From: Glenn Morton (email@example.com)
Date: Sat Oct 19 2002 - 23:00:50 EDT
A review by A.Lawler, Science 292 (29 June 2001), 2418-2420, suggests
that the origin of writing has been pushed back to at least 3300 B.C.,
if not much earlier. "The prehistoric communication revolution" is
believed to have begun about 7000 B.C., but there seems to be very
little information dating to before 3500 B.C. In Mesopotamia, clay
tokens preceded real writing. To date, the earliest clay tablets found
at Uruk date to perhaps 3200 B.C. and early cuneiform to 3100 B.C. A
photograph of an example of "protocuneiform" dating to 3000 B.C. is
shown. One researcher called the early cuneiform "too good" to have been
developed in a haphazard way, implying sufficient sophistication to
write texts like early Genesis....
One needs to be aware that the earliest writing probably didn't happen in
Mesopotamia but either in Pakistan or Egypt.
Of Early Writing and a King of Legend
By JOHN NOBLE WILFORD
Carved in the limestone of a desert cliff in Egypt is a 5,250-year-old
tableau of a victorious ruler, perhaps the so-called King Scorpion ó whose
exploits, previously the stuff of myth and legend, may have been critical to
the founding of Egyptian civilization. The archaeologists who discovered the
tableau seven years ago now say it may be the world's earliest historical
More than that, they say, the inscribed scenes and symbols bear a strong
resemblance to later hieroglyphs. This is a significant addition to a
growing body of evidence that the first true writing originated in Egypt ó
not in ancient Sumer, in what is now Iraq, as scholars of antiquity had
Writing May Have Begun in
Egypt - Archaeologists
CAIRO, Dec 15 (Reuters) - German archaeologists said on
Tuesday they have discovered ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic
inscriptions which raise questions about the origin of
"It was thought that Sumerians were earlier in writing than
Egypt," Gunter Dreyer, director of the German Archaeological
Institute in Egypt, told a news conference.
"With our findings we see now it's on the same level and
this is an open question: was it (writing) invented here or
An expedition from the institute discovered the inscriptions
on about 300 pots and labels over a period of 10 years at an
ancient royal cemetery, named "the Mother of Pots" for its
rich pottery work, in Abydos, about 400 km (250 miles) south
The earliest known Sumerian writings were thought to date
back to 3000 BC but the German Institute's new findings show
some writings dating back to 3400 BC. "But the bulk of the
(institute's) evidence is about 3200 BC," Dreyer said.
The German archaeologist said Egyptian inscriptions of that
time were more advanced and readable than those in
Mesopotamia, inhabited by the Sumerians. "Our colleagues in
Mesopotamia don't have explanations of their (writings')
meaning," he said.
Copyright 1998 Reuters Limited.All rights reserved.
Tuesday, May 4, 1999 Published at 08:10 GMT 09:10 UK
'Earliest writing' found
The fragments of pottery are about 5,500 years old
Exclusive by BBC News Online Science Editor Dr
The first known examples of writing may have been unearthed
at an archaeological dig in Pakistan.
So-called 'plant-like' and 'trident-shaped' markings have
been found on fragments of pottery dating back 5500 years.
They were found at a site called Harappa in the region
where the great Harappan or Indus civilisation flourished
four and a half thousand years ago.
Harappa was originally a small settlement in 3500 BC but by
2600 BC it had developed into a major urban centre.
The earliest known writing was etched onto jars before and
after firing. Experts believe they may have indicated the
contents of the jar or be signs associated with a deity.
According to Dr Richard Meadow of Harvard University, the
director of the Harappa Archaeological Research Project,
these primitive inscriptions found on pottery may pre-date
all other known writing.
The earliest writing in Mesopotamia is usually dated from c. 3200 BC. If one
says 3300, it really does not make any significant difference because it
would still be quite primitive. From 3200 to c. 3000 it is pictographs.
I am sorry, but pictographs are not primmitive in the sense that they are
limited in the ideas they can convey. Pictographic languages like Chinese
can convey any concept or idea the modern world has to offer. What
pictographic languages aren't, is compact. But compact is not a measure of
for lots of creation/evolution information
personal stories of struggle
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