Free Ancient History

 

Prehistory and Early Humans

Browse the World: Prehistory
From Mr. Dowling.com comes this cool website for elementary and middle school students on Prehistory. Learn about nomads, archaeology, ancient technology, Neanderthals, evolution, and more.
Mr. Donn’s Early Humans
Another very popular middle school website with a great collection of information on early humans.
Kid’s Past: Prehistoric Humans
From the amazing free online world history textbook on this website, suitable for grades four and up, find this interesting and well-written information on prehistoric humans.
Ancient Civilizations: Before Civilization
A website with information on prehistoric times for middle and high school students. Find information on the ancestors of modern humans to the development of modern agriculture and writing and the beginnings of civilization.
Becoming Human
This website has an interactive timeline of human evolution along with an interactive documentary, a presentation of the history and crafting of early stone tools, along with a variety of classroom materials and activities.
PaleoPortal
This site includes a collection of paleontology resources including a section on resources that might be useful to students and teachers, including a teacher’s guide and suggested activities.
 Understanding Evolution
From the website: “Understanding Evolution is a non-commercial, education website, teaching the science and history of evolutionary biology. This site is here to help you understand what evolution is, how it works, how it factors into your life, how research in evolutionary biology is performed, and how ideas in this area have changed over time.”
This website has teaching resources for grades from K to 12.

Ancient Man, by Hendrik Willem van Loon. An interesting text that tells the story of ancient man from prehistoric times to the earliest civilizations.

 

Some Creation Myths from around the World

Cultural Creation Myths
This is one lesson, appropriate for grades 9 to 12, from Arts Edge at the Kennedy Center.

The Big Myth
A collection of 25 animated creation myths from all over the world appropriate for elementary level students. Includes information on each culture as well.

Creation Stories
A text-based collection of creation myths from all over the world.

 

Ancient Egypt

Egyptian Myths
Tales from Egyptian mythology for kids.
Ducksters.com
A collection of entertaining resources on Ancient Egypt for elementary level students.
History for Kids: Ancient Egypt
Appropriate for upper elementary and middle school level students.
The Children’s University of Manchester 
A very entertaining website about Ancient Egypt meant to be enjoyed by elementary level children.
Browse the World: Ancient Egypt
From Mr. Dowling.com comes this site on ancient Egypt suitable for upper elementary and middle school students.
Legends of Ancient Egypt: Stories of Egyptian Gods and Heroes by F.H. Brooksbane. (1920). An enjoyable book that begins with a description of life in ancient Egypt. Suitable for ages 8-12.
History.com
Video and other resources on Ancient Egypt.
Ancient Civilizations: Egypt
A great site for middle and high school students.
The British Museum 
Ancient Egyptian exhibits and other resources
NEOK12: Ancient Egypt
A collection of video resources on Ancient Egypt suited for middle school and older students.

The Cat of Bubastes by G.A. Henty. From the website: “Amuba, a prince of the Rebu nation on the shores of the Caspian sea, is carried with his charioteer Jethro into slavery after losing a vicious battle with the Egyptians. They become inmates of the house of Ameres, the Egyptian high priest, and are happy in his service until the priestâs son accidentally kills the sacred cat of Bubastes. In an outburst of popular fury Ameres is killed, and it rests with Jethro and Amuba to secure the escape of the high priestâs son and daughter. After many dangers they succeed in crossing the desert to the Red Sea, and eventually make their way back to the Caspian Sea and freedom.”
Popular Stories of Ancient Egypt by Sir G. Maspero. (1915). A collection of stories from ancient Egypt, heavily annotated by the editor. Meant to be more of scholarly interest than a book read for entertainment.
Legends of Ancient Egypt: Stories of Egyptian Gods and Heroes by F.H. Brooksbane. (1920). An enjoyable book that begins with a description of life in ancient Egypt. Suitable for ages 8-12.

Antony and Cleopatra by William Shakespeare

Cleopatra by Jacob Abbott (1903)

Ancient Mesopotamia and the Near East

Ancient Civilizations: Ancient Mesopotamia
A great website for middle and high school students.
Mr. Donn: Mesopotamia
A wonderful collection of history resources on ancient Mesopotamia for elementary and middle school level children.
Ducksters.com
A collection of resources about ancient Mesopotamia for elementary and middle school level students.

Mr. Donn’s Ancient Persia
Information about ancient Persia for elementary level kids
Duckster’s Persian Empire
Entertaining information on ancient Persia for kids.
Ancient Arabia
A website of information on ancient Arabia, suitable for middle and high school students
Kid’s Past: Middle East From the excellent and free online world history textbook suitable for grade four and up comes this entertaining and comprehensive look at ancient middle eastern civilizations in Persia.

The Cat and the Mouse by Hartwell James and John R. Neill. Fairy tales from Persia.

 

Ancient Greece
Arts Edge Kennedy Center
This website offers a selection of lessons that include Greek mythology, culture, and art.
Kid’s Past: Ancient Greece.From the free online textbook of world history, suitable for grade four and up, comes this interesting and informative website of information about ancient Greece.
Ancient Greece
A website dedicated to ancient Greece. From the site: “Read and explore the History of the Ancient Greek World from the Neolithic to the Classical Period. Covering important topics, such as Art and Architecture, Mythology, Wars, Culture and Society, Poetry, Olympics, History Periods, Philosophy, Playwrights, Kings and Rulers of Ancient Greece”
History.com 
A collection of video and other information on Ancient Greece from History.com
History for Kids: Ancient Greece
LInks to pages of maps, arts, culture, and more of Ancient Greece and geared toward upper elementary and middle school students.
BBC: Ancient Greek for kids
Engaging site with information for elementary and middle school students.

Story of Greek People: An Elementary History of Greece by Eva March Tappan. A very readable story of the history of Greece, and a great read-aloud for younger children.

Old World Hero Stories  by Eva March Tappan. Tales of the heroes of ancient Greece and Rome.

Stories from Plato and other Classic Writers by Mary E. Burt (1895). Ages 6-9
Original Classics
A collection of writings from classic Greek and Roman writers.

The Aesop for Children by Milo Winter (Gutenberg)

The Æneid for boys and girls by Alfred John Church  January 1, 1917. Ages 8-10

The Iliad for Boys and Girls by Alfred John Church January 1, 1914. Ages 8-10

The Odyssey for Boys and Girls: by Alfred John Church January 1, 1919. Ages 8-10

Old Greek Stories:  by James Baldwin January 1, 1895. Ages 8-12

The Golden Fleece: More Old Greek Stories by James Baldwin January 1, 1905. Ages 8-12

Old Greek Folk-stories Told Anew by Josephine Preston Peabody January 1, 1897. Ages 8-12

Famous Men of Greece by John Henry Haaren  January 1, 1904. Ages 8-12

A Wonder Book for Girls and Boys, and Tanglewood Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne Howard Pyle January 1, 1900. Ages 9-12

The Story of the Greeks by Hélène Adeline Guerber January 1, 1896. Ages 10-14

The story of Greece : told to boys and girls by by Macgregor, Mary. 1910. Ages 10-14

 

Ancient Rome

Kid’s Past: Ancient Rome
This selection of interesting information on Ancient Rome is from the free online world history textbook suitable for grades four and up.
Mr. Donn’s Ancient Rome for kids
Mr. Donn’s entertaining collection of resources on ancient Rome for kids.
BBC Primary History: Rome
A collection of interesting resources about Rome, intended for children.
Duckster’s Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome for kids.
History for Kids: Ancient Rome
Well done site for middle school level students.
Social Studies for Kids: Ancient Rome
More information about ancient Rome.

The Children’s Plutarch: Tales of the Romans by Frederick James Gould January 1, 1910. Ages 8-10

The story of the Roman people an elementary history of Rome by Eva March Tappan (1910). A master storyteller tells the story of Rome. Ages 6-10

Famous Men of Rome by John H. Haaren. 1904. Ages 9-12

The Story of the Romans by Helene A. Guerber. Ages 10-14

The Story of Rome by Mary Macgregor. 1912. Ages 10-14

Julius Caesar by Jacob Abbott. 1869

Nero by Jacob Abbott. 1901

 

Ancient Africa
Browse the World: Africa
From Mr. Dowling.com comes this website about the ancient history of Africa. Learn about ancient African civilizations and life in ancient Africa.
Kid’s Past: Africa
Enjoy this material from the free online children’s world history textbook, suitable for grade four and up. A great starting point for your upper elementary or middle school student.
Kid’s Past: Arabia
More material from the free online children’s world history textbook.
Mr. Donn: Africa
Entertaining website about Africa both ancient and modern, for elementary and middle school students.
The Story of Africa
Created by the BBC and suitable for middle and high school students, this website features the history of Africa from ancient times to modern times.
From the website: “The Story of Africa tells the history of the continent from an African perspective. Africa’s top historians take a fresh look at the events and characters that have shaped the continent from the origins of humankind to the end of South African apartheid. See the rise and fall of empires and kingdoms, experience the power of religion, the injustices of slavery, and chart the expansion of trade between Africa and other continents. Hear what it was like to live under colonialism, follow the struggle against it, and celebrate the achievement of independence. ”
Lonely Planet: Africa
A comprehensive history of the African continent appropriate for high school students. This website begins with the origin of humanity and continues into modern times.
From the website: “African history is a massive and intricate subject, world-s­haking events have shaped the continent’s history, from the early men and women who left their footsteps in volcanic ash to the liberation of Nelson Mandela, and a whole lot of wars, conquests, civilisations, and revolutions in between.”
Egypt, Africa, and Arabia Volume III
The World’s Story: A History of the World in Story, Song, and Art edited by Eva March Tappan. An enjoyable collection of African literature and arts.

World Tales: African Folk Tales
A collection of African Folk Tales from several vintage books, available on this website.
West African Folk-Tales by William H. Barker. A lovely vintage book containing tales of that cunning spider, Anansi.
Native Fairy Tales of South Africa  by  Ethel L. McPherson

Cinderella in the South by Arthur Shearly Cripps. Tales from Africa.

 

Ancient Middle East and Asia

Duckster’s Asia
A collection of information on the geography and countries of Asia suitable for middle school students.
History of Asia
A scholarly history of Asia from Princeton University, suitable for high school students.
Kid’s Past: Islam
Material from the free online children’s world history textbook regarding Islamic cultures in Asia and Africa.

World of Tales: Chinese Fairy Tales
The Chinese Fairy Book edited by R. Wilhelm, 1921. 74 Chinese fairy tales for your enjoyment, in their entirety on this website.

A Chinese Wonder Book by Norman Hinsdale Pitman

Japanese Fairy Tales by Yei Theodora Ozaki

World Tales: Japan
A website with links to several vintage books with folk tales of Old Japan

Fairy Tales of Old Japan  by  William E. Griffis

World Tales: Filipino Folk Tales
A collection of entertaining folk tales from the Phillipines

Kid’s Past: Byzantium
Enjoy this collection of information from the free online children’s world history textbook, suitable for grades four and up.
Kid’s Past: Mongols
Another excellent resource from that free online children’s world history textbook.
History for Kids: Central Asia
A great resource for middle school students
Genghis Khan  by  Jacob Abbott. A biography of Genghis Khan, a potentate of central Asia.
The Story of Russia  by  Robert van Bergen

Mr. Donn’s Ancient China
Resources and information on ancient China for elementary level students.
Kid’s Past: China
An excellent collection of material on Ancient China from the free online children’s history textbook, suitable for grade four and up.
NEOK12: Ancient China
A collection of video resources on ancient China suitable for grades six to twelve.
Duckster’s Ancient China
Resources and information on ancient China for elementary and middle school level students.
Ancient Civilizations for Kids: China
Excellent site for middle and high school students.
History for Kids: Ancient China
A website for middle and high school students.
China: Arts & Culture: A glimpse of the history and diversity of China’s performing arts. This series of videos contains links to related content, lessons, and activities.
China’s Story by  William E. Griffis. The story of China from earliest times to the modern age.
The Story of China  by  R. Van Bergen

Mr. Donn: Ancient Japan
A website for elementary and middle school level students interested in ancient Japan.
Explore Japan
A website from Japan that endeavors to ‘introduce Japan to school children’ from other countries. Suitable for upper elementary to middle school, and includes a history of Japan from ancient to modern times.
Duckster’s Japan
An entertaining resource for elementary and middle school students.
Kid’s Past: Japan
From the free online World History textbook comes this excellent review of Japanese history, suitable for upper elementary and middle school students.
Crafty Classroom: Japanese crafts
Augment your study of ancient Japan with a craft or activity.
Japan: Arts and Culture: A glimpse into the history and diversity of Japan’s performing arts. This series of videos contains links to related content, lessons, and activities.
The Story of Japan  by  R. Van Bergen. A vintage history book of Old Japan.

Mr. Donn: India
A collection of information on ancient India for children in elementary school.
Kid’s Past: India
Enjoy this excellent website with information from the free online children’s world history textbook, suitable for grade four and up.
History for Kids: Ancient India
Suitable for upper elementary and middle school students.
Ancient Civilizations: India
A great site for middle and high school students.
BBC Indus Valley
An entertaining and interesting presentation of information on the ancient Indus Valley suitable for upper elementary and middle school level students.
The Indus Civilization 
A very large website with information on the ancient Indus Valley suitable for middle and high school students.

 

World Tales: India
A website with several Indian folk tale books
Ancient India Tales
A small collection of folk tales from ancient India
Savitri: A Tale of Ancient India
A short story in which Savitri must save her husband from the god of death.
Indolink: Kidz Korner
A collection of children’s stories from India
Panchatantra Stories for Children
Panchatantra stories for children from India.
Indian Folk and Fairy Tales   by  Joseph Jacobs.
Hindu Tales from the Sanskirt by Nancy Bell
Jataka Tales by Ellen C. Babbitt. From the site at the Baldwin Children’s Literature Project:”Eighteen fables from the Jatakas of India, skillfully retold and attractively illustrated. Includes The Monkey and the Crocodile, The Merchant of Seri, The Turtle Who Wouldn’t Stop Talking, The Foolish Timid Rabbit, The Banyan Deer, and others.  Ages 7-10″
More Jataka Tales by Ellen C. Babbitt. From the site at the Baldwin Children’s Literature Project:”Twenty-one more fables from the Jataka tradition of India, compiled at the request of children captivated by the charm of the stories in Jataka Tales, retold by the same author and illustrated by the same artist.  Ages 7-10″
Tales of the Punjab by  Flora Annie Steel
Indian Fables by P. V. Ramaswami Raju. From the website: “An appealing collection of more than a hundred Indian fables that are delightful as well as short, pithy, and ingenious. Each fable has its separate moral in prose or rhyme; these are often epigrams of the shrewdest kind, full of wit and subtlety. Most of these fables are likely to be new to the majority of readers. In the characters of animals the same rules are observed as in Western fables. As the symbol of strength, the lion (or, in one or two instances, the tiger) is king, the fox is the symbol of cunning, the bear of inert power, the wolf of ferocity, the owl of assumed wisdom, and so forth.  Ages 7-10”

 

Ancient Americas

Social Studies for Kids: Ancient America
A website for middle school level students that focuses mainly on the history of Central and South America and the civilizations that flourished there long ago.

Ducksters: Aztecs, Maya, and Inca
Entertaining website with information on ancient South American civilizations for upper elementary and middle school level students.

Kid’s Past: Ancient Americas
From the amazing free online world history textbook (grades four and up) on this website find this extensive information on the ancient civilizations of the Americas from the peoples of the Arctic and the North American continent to the people and civilizations of the South American continent.

​​World Tales: North America
A website with a collection of folk tales and fairy tales from North America

World Tales: South America
Some folk tales from South America for your enjoyment.