Mysterious Ancient Manuscripts with Hidden Secrets

Over the years, many mysterious ancient manuscripts have been uncovered, and researchers who have examined these documents have found hidden secrets from the past. Most of these secret texts are concealed in other archaeological records, and the traces of these manuscripts are usually invisible to the naked eye. The utilization of modern technology like X-rays, CT scans and multispectral imaging are often necessary for bringing the secrets of these mysterious and long-lost works to light.


Hidden Text of Euripides

Number 1 – The Hidden Text of Euripides. A group of researchers from the Universities of Bologna and Gottingen discovered a hidden text of a fifth-century-BC Greek drama beneath a 13th-centuary-AD prophetic book of the Old Testament. This early work is attributed to one of Athens’s foremost dramatists, Euripides, whose work became the cornerstone of education in the Hellenistic age and has significantly influenced modern drama. This hidden text was uncovered through multispectral imaging in 2013, and not only does the document contain Euripides’s work, but it is also full of ancient annotations.

Treatise of the Vessels

Number 2 – Treatise of the Vessels. Archaeologists and fortune hunters have been hard at work to find the alleged hidden treasures stashed away by Israel’s third king, Solomon, and among them is the legendary Ark of the Covenant. At present, a newly-translated ancient Hebrew text known as the Treatise of the Vessels seems to have new information about the location of the elusive Ark, along with the rest of King Solomon’s treasures. According to a translation by James Davila, a professor at the University of St. Andrews, the treasures were hidden by some Levites and prophets, and that they are stocked away in various locations in the Land of Israel and Babylonia, while others were delivered into the hands of the angels.

Codex Selden

Number 3 – Codex Selden. For decades, researchers were certain that hidden messages can be found beneath the surface of Codex Selden, which was previously lost for almost 500 years. It was only in 2016, that hyperspectral imaging finally allowed researchers to take a closer look at the surface of the precolonial Mexican manuscript, revealing hidden texts and images beneath. So far, the researchers have yet to complete scanning all the pages, and the text has not been translated, but researchers are convinced that more discoveries are to be made once the hidden messages of the Codex Selden are interpreted.

Novgorod Codex

Number 4 – Novgorod Codex. In 2000, archaeologists excavating Novgorod in Russia discovered the Novgorod Codex, the earliest known book made by the Rus’ people. This hyper-palimpsest, dated to the 11th century, preserved two Psalms. However, when the wax was removed for conservation, the restorers found retained traces of an earlier text, including several previously unknown Slavonic compositions of native origin. It is believed that the Novgorod Codex may contain several dozens of hidden text layers.

Codex Zacynthius

Number 5 – Codex Zacynthius. In the 13th century, the Codex Zacynthius were an Evangeliarium, an old manuscript that contained a collection of Gospel passages. However, in 1861, researchers detected that there is actually a hidden text in the Codex Zacynthius. The text is a sixth or seventh-century script which turned out to contain an account of the Gospel of Luke. This Codex has 176 vellum leaves, and experts believe that there are a lot more secrets to be discovered in the ancient document, and they plan to analyze the hidden text through multispectral analysis.

The Lost Gospel

Number 6 – The “Lost Gospel.” Many theologians have long speculated about Jesus’ alleged romantic relationship with Mary Magdalene. However, if the translation of the so-called “Lost Gospel” – a 1500-year-old ancient manuscript found at the British Library – is any indication, then what we believe to know about the life of Jesus Christ at present is not completely true. Translated from Aramaic, the text reveals that Jesus had indeed married Mary Magdalene and even had children with her. This makes the Christian messiah a husband and a father to a family of his own if the “Lost Gospel” is proven true.

Voynich Manuscript

Number 7 – The Voynich Manuscript. This ancient medieval manuscript was named after Wilfrid M. Voynich, a Polish-American book dealer who discovered the text in a chest in the Jesuit College at the Villa Mondragone in Frascati in 1912. The cryptic document is written on medieval parchment using an unknown script system showing basic statistical patterns which resemble a real language. However, there are also those that believe that the manuscript was a forgery intended as a hoax. Until now, the nature and origin of the manuscript have remained a mystery and have led to a lot of controversy and debate.

Sibiu Manuscript

Number 8 – The Sibiu Manuscript. In 1961, Doru Todericiu, a professor of Science and Technology at the University of Bucharest, found an ancient document, now known as the Sibiu Manuscript. The 450-page manuscript dates back to 1570, with its history even going further back by several centuries. The old text contains technical data about multi-stage rockets, artillery, and ballistics. It also reported about a “javelin” which flew with considerable effective range, and the launching of a multi-tiered rocket in the city of Sibiu, where thousands of people supposedly witnessed the event in 1555 and turned out to be a complete success.

Black Book of Carmarthen

Number 9 – Black Book of Carmarthen. The Black Book of Carmarthen was written by a single monk around 1250, and it is the oldest surviving manuscript which is written solely in Welsh. In 2015, Raul Russell and Myriah Williams of the University of Cambridge reported that hidden contents had been found in the book which had been invisible under normal viewing conditions. Using a variety of imaging techniques like ultraviolet lamps and photo-editing software, some of the unknown material was detected, including extensive marginal annotations such as inscriptions, poems, and even drawings.

Codex Washingtonianus

Number 10 – Codex Washingtonianus. Housed at the Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery of Art, the Codex Washingtonianus is the world’s third oldest Bible. The priceless ancient book is made up of almost 200 parchment pages and is believed to be more than 1,500 years old. The Codex Washingtonianus has been the subject of controversy because of the unique insertion in the ending of the biblical gospel of Mark. Referred to as the “Freer Logion,” a part of the passage makes mention of the end of Satan’s power, seemingly addressing the question of whether God or Satan was the one in charge of mankind’s fate. The text is not found in any other manuscript, and when it was published in 1912, the passage caused much consternation as it raised another challenge to the Bible people knew.

The ancient documents we have mentioned, even without their unlocked secrets, are important archaeological artifacts that serve as an enduring testament to mankind’s complex and impressive history. And as more mysterious ancient manuscripts continue to get discovered, the potential secrets they hide could now be much easier to uncover - thanks to modern technology – allowing us to learn more about our past and possibly gain a better understanding of who we are through the works of our ancestors.



Secrets Casinos Don't Want You to Know

“Gambling: the sure way of getting nothing for something,” or so American playwright Wilson Mizner once said. While this may not be a universal truth, in real life, it’s almost always true. Gambling involves the wagering of money or something of value on a game or event which has an uncertain outcome with the primary intent of winning, and it is also considered to be one of the most insidious of human vices that can quickly lead a person down the path of financial ruin. The odds are rarely – if at all – ever in your favor, and when they are, it’s usually just an illusion to get you to gamble more.

The gambling industry has come a long away over the centuries that have passed, and now, various types of gambling activities are housed in a facility known as a “casino.” These casinos are often built near or combined with hotels, restaurants, retail shopping centers, cruise ships and other tourist attractions. And these facilities are also notorious for their efficiency, precision, and ingenuity of separating people from their money. And once you get inside one, that casino will make sure you’ve lost as much money as possible before they let you leave.

To possibly give players an advantage over the casinos, or for the sake of just evening the playing field, some casino experts over the years have shared some of the dirty little secrets that casinos don’t want people to know about. And here are a few of them.


The Art of Seduction

First and foremost, it is important to always keep in mind that casinos are all about the art of seduction: 

  • Facility design intentionally leads you around; 
  • bright lights capture your attention; 
  • cheerful sounds make you think people are often winning; 
  • alluring scents making you want to stay and play
  • All these are cleverly designed psychological schemes that seduce you to take more money out of your wallet. 

Casino design is not only a matter of architecture and aesthetics; it’s  psychological manipulation. It’s an intricate process that involves the optimization of a casino’s floor plan, décor and atmospherics to seduce people into gambling. For example, in Las Vegas, there are two typical hotel/casino designs: the classing “gaming” style, and the more modern “playground style.” The classic “gaming” style design emphasizes gaming décor above all else, from the facility’s low ceilings to its maze-like floor plans that somehow almost always lead you back to the casino. Casinos design with “playground” style, on the other hand, are spacious, open, airy and luxurious.

Inside a casino, time seemingly comes to a standstill. One in the morning is one in the afternoon and vice versa. Why? It’s because there aren’t any windows or clocks inside a casino to give you any indication that a significant amount of time has passed and that it’s time to stop. While there may be windows at the entrance or exit at these gambling facilities, once you walk further into the casino, you won’t get to see a single speck of daylight.  When customers play a game of blackjack or pull the lever on a slot machine, time is wasted away much faster than they’re aware of, which is why casinos don’t place any clocks to tell you whether it’s time to sleep, eat, or leave before you lose what remains of your money.

Some Games are Bigger Rip-Offs


Inside the casino, it’s a truth universally acknowledged that just about every game is tilted in the house’s favor. But according to casino experts, some gambling games rip people off more than others. There’s a reason why casinos usually place slot machines nearest to the entrance: they are more likely to make a lot of money for the house. Which is why if you do play inside a casino, you’re chances of success are much higher playing at the tables than trying your luck with the machines.

Novice gamblers prefer to play at the slot machines because they’re simple and require cheap minimums. However, because the game is speedy and randomized, it is more likely for players to lose more money than they win. Table games, on the other hand, are much slower-paced, giving players more time to strategize and contemplate making better and safer bets, especially when more players are gambling at a table.

Even at the tables, some games are worse than others. At the top of the list are what they call “carnival games,” which have high house advantages. On this list includes table games such as Let it Ride, Three-card poker, and Caribbean Stud. Double Exposure Blackjack, in particular, has over nine percent house advantage against gamers. So, if you plan on playing at the tables of a casino, it’s still best to stick to the traditional card games.

Nothing is Free


Casinos are infamous for offering their guests an abundant number of exclusive perks and freebies. But inside these gambling facilities, nothing is ever really free of charge, even if they tell you otherwise. No matter how much free items they receive or complimentary drinks they drink, customers will still end up paying for what was given to them one way or another.

Some casinos offer their customers free parking, hotel stays, spa packages, tickets to shows, and even ringside seats for fights. However, these special perks are only given if you spend enough money playing in their establishment. There’s a one-to-one correlation between gambling and the rewards they offer, which means if they think you’re not playing enough, then you have to play more if you want to enjoy those complimentary drinks at the bar. If you want to eat, drink, and live like a high roller, then you have to play like a high roller.

And even if you are careful with your money, the house still finds a way to earn from their guests by charging them hidden fees they label as “resort fees” or “concession and franchise fees.” While it’s become the practice of many hotels all over the country to add surcharges onto bills to cover the rising utility costs and for the use of special amenities, like tennis courts and swimming pools, these surcharges are now extended to even the most ludicrous items. These establishments impose tax upon tax, adding fees to cover for the live entertainment, for the fact that the building is in a prime real estate location, and even for tap water.

‘Big Brother’ Watches Everything


Casinos greedily rake in billions of dollars every year, which is why it is not surprising that their security is infamously tight. Minimizing cheating, theft and other potential losses is their top priority at all times. But of course, gone are the days where big mafia guys in slick suits beat people up for cheating. Since then, casino security has become more high-tech, with their owners spending millions of their billions to ensure the security of their vaults and the safety of their players.

Every gambling facility uses state-of-the-art closed-circuit television so that security will be able to monitor every square inch of the establishment. In fact, for a large venue like the MGM Grand, the venue is surveilled by more than 2,000 cameras which are connected to 50 monitors. With the level of technology at their disposal, they can even zoom in on your cards and follow you throughout the building to ascertain that you’re not cheating.


The ‘Big Brother’ of casinos is always watching you, especially if you win big, or you’re on a major hot streak. According to casino experts, when someone is winning a lot of money, they’re always going to get checked by security, and the customer won’t know that he’s under scrutiny. Their intention is not to harass the winner but to make sure that he legally won, and that he didn’t cheat. Once security realizes that the win is legitimate, they move on to the next big winner.

Plus, most gambling establishments are now equipped with some form of facial recognition software to help these casinos identify flagged individuals with shady records, customers with gambling addictions, and even underage guests.

Casinos Chips Make You Bet More

Casinos require the use of colorful little round chips while playing at the tables for simple yet excellent reasons. First, they make the whole gambling process more efficient. Using casino chips keeps the games moving more swiftly than if dealers had to wait for players to pull out their wallets and count their money before placing their bets.

Second, casino chips are an added security measure to protect the establishment’s money. Stealing these chips have become much harder to accomplish since many casinos have started embedding radio frequency tags or RFID tags into these colorful chips. In fact, several years ago, the Bellagio used these RFID tags to catch the armed bandit who stole at least $1.5 million in casino chips from a craps table.

Third and perhaps the most deceitful reason of them all: Casino chips reduce the feelings of guilt when you spend your money away. Similar to tokens, e-cash or smart cards, these casino chips disguise the true value of your money, and psychological evidence suggests that people tend to gamble more when using virtual forms of money compared to when they handle real cash.  

The negative aspects of gambling are not exactly a recent, mind-blowing revelation to those who engage in this risk-taking activity. Some people know better than to risk the little money they have, and to gamble them all away on an uncertain game that they may never win. But for people who love and enjoy gambling, it’s all about living by the idea of “going big or going home.” Perhaps that is why gambling, from ancient to modern times, has continued to be one of the most successful and enduring industries ever to have been established by human civilization.



Alleged UFO Sighting on May 16, 1808 in Biskopsberga, Sweden

For as far as written history permits us to remember, mankind has always witnessed strange things happen in the skies, which people, by the standards of that particular time, have not been able to explain adequately. The sighting of an unidentified flying object or UFO is not a rare phenomenon, and many of these occurrences over the years have been carefully studied and subsequently debunked, while others remain as mysteries that baffle even the best of us. Among those which are left unexplained, many of these UFO sightings are believed to be flying spaceships of extraterrestrial beings.

However, not all unidentified flying objects are potential alien spacecraft. Some are even stranger. One such remarkable and unexplained phenomenon took place in a small village in Sweden over 200 years ago.

UFO Sighting on May 16, 1808 in Biskopsberga, Sweden

On May 16, 1808, civilians living in the small village of Biskopsberga - which is located near Skanninge in Ostergotland, Sweden – witnessed a strange event which cannot be easily explained. At present, the village no longer exists, but at the time of the unusual phenomenon, it was the home of around 300 inhabitants.

The UFO sighting took place in a hot and cloudless afternoon. The wind was blowing from the west. People were still preoccupied with working on their farms when they noticed that the sun shining over their village suddenly dimmed, turning into a dull brick-red shade. The sunlight became so dark that villagers could stare right into the sun without feeling any kind of pain in their eyes.

At the same time that darkness engulfed the small village, a large number of spherical objects appeared from the western horizon. These unidentified objects appeared small, and they measured just several inches in diameter. They appeared dark brown in color and they seemed to be headed toward the sun. Then, as these strange figures got closer to the sun, they changed their colors from dark brown to black.

For some unknown reason, the spherical objects changed their course slightly, moving in a straight procession across the sky to the eastern horizon. When these small figures approached the sun, they reduced their speed, only to increase their pace again after passing in front of it. The strange phenomenon didn’t stop there. For a significant period of time, new spheres appeared from the west and subsequently disappeared when they reached the east.

That afternoon, the number of spheres flying across the village’s sky was so many that it became impossible to count them. In the eyes of the villagers, it seemed as if millions of small balls were, for reasons unknown to them, suddenly flying in the heavens.

According to the Transactions of the Swedish Academy of Sciences from 1808, “the phenomenon lasted uninterruptedly, upwards of two hours, during which time millions of similar bodies continually rose in the west, one after the other irregularly, and continued their career in exactly the same manner.”

One of the witnesses of this unusual phenomenon in the skies over Biskopsberga was K.G. Wettermark, who was a respectable citizen and secretary of the Swedish Academy of Sciences.

Not far from where Wettermark stood, one of the spheres fell down to the ground, and he managed to observe the ball’s behavior when it did. He noticed that just before these spheres touched the ground, they looked like air-bubbles which children used to play with and produce from soapsuds using a reed. Moreover, he immediately examined a spot where one of the balls had fallen, and he saw nothing but a scarcely perceptible gelatinous film which was as thin and fine as a cobweb. It was still changing colors, but it soon dried up entirely and vanished without a trace.

What were these weird bubbles? Why were there so many of them flying in the skies that afternoon? And why did it seem like they were capable of consciously changing the course of their movement?

The older the UFO sighting, the harder it is to investigate and explain. Most likely, the alleged UFO sighting in the skies of Biskopsberga, Sweden in 1808 was nothing more than a natural phenomenon that could not be explained by the scientific knowledge available at the time. And even if modern science is capable of resolving this mystery, a strange case like this one can be very difficult to study as such phenomena occur so rarely.

Similar Incident in Basel, Switzerland in 1566

A similar, although not entirely identical incident occurred in Basel, Switzerland on August 7, 1566. At the time, citizens of the city saw a large number of black spheres fill the skies. Not only did these objects appear to be flying towards the sun, they also looked like they were engaged in some sort of aerial battle.

The UFO sighting in Switzerland in 1566 took place at the time when the sun rose. People saw many large black balls that moved at great speed in the skies, flying toward the sun. These figures also made half-turns, with each one banging against the others as if they were engaged in fierce combat. Many of them turned red and igneous before they were consumed and died out. The strange phenomenon lasted for several hours that day before disappearing completely.

The main difference between the sighting in Sweden in the 19th century and the odd occurrence in Switzerland in the 16th century is that the black spheres in Switzerland were unable to survive the heat from the sun. The spherical objects seen in Sweden, on the other hand, changed direction when they approached the sun.

Without a doubt, the inhabitants of Biskopsberga were confused and puzzled by what they had seen happen in their skies. The Swedes didn’t succeed in solving the mystery, and not a single person got closer to the truth even after the UFO sighting in the village that day was published in the North American Review in 1816.

At present, there are several theories that have been presented, speculating on what the strange UFO phenomenon in Sweden in 1808 really was. However, just as when the eerie occurrence took place around 200 years ago, no one really knows the answer for sure until now.

And so, it is safe to say that this particular case of UFO sighting remains unsolved.

The Mysterious Ancient Giants Who Ruled America

Are giants real? At some point in our distant past, were there ancient people of enormous size that walked the earth and dominated the planet as humans now do?

So much knowledge of the world’s past has been lost throughout the ages – some destroyed by war, some ruined by natural disasters, some neglected by mankind’s ignorance and lack of appreciation, and some simply disappeared as a natural consequence of the passage of time. But while much has been lost, much also remains to be discovered. And the clues to answering questions like whether or not giants once existed on the planet could actually be found in what lies beneath our feet.

In recent years, due to the number of mysterious findings around the world supporting the idea that giants walked on earth a long, long time ago, more and more people are seriously considering the possibility that these gigantic human-like creatures are more than just mythological beings.

Mentions of Giants in Mythologies of Different Cultures

But before we go any further on the supposed archaeological evidences available supporting the existence of ancient giants, let’s briefly discuss the many old stories about enormous beings that are treated today as nothing more as simple myths.

The Bible, in particular, references giants several times in many of its sections. For example, Genesis 6:4 in the King James Bible states: “There were giants in the Earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bore children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.”

In some translations of the Old Testament, these “giants” are referred to as the “Nephilim,” which some say are born from the union between fallen angels and the descendants of Adam. One more example of giants having been mentioned in the Bible is Goliath, the champion of the Philistine army who engaged in a famous battle with David, as told in the Book of Samuel.

Ancient Greek mythology also made mention of giants of prehistory – the titans. As the story goes, the primordial goddess Gaea gave life to the titans, giants who roamed the earth before the Olympians and mankind could. However, the titans were eventually overthrown by the Olympians, and they had suffered terrible fates of torture and oblivion.

Several Native American tribes have also passed down legends of giants who were wiped out. For one, the tradition of the Choctaw people spoke about a race of giants that once lived in what is now the State of Tennessee in the United States. Referred to as the Nahullo, the ancestors of the Choctaw came into contact with this race of white giants when they first crossed the Mississippi River. The Nahullo were said to be cannibals, and the Choctaw eliminated these giants when the opportunity arose.

Other tribes like the Comanches, the Navajo, and the Manta indigenous people also passed down stories of white giants that supposedly inhabited different parts of the continent a long time ago.

Alleged Archaeological Evidences Proving the Existence of Ancient Giants

Now that we’re on the subject matter of Native American tribes and their cultures, let’s talk about the fact that the mound sites found in North America – which are often related to these tribes – are believed by some people to be the sacred burial mounds of the ancient giants that once existed in the area. Over 1,000 accounts of skeletons that stood at around seven-foot and taller have reportedly been recovered from these ancient burial sites for over two hundred years of archaeological exploration in the continent.  This is supported by a deluge of newspaper clippings, journal articles, diaries, photos and ethnology reports that have largely documented the discovery of these skeletons.

Giant Skeletons in the West Virginia Mounts

The West Virginia Mounds, in particular, are believed by some people, in many respects, to be the key to unlocking the real story behind the ancient giants who once ruled America. In the book of Emmy Award-winning writer and researcher Richard Dewhurst, “The Ancient Giants Who Ruled America,” he claimed that in 1883, the Smithsonian dispatched a team of archaeologists to the South Charleston Mound in West Virginia to conduct an extensive dig of 50 mounds found in this location. In their report, the team revealed that they have uncovered numerous giants, and one of them was 7 feet and 6 inches tall. In another mound, they also found another giant skeleton surrounded by a circle of ten skeletons. There was also a large skeleton found in the remains of a bark coffin, and it had a compressed or flat-head type of skull.

Archaeologists in Wheeling, West Virginia also found a group of giants with heights ranging from 6 feet and 7 inches to 7 feet and 6 inches. These skeletons also showed unusual skull formations. They had low foreheads “while the back part of the head is very prominent,” features which are noticeably different from the skulls of humans that exist today.

Giant Skeletons Across the State of Ohio

Dewhurst also revealed in his book that numerous finds of giants 8 to 10 feet tall were also discovered across the state of Ohio. For example, in a mound site in Chillicothe, dozens of skeletons were found wearing copper masks, and at a related site in the same area, they also supposedly unearthed “a massive skeleton” which was “encased in copper armor.” In another dig conducted in 1889 in Southern Ohio, a giant was found buried with the bones of a panther, while another large skeleton with bone and shell beads imported from the Atlantic Ocean was also unearthed.

The discoveries in Newark, Ohio also deserve special mention, as the skeleton of an 8-foot-tall queen wearing copper jewelry and pearls was reportedly found in this area. In Centralia, another giant encased in copper armor was discovered, and a 7-feet-2-inch giant skeleton was also uncovered in Cartersville.

Giant Skeletons Found in the Mound Sites of Wisconsin

Among the most crucial pieces of evidence in support of the theory that ancient giants roamed America are the discoveries made in Wisconsin. As first reported in the May 4, 1912 issue of the New York Times, at least 18 anomalous skeletons had been found in Wisconsin and they exhibited extremely unusual features that are supposedly nothing like any known species at present. The excavation was overseen by the Beloit College and around 200 mounds were studied in the process. The anomalous skeletons retrieved from this area were allegedly bigger than men today, with their heights ranging from 8 to 10 feet.

Alleged Smithsonian Involvement in Covering Up the Existence of Ancient Giants

Despite the abundance in archaeological proof supporting the existence of giants, mainstream science has, until now, stubbornly remined silent when it comes to affirming or recognizing the theory that an ancient race of giants once inhabited different parts of the world, particularly America. And in Dewhurst’s book, he claimed that the Smithsonian has been at the center of a vast cover-up of America’s true history since the 1880s, suppressing the discoveries of giant skeletons found in many Native American burial mounds in the continent to avoid risking putting the current theory of evolution into question. There are even speculative rumors which suggest that the Smithsonian went so far as to not only hide but also destroy evidence of giant skeletons in America. The museum allegedly has the reputation of stepping in and taking unearthed skeletons and relics for further research and analysis, only for these archaeological finds to never be seen again.

Of course, those who believe in such “out-of-this-realm” conspiracy theory often face ridicule from men and women of conventional science. After all, it would be very difficult to prove that a cover-up actually happened without overwhelming evidence that will convince skeptics that giants did exist in the first place. But then again, how can we prove that giants once existed on the planet if there are forces out there deliberately preventing people from knowing the truth?

Well, clearly, all of this is still a matter of intense debate. The battle of proving whether there was once an advanced civilization of giants that spread across the earth in a distant time where mankind was still in its primitive state still cannot be won up to now. And a definitive answer is still nowhere in sight either. So, for the time being, we will have to weigh all available information about this subject matter for ourselves, and provide a subjective and personal verdict on the merits of this particularly mystery on our own.

If you ask me, I would say that the evidence presented by those who believe in the existence of ancient giants is too substantial and overwhelming to be completely discredited. Moreover, aren’t we limiting ourselves if we simply resent and resist other beliefs and theories just because they go against what society and mainstream science expect us – demand us – to hold true? Perhaps that’s another thing that we should think about, too.


The Secret of Real Life Magic Mirrors of The Far East

There are those among us that seek to find proof that our ancient ancestors possessed advanced knowledge and technology that equal – if not surpass – the things we know and are able to do in modern times. And among the strangest objects in the world that seem to serve as evidence of advanced ancient knowledge are the so-called “magic mirrors” of the Far East.

What Are Ancient Magic Mirrors?

The Chinese and Japanese of ancient times were owners and makers of precious and rare mirrors that are made of solid bronze but at the same time can seemingly and magically let light shine through them. To the Chinese, they referred to these previous artifacts as “mirrors which are permeable to light.” In the Western world, however, they came to simply be known as “magic mirrors.” And since their introduction in the West, these rare “magical” mirrors have baffled scientists for many years.

The front of a magic mirror was made of cast bronze and is generally circular in shape, with size of about 15 to 20 centimeters in diameter. The polished surface of the bronze, or the mirror’s front side, functioned normally as a mirror since it can produce a faithful reflection of the objects in front of them.  

The back of the mirror, on the other hand, was decorated with various characters and patterns. On the reverse surface, there is usually a modeled drawing or carvings that can be landscape featuring trees, water, birds or animals, or they can contain inscriptions and perhaps even a figure of Buddha.

In many conditions of lighting, when a magic mirror is held in the hand, it appears to be perfectly normal mirrors. However, the “magic” happens when the mirror is held in bright sunshine. When an especially bright beam of light is reflected off a magic mirror and onto a clear surface, its reflecting surface can be seen through. Hence, it becomes possible to inspect the written character or patterns on the back of the mirror from the reflection cast on to a dark wall. It is as if the solid bronze had become transparent, making this luminous effect one of the most unexpected and the most captivating mankind has ever seen.

Origins of Ancient Magic Mirrors

There are many historical variations with regard to the origin of these Far Eastern magic mirrors. However, it is generally agreed on that these ancient artifacts appeared for the first time in China around the 2nd century BC and that they were produced in large quantities during the entire period of the Han dynasty (206 BC – 24 AD).  

Discovery of the Ancient Magic Mirrors by the West

The first magical mirror appeared in Europe when the Director of the Paris Observatory brought with him one in the 19th century upon his return from China. It presented an irresistible mystery to the French Academy of Sciences, and despite their efforts to register its behavior, they could never fully understand why it could do what it can do. In total, there are four magical mirrors that were reported to have been brought from China to Europe at the time.

Then in 1878, two engineering professors presented the Royal Society of London with a variety of magic mirrors they had brought from Japan. The English referred to them as “diaphanous mirrors” and for the first time, they managed to make technical observations about their construction. However, nobody at the time could determine what produced the ghostly and beautiful projection of light from the mirror, giving the impression that the solid mirror is transparent in some way when it should not be the case.

For many centuries, the supposed mystery behind these ancient mirrors left scientists and collectors perplexed, and labeled the abilities of these mirrors as “impossible optical illusions” and therefore, “magical.”

The Secret Behind the Ancient Magic Mirrors

Western scientists began their examination of the magic mirrors from the Far East in 1832, but their efforts did not produce their desired results right away. Even in the East, it seemed the knowledge of how to intentionally recreate these magic mirrors were elusive, even though its possibility was not completely out of reach.

About 1,200 years ago, the secret to constructing magic mirrors was recorded in an ancient Chinese text titled the “Record of Ancient Mirrors.” The book supposedly contains the secrets of these enigmatic objects and their constructions. It described the method of crafting solid bronze mirrors with decorations, written characters or patterns on the reverse side in such a way that they could cast a reflection of these images or inscriptions on a nearby surface when light hits the front and polished side of the mirror in a seeming transparent effect. Unfortunately, the book has been lost for over a thousand years.

Magic mirrors were also described in the “Dream Pool Essays” by Shen Kuo in the 11th century, who owned three of these mirrors as a family heirloom. Astonished as how solid metal could be transparent, Shen guessed that some sort of quenching technique was used to produce tiny wrinkles on the surface of the mirror that are too small to be observed by the naked eye.

It was in 1932 when it was finally discovered why the reflections of the magic mirror showed the designs on the back. According to British physicist, chemist and mathematician Sir William Henry Bragg, although the surface of the mirror is polished and seems to look like they’re completely flat, the front is actually curved into a convex form by scraping and scratching before the surface is polished. It is then coated with a mercury amalgam. This complex process creates stresses and buckling, resulting in bulges on the surface of the mirror which is too minute for the naked eye to perceive. These bulges are the ones that match the design carved on the back of the mirror.

And so, when the mirror reflected bright light or sunbeam against a dark wall, the effect reproduces the patterns in a magnified manner as if they were passing through solid bronze by way of these light beams.

It is important to note, however, that while this method explains the creation of a Chinese or Han magic mirror, it is not the same method that is applied in making a Japanese magic mirror, as the optical properties of the images produced by the two types of mirror were not made by the same process. Moreover, unlike the rare Chinese models, there are many Japanese magic mirrors around the world, probably because in ancient Japan, mirrors were considered precious items that were carefully taken care of.

Today, it is rumored that Yamamoto Akihisa is the last manufacturer of magic mirrors in Japan. When the Kyoto Journal interviewed him, the artisan explained part of his technique in making these mirrors, which he revealed that he had learned from his father, who also learned it from his father, and so on, over several generations.

Even now, our generation is just starting to learn about these magic mirrors, and there are a lot of things that we do not know about these ancient artifacts. Perhaps we may never really know the true meaning behind these “magical” mirrors because ancient records describing these mysterious objects are gone forever. Nevertheless, it cannot be denied that these ancient magic mirrors in China and Japan are already a part of the magical history of mankind for being undoubtedly one of the strangest objects in the world.