A Mnemosyne mosaic from the second century AD

Healing and Memory in Ancient Greece

The goddess Mnemosyne helped bards remember what to sing and was the mother of the Muses. But she also played a role in healing sanctuaries.
Cork oak (Quercus suber) pasture near Arcos de la Frontera, Cádiz, Spain.

Plant of the Month: Cork

Why is cork so strongly associated with bottle stoppers? The answer goes back centuries.
Ruins of a Roman aqueduct in Tunisia

Fixing the Aqueduct from Hell

The Roman engineer Nonius Datus thought the project was in good shape when he left Saldae. He would return.
Roman Street Scene by Ettore Forti

Everyone in Pompeii Got Takeout, Too

Archaeologists have found that snack bars called tabernae fed much of the city in the shadow of Mount Vesuvius.
The Last Day of Pompeii by Karl Brullov

Pompeii Mania in the Era of Romanticism

Nothing appealed more perfectly to the Romantic sensibility than the mix of horror and awe evoked by a volcano erupting.
Anne and Bernard Spitzer Hall of Human Origins, American Museum of Natural History, Upper West Side, New York, NY

Sewing Saved Us from a “Cold Snap” 13 Thousand Years Ago

Sewing a full winter outfit from animal hides took 105 hours. And we needed lots of them to survive the Younger Dryas Cold Event.
Xipe Totec Impersonator from AD 600-900

The Festival of the Flayed God

The terrifying and gruesome rituals of the Flayed God had a symbolic subtext that was somewhat gentler than one might imagine.
A piece of polished amber

Facts and Fancies About Amber

It's taken scientists a long time to figure out what amber is made of, and what we can learn from it.
Chan Chan idol

Child Sacrifice in the Ancient Americas

At various sites throughout Peru and Argentina, archaeologists have found remains of child sacrifices.
Alexander The Great mosaic

The Other Alexander the Great

Stories emerged in the centuries after Alexander the Great’s death. They revolved around Alexander's failures, not his victories. The portrait that emerges is strangely poignant.