In the late 4th millennium BCE, Uruk had 10000 inhabitants which increased to 50000 in the decades after that, making it the largest city in Mesopotamia, and in the Sumerian civilization.
The people of Uruk were highly civilized and worked in various professions like ambassadors, priests, stonecutters, cooks, and jewellers.
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Uruk was the world’s first large city and completely changed humanity’s ability to store, exchange and replicate information by creating the first writing system in 3200 BCE.
The invention of writing made the unreliable and fallible human memory obsolete and revolutionized how we process information. The earlier form of dictating information orally from generation to generation quickly became a thing of the past.
Uruk was the first civilization to introduce written record-keeping, using symbols, pictographs, and eventually words. The Sumerians were an innovative civilization and improvised this symbolic language into complex documents, epic poems and literature, along with lists and genealogies.
Writings were mostly on reeds and clay, slowly forming a complex language of letters based on ‘wedge-shaped’ markings, known as cuneiform.
According to the ancient Sumerian writings, the mythical king Enmerkar is credited with the invention of a written language, leaving a permanent mark in history and all the human literary output from that point onwards.
The preservation of ancient writings has provided humanity with a way to travel through time, with the writings being like artefacts from the past with deep insights and information of that time.
The Sumerian culture used to worship the sun and revered the cow, which is associated with motherhood. The Sumerian Sun God was called Utu, with the revered King Enmerkar ruling Uruk for more than a hundred years according to the scriptures. The Sumerian legend is preserved in the epic ‘Enmerkar and the Lord Of Aratta’.
Mohenjo-Daro is a city in today's Pakistan that pioneered new standards of urban sanitation. Mohenjo-Daro was the earliest and largest urban center of the ancient Indus Valley civilization, constructed circa 2500 BCE.
The people of the Indus Valley civilization invented new water supply and sanitation devices, including piping and a complex sewage system. Most of the city's houses had indoor baths and latrines with drains. This civilization is thought even to surpass the plumbing system of the later Roman civilization.
Some of the first tools for writing were the hunting club and the sharpened stone. Cave dwellers scratched pictures onto the walls of cave dwellings. It represented daily events such as planting crops or hunting victories.
With time, systematised symbols were developed from their drawings that represented words and sentences but were quicker and easier to draw. The symbols became shared among groups.
Alexandria, with its Great Library, was marked as the intellectual capital of the world.
During the third century BCE, the Musaeum, an educational and research institution, was built in Alexandria. The Great Library was one part of the Musaeum and may have held around 700,000 scrolls (equivalent to over 100,000 printed books.)
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