Historic ErasHistoric eras—including prehistory, ancient and modern history—represent time viewed through the lens of human events
He was the barbarians' barbarian who called himself "the Scourge of God." But how did the terrible Attila command such loyalty—and why, in death, was he so mourned?
February 03, 2012 | By Mike Dash
Two thousand years before Picasso, artists in Egypt painted some of the most arresting portraits in the history of art
February 2012 | By Smithsonian Magazine
Charles J. Guiteau said he wanted to kill President James A. Garfield "in an American manner." He passed up several opportunities before he thought the time was right.
January 17, 2012 | By Gilbert King
January 2012 | By G. Wayne Clough
In A.D. 9, the Chinese emperor nationalized his state's land and redistributed it to the peasantry. That revolutionary act cost him his throne and his life—and even now his motives remain unclear
December 09, 2011 | By Mike Dash
The first case of stigmata—the appearance of marks or actual wounds like those Christ received during the Crucifixion—was recorded in 1224. Hundreds of cases have followed. But this phenomenon has not been fully explained.
November 18, 2011 | By Mike Dash
Following years of haggling over its provenance, a celebrated statue once identified as Aphrodite, has returned to Italy
November 2011 | By Ralph Frammolino
In 1782, an unknown French engineer offered an invention better than radar: the ability to detect ships hundreds of miles away
October 13, 2011 | By Mike Dash
For the better part of 200 years, thousands of female soldiers fought and died to expand the borders of their West African kingdom. Even their conquerors, the French, acknowledged their "prodigious bravery."
September 23, 2011 | By Mike Dash
Renowned for their ruthlessness, these two female pirates challenged the sailors’ adage that a woman’s presence on shipboard invites bad luck
August 09, 2011 | By Karen Abbott
A 1957 "time traveler" recalls "a feeling of unfriendliness and unseen watchers which sent shivers up one’s back"
July 21, 2011 | By Mike Dash
Make the most of the last events by trying Amazonian tucupí broth, made of scalded cassava, or try your hand at the tango
July 11, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
Fuse two dance traditions at the event "Tango meets Salsa" at the El Rumbiadero stage today and learn about Colombian mask-making traditions at the Me Contaron Los Abuelos stage
July 10, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
Check out presentations about weaving and the environment and recycling in the arts this morning in the Colombia tents, then head over to the Peace Corps area to try out some Ukrainian, Jamaican and Georgian cooking
July 09, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
This morning, learn a thing or two about improvisation at the El Rumbiadero stage or immerse yourself in the culture of Colombia’s coffee region
July 08, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
Welcome back to day six of the Smithsonian Folklife Festival! Settle in to today’s scheduled events with some cowboy stories in the Colombia tents, then head next door to try cholado, a common Colombian drink made from crushed ice, fruit and sweetened condensed milk. Later in the day, watch traditional dancers from the Ukraine and [...]
July 07, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
Before going to the fireworks, broaden your horizons with Tango de Medellín or learn about how Peace Corps members deal with what it means to be “the American” during their time abroad
July 04, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
On Day 4 of the Folklife Festival, catch a performance of Aires del Campo, see dancers from Botswana and the Philippines and head over to the R&B area to enjoy performances by Swamp Dogg, Nat Dove, Sonny Til’s Orioles and more
July 03, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
On Day 3 of the Folklife Festival, taste traditional Moroccan food, try your hand at the marimba and get schooled on Afro-Colombian hairstyles
July 02, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki
On day 2 of the Folklife Festival, enjoy music from South America, doo-wop and Martha Reeves, as well as cooking lessons from the Peace Corps
July 01, 2011 | By Julie Mianecki