Early humans had no written language.
From the earliest times, people needed to keep records. About 5,000 years ago, when ancient people wanted to write something down, they drew a simple picture.
The Sumerians made wedge-shaped marks in a tablet of soft clay. This was later baked in the sun.
Priests in ancient Egypt drew simple pictures to represent words. They wrote on papyrus, a paper made from flattened reeds that grew on the banks of the Nile river.
(This is my name in hieroglyphics. KIO. A basket, a reed leaf and a quail chick. I also have a real papyrus that my mum bought me when we were in Egypt with my full name - Kiodah - written on it.)
Later on, letters and symbols instead of pictures were used for each different sound in a word. All these different letters made up an alphabet.
Back to Library Back to my Site Index Back Home