Fire Temples are places of worship in the Zoroastrian religion. They were known as ataskada (“house of fire”) by the Persians but are best known today by their Greek name pyratheia (fire temple). They are thought to have originated from the...
Greek Fire was an incendiary weapon first used in Byzantine warfare in 678 CE. The napalm of ancient warfare, the highly flammable liquid was made of secret ingredients and used both in catapulted incendiary bombs and sprayed under pressure...
St. Anthony's Fire
St. Anthony's Fire (SAF) is an illness brought on by the ingestion of fungus-contaminated rye grain causing ergot poisoning (ergotism). The disease's common name derives from the medieval Benedictine monks dedicated to that saint who offered...
The Aztec New Fire Ceremony
The New Fire Ceremony, also known as the Binding of the Years Ceremony, was a ritual held every 52 years in the month of November on the completion of a full cycle of the Aztec solar year (xiuhmopilli). The purpose of it was none other than...
Zoroastrianism is the monotheistic faith established by the Persian prophet Zoroaster (also given as Zarathustra, Zartosht) between c. 1500-1000 BCE. It holds that there is one supreme deity, Ahura Mazda (Lord of Wisdom), creator and sustainer...
Ancient Persian Religion
Ancient Persian religion was a polytheistic faith which corresponds roughly to what is known today as ancient Persian mythology. It first developed in the region known as Greater Iran (the Caucasus, Central Asia, South Asia, and West Asia...
Greek Fire Grenades
Two clay grenades which were designed to be filled with the flammable liquid known as Greek Fire and launched at the enemy. Greek Fire was first used in the Byzantine empire in 678 CE. These examples date to between the 10th and 12th century...
The Great Fire of London, with Ludgate and Old St. Paul's
A c. 1670 anonymous painting titled The Great Fire of London, with Ludgate and Old St. Paul's. The Great Fire of London ravished the English capital in September 1666 destroying over 13,000 buildings. (Yale Center for British Art, Yale University...
A 12th century CE illustration of the Byzantine weapon Greek Fire in action. The weapon sprayed a petroleum-based liquid to set ablaze anything in its path, especially ships. Here the battle is between ships of Michael II and those of Thomas...