An Eye Of The Past

Flashback to the Ancient Asian Civilization

INTRODUCTION

Asian countries show huge historical identity through its living tales, site, beliefs of the past. China, India, and Mesopotamia contribute a lot about Asian civilization. Its culture shows excellent effect of today’s human existence. Its creativity and were oriented people convinced the other continents to have a sight of what these countries could offer in terms of tourism.

THE INDIAN CIVILIZATION

Wanna know about Indian Civilization?

The Indian civilization is one of the most ancient civilizations of the world. It is known as the Sindhu civilization or the Indus Valley civilization or the Aryan civilization. Sometimes it is also referred to as the Vedic civilization. The Aryans kindled the light of this civilization on the banks of the river Sindhu (Indus) in the Northern India, thousands of years ago. Later, they helped spread it across some other parts of the country. The historians can not ascertain the precise period when this great civilization flourished. The scholars differ on the period of its development. Even the origin of the Aryan race has been debatable. Some historians believe that the Aryans migrated from the North Central Asia and settled in India. Some other historians contend that the Aryans have been the natives of India. In the opinion of Lokmanya Tilak and other Indian scholars, the Aryan civilization is 4000 to 8000 years old.


Hinduism - Science Proves True and Aryan Ivasion Theory Proven False
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CAN YOU IMAGINE?

how life would be like if you didn’t know about 0? Can you image how different life would be without the 0. Well, you should know that one of the main legacies of India is the invention 0 and there are many other legacies that are in use today!


CHARACTERISTICS

  • Religious Legacy- Hinduism and Buddhism are practiced in countries besides India and have also influenced people of other faiths.
  • Artistic Legacy- The artistic styles of ancient India influenced other cultures and continue to be used today.
  • Mathematics Legacy- The decimal system, numerals, and the concept of the zero transformed the ability to do mathematical calculations.


India's Religious Legacy

Question: How did the religions of India affect other cultures?


Hinduism and Buddhism Today

Today four out of

five people in India are Hindus

- Hindus also live in Nepal, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, other countries

- one million Hindus live in United States

• Today less than one percent of Indians are Buddhists

- but Buddhism is popular in Asia, Western Europe, United States


Hindu and Buddhist Influences

Mohandas Gandhi—mid-1900s Indian leader

- used ahimsa to fight against British rule

• His life inspired U.S. civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.

- in 1950s, 1960s, led nonviolent protests for African-American rights

• Hindu and Buddhist in

fluences continue today

- yoga, meditation are popular with people of many different religions





India's Artistic Legacy

Literature, Art, and Architecture

• Indian arts have influenced the world

• Southeast Asians perform plays based on Sanskrit epic Mahabharata

•Bhagavad Gita has been translated and read around world

• Ancient artistsʼ visual symbols for Buddhaʼs holiness still used

• Indian influences in design of Cambodiaʼs Hindu temple, Angkor Wat


Legacy of Indian Mathematics

How does the mathematical knowledge of ancient India affect our lives today?

Hindu-Arabic Numerals

• Numerals we use—Hindu-Arabic numerals—came from India

- numerals 1 to 9 are 2,000 years old; Arab traders took them to the West

• Indians developed decimal system, based on tens

- each numeral is worth 10 times the numeral to its right

• Decimal system requires symbol for zero, to show empty places

- zero used in India for 1,400 years




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Ajanta Caves

The Ajanta caves located at Aurangabad district in Maharashtra. It were found by a group of British military personnel,in the beginning of 19th century.


Bahai Temple

Bahai is a religion established by Mirsa Hussein Ali in the 19th century. The Baha'i temple was built in 1989 at Nehru Place in Delhi.


Basilica of BOM JESUS

Goa is a place of churches and chapels, and is often called Rome of the east. Basilica of Bom Jesus at Old Goa was built by the Jesuits in 1605.


Charminar

The Charminar situated in Hyderabad ,Andra Pradesh, is the central attraction of the city. It was built by Mohammed Quli Shahi,the sultan of Golconda in 1591.


Church of Lady of Ransom

In the 19th century the roman catholics built St.Thomas church at Kanyakumari ,Tamil Nadu. Later it was rebuilt and named as lady of ransom.


CONTRIBUTION OF INDIA

Once upon a time India was described as a land of heavenly life…; every man and woman who lived here was equivalent to divine beings. The mention of 33 billion manifestations of Gods in the Indian scriptures refers to these inhabitants of ancient India. It is a country of golden heritage and glorious past. All branches of knowledge and civilization are said to have emanated from the Indian Philosophy and Culture which were disseminated across the globe through the dedicated altruist endeavors of the Rishis. India was supposed to be the eminent guide of the entire world in pre and post vedic age. The scientific and socio-economic development here was so advanced those days that India was often referred as a “Dimond Bird” – a symbol of immense prosperity. The periphery of the Indian culture was so vast that practically the whole world was lying in its domain of influence until several thousands years ago.


CONTRIBUTION OF INDIA TO THE WORLD

  • Sanskrit is the mother of all the European languages. Sanskrit is the most suitable language for computer software - a report in Forbes magazine, July 1987.
  • Although modern images of India often show poverty and lack of development, India was the richest country on earth until the time of British invasion in the early 17th Century. Christopher Columbus was attracted by India's wealth.
  • India invented the Number System. Zero was invented by Aryabhatta.
  • Algebra, trigonometry and calculus came from India. Quadratic equations were by Sridharacharya in the 11th century. The largest numbers the Greeks and the Romans used were 106 whereas Hindus used numbers as big as 10**53(10 to the power of 53) with specific names as early as 5000 BCE during the Vedic period. Even today, the largest used number is Tera 10**12(10 to the power of 12).
  • The value of "pi" was first calculated by Budhayana, and he explained the concept of what is known as the Pythagorean Theorem. He discovered this in the 6th century long before the European mathematicians.


Albert Einstein says...

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CHINESE CIVILIZATION

Do you want to know about the China?

China is a country with a very early civilization and a long and rich history. The compass, gunpowder, the art of paper-making and block printing invented by the ancient Chinese have contributed immensely to the progress of mankind. The Great Wall, Grand Canal and other projects built by the Chinese people are regarded as engineering feats in the world.


Furthermore...

China, one of the countries that can boast of an ancient civilization, has a long and mysterious history - almost 5,000 years of it! Like most other great civilizations of the world, China can trace her culture back to a blend of small original tribes which have expanded till they became the great country we have today.

It is recorded that Yuanmou man is the oldest hominoid in China and the oldest dynasty is Xia Dynasty. From the long history of China, there emerge many eminent people that have contributed a lot to the development of the whole country and to the enrichment of her history. Among them, there are emperors like Li Shimin (emperor Taizong of the Tang), philosophers like Confucius, great patriotic poets like Qu Yuan and so on.

Chinese society has progressed through five major stages - Primitive Society, Slave Society, Feudal Society, Semi-feudal and Semi-colonial Society, and Socialist Society. The rise and fall of the great dynasties forms a thread that runs through Chinese history, almost from the beginning. Since the founding of the People's Republic of China on October 1st, 1949, China has become a socialist society and become stronger and stronger.


【New Frontier HQ】 Chinese Civilization (01) The Dawn of Civilization / Part 01

Additionally ...

Man has lived for a very long time in what is now China, according to archaeological finds. In many parts of the country, for instance, fossil remains of primitive ape men have been unearthed. Among them are the fossil remains of the Yuanmou Ape Man who lived in Yunnan Province some 1.7 million years ago.

Research findings show that the Peking Man, who lived about 500,000 years ago, was able to make and use simple implements and knew the use of fire.


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China Legacy

Chinese civilization was one of seven major ones to emerge indepen-dent from others.

Its origins go back to agricultural villages in the Yellow River valley of northern China around 5,000 BC. It eventually spread to include today’s China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Singapore (three fourths ethnic Chinese) and influenced Korean and Japanese society and culture. China coalesced politically in the Qin (Ch’in) Dynasty (221 to 206 BC), from which came its name in English. It often surprises Westerners to hear about early Chinese technological advancements (gunpowder, block printing, paper, magnetic sailing compass, complex pest control systems) that predate exposure to Western science (Needham, 1954). There were grandiose public works projects such as the Grand Canal (1,200-mile north–south waterway, part natural, part constructed), started in the 6th century AD, stretching from Tianjin in the north nearly to Shanghai; there was the Great Wall (about 1,500 miles long) in the north, begun in 220 BC. Early Chinese traders traveled the Silk Road to Central Asia, and fleets reached India, the Arabian peninsula, and east Africa before the Spanish and Portuguese crossed the Atlantic (The Explorers Map, 1998; History of China, 1991).


CHINA DYNASTIES

Shang Dynasty

(商朝; Shāng cháo)
or the Yin Era (殷代, Yīn dài)

First recorded Chinese dynasty for which there is both documentary and archaeological evidence.
The latter part of the Shang dynasty, from the reign of P'an-k'ang on, is also called the Yin dynasty.
It was in the Shang period that Chinese writing began to develop.


Zhou Dynasty

(Chou dynasty)
(Chinese: 周朝; pinyin: Zhōu cháo),

The Zhou ruled ancient China for almost a millennium, establishing the distinctive political and cultural characteristics that were to be identified with China for the next 2,000 years. The Zhou coexisted with the Shang for many years, living just west of the Shang territory in what is now Shaanxi province. In mid-11th century the Zhou solidified their reign over all of China. An array of feudal states was created within the empire to maintain order and the emperor's hold on the land.


Qin Dynasty

(Chinese: 秦朝; pinyin: Qín cháo)
also known as the Ch'in dynasty, established the first great Chinese empire. The Ch'in (Qin), from which the name China is derived, established the approximate boundaries and the basic administrative system that all subsequent Chinese dynasties were to follow for the next 2,000 years. They also standardized the writing system, standardized the measurements of length and weight and the width of highways/roads and they built the precursor version of the Great Wall. But under its Emperor Qin Shi Huang and his chief adviser Li Si, the Qin also instituted a rigid, authoritarian government based on the principles of the Legalists: human beings were fundamentally base and selfish and had to be strictly controlled through laws. The Qin abolished all feudal privileges, and in 213, to halt subversive thought, they ordered all books burned.


Xin Dynasty

(or Hsin, 新朝; Xīn cháo), short-lived dynasty in China formed by Wang Mang (王莽; wáng măng), a Han Dynasty official who seized the throne from the Liu family. Wang Mang, with his sucessor Liu Keng-shih, ruled during an interim between the Former Han and Later Han dynastic periods.

Tang Dynasty

(Chinese: 唐朝; pinyin: Táng cháo)
founded by the Li (李) family, who seized power during the decline and collapse of the Sui Empire. The capital of the dynasty was Chang'an (present-day Xi'an), the most populous city in the world at that time. The Tang period is regarded by historians as a high point in Chinese civilization - equal to or surpassing that of the earlier Han Dynasty - as well as a golden age of cosmopolitan culture. Its territory, acquired through the military campaigns of its early rulers, was greater than that of the Han period, and rivaled that of the later Yuan Dynasty and Qing Dynasty. The Tang Dynasty was largely a period of progress and stability, except during the An Shi Rebellion and the decline of the central authority in the latter half of the dynasty.


The Yuan Dynasty

(Chinese: 元朝; pinyin: Yuán cháo)
The dynasty's official title 'Da Yuan' (Chinese: 大元, "Great Yuan") originates from 'I Ching'. It was the first non-Han dynasty to rule all of China. It was a khanate of the Mongol Empire, a political entity ruled by a Khan, namely Kublai Khan (Chinese: 忽必烈; pinyin: Hū bì liè). He became the first Yuan emperor, his reign dominated over Mongolia, Inner China, and some adjacent areas. Kublai Khan proclaimed the capital to be at Dadu (today Beijing). After some years of hard work, he finally defeated the Han-Dynasty of Southern Song in 1279. As emperor he also worked hard to minimize the influences of regional lords who had held immense power before and during the Song Dynasty. Almost all important central posts were monopolized now by Mongols. Unlike his predecessors Kublai Khan had decided to become the first absolute monarch.


Ming Dynasty

(Chinese: 明朝; pinyin: Míng cháo)
The Empire of the Great Ming followed the collapse of the Mongol Yuan Dynasty. Rivalry among the Mongol imperial heirs, natural disasters, and uprisings of Han Chinese groups against the Yuan Dynasty led to its collapse.
The Ming dynasty was founded by the Han Chinese Zhu Yuanzhang, a former Buddhist monk from a peasant family.
In 1356 Zhu Yuanzhang's rebel force captured the city of Yingtian (Nanjing), where he established his own military base.
In 1368, after Zhu Yuanzhang's army captured the Yuan capital Dadu (today Beijing), Zhu Yuanzhang officially proclaimed himself Emperor of China and founded the Ming Dynasty.
Under Zhu Yuanzhang the Chinese government established a standing army of 1,000,000 warriors and ordered the construction of a vast navy.
The era saw enormous projects of construction, including the restoration of the Grand Canal, the Great Wall and the construction of the Imperial Palace (Forbidden City) in Beijing.
The Ming was the last imperial dynasty in China ruled by ethnic Hans.


Qing Dynasty

(Chinese: 清朝; pinyin: Qīng cháo)
The Great Qing (also called the Later Jin) was the last ruling dynasty of China. The dynasty was founded by Manchus (Jurchen tribes), who are today an ethnic minority in northeast China. By 1646 the Manchus ruled over most of present-day China.
The dynasty was founded by Nurhaci (Chin.: 努尔哈赤 pinyin: Nǔ ěr hā chì) a former vassal of the Ming emperors. In 1616 he proclaimed himself Khan of "Great Jin", after he had consolidated the Jianzhou region to unify the Jianzhou Jurchen tribes. Two years later Nurhaci openly renounced the sovereignty of Ming overlordship. Under his command he united the loosely joined Jurchen tribes into a nation. He also confederated with various Mongol tribes. After Nurhaci's dead his son Hung Taiji (皇太極) continued to fight the Ming dynysty. He laid the groundwork for the conquering of the Ming in China, although he died before this was accomplished.
In June 1644 the Manchus seized control of Beijing and proclaimed the Qing dynasty to be the legitimate successor to the Ming Dynasty. Its first emperor Shunzhi Emperor was the second emperor of the Manchu Qing dynasty, and the first Qing emperor to rule all over China from 1644 to 1661. In the course of time under Emperor Kangxi, the Qing dynasty defeated Taiwan and Tzarist Russia. The dynasty lasted until 1911 after its decline in the mid-19th century. Following the Xinhai Revolution the Qing Dynasty was overthrown.


CHINA'S CULTTURE

Chinese culture is called Confucian in reference to its early, long- revered, and oft-cited sage Confucius (Kung Fu-tzu, c. 500 BC), whose thinking and teaching influenced its social value system (Leys, 1997). Confucian tradition draws mainly from custom rather than from religion, ideology, or law, and with the following features. The social structure values order, hierarchy, and deference to authority, as reflected in long-standing wu-lun rules of deference (e.g., of child to parent, student to teacher, young to old, wife to husband, citizen to ruler, and, by extension, employee to employer or boss). In this respect, Chinese culture is high on Hofstede’s power distance, that is, it readily accepts interpersonal differences in power. Group consciousness is strong (high collectivism, low individualism); daily life, including business, relies heavily on personal connections and trust, based variously on family and kinship ties, community, geographic region, language dialect, school, or other bonds.

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Chinese Dynasties Song

Contributions of Ancient China to the World

The world is indebted to ancient china for a number of contributions in the sector of art, literature, science and technology. Let us discuss about the major contributions of ancient china to the world.


PAPER

For the nation that uses some 80,000 different symbols in their language, it was just natural to invent the paper. Papers were produced from 3 different kinds of sources, namely, the silk rags, wooden strips and bamboo, hemp or clothes.

The ancient China also pioneered the concept of ink (206B.C.-A.D.220) and they were the first to invent printer (618-906A.D) and print a book (868 AD).


COMPASS

It was a tool that was invented to fulfill religious purposes. A compass was used to examine whether an under-construction building was facing the right direction so that it could be in perfect harmony with nature. For example, the scientists of ancient China believed; if the house faces north, the inhabitants will be perfectly getting along with the nature. The earliest compass made by the ancient Chinese inventors, resembled a wooden circle which had a number of marks on it along with a magnetic spoon on the top.


SILK

Probably the most significant contribution of the ancient china was the fine variety of silk that goes by the name of Chinese silk. The ancient Chinese were the one who taught the rest of the world how to harvest silk from silk worms. They also coined the techniques of creating clothes, fans, kites, paper, and many other articles from it.


Historical Sites In China

Xi'an City Wall

Located in the center of Xi'an City, the Xi'an City Wall (西安城墙) measures 12 meters high, 18 meters wide at the base and 15 meters wide at the top. It is 13.7 kilometers long and the length of the east, west, south and north walls are, respectively, 2590 m, 2631.2 m, 3441.6 m and 3241 m. It has four gates; Changle Gate in the east, Anding Gate in the west, Yongning Gate in the south and Anyuan Gate in the north.

The existing wall was built between 1374 and 1378, making it over 600 years old. It is the oldest and most well preserved city wall in all of China.

There are 5948 battlements on the outer side of the city wall, once used by archers to defend against enemies. Every 120 meters, there are ramparts that extend off the main wall. About every 40 or 60 meters, there are water channels made of green bricks used for drainage. The channels were very important for long term protection of the wall. The Xi'an City Wall is a complete and perfected defense system including a moat, suspension bridge, draw bridge and turrets.

In 1961, the State Council announced that the Xi'an City Wall was in the first batch of national important historical sites that should receive special protection.


Forbidden City

(or the Palace Museum) is one of the must-visit attractions for travelers to China. It used to be an imperial palace in the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties.It has housed 24 emperors.

The layout of this palace is strictly according to Chinese fengshui theory. China’s best-preserved imperial palace is the world’s largest ancient palatial structure (720,000 square meters, and more than 9,000 halls), and the essence and culmination of traditional Chinese architectural accomplishment.

Today, the palace is a large museum. There are thousands of historical relics, and the most precious two are the scroll painting of 'A Riverside Scene at Qingming Festival' (清明上河图) and a gold cup with three pillars used by Emperor Qianlong (金瓯永固杯).

Beijing is the city with the most historical sites in the world, including the Great Wall, Summer Palace, Temple of Heaven, and the Forbidden City. Check out our information on over 70 Beijing’s attractions.


The Terracotta Army: First Emperor Qin's Buried Battalions

The museum exhibiting this life-size terracotta army lies about 1.5 kilometers east of the Mausoleum of First Emperor of Qin, which is believed to be a magnificent mausoleum (it has not been unearthed). The museum, with three pits containing the Terracotta Army, covers an area of 22,780 square meters. Over 8,000 terracotta soldiers and horses, and more than 10,000 bronze weapons were unearthed in these three pits.

The Terracotta Army was included on the World Heritage List by UNESCO in 1987, candidate for the title “eighth wonder of the world” and the largest military museum underground. An interesting fact is that all the terracotta soldiers were made to face east towards Emperor Qin's enemies.

Xi’an, where the Terracotta Army is located, is one of the two greatest ancient cities in China. The Ancient City Wall is another highlights of the city. You can check out more historical sites in Xi’an.


The Great Wall: the Longest Defensive System in the World

The Great Wall of China is one of the greatest sights in the world. The entire Great Wall includes defensive systems built in the Warring States Period (475–221 BC), the Qin Dynasty (221–206 BC), the Han Dynasty (202 BC–220 AD), the Northern Wei Dynasty (386–557), the Jin Dynasty (1115–1234), and the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644).

In ancient China the Great Wall was used as defense against the invasion of nomadic tribes (mainly Mongolians) in northern China. Today, the Great Wall is a symbol of China, together with Tian’anmen and the five stars or the Communist flag.

The entire Great Wall of China zigzags across the mountains of northern China. We highly recommend hiking along the best-protected sections of the Great Wall: Shanhai Pass, Juyong Pass, Badaling, Mutianyu and Yumen Pass. Check out our customizable Great Wall tours.


The Potala Palace: Masterpiece of Tibetan Architecture

If you are interested in Tibetan culture, the Potala Palace is an attraction which you should not miss. The Potala Palace was first built as a palace of Songtsen Gampo (617–650), the founder of the Tu-Bo Dynasty (吐蕃王朝).After being rebuilt in the 17th century, it was the residence of Dalai Lamas.

There are plenty of precious historical relics in the palace, including over 10,000 Buddha statues made of gold, silver, jade, wood, or clay, and about 10,000 tangkas (scroll paintings related to Budhhism). The gorgeous mural paintings, wooden carvings, and color paintings used for decoration are outstanding.

The Potala Palace is located in the northwest of Lhasa city. Other top attractions in Lhasa are: Norbulingka (“the Summer Palace” of Lhasa), Jokhang Temple (a Tibetan Buddhist temple with more than 1,350 years of history), and Drepung Monastery (the largest monastery in the world, with about 10,000 monks).


MESOPOTAMIAN CIVILIZATION

Mesopotamia (from the Greek, meaning 'between two rivers’) was an ancient region in the eastern Mediterranean bounded in the northeast by the Zagros Mountains and in the southeast by the Arabian Plateau, corresponding to today’s Iraq, mostly, but also parts of modern-day Iran, Syria and Turkey. The 'two rivers' of the name referred to the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers and the land was known as 'Al-Jazirah'(the island) by the Arabs (referencing what Egyptologist J.H. Breasted would later call the Fertile Crescent, where Mesopotamian civilization began).


Lost civilisations - 01 - Mesopotamia.avi

Do you want to know the classes of people in Mesopotamia?

Job specialization was very important in ancient Mesopotamia because it meant that there could be classes of people in Mesopotamia. There were three different classes of people. The lowest class of people were slaves. The slaves had no right, and were controlled by their owners. The slaves were not paid for the hard work that they did, but were provided with shelter. Slaves were often captured during wars.

Next came the middle class of Mesopotamia. These were the people that had paying jobs to feed their families. Often these people owned slaves, but were not slaves themselves. Common jobs for these people were merchants, teachers, and farmers.

The very top social class in Mesopotamia were the kings, rulers, and priests. Priests were the doctors of the time, and made sure that all the people didn't do things to upset the gods. The kings made all of the laws and controlled the military.

The social classes of people in Mesopotamia were different from those in the U.S. In the U.S, we have presidents instead of kings. There are no slaves in the U.S, and everyone is allowed to live their life the way they want to. In Mesopotamia, your social class really couldn't change that much: if you were a slave, you would probably stay a slave. However, in the US, you can change your social class by getting a better or worse job and earning more or less money.


Mesopotamian Legacy

The creation of writing, early mathematics, polytheism and other forms of religions, astronomy, agriculture and pottery. The code of Hammurabi made by the Babylonians is one of the most important foundations of Law. the Sumerian "the Epic of Gilgamesh" is the first piece of literary work known to us. Egypt left us with architectural knowledge and invented the solar calendar.


Cultural Components

Language

The people in Mesopotamia spoke Semitic, which was similar to Arabic and Hebrew


Art

Sumerians were very good craftsmen. They made beautiful pottery, jewelry, and sculptures. The Sumerians made such beautiful pottery that it was used to trade for food, clothes, and other goods. They also made mosaics out of many tiny pieces of painted clay. The Sumerians made jewelry out of gold and lapis. (left.) They also built sculptures to honor their gods. Babylonians made sculptures of animals. Often times, these sculptures were of lions. The Babylonians built these sculptures to honor their gods. The Assyrians weren't as interested in art that was pretty. They painted huge painting that showed their daily life, and how fierce their army was in battle.


Religion

Sumerians worshiped nature, such wind and water. They also believed in immortal in gods that took human shape.

Assyrians practiced two religions throughout their history. First they practiced Ashurism, and then they practiced Christianity.

Babylonians believed that different gods controlled different parts of nature: one controlled the earth, one controlled the ocean, on controlled the air, the sun, the mountains, the rivers, etc. They believed that if they annoyed one of the gods, the part of nature that it controlled would bring bad luck. For example, if you annoyed the river god, a river might flood.


CONTRIBUTIONS OF MESOPOTAMIA

Some of the contributions were things like school and cuneiform, which is wedged shape writing in clay. This made possible the first literature, poetry, letters, bills, and accounting systems, they also invented the wheel, the first wheeled vehicles and many of the farm tools that are still used such as hoes, shovels, and rakes. The Phoenicians created the first alphabet. Some of their letters are still used today, though somewhat changed in form. The Mesopotamians also made ziggurats, which were sacred 'mountain' temples to their gods. Egyptians later borrowed the idea of step-shaped buildings and converted them into pyramids. Ancient Mesopotamians invented the system by which we still keep time using base 20. They devised the twelve month calendar which we still use. The calendar they developed used constellations to tell time, from this study of the stars came astrology. They developed the first mathematics and geometry. King Hammurabi is credited with the idea of written laws. Some Mesopotamians began to worship one god instead of many, a belief that is central to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. They built two of the wonders of the ancient world: the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and the royal tomb at Halicarnassus. The Hittites were the first to make and use iron weapons which revolutionized warfare.


Historical Sites

Ziggurats

Temples were originally built on platforms. During the third millennium B.C., these were made higher and bigger. Eventually it was decided to build even higher temples on platforms which were stepped.

These stepped towers we call ziggurats. By 2000 B.C. mud-brick ziggurats were being constructed in many Sumerian cities. Later, ziggurats were constructed in Babylonian and Assyrian cities.


Hatra Ruins:

For security reasons, the Hatra Ruins barely see any visitors come its way. Safety is a concern when embarking on this adventure to discover the ancient ruins, a handful of military personnel frequent the area, to make sure that the ruins are safe from looters. The key to fully taking in what the ruins has to offer is to take a deep breath and just go for it. Visiting the Hatra Ruins is definitely an opportunity of a lifetime. There are a number of temples that were dedicated to different ancient deities you will find on your visit. The remaining stone statues that adorn the ancient city will amaze you. There are a number of excavation digs that are still on the lookout for any historical artifacts that can help future generations have a better understanding of Iraqi history and the civilization of the world as a whole. Take a trip down the road that once united western progress with eastern thought and let the past speak to you once you visit the Hatra ruins.


National Museum of Iraq:

The National Museum of Iraq is known to house a significant number of historical artifacts that has helped people learn more about the Mesopotamian civilizations and middle-eastern life in general. It first opened its doors to the public in 1926 through the efforts of author and British traveler Gertrude Ball, who unfortunately passed away months before the museum welcomed its first guests. Because of many conflicts that befell the country in the past, many important relics that were originally included in the museum’s display have been looted and sold to private collectors through the black market. In 2009, the national museum once again opened its glory to the world for a day by the Iraqi prime minister Al – Maliki. Although the national museum no longer holds its former grandeur, it is a relief to know that history is not completely all lost. There are many artifacts that are still kept within its walls, some even dating back to the prehistoric era.


Wadi al Salam

The Wadi al-Salam cemetery in the city of Najaf is one of the most popularly visited landmarks today. The popularity of the city can be credited to the tomb of imam Ali bin abitaleb, the fourth caliph and the first imam who is revered by so many in the Muslim faith. This is why the Wadi al-Salam cemetery has been a famous destination for devotees and even families who would like to have the distinction of being buried in the valley of peace. The Wadi al-Salam cemetery is one of those interesting destinations in Iraq to visit.


The Abbasid Palace

It has a central courtyard and two stories of rooms, with beautiful arches and muqarnases in brickwork, and a remarkable ewan with brickwork ceiling and facade. When it was partly reconstructed in recent times another one was built to face it. Parts of the building were reconstructed by the State Establishment of Antiquities and Heritage, whereupon a collection of historical remains were exhibited in it representing certain stages of the country's Arab Islamic history.