Tools and Buildings – Innovations that Show Culture and Civilization
How do you define a civilization? Some would say it’s due to a common language, or a common faith. It has to be more than a location though, doesn’t it?
Around the world, we see the same basic things used thru every civilizations. In approx the same timeline too.
We see people who: wear clothes, decorate themselves with meaningful symbols; used for praise or to appease their gods, rules of living that show morality, and creativity for things like art; as funeral rites or celebration of what they see and experience.
And we think of what that shows about the people. Who they were and who they are becoming too. How they’ve changed.
But that’s the big stuff….
What about the way they spend their days? What is their habitat like? What tools do they use to make their tasks easier? Did they create them? Or how did they find them?
What does that show about their intelligence? At a time when the earth was young and they were battling glaciers and extensive deserts, large predators, and had little between them and nature but their superstitions, how did they come up with rope that would help them leverage weights to build, hoist sails, baskets that would store their things, or spears that would help them hunt for food? I know I’m pretty creative, but not in that kind of practical way. I know my father was creative in that way, but he never invented a tool to ease his day.
So how is it that at the time of beginning , when it was most needed, that type of intelligence was so prevalent? And how do we still look at them as savages? As uncivilized? I often think it says more about us than it does them.
Today we have so much respect for the people who give us the tools we need now, like the phone or the computer, yet we have none for those who began the world. But those who invented the computer couldn’t have done so unless they were on the shoulders of their forbearers, could they have? How do you think Bill Gates would have done back at the beginning of everything, if all he had to offer was a computer?
Sometimes it’s not just the tool, but also the timing.
….. Going into Africa
For a sense of time, these are the large movements of the Eurasians.
The Silk Road – Established when the Han Dynasty in China officially opened trade with the West in 130 B.C., the Silk Road routes remained in use until 1453 A.D., when the Ottoman Empire boycotted trade with China and closed them.
The Crusades In all, eight major Crusade expeditions occurred between 1096 and 1291.
The Disciples spreading the gospel are said to have made it to Africa. And Jews and Muslems were related to North African tribes. But how close was their contact?
Common inventions approx simultaneously. Were they learning on their own, or somehow in communication? (Though some might say that devils, gods, or aliens taught the beginning tribes what they needed to know to survive.)
And how did almost every early civilization come up with the idea to go from grass sheds to hide tents, from log barracks to stone or brick bldgs that reached for the skies? At a time of superstition, weren’t they afraid of offending the gods? How did they consider making replicas of those who passed on or gods and devils as anything but sacrilege? Yet those statues were common in the Necropolises and temples.
The ancient monument at Nabta Playa , in the desolate Sahara desert of southwestern Egypt, has been called one of the earliest aligned structures of mankind’s ancient past. Consensus opinion currently indicates that usage of the site may have begun around 4500 BC
Sabratha was a Phoenician trade port in Libya approx 500 BC
Yeha Temple, Ethiopia (500 BC)
Referred to as the “Terrific Temple of the Sun and Moon,” Yeha Temple is situated in the town Yeha in the northern Tigray Area of Ethiopia. It is the most ancient Ethiopian structure still standing today.
- Pyramid of Khafre, Egypt (c. 2500 BC)
Also called the “Pyramid of Chephren,” this ancient structure is the 2nd largest in addition to the 2nd tallest of the Ancient Egyptian Pyramids of Giza.
- Great Pyramid of Giza, Egypt (c. 2560 BC)
- Red Pyramid, Egypt (c. 2580 BC)
A little older than the Great Pyramid of Giza is the Red Pyramid, also referred to as the North Pyramid.
- Bent Pyramid, Egypt (c. 2580 BC)
- Pyramid of Meidum, Egypt (c. 2580 BC)
- Pyramid of Djoser, Egypt (2667–2648 BC)
Finally, the oldest building still standing in Africa is the original Egyptian pyramid,
Located on an island just off the coast of Tanzania, the ancient ruins of Kilwa Kisiwane tell the story of a once great East African port. Between the 13th and 16th centuries,
The city of Khami was once the capital of Zimbabwe’s Torwa dynasty, rising from the fall of the Great Zimbabwe Kingdom between 1450 and 1650 CE.
Adam’s Calendar in Mpumalanga, South Africa is often suggested to be the oldest man-made structure in the world. Referred to as “African Stonehenge”, its construction predates Stonehenge and the Great Pyramid of Giza by tens of thousands of years – in fact, it’s believed to be about 75,000 years old.
The Obelisk of Axum in Ethiopia was constructed all the way back in 4th century BCE. Historians believe the obelisk was carved by the Kingdom of Aksum, an ancient Ethiopian civilisation.
The newly discovered city, called Kweneng, a lost city that was once a bustling epicenter in what is now under South Africa’s Suikerbosrand National Park, was once a thriving capital that existed from the 1400s until it was destroyed and abandoned, likely because of civil wars, in the 1820s,
SKBR ancient Tswana ruins in and around the Suikerbosrand hills, about 60 kilometres south of Johannesburg, South Africa , it’s estimated that the builders of the stone walled structures occupied this area from the fifteenth century AD until the second half of the 1800s.
In the 12th century A.D., a devout king ordered the construction of 11 eye-catching Christian churches in the Ethiopian village of Lalibela . “New Jerusalem”