Cuneiform Latin for "wedge shaped" appears on baked clay or mud tablets that range in color from bone white to chocolate to charcoal. Inscriptions were also made on pots and bricks.
As Sumerian towns grew into cities, the people needed a way to keep track of business transactions, ownership rights, and government records. Around BC the Sumerians began to use picture symbols marked into clay tablets to keep their records.
Sumerian Writing by Unknown Symbols were made with wedge shaped marks on clay tablets Clay Tablets Writing was inscribed on clay tablets. Scribes would take a stylus a stick made from a reed and press the lines and symbols into soft, moist clay.
Once they were done, they would let the clay harden and they had a permanent record. Cuneiform The initial writing of the Sumerians utilized simple pictures or pictograms.
For example, a drawing of a person's head, meant the word "head". Over time, however, the writing of the Sumerians further developed to include sounds and meanings. Scribes would use the stylus to make wedge shaped marks in the clay.
This type of writing is called cuneiform writing, which means "wedge-shaped". Translating Translating Mesopotamian writing is difficult for archeologists today. This is because there were over different symbols and the symbols' meaning and shapes could change between different cities and regions.
The symbols often changed over time as well. However, many Sumerian tablets have been deciphered. This is how we know so much about Mesopotamian culture, government, and history.
Literature While most of the tablets discovered have been government and financial records, some of the writings are literature. This literature includes mythology of the Mesopotamian gods, tales of their heroes, poetry, and songs.
Some of the writings include sayings of wisdom.
The most famous and epic of all the Mesopotamian literature is the story Gilgamesh. Go here to learn more about the Epic Tale of Gilgamesh. Interesting Facts About Sumerian Writing People signed items with personal seals made of stone, metal, or wood. Later Mesopotamian civilizations such as the Assyrians and the Babylonians used Sumerian writing.
Cuneiform writing was around for thousands of years until it was replaced by the Phoenician alphabet near the end of the neo-Assyrian Empire. Hieroglyphics was invented in Ancient Egypt about the same time as cuneiform in Mesopotamia, but scientists believe that cuneiform came first.
As far as archeologists can tell, the Sumerian language is not related to any other language on Earth. Cuneiform refers to the way a language is written, not necessarily a particular language.
It was initially used in Mesopotamia to write Sumerian, but later was used for Akkadian which the Sumerians, the Akkadians, the Babylonians, and the Assyrians all spoke.
Activities Take a ten question quiz about this page. Listen to a recorded reading of this page: Your browser does not support the audio element. Go here to learn how to write like a Babylonian: Learn More about Ancient Mesopotamia:Over time, the need for writing changed and the signs developed into a script we call cuneiform.
Over thousands of years, Mesopotamian scribes recorded daily events, trade, astronomy, and literature on clay tablets. Cuneiform was used by people throughout the ancient Near East to write . The Cuneiform Writing System in Ancient Mesopotamia: Emergence and Evolution. The earliest writing systems evolved independently and at roughly the same time in Egypt and Mesopotamia, but current scholarship suggests that Mesopotamia’s writing appeared first.
Details of the Sumerian cuneiform script, the world's oldest writing system, which was used to write Sumerian, a semitic language spoken in Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq and Syria) until about AD.
Discover thousands of images about sumerian alphabet. The Dot-to-Dot Alphabet Letter Charts are a re-usable printable that can be used part of learning centres, small group activities or independently to learn the correct formation of writing alphabet letters.
Starting at number 1, count, follow and join the numbered to form the letter. Printable Dot-to- Dot Alphabet Letter Charts. Details of the Sumerian cuneiform script, the world's oldest writing system, which was used to write Sumerian, a semitic language spoken in Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq and Syria) until about AD.
Details of the Sumerian cuneiform script, the world's oldest writing system, which was used to write Sumerian, a semitic language spoken in Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq and Syria) until about AD. This is the Sumerian alphabet.
The Sumerians were one of the first urban societies who possessed a visual written language.