Roman Empire

Art dealer Helen Fioratti and her husband, Nereo, purchased the mosaic from an aristocratic Italian family in the 1960s and used it as a coffee table in their Manhattan apartment for some 45 years.

Cool Finds

A Mosaic From Caligula's 'Pleasure Boat' Spent 45 Years as a Coffee Table in NYC

Authorities returned the ancient artwork, now on view at a museum near Rome, to Italy following a multi-year investigation

The mosaic was scorched by fire, but its depiction of the Iliad remains clearly visible.

Cool Finds

Huge Roman Mosaic Depicting Scenes From the 'Iliad' Found Beneath U.K. Field

The artwork features scenes from the Iliad showing Achilles’s defeat of Hector

Inlaid with silver and brass, the ancient Roman dagger is in remarkably good condition.

Cool Finds

Amateur Archaeologist in Switzerland Unearths 2,000-Year-Old Roman Dagger

Lucas Schmid's find led to the discovery of hundreds of other ancient artifacts linked to a 15 B.C.E. battle between imperial and Rhaetian forces

Made of pure silver, the coin was minted during the second year of the Great Revolt.

Cool Finds

Israeli Preteen Discovers Rare Silver Coin Minted During Jewish Revolt Against Rome

Eleven-year-old Liel Krutokop found the shekel, which dates to the second year of the first-century C.E. Great Revolt, while sifting through dirt

The coins span the reigns of Nero (54 to 68 C.E.) to Septimius Severus (193 to 211 C.E.).

Cool Finds

Hoard of 5,500 Roman-Era Silver Coins Unearthed in Germany

The coins were buried in what is now the city of Augsburg around the third century C.E.

The heads belong to statues previously discovered in the ancient city.

Cool Finds

Roman-Era Shops, Statues of Greek Deities Found in Ancient City in Turkey

Researchers in Aizanoi unearthed traces of a bone workshop and an oil lamp store, as well as the heads of sculptures depicting Aphrodite and Dionysus

The Roman elite viewed public toilets as an instrument that flushed the filth of the plebes out of their noble sight.

How the Ancient Romans Went to the Bathroom

A new book by journalist Lina Zeldovich traces the management of human waste—and underscores poop's potential as a valuable resource

The room's sparse furnishings led archaeologists to suspect it served as housing for enslaved people.

Quarters for Enslaved People Discovered at Pompeiian Villa

The plainly furnished room contained three wooden beds, a chamber pot and a chest

The latrine was about 16 inches high, with a smaller 3- to 4-inch-deep trough for clean water located nearby.

Cool Finds

Latrine Used by Ancient Actors Discovered Among Ruins of Theater in Turkey

Dated to the second century C.E., the communal "artist toilet" could accommodate about a dozen people at a time

Archaeologists excavated the foundations of a carcer, or holding cell, where gladiators, doomed prisoners and wild animals waited before being brought into the Richborough Roman amphitheater in Kent.

Cool Finds

Holding Cell for Gladiators, Doomed Prisoners Found at Roman Amphitheater in England

Researchers initially thought the structure was a passageway to the ancient arena

Archaeologist Rachel Wood holds a Roman bust found at the site of a Norman church.

Cool Finds

Trio of 'Astounding' Roman Statues Found Beneath Medieval Church in England

The well-preserved sculptures—believed to have stood in an ancient mausoleum—depict a woman, man and child

Top Spanish chefs have endorsed garum as a fishy sauce with deep roots in Spanish and Roman history.

Culinary Detectives Try to Recover the Formula for a Deliciously Fishy Roman Condiment

From Pompeii to modern laboratories, scholars are working to recreate garum, a sauce made from decaying fish that delighted ancient Rome

The tombs feature images of vines, flowers and geometric patterns, as well as mythological figures.

Cool Finds

Hundreds of Ornate, Rock-Cut Tombs Discovered in Ancient Turkish City

Some 1,800 years ago, residents of Blaundos buried their dead in highly decorated graves cut into the sides of a surrounding canyon

The white pipeclay Venus statuette before (right) and after (left) cleaning

Roman-Era Statue of Venus, Goddess of Love, Discovered in England

The seven-inch-tall figurine likely stood in a household shrine in what is now Gloucestershire some 1,800 years ago

Early Etruscans had advanced knowledge of art, farming and metallurgy, leading some historians to believe the civilization originated elsewhere before settling in what is now Italy. DNA analysis shows they were actually locals.

New Research

Where Did the Ancient Etruscans Come From?

A new DNA analysis suggests the enigmatic civilization was native to the Italian Peninsula

Two men found the coins while diving in Portitxol Bay along the Mediterranean coast.

Cool Finds

Amateur Divers Discover Trove of 53 Roman Gold Coins in Spain

A wealthy landowner probably hid the hoard to protect it from "barbarian" invaders

The letters "IMP" stand for imperator, meaning the tile maker was "supplying tiles fit for the emperor" or "on the emperor's demands."

Cool Finds

Tiles 'Fit for the Emperor' Found in Roman Ruins Beneath English Cricket Club

The objects, as well as an inscription at the site, suggest ties to Septimius Severus, who led campaigns nearby in the early third century C.E.

Italian artist Girolamo di Tommaso da Treviso created the ceremonial shield around 1535.

Ornate Medieval Shield Looted by the Nazis Will Be Returned to the Czech Republic

Created in the 16th century, the intricately decorated piece of armor was once owned by Archduke Franz Ferdinand

Experts say the cache is one of the largest and most significant of its kind ever found in Denmark.

Cool Finds

Amateur Treasure Hunter Discovers Trove of Sixth-Century Gold Jewelry

Found in Denmark, most of the 22 objects are bracteates, or medallions inscribed with mystical symbols

A different headless statue of health goddess Hygieia

Turkish Archaeologists Unearth Headless Statue of Greek Health Goddess

Researchers found the figure in a 5,000-year-old site called Aizanoi, which is also home to a temple dedicated to Zeus

loading icon