By Miranda Pope


Like many ancient people, the ancient Sumerians believed that powerful gods lived in the sky. They built huge structures, called ziggurats, with steps climbing up to the top.

But all year long, people left offerings of food and wine on the steps of the ziggurats. One of the jobs of the priests was to enjoy these offerings, because as everyone knew, the gods could not eat for themselves.


By about 3000 BC, the Sumerians were drawing images of tokens on clay tablets. At this point, different types of goods were represented by different symbols, and multiple quantities represented by repetition. Three units of grain were denoted by three 'grain-marks', five jars of oil were denoted by five 'oil-marks' and so on.


Mesopotamian diseases are often blamed on pre-existing spirits: gods, ghosts, etc.

However, each spirit was held responsible for only one of what we would call a disease in any one part of the body. So usually "Hand of God X" of the stomach corresponds to what we call a disease of the stomach.


PLUMBING- The rich households and the palaces had separate bath rooms; that is, rooms in which to "bathe" or refresh oneself with water or anointing of oil. The ordinary folk used the banks of the canals or the cisterns in the courtyards. WRITING- Over five thousand years ago, people living in Mesopotamia developed a form of writing to record and communicate different types of information. FIRST WHEEL- the Sumerians first invented the wheel. They connected it to vehicles called chariots. It got them to places they wanted to go quickly. It was one of the biggest achievements in history. Without the wheel we wouldn't be here today. We wouldn't have all the cities and towns without the wheel. That is why the wheel is so important.


Mesopotamia, as was Egypt, was blessed with yearly flooding

The floods came in late spring or early summer from the melting of snows in the Turkish mountains. This was too late for the spring crop and two early for the autumn crops.