By Alexis Irlbeck
The Mesopotamians were an ancient civilization that achieved many things that have impacted our world today.
- Invented the first wheel and attached them to chariots to get places – possibly most important invention in history
- Invented pictograms – communicated basic information on crops and taxes
- Invented cuneiform tablets for writing
- Built huge, tall Ziggurats to be closer to the Heavens/Gods
- Built Ziggurats, houses, and city walls out of mud-brick/adobe
- Ziggurats were very important religious – they were also used to leave offerings/gifts to the gods
- Huge walls were built around cities
- Most surviving cuneiform tablets that were medical texts were about prescriptions
- The diagnostic treatise contains texts about neurology, fevers, skin lesions, etc.
- Most diseases or organ failures were blames on the spirits
- One surgical tablet describes postoperative wound care, which includes dressing a wound with sesame oil for antibacterial purposes
- Evidence that they wrestled and boxed were shown in art
- Played a board game called “20 squares” that involved a race with pieces according to what numbers were rolled on a dice
- Dancing was mentioned in tablets, and whirling dances were done in respect for the Goddess Ishtar, and circle dances were done for fun by women
- Hunted for recreation, religious, and political reasons
Ancient Boxing Art
- Used the Nile River Floods to farm
- Made irrigation systems to supply water for crops and to families
- Started making bronze tools at 2800 B.C.
- By 3000 B.C., plows that could be pulled by oxen were made
How have the Mesopotamians affected modern day society?
The ancient civilization of Mesopotamia has affected us in a number of ways. Their original ideas have helped us greatly today. In my opinion, the most important ideas that have evolved are the inventions of the wheel, irrigation systems, and using sesame oil to dress wounds, because we are still using those first ideas today. Without those original ideas, many people would have died off and we would not be here today.