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Why was writing first invented in Sumer?

Question:

Why was writing first invented in Sumer?

Writing:

History officially began nearly six thousand years ago when the Sumerian peoples of Mesopotamia invented writing. Prior to this, forms of communication existed (like cave art) but failed to fully capture the author's intents.

Answer and Explanation:

Writing was first invented in Sumer for several key reasons. First and foremost, Sumer had already developed pictograms meant to keep tallies of numbers, such as quantities of food for trade, and it was a natural progression of these pictograms into script. Additionally, Sumer was one of the first civilizations where government administration progressed to complex organization, necessitating record-keeping to carry out orders. Finally, Sumerian language was an isolate, meaning that it has no known association with other languages families: it is thus hypothetically possible that writing was more necessary in Sumer if their language had no similarities to share with other languages.


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Sumer's Protoliterate Period & the Origin of Writing

from World History: Credit Recovery

Chapter 5 / Lesson 3
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