What is the oldest civilization we know about?



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         The word “civilization” means different things to different people, and new archeological discoveries are being made all the time. However, Sumer (2900-1800 BCE) is considered by most experts to be the world’s oldest civilization. It arose in southern Mesopotamia between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, an area known as the Fertile Crescent. Sumer’s 3,000 year duration saw the introduction of revolutionary inventions like the wheel, the plow, writing, agriculture, and the arch. Sumer also produced the Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the earliest known works of literature.

    An example of cunieform, the world’s oldest known form of writing. 

         The world’s oldest continuous civilization is probably China, although India also lays claim to the title. The oldest civilization in the Americas is the Norte Chico civilization of coastal Peru. 

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