Essay by LevonjonesJunior High, 9th grade October 2006

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Around 3,000 B.C., the Sumerians began to colonize the fertile valleys between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. This area was called Mesopotamia. Through their developments of writing, architecture, economy, government, religion, agriculture, and technology, the Sumerians created what we know today as civilized life.

The greatest achievement of the Sumerians was the invention of cuneiform style writing. They would engrave their picture words using reeds as a writing instrument on wet clay, which would then dry into stone-hard tablets. Eventually, they converted their picture words to a short-hand consisting of wedged lines created by bending the reed against the wet clay and moving the end closest to the hand back and during the early civilization period included the use of bronze for tools and weapons. Copper had introduced earlier, but mixing it with tin for bronze created much stronger equipment. The Sumerians invented the sailboat, which was important for trade, enforcing laws, sharing culture, and unifying the empire.

They also invented the wheel, which was used for pottery, then adapted for transportation. Everyday life depends heavily upon the technology of this ancient civilization.

Mesopotamia has made some of the many inventions we still use today.

Through their developments, the Sumerians created what we know today as civilized life. The fact that the Mesopotamians were able to survive in the land between the rivers says much about the strength and adaptability of this civilization.