Archeology is one of the main studies humans have to get deeper insights into our past. If we dig a bit into history, we can discover what life looked like hundreds of thousands of years ago. It’s truly remarkable to see through artifacts how humanity has evolved over time. Sure, science continues to advance with new technologies and inventions, and as humans, we are always looking for the next big development in mankind. But if we take a look at some of the discovered artifacts of our past, it is evident that they are incredibly valuable to this day and speak louder than words. Although they may be centuries old, they still surprise us today. Let’s take a look at some of the most breathtaking archeological finds from around the world.
A 3400-Year-Old Painter’s Palette From Ancient Egypt Still Contains Traces of Pigment And Belonged To Pharaoh Amenhotep III
This ancient artist’s palette is made from just one single piece of ivory. This palette has been so well preserved, it still contains remnants of pigments like green, blue, yellow, red, black, and brown. This artifact is just one example of how the North African civilization of ancient Egypt was paving the way in the field of arts.
A 2,000-Year-Old Glass Mosaic Was Uncovered In Zeugma, Turkey Which Shows Characters From Ancient Greek Mythology
Archeologists have unveiled numerous mosaics in the city of Zeugma. In order to conserve the relics of the past, excavation took place when word came out that the city was being flooded by a dam close by. These types of elaborate mosaics decorated the floors of people’s homes and date back to the 2nd century BC.
This 2,000 Year Old Face Cream Is The Oldest In The World And Still Contains Finger Marks On The Inside Of The Lid
At the Roman temple complex in London, Archeologists have uncovered something marvelous. Archeologists were shocked to find white paste inside the sealed container. Creams like this don’t usually survive this long to be placed in archeological records. This may have served as a foundation for Roman women who strived for a fair complexion.
Historians Believe That The “Beware Of Dog” Tile Mosaic in Pompeii From 2,000 Years Ago Shows That Romans Had Aggressive Dogs In Order To Protect Their Households
It is well known that dogs have been pets for centuries. This is possibly the oldest known “beware of dog” sign which depicts a frightening dog. This amazing mosaic found at a Roman poet’s home has words at the bottom that can be faintly seen. The words seen are “Cave Canem,” which comes from the words “caveat” (beware) “canine” (dog).
The World’s Oldest Pair Of Levi’s Jeans Were Discovered In A Goldmine After 136 Years And Are Kept In A Fire-Proof Safe Where Only Two People Know The Code
The “waist overalls” jeans, otherwise known as XX, were produced back in 1879. They are the original version of the classic 501 that Levi’s sells today. Interestingly, these pants don’t contain belt loops, but rather buttons to secure suspenders. The wear pattern of these jeans brought archivists to the conclusion that they were most likely worn by three people.
Galileo Galelis’s First-Ever Sketches Of The Moon After Using His Telescope in 1609
This sketch made by Galileo is a fascinating and important piece of history. Who knew the discoveries he made by looking through his telescope would bring us to where we are today. From discovering craters on the moon, stars in the Milky Way, and the pendulum clock, he really molded our world as we know it today.
2,000-Year-Old Roman Lead Pipes Are Believed To Be The Reason For The Fall Of The Roman Empire Due To Lead Poisoning
The ancient Roman plumbing system was a huge accomplishment in civil engineering. The rich Romans had access to hot and cold running water, as well as a working sewage system. But with the discovery of lead pipes, researchers discovered a sudden rise in lead in the waters in 200 BCE.
Dating Back 1,000 Years, India’s Ancient Stepwalls Are Solving Modern Day Water Problems
Throughout western India, ancient step walls can be found which were once used as traditional techniques for collecting small amounts of rainwater which helped people survive in the heat of this region. The large stone structures are called ‘baolis’ and act as reservoirs. Today, locals are fighting to keep their preservation, and experts are working on using the baoli model in other places around the world.
Cliff Drawing Discovered At The ‘Sistine Chapel Of The Ancients’ Reveal Prehistoric Life And People’s Liking For Bungee Jumping
There are thousands of ice-age drawings that scatter across prehistoric rock nearly eight miles long in the Amazonian rainforest. These drawings date back 12,500 years ago and there are more than 100,000 individual paintings like extinct animals, armadillos, and group ceremonies, and people bungee jumping. It’s believed that this finding is only scratching the surface.
Historic Ottoman Architecture Was Designed With The Protection Of Animals In Mind, Like These Detailed Bird Houses That Look Like Miniature Palaces
Ancient Ottoman Architecture, which was built between the 15th and d19th centuries, was truly unique in the sense that it accommodated more than just humans. Birds were able to flock to multi-story mansions, some of which contained ‘runways’ for the birds’ takeoffs and landings.
The Atacama Giant Is The Largest Ancient Geoglyph Ever Discovered Which Was Used To Predict The Weather
This Atacama Giant in the desert of Chile is a drawing of one of the diety’s that was used to calculate where the moon moved. It is believed to have been made between 1000 and 1400 BCE. This drawing is only one of about 5,000 others. It was made by digging outlines from the soil or using stones to stencil out the design and putting sand on top of that.
The Detailed Da Vinci Globe Is Made Of Two Ostrich Egg Halves And Is The Oldest Known Globe To Depict The New World
This ostrich egg globe which was made in 1504 was most likely Da Vinci’s genius. This was the earliest known globe to show the Americas. It is interesting to see that in place of Central and North America, you can see the islands of Columbus’ discovery which is engulfed by an ocean where the Pacific and Atlantic come together.
Ancient Terracotta Dice From The Indus Valley Was Discovered between 1995 and 2001 And Were Most Likely Used For Board Games And Gambling
These ancient cubicle dice are marked with dots 1 to 6. What’s unique about them is that they have been kept intact after all these years. The difference between these dice and modern-day dice is that the 1 is placed opposite 2,3, and so on. The dice of today always sum up to the number 7 on opposite sides.
This diving suit designed by the Carmagnolle Brothers had 25 individual glass viewing portholes on the helmet for the diver to see
The 1878 diving suit was the very first anthropomorphic suit to ever be created, meaning it had a human form. The two French brothers, Alphonse and Theodore Carmagnolle received a patent for this armored suit in 1882. Along with the 25 helmet holes, there was an extra port on the top to help ventilate the top once at the surface.
This Is A Sumerian House Plan From 5,000 Years Ago Displayed On A Clay Tablet
Even 5,000 years ago, people were drawing up house plans. Many Sumerian homes built back then were constructed around a central courtyard to allow air and light through, and windows were small and high to block out the heat. The walls and floors were made out of bricks of mud and women cooked on raised mud bricks.
This Is What Medieval Doodles Of A 7 Year Old Looked Like In 1200 AD
This doodle was found in Northern Russia in the clay soils of Novgorod. Many documents were found here, but one of the most spectacular is this 13th century drawing from a 7-year-old boy named Onfirm. He was learning how to write, but his imagination and creativity took over, so his spelling exercises are mixed with doodles.
The Shigir Idol Is The World’s Oldest Wooden Sculpture That Contains Symbols Meant To Communicate A Message
The Shigir Idol has been preserved for around 11,000 years and can unveil a lot about history if we look close enough. It’s covered with symbols and pictograms, and researchers are trying to understand their meaning. For example, this statue could have been used as a map where the lines indicated the direction and length of a trip.
The World’s Oldest Pair Of Sunglasses Were Snow Goggles, Meant To Sheild The Eyes From The Sun’s Rays Reflected By The Snow
The oldest pair of sunglasses were found in Canada on Baffin Island. The small slits in the design helped to protect the eyes from snow-blindness that can happen when sunlight bounces off the white snow. The snow goggles first came to Canada 800 years ago with the Inuit culture.
This Is The Oldest Recorded Recipe For Sumerian Beer, Dating Back 5,000 years
Even back then, people still needed to write down recipes, they just may have written it quite differently. In this particular recipe for Beer, it is believed to have been very strong and with floating bread pieces in it.
Ancient Egyptian Sandals from 1500 BC Were Made Of Gold And Had Matching Toe Caps
The ancient Egyptians were known for their very rich burials. Whatever was left in the grave was meant to help in the transition to the afterlife. The sandals buried with Egyptian royals were usually gold sandals accompanied by toe stalls to protect the mummy.
The 10,000-Year-Old “Cave Of Hands” Is One Of The Earliest Forms of Cave Art
The Cave of Hands, otherwise known as La Cueva de la Manos is made up of hundreds of stenciled handprints in Argentine Patagonia. These handprints date back to 5,000 BC, and it’s believed that the stencils were made from bone-made pipes.
British Archeologists Discovered Pottery Pipes Believed to Have Been The First Water Drainage System In History Before 4000 BC
An image worth a thousand words. British archeologists Leonard Woolley and his wife Catherine worked on excavation sites where they found ring drains. These underground pipes were used as a sewage and rainwater network.
The 2000-Year-Old Roman Mosaic Was Hiding Under The Euphrates Waters in Turkey
The ancient Turkish city of Zeugma has a very rich archaeological history. Back in May of 2000, the Birecik Dam flooded several ruins, which began an emergency excavation. During this project, some of the most important collections of Roman mosaics were discovered.
People Would Put Their Hands Inside The “Mouth Of Truth”. If A Liar Put His Hand Inside, He Would Lose It
The Mouth of Truth, otherwise known as the Bocca della Verita, is a marble mask located in Rome. In the 15th century, the mask had taken on symbolic meaning and was believed to hold magical powers of sniffing out liars,m but no lost hands have ever been recorded.
The Voynich Manuscript Has Remained A Mystery Since Its Discovery in 1912 And Contains Strange Symbols And Handwriting In An Unknown Language
The 15th-century Voynich Manuscript is filled with illustrations of plants, women, weird objects, and zodiac symbols. One researcher may have cracked the code of the book and believes it serves as a guide to women’s health. For example, the plants could be related to herbal medicine.
The Decree Of Sais, A Stele Inscribed With Hieroglyphics, Was Found During An Underwater Excavation
The Decree of Sais was just one of the sunken treasures found during this excavation. It was part of a 2,200-year-old military shipwreck in Egypt’s lost cities of Thonis and Heracleion. The stele decree with hieroglyphics had curses on it against the nation’s enemies and proved that Thonis and Heracleion were the same city.
The Oldest Throne In Europe Was Discovered In Greece Circa 1900 In The Palace Of Knossos
If you go to the Greek island of Crete, you can find the throne room which was built back in the 15th century BC. It is not fully clear whether this room was used by a ruler or if it was used purely for religious ceremonies for gods and goddesses, or other high-type figures.
Found In Western China, These Are Believed To Be The Oldest Pants Dating Back 3,300 Years
The oldest known pair of pants were found at the tombs in Western China. The pants were made of wool, had two straight legs, and were most likely used for horseback riding. Horseback riding may go back about 4,000 years ago, with pants coming into the picture not far after that.
This Rare 5,000 Year Old Crystal Spearhead May Have Been Used By The High-Level People To Help Get Magical Powers
Found at a prehistoric Iberian megalithic tomb in Spain, this spearhead is made from rock crystal, which was only available outside of the region. It’s around 8.5 inches long. Researchers believe that these crystals held symbolic meaning and were used for magical powers, like connecting to ancestors.
This Unusual Object Is A 19th Century Artificial Limb From Victorian England
This prosthetic arm made from steel and brass seems as though the person wearing it may not be able to move or grasp things properly. The handicapped today have prosthetic limbs that allow for functionality due to advanced technology, but this 19th-century arm was just the beginning.
These 3,000-Year-Old Stairs Are Europe’s Oldest Wooden Staircase Found In The Hallstatt Salt Mine
The staircase of Hallstatt is about 3,100 years old and its build represents what construction was like during the bronze age. It was built by miners in 1344 BCE in the prehistoric mine, and after archeologists discovered the staircase, a wooden shelter was built over it in order to preserve it.
This Ancient Fast-Food Restuarant Counter Was Discovered In Pompeii
In the Roman city of Pompeii, archeologists have unearthed a thermopolium, or what we know today as a hot food and drink bar. Terra cotta jars were also found where the hot food was served from. It is also believed that the paintings that adorned the shop’s exterior were the restaurant’s menu.
This 2,000 Year Old Roman Mosaic Looks Like A Carpet That Needs Straightening
Archeologists in Antakya, Turkey have recently found a detailed mosaic dating back 2,000 years. This may be one of the world’s largest mosaics and covers about 9,000 square feet. Astonishingly, the rug is believed to have been worked on by 13 different civilizations, meaning it would have been in progress for more than 15 centuries.
The Cursed Delhi Purple Sapphire Was Found With A Note Warning Whoever Opened It, To Throw It Away Into The Sea
For centuries, people have been associating gemstones with certain properties. The purple amethyst, for example, is said to bring clarity and calmness. However, this gem, known as the purple sapphire is said to be cursed. Its previous owner wrote a note warning against anyone who handles it.
The Ancient Greek Antikythera Mechanism May Be The World’s First Computer
This ancient Greek device was found deep in the sea in 1901 in the Antikythera shipwreck and is believed to have predicted planets’ movements. This artifact has a clock mechanic with 40 bronze gears attached to dials and activated by a crank handle. The Greeks were nothing but impressive.
These 23,000-Year-Old Footprints Discovered In New Mexico Are The Oldest Known Footprints In The Americas
What’s exceptional about this discovery is that it proves that people may have been in the Americas 10,000 years before scientists had originally thought. The fossilized footprints tell a story of what life was like back then, with tracks left mainly by teenagers and young kids.
The 16th Century Boxwood Carvings Are So Small, An X-Ray Had To Be Used To Unlock Their Mysteries
These 500-year-old boxwood carvings that fit in the palm of a hand were made between 1500 and 1530 in the Netherlands. The detail of these portable religious carvings are so intricate, it’s not visible by the human eye, so researchers relied on micro-CT scanning to get a good view.
This 2,000 Year Old Sapphire Ring Belonged To The Ancient Roman Emperor Caligula And His Fourth Wife Is Etched Into The Stone
This intricate 2,000-year-old piece of jewelry is remarkable for the intricate portrait that’s been carved into it. It’s believed to be Caligula’s fourth and final wife, Caesonia. The ring has since been auctioned and went on sale for $750,000.
The Explorer Ernest Shackleton’s Lost Ship, ‘Endurance’, Being Crushed By The Ice Of The Antarctic
Ernest Shackleton had a bold dream, to be the first man to reach the South Pole. Unfortunately for the explorer, the ice of Antarctica had different ideas, crushing the ironically named ship, Endurance, only 5 weeks into the journey. The crew and Shackleton made it back home, but the ship was lost for over 100 years and only recently rediscovered.
The Codex Gigas Is the Largest Medieval Book In The World And Is Also Known As ‘The Devil’s Bible’
The Codex Gigas gets its name as the ‘Devil’s Bible’ because of the large drawing of the devil on the inside of the book. It is 36 inches tall, 8.7 inches thick, and weighs 165 pounds. With its many pages and detailed drawings, it’s believed to have taken 30 years to finish.
The Mysterious Por-Bazhyn Island Fortress In Siberia Was Used As A Manichean Monastery
The Fortress of Por-Bazhyn, which translates to ‘Clay House,’ can be found in the mountains of Siberia and was built back in AD 777. In its remains are more than 30 buildings surrounded by 40 feet high walls. The site’s monastic purpose was proven by the timbers on the site, for they date back to when the emperor Bo-Gu converted to Manichaeism.
The Lavish Ottoman Three-Mass Tents From The 17th Century Were Used As Military Camps And Movable Homes
The Ottoman Empire rose in the 13th century and Ottoman tents served many different functions. They were used for military campaigns, celebrations, and country excursions. The Turkish tents not only made for convenient travel but were also their prized form of architecture.
This 2,000 Year Old Green Stone Mask Is Believed To Have Been Used As A Ritual Offering To Mark The Start Of Construction Of The Pyramid Of The Sun
This green mask was found at the Teotihuacan Pyramid of the Sun in Mexico City. Researchers also found remains of offerings at the pyramid site, which was built in 100 AD. These offerings were part of a dedication ceremony.
Medieval Europe Established The World’s Most Famous Chess Pieces, The Lewis Chessman
These walrus ivory chessmen have a long history. They got their name from the Isle of Lewis. It’s believed that the pieces belonged to a merchant who carried them from Norway to Ireland. They’ve also made their way into movies, like when a replica of the Lewis chess set was used in the first Harry Potter film.
The Oldest Known Leather Shoe In The World Discovered In Armenia Goes Back 5,500 Years
This 5,500-year-old shoe was found in pretty great condition in the Arena-1 cave in Armenia. It’s the oldest known piece of leather footwear in the world. The discovered shoe was found with grass inside, and it is unknown whether this was used to keep the feet warm, or if it was to preserve the shape of the shoe.
The 1,500 Year Old Maya Figurine Is The World’s Oldest Action Figure
This ceramic Maya figurine found in Guatemala was found nearly intact including a removable helmet. It was actually among 23 other ceramic figures who represented supernatural characters who were placed by mourners in a circular form inside a royal tomb chamber.
The skeleton of these conjoined twins about 12” tall can be found at the Mutter Museum in Philidelphia
These conjoined twins at the Mutter museum are fused at the head and part of the neck. As you can see by the size of these skeletons, they didn’t make it very long. This type of conjoined twin is not usually compatible with life, unfortunately. They also probably didn’t stand like this in real life but were assembled for visibility purposes.
This 15-year-old sacrificial girl from the Incan Empire was frozen for 500 years
This is one of the most well-presevered mummies in the world and was found in Argentina. She’s called Juanita La Doncella and was found with other sacrificial children part of an ancient civilization. The near-perfect state in which she was found gave her the title of the best-preserved mummies found by National Geographic.
The foot of a Megalapteryx found in New Zeland is considered to be the best-preserved dinosaur tissue
This animal, also known as the Moa bird only lived on the South Island of New Zealand. Archeologists think the moa was the last of its species to become extinct back in 1500 AD. When this foot was discovered, it still had flesh and scaly skin, and once analyzed, was believed to be from a 3,300-year-old Moa.
The Abbey Church if Sainte-Foy In France Was A Popular Rest Stop For Pilgrims And Depicts Medieval Humour
The Abbey Church of Sainte-Foy is one of the most beautiful churches in France and was built towards the end of the 11th century. Many medieval church architects would leave their signatures on their buildings, and one of them happened to be this figure peeping out from behind the stairs.
This 2,000 Year Old Carbonized Loaf Of Bread Was Discovered In The Ruins Of Pompeii
The ruins of Pompeii were first found towards the end of the 16th century, and with modern archeology, the life of the Romans was able to be brought to light. One of the most interesting artifacts found were loaves of bread inside an oven in bakery ruins. Despite being covered in ash, its shape looks like it just came out of the oven.
This 18th Century Samurai Helmet Used By Japanese Warriors Was Shaped Like An Octopus To Help High Ranking Military Leaders Stand Out From The Other Soldiers
This Japanese helmet, also known as Kabuki, was very popular among Japanese warriors. Although they look very hefty and difficult to manage, they were designed to be lightweight so they wouldn’t be bothersome to whoever wore them. In Japanese culture, the octopus represents vitality and is symbolic of a deep connection to the sea.
This 16th Century Sundial Ring Was An Ode To The Renaissance Fascination in Scientific Discoveries And Natural Sciences
This gold sundial ring from 1570 is quite unique. Wearers were meant to hold the ring directly toward the sun so sunlight could hit the inside of the ring, which was engraved with the hours of the day. This would indicate the correct time by the position of the sun in the sky.
The Newspaper Rock In Utah Has One Of The Largest Known Collections of Petroglyphs Recording 2,000 Years Of Human Activity
Hundreds of Petroglyphs, or carved designs and pictures into rock, can be spotted along Newspaper Rock State Historic Monument in Utah. These images were made roughly 2,000 years ago, and in the Navajo language, the rock is called ‘Tse’ Hone,’ which means ‘a rock that tells a story.’
The Vasa Warship Sunk After A Light Gust Of Wind Toppled The Ship Onto Its Side Only After 1300m Into Its Voyage
The Vasa Swedish warship was built between 1626 and 1628. It was one of the Swedish navy’s greatest achievements, yet sunk after sailing twenty minutes. The remains of the 17th-century vessel can now be found at Stockholm’s Vasa Museum and it is the only preserved 17th-century ship in the world.
After 2,000 Years, This Ancient Roman Bathhouse In Algeria Is Still In Use
This 2,000-year-old bathhouse in the town of Khenchela, Algeria is available for the public, where locals often come to visit. This particular bathhouse, Hammam Essalhine, is known for its therapeutic waters, whose chemical compositions provide many essential minerals.
Hundreds Of Gold Coins Were Found In The Basement Of An Old Theatre In Italy Dating Back To Rome’s Imperial Era
At the former Cressoni theatre in Northern Italy, archeologists have uncovered a hefty amount of golden coins, at least 300 of them. Archeologists have said that whoever buried these coins buried in such a way so if there were to be any danger, they could easily retrieve them.
Because Of Its Intricate Design, The Chinese Puzzle Ball Was Once Believed To Not Be Carved By Humans
The intricately made ivory puzzle ball is also known as the devil’s work ball. Puzzle balls usually consisted of 20 to 25 layers of ivory, which was then chiseled from a single piece of material. Ivory was a very luxurious material at the time, and using ivory in Chinese art dates back almost 4,000 years ago.
These Gold Plaques Were Found On The Shoes Of A 6 Foot Tall Celtic Prince
The Hochdorf Chieftain’s grave is a burial chamber that holds numerous treasures. One of those treasures were these golden plaques found on his now disintegrated shoes. He was also laid on a bronze couch with a gold ring around his neck, a bracelet, and a cauldron at the foot of his bed.
Map Of A Woman’s Heart
This map depicts the 19th-century idea of what womanhood and beauty were supposed to look like. It showed how women were supposed to feel about relationships and love during this time. The map was created by D. W. Kellogg between 1833 and 1842 and depicted that love is an “open country.”
15,000-Year-Old Bison Sculptures Were Discovered Perfectly Preserved In The Tuc D’Audoubert Cave
Finding preserved prehistoric sculptures is not easy to come by. When found, they provide archeologists with information as to how the earliest cultures lived. In this cave in France, two bison sculpted in clay can be seen. Experts believe bison served a ritualistic purpose, and they were also an important food source at the time.
Life-Size Terracotta Warriors Were Positioned In Military Formation To Gaurd Emperor Qin’s Tomb
The Terracotta Army was made up of more than 8,000 life-size soldiers that protected the burial site of Qin Shi Huang, China’s first emperor. They were made from yellow clay. Qin spent the majority of his rule preparing for the afterlife, and it is believed that they took more than 10 years to finish.
This 1,700 Year Old Woven Sock Most Likely Belonged To A Young Child In Ancient Egypt
This sock was found during the 1913-1914 excavation of the Egyptian city of Antinooupolis. The sock has seven different colors of wool yarn woven together to create a stripe pattern. The different combinations of colors were used by just three plant dyes of red, yellow, and blue.
The Walls Of The Hathor Temple In Egypt Depict The Roman Emperor Trajan Making Offerings To Hathor
The Hathor Temple, or the Dendera Temple Complex, is one of the most well-preserved temples in all of Egypt. It is believed to have been built in 2250 BCE and is a great example of Pharaonic architecture. Hathor was the Egyptian sky goddess of fertility and motherhood to which this temple was dedicated to.