India

This iron dagger's well-preserved wooden handle may help researchers date artifacts found in Konthagai.

Cool Finds

Archaeologists Unearth Ancient Dagger Linked to Enigmatic Indian Civilization

A blade found in the state of Tamil Nadu offers new evidence of an urban center that thrived as long as 2,500 years ago

The cave paintings are located in the Aravalli mountain range in northwestern India.

Cool Finds

These Millennia-Old Cave Paintings May Be Among India's Oldest

Locals have known about the artworks for generations, but government archaeologists only began documenting them this summer

The yazh's design is based on detailed descriptions of the ancient instrument.

Listen to the First Song Ever Recorded on This Ancient, Harp-Like Instrument

Tharun Sekar, a luthier based in southern India, has painstakingly recreated the long-lost yazh

A 300-thread count sari woven out of a hybrid Dhaka muslin thread

How Modern Researchers Are Trying to Recreate a Long-Lost Fabric

Dhaka muslin was immensely popular for millennia, but the secrets of its creation faded from memory by the early 20th century

Six of the statues appear to depict Siddhartha Gautama, while five likely portray the Hindu deity and Buddhist bodhisattva Tara.

Cool Finds

Remnants of Tenth-Century Buddhist Monastery Found in India

The excavation uncovered statues of the Buddha and Tara, a prominent bodhisattva

Health workers in protective suits cull ducks in Karuvatta after the H5N8 bird flu strain was detected.

Avian Flu Outbreak in India Results in Mass Poultry Culls

No cases of avian flu have been detected in humans during the current outbreak

Archaeologists have been excavating the site since 2017.

Cool Finds

A Medieval Nun Led This Newly Unearthed Buddhist Monastery in Eastern India

The religious center, located on a hillside away from densely populated areas, may have had all-female or mixed-gender renunciates

After composing and transcribing music for my wedding day, Red Baraat was born. Dave Sharma leads the baraat (wedding procession) on dhol, as I walk with my mother, family, and friends. August 27, 2005.

Smithsonian Voices

Musician Sunny Jain Reflects on Jainism, Jazz and the Punjabi Dhol Drum

While the originations of the dhol are not known with complete certainty, what is known is that it is a sound that has migrated

The group’s identification also highlights how much of ocean life—even when it comes to the largest sea creatures—has yet to be discovered.

Scientists Eavesdrop on New Population of Blue Whales Singing in the Indian Ocean

Scientists have identified a previously unknown blue whale song, suggesting that a distinct population had long gone undetected

A new book  Incredible Archaeology: Inspiring Places From Our Human Past, out this month from Smithsonian Books, explores some of the world's most spectacular ancient wonders.

Twelve Ancient and Enduring Places Around the World

From Smithsonian Books, towering temples, dramatic works of art and early settlements that have stood the test of time

The Gollum snakehead is unusual among subterranean critters because it has both eyes and a colorful complexion.

New Research

Subterranean Fish Named 'Gollum' Belongs to a New Family

The freshwater fish belongs to a never-before-described taxonomic family, making it one of the biggest finds of the last decade

The classic Turkey red, sported by everyone from Rosie the Riveter to Tupac Shakur.

The Global History of the Bandana

How an Indian export became part of the fabric of American life

This 200-year-old Hindu temple in India was rediscovered by locals after being buried for some 80 years.

Cool Finds

Centuries-Old Hindu Temple Unearthed in India

The 200-year-old structure had been buried by sand for 80 years until local miners rediscovered it

This week's selections include The Women With Silver Wings, Tombstone and The Restaurant.

Books of the Month

A 2,000-Year History of Restaurants and Other New Books to Read

The fifth installment in our weekly series spotlights titles that may have been lost in the news amid the COVID-19 crisis

A policeman stands over a graffiti drawn to bring awareness to social distancing as a preventive measure against COVID-19 in Chennai, India, on April 9, 2020

Covid-19

How 'Social Distancing' Can Get Lost in Translation

Governments around the world grapple with how to deliver important guidelines on minimizing the spread of COVID-19

Asiatic cheetahs—like this one photographed in Iran—haven't had a stable population in India in decades. Now, the government has clearance to introduce African cheetahs into several wildlife ranges in the Indian subcontinent.

After Decades-Long Battle, Cheetahs Can Be Reintroduced in India

Officials will now move forward with an experimental—and controversial—plan

Indian Roller on Sandalwood Branch, by Shaikh Zain ud-Din, Impey Album, Calcutta, 1780.

Art Meets Science

London Exhibit Celebrates Indian Artists Who Captured Natural History for the East India Company

Paintings once anonymized as "company art" will finally be labeled with the names of their creators

A tiger similar to the one pictured here trekked more than 800 miles over the course of five months.

Trending Today

Tiger Takes Record-Breaking 800-Mile Trek Across India

The male, dubbed C1, left the Tipeshwar Tiger Reserve in June and is likely looking for a mate, new territory or prey

Shaikh Zain ud-Din’s Brahminy Starling with Two Antheraea Moths, Caterpillar, and Cocoon on an Indian Jujube Tree was originally part of an album commissioned by his British patrons.

The Awe-Inspiring Wildlife Drawings of Shaikh Zain ud-Din

An 18th-century album of India's flora and fauna showcases the startling work of an overlooked master

The moon lander Vikram in the foreground and the orbiter Chandrayaan- in the background during preparation of the spacecraft for launch, June 10, 2019.

India Locates Lost Lunar Lander but Struggles to Reestablish Contact

The Vikram spacecraft went offline minutes before it was scheduled to touch down near the south pole of the moon

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