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ancient history



  • Ancient Egypt for the Egyptians

    New books and a documentary consider the entanglement of colonialism with the rise of academic Egyptology.



  • Searching for Our Urban Future in the Ruins of the Past

    Annalee Newitz's book on lost cities debunks the idea of sudden, catastrophic collapse. But the death of cities does show that humanity is vulnerable to change that makes centuries-old ways of life untenable. 


  • The Original Storming of the Capitol

    by Stephen Dando-Collins

    The January 6, 2021 siege of the Capitol in Washington DC has eerie parallels with a much earlier event, the AD 69 siege of the Capitoline Mount in Rome.


  • Ancient Rome Has an Urgent Warning for Us

    by Kyle Harper

    It's simplistic to look to the classics as instructions for political or social conduct, but the study of the past should inform our awareness of the power of nature to affect social and political life. 



  • The Complicated History of Religion and Archaeology

    Modern archaeology has largely succeeded in instituting professionalization and historical rigor to the study of sites of theological significance, but the discipline has a long and continuing historical entanglement with efforts to find proof of religious doctrines.



  • Why are there seven days in a week?

    by Kristin Heineman

    The Babylonians, who lived in modern-day Iraq, were astute observers and interpreters of the heavens, and it is largely thanks to them that our weeks are seven days long.