Cuneiform writing activities

The study of Sumerian culture introduced by the present volume, Sumerian Mythology, is to be based largely on Sumerian literary sources; it will consist of the formulation of the spiritual and religious concepts of the Sumerians, together with the reconstructed text and translation of the Sumerian literary compositions in which these concepts are revealed. It is therefore very essential that the reader have a clear picture of the nature of our source material, which consists primarily of some three thousand tablets and fragments inscribed in the Sumerian language and dated approximately B. After a very brief general evaluation of the contents of the huge mass of Sumerian tablet material uncovered in the course of these excavations, it turns to the Sumerian literary tablets which represent the basic material for our study, and analyzes in some detail the scope and date of their contents.

Cuneiform writing activities

South Haven, Michigan 7th grade class 1. Make cuneiform "tablets" by placing 11 popsicle sticks side by side. Glue 3 sticks crosswise to hold them together. Paint the smooth sides of the tablets in earth colors.

Mesopotamia- Cuneiform Decoding - ESL worksheet by srmvision.comri

Draw your cuneiform monograms on the smooth sides with ink, paint, or pipecleaners which can be bent and glued into place. Got a classroom project? Send it -- we'll post it! The first pictograms were drawn in vertical columns with a pen made from a sharpened reed. Then two developments made the process quicker and easier: People began to write in horizontal rows, and a new type of pen was used which was pushed into the clay, producing "wedge-shaped" signs that are known as cuneiform writing.

Cuneiform was written on clay tablets, and then baked hard in a kiln. Cuneiform was adapted by the Akkadians, Babylonians, Sumerians and Assyrians to write their own languages and was used in Mesopotamia for about years.

cuneiform writing activities

Clay tablets were the primary media for everyday written communication and were used extensively in schools. Tablets were routinely recycled and if permanence was called for, they could be baked hard in a kiln.

Many of the tablets found by archaeologists were preserved because they were baked when attacking armies burned the building in which they were kept. Clay was an ideal writing material when paired with the reed stylus writing tool.

The writer would make quick impressions in the soft clay using either the wedge or pointed end of the stylus. By adjusting the relative position of the tablet to the stylus, the writer could use a single tool to make a variety of impressions. While many wedge positions are possible, awkward ones quickly fell from use in favor of those that were quickest and easiest to make.

Like sloppy handwriting, badly made cuneiform signs would be illegible or misunderstood. Becoming a Scribe On a hot sunny day years ago in the city of Nippur under the rule of the Hammurabi Dynasty circa - BC a young boy was learning to be a scribe. His classroom was most likely in a private home; his materials: The lesson of the day was to practice writing thousand year old Sumerian cuneiform characters.

Higher levels of Babylonian learning involved studying the Sumerian roots of their civilization, much like modern students study Greek and Latin. Literacy and knowledge were the tickets to a prosperous life as a scribe in the ever-growing government and religious bureaucracies.

The day's lesson was a routine, but important, practice in handwriting and vocabulary.

Writing - Wikipedia

In the reign of Hammurabi - BC when law and literature were celebrated with zeal, the ancient Sumerian heritage of the region was fully incorporated into the education of the empire's most promising students.

These Babylonians spoke Akkadian and wrote in cuneiform on clay tablets. Akkadian and cuneiform continued to thrive for more than another thousand years under the Assyrians and the later Babylonian revival of Nebuchadnezzar. The use of Aramaic became widespread after the beginning of the first millennium and the Aramaean alphabet gradually replaced cuneiform.

There are 4 rows of signs on the front of the tablet. The teacher in ancient Nippur inscribed the signs in rows 1 and 2. The student then took the soft tablet and copied the text into rows 3 and 4. Our student was learning Sumerian signs that were already years old.

The signs in row 1 were pronounced gi-gur which translates "reed basket. This lesson was both for handwriting and vocabulary. Early Sumerian Tablet The Early Sumerian Tablet represents the second stage in the development of the Mesopotamian system of recording ancient economic activities.

The very first stage of bookkeeping was tied to specific economic items represented by tokens, originally made from stone and then from clay. There was a specific token for sheep, another for wine, another for a day's work, etc.

To record 3 sheep and 2 jugs of wine, the ancient bookkeeper would create the token for sheep three times and the token for wine twice. These tokens were then stored in a container, probably made of cloth or leather.

In this first stage, quantities and items were integrally linked together.In this activity students will be introduced to the world’s first writing system—cuneiform—as they work through the British Museum's Mesopotamia site interactive online activity The Story of Writing, available through the EDSITEment resource The Oriental Institute: The University of Chicago.

cuneiform writing activities

In Europe, there is only one Classical language common to the whole area, and that is a large and dominant subdivision of Europe, we also find Latin as the Classical language.

Historically, that region can be distinguished as "Francia."It can also be called simply "Latin" Europe, although some might think that this would only apply to areas with languages, like French and Spanish. Cuneiform, from the Latin cuneus, meaning "wedge," is the term applied to a mode of writing which used a wedge-shaped stylus to make impressions on a clay surface, and also on stone, metal, and wax.

Most of the clay tablets were sun-baked, making surviving tablets very fragile. Oct 06,  · Cuneiform writing means "wedge shaped" and is believed to be first written around BC. The book first explains that the very earliest writing was pictogram shapes and then slowly evolved into more straight lines as it was easier to do on clay or stone.

This bar-code number lets you verify that you're getting exactly the right version or edition of a book. The digit and digit formats both work. Lesson Plans. Translators Needed: Cuneiform (Mesopotamia) Hieroglyphics lesson plans (Egypt) The Alphabet is Historic (Greece) The History of Writing (resource).

Cuneiform Worksheets - Printable Worksheets