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3,500BC Sumerians and Babylonians use sexigesimal (base 60) number system according to historian Eric Temple Bell.
3,450 The first cities appeared along the banks of the Tigris and Euphrates just north of what is now the Persian Gulf. The cities made up the Uruk culture named after the principal city of Uruk, which corresponds to the Biblical Erech. The culture invented writing, the lunar calendar, used metal and built monumental architecture. The cities remained independent for almost a thousand years.
3,300 Around this time the inhabitants of Sumer in present day Iraq adopted the practice of storing tokens in sealed clay jars. The tokens represented the counts of foodstuffs, livestock , and land. The stored tokens provided a more permanent record but required that jars be broken in order to examine the record. Then someone hit on the idea of making marks in the soft clay covers of the jars to represent the tokens inside. Archeological evidence shows that the marked jars led almost immediately to a system of marks on clay tablets.
(I&I, Penzias, p.42)
3,300 Archaic cylinder seals [of Sumeria] of this time were later collected by financier Pierpont Morgan.
(SFC, 2/15/97, p.D1)
3,200BC Archeological evidence indicates that the Sumerians used wheeled transportation.
3,200 The Sumerians developed pictographic writing about this time.
(SFEC, 11/14/99, p.A6)
3100BC Writing was related to Sumerian language.
2700BC The Sumerian King, Gilgamesh, ruled the city of Uruk which had grown to a population of over 50,000. Gilgamesh was the subject of many epics, including the Sumerian “Gilgamesh and Enkidu in the Nether World” and the Babylonian “Epic of Gilgamesh.”
2320BC Sargon conquered the independent city-states of Sumer and instituted a central government.
2300BC Sumerian cuneiform texts mention the land of Magan (possibly Oman) as a source of copper and diorite for the states of Mesopotamia.
(AM, May/Jun 97 p.49)
2,200 In what is now Bahrain settlements and temples of the city state of Dilmun, known as the city of the gods in ancient Sumerian literature, were found by Danish archaeologists in the 1950s.
(AM, May/Jun 97 p.48)
2113BCE Ur's golden century began when King Ur-Nammu expanded the Sumerian empire and made his capital the wealthiest city in Mesopotamia.
2100BC The Sumerian King List was written. It recorded all the kings and dynasties ruling Sumer from the earliest times. Eridu was named as the earliest settlement and archeological evidence seems to confirm the claim.
c2000BC The goddess Inanna was a fertility figure.
(SFEC, 9/27/98, BR p.7)
2000-1600BC In Mesopotamia the Old Babylonian period began after the collapse of Sumer, probably due to an increase in the salt content of the soil that made farming difficult. Weakened by poor crops and lack of surplus goods, the Sumerians were conquered by the Amorites, situated in Babylon. The center of civility shifted north. The Amorites preserved much of the Sumerian culture but introduced their own Semitic language, an early ancestor to Hebrew, into the region.
c1900BC The “Epic of Gilgamesh” was redacted from Sumerian sources written in the Babylonian semetic. The legend was written about 1,600 BC.
(eawc, p.3)(SFC, 11/18/99, p.C6)
1900-1500 During this period a semetic group of nomads migrated from Sumer to Canaan and then on to Egypt. They were led by a caravan trader, the Patriarch Abraham, who became the father of the nation of Israel.
1763 Hammurabi, the Amorite King, conquered all of Sumer. He wrote a “Code of Laws” that contained 282 rules including the principles of “an eye for an eye” and “let the buyer beware.” It was one of the first codes of law in world history, predated only by the Laws of Lipit-Ishtar.
1400 Sumerian writing remained pictographic until about this time.
(SFEC, 11/14/99, p.A6)
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Subject = Sumeria
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