Do you remember way back in January when I first told you about a series of blog hops my friend Lindsay Starr and I were going to host? No? Not to worry (my memory isn't always so great either) - you can always follow this link to the original post and refresh your memory. We started with the Pre-Human Edition and then moved on to the Early Human Edition. For the third round, we'll be taking our inspiration from the early civilizations. And boy, is there a lot to choose from!
The first written language appeared near the beginning of this period. It's generally agreed that the ancient Sumerians invented it about 3200 BC and the picture above is an example of Sumerian text. These guys weren't just sitting around admiring their penmanship, either. They were doing things like inventing the wheel and plow; making advances in arithmetic and geometry; and studying astronomy, chemistry and medicine.
The folks in Egypt were keepin' up with the Jones', too. They'd built the Great Pyramid at Giza and the Sphinx before the mammoths even went extinct!
Just think about that for a minute. That's a long time ago and those structures are still standing. If that's not truly awe inspiring, I don't know what is. They were also inventing a calendar with 365 days and 12 months, a system of written numbers and a form of geometry, and practicing medicine.
The Indus Valley Civilization was another of the big ones, and the most wide spread in the Old World at the time. Their engineers created plumbing and sewage systems and they built houses of brick with bathrooms! And flush toilets!
Over in ancient Babylon, King Hammurabi came up with the oldest existing code of laws. This guy put 282 laws covering all aspects of life in writing. His goal was for government to take responsibility for order and justice, and if you think about it, that's a big deal for any civilization.
The arts were flourishing in these civilizations as well, with some breathtaking jewelry in the mix like the Minoan Master of Animals shown above or the Egyptian pendant below:
How's that for a bunch of inspiration? Our challenge is to create something inspired by this theme: the Dawn of Civilization. Use any medium you like and draw inspiration however you like, whether it's a certain civilization, a style, or even a specific material (got any gold laying around?). Then meet Lindsay and I back here on August 1st to see what everyone made.
And most of all, remember to have fun with it!