Earliest Recorded Text

Sumerians were the first dwellers of the world. They had managed to develop all rudimentary stuff needed to survive. One of these was the art of writing. Another thing that they invented was the concept of names. Shakespeare relegates ‘name’ to an insignificant position in his famous quote ‘What’s in a name?’. However, we all know how particular we are about our names being spelled/pronounced right.

Let’s have a look at the earliest recorded text in the history. Its mentions a name ‘Kushim’.

A clay tablet with an administrative text from Sumerian times reveals ‘Kushim’ as an important personnel who maintained accounts. Quoting an excerpt from Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari below –

The earliest messages our ancestors have left us read, for

example, ‘29,086 measures barley 37 months Kushim.’ The most probable reading

of this sentence is: ‘A total of 29,086 measures of barley were received over the

course of 37 months. Signed, Kushim.’ Alas, the first texts of history contain no

philosophical insights, no poetry, legends, laws, or even royal triumphs.

Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari

It seems that the first name recorded in the earliest texts is of an accountant. So much for all the greatness that conquerors, poets and philosophers are extolled for.

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