The British Museum excavation team work in Sidon

Ancient Sidon: Sifting through the city's deadly history

Among its ruins, Robert Fisk joins an archaeological dig that could transform our understanding of Lebanon’s bloody past

The skeleton of a man at Sozopol in Bulgaria, with an iron stake driven through his chest

Land of the tomb raiders: Bulgaria is trying to claw back tens of thousands of ancient artefacts plundered from its historic sites in a £25m-a-year export racket

Greeks, Romans, Thracians, Byzantines and Ottomans all fought countless wars to gain control of its fertile lands at the crossroads of Europe and Asia

Beowulf is depicted in his battle against Grendel

Feasting and fighting: the long-lost secrets of Beowulf

Archaeologists in Denmark have excavated the sixth-century great dining hall at the centre of the epic work

The gardens were probably situated in Nineveh, a city located in what is now in the north of modern-day Iraq

The biggest wonder about the Hanging Gardens of Babylon? They weren’t in Babylon

Oxford historian gathers evidence that proves ancient marvel was located 300 miles away

Pompeii: Life and death in the shadow of Vesuvius

A blockbuster exhibition of artefacts salvaged from the volcanic eruption that decimated the Roman city of Pompeii 2,000 years ago opens in New York today.

Greatest finds of the year

Grunts from the front: From Roman tablets to army blogs

Humans have always fought each other, but the written narrative of warfare begins about 6,000 years ago with documents detailing a conflict between Elam and Sumer (modern-day Iran and Iraq). Since then military history has been dominated by the official story of leaders and their strategic political and military decisions. Wars have rarely been narrated by the ordinary foot soldier, pilot or sailor.

David Lister: Craft does not make art – it takes originality

As a debate, "what is art" prefigures most art. France's celebrated prehistoric cave paintings probably had assorted cavemen raising their clubs as they declared: "I may not know much about art but I know what I like." And within the last couple of weeks, there has been an earnest debate in the pages of The Independent on the nature of art. This was sparked by Sir Richard Eyre's polemic on the subject, in which he said, among many other things, that art "makes us look at the world differently".

Huge ice age river carved the English Channel

Prehistoric Fleuve Manche cut through land bridge to Europe, say scientists

Prehistoric Masterpieces: The Swimmers and The Beast

The inhospitable plateau of Gilf Kebir in the far south-west Egyptian desert was once home to an early Egyptian civilization, who left behind spectacular cave art.

Best of the stones: The ancient structures at Stonehenge are truly rocks of ages

You know Stonehenge, of course: a haunting silhouette from the past that stands gaunt and defiant on the chalky grassland of Wiltshire, just where the busy A303 and A344 meet. This inspirational stone circle, a triumph of the human spirit, was bequeathed millennia ago. It is now protected by English Heritage and forms part of a Unesco World Heritage Site.

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Robert Fisk: All this talk of an ‘apocalyptic’ threat is simply childish

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French connection: After 1,300 years, there’s a bridge to Mont Saint-Michel

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Horst P Horst comes to the V&A

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