A Glimpse Into The Most Advanced Ancient Civilizations in the World
1) Rama Empire or The Indus Valley Civilization 10,000 – 2,500 BC
(Modern Day: India and Pakistan)
The oldest and one of most technologically promising civilizations of the ancient world is the Rama Empire or what we popularly know as the Indus Valley Civilization – a civilization that was almost twice the size of Mesopotamian and Egyptian civilizations.
With the discovery of the extremely urbane towns of Harappa and Mohenjo Daro, one gets a first-hand glimpse of the architectural and engineering dexterity of the people of this time.
These highly-developed cities have exhibited the meticulous planning and expertise that has gone in building them. Evidences point at the fact that each of these cities were conceived in entirety before being built.
Complete with an incredibly superior sewage system and brick houses, this civilization’s architects demonstrate incredible foresight. Several inventions like that of rulers (made from ivory), existence of metal money, and evidence of stepwells, make this civilization far superior to many that have come after it too!
2) Ancient Egypt 3150 – 31 BC
(Modern Day: Egypt)
While making great advances in the areas of Math and Architecture, Ancient Egyptians are also renowned for their progressive thought in the field of medicine.
From prevention of parasitic diseases and malaria to the advanced knowledge in anatomical sciences and practical medicines like setting bones and stitching wounds, Ancient Egyptian surgeons were at a scientific zenith at this time.
On the engineering front, nothing can surpass the Ancient Egyptian structures of the Pyramids and the Sphynx. From the use of natural ingredients for cosmetics to exemplary culinary habits, the Ancient Egyptians were far ahead of their times.
With much focus on preparing for an afterlife, dead bodies were often embalmed using herbs and other ingredients to preserve them for the afterlife. Surprisingly, till this day, this art continues to baffle even the technologically advanced modern-day world!
3) Ancient China 2100 – 221 BC
(Modern Day: Greater China)
Ancient China, also known as Han China, traces back to over 4000-years and is said to born out of the huge Pacific continent Mu. One of the longest-lasting civilizations among all others, it is accredited with perhaps the most number of technological inventions of the ancient time.
Ancient China is best known for four great inventions– printing, invention of compass, paper-making and gunpowder used in canons. The technological prowess of the Ancient Chinese is further exemplified in their unique inventions of kites, toilet paper, paper money, earthquake detectors and even crossbow.
Besides these, Ancient Chinese made great advances in the field of science and engineering being the progenitor of the concept of time-keeping through Shadow Clocks and of rocket technology. They even went ahead to be the first to record the observation of solar eclipses and comets.
In fact, in 1959 archaeologists discovered thousands of years’ old aluminum belt buckles. Did you know that aluminum is processed from bauxite using electricity!
Architectural feats like the Great Wall, which is over 5000-miles long and was built to keep Mongols at bay gives an indelible proof of their superior architectural skills. From sky-chariots to geomancy, the Ancient Chinese civilization has contributed to almost every facet of human race development.
4) Maya Civilization 2000 BC – early 16th Century
(Modern day: Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras)
A glance at some of the Maya archaeological sites like Palenque in Mexico, Copan in western Honduras and Tikal in Guatemala are enough to catch a glimpse of the technological prowess of the Mayans.
Primarily an agrarian civilization, it is well-known for its sophisticated methods of food production that included forest gardens and permanent raised fields to support terracing – practices that find use even in the modern-day.
The Mayans demonstrated great skills in the areas of science and mathematics, even way back in 1800 B.C. Ancient Mayans were brilliant astrologist, skilled astronomers and outstanding mathematicians, credited with the discovery of the accurate measure of the length of a solar year.
Their skills in architecture and engineering is further reflected in the Mayan pyramids that are strewn over not just Central America but as far away as Java.
Besides these, the canals, hydroponic garden cities and the radionics Mayan glyphs (insect control devices) found throughout the ancient Yucatan Peninsula bespeak of their engineering skills.
A technologically advanced civilization, the Mayans are believed to have preserved their repository of ancient knowledge related to engineering and science in quartz crystals, which are now being unearthed in the present-day Yucatan. These are said to be capable of holding information just like we do on modern-day CDs.
5) Osirian Civilization 10,000B.C – 1,500 B.C
(Modern day: Mediterranean)
The Osirian civilization, pre-dating the dynastic Egypt, was the highpoint of all the Mediterranean civilizations that existed in the large and fertile Mediterranean valley, along the Nile (then known as River Stix).
This river, instead of flowing into the Mediterranean Sea at its Delta in northern Egypt, flowed into deepest part of the Mediterranean Valley, creating a lake along which the civilization existed, before draining into the Atlantic at Pillars of Hercules, Gibraltar.
In fact, even the great civilizations of Egypt, Crete and Greece are considered to be remnants of this ancient civilization that finally perished due to the cataclysmic changes in the Atlantic that flooded the Mediterranean basin.
The strange earthquake-resistant megalithic remains of the over 200 sunken cities bear testimony of the technological advancement during this time, especially with the evidence of electricity and presence of airships and other electrical modes of transport.
The mysterious cart tracks found in Malta are also considered to be some kind of an ancient Osirian tram-line, that was used to transport quarried stones to the main cities.
Another awesome example of the existence of advanced technology is the present-day Osirian platform found at Ba’albek, Lebanon which is the largest architectural structure made of hewn rocks (ashlars). This architectural wonder is made of 82-100ft long and 15ft thick individual stones, with wooden roller used to flip over these 1200-1500 ton pieces!!
6) Mesopotamia (6000 B.C. – 600 A.D.)
(Modern Day: Iraq, Turkey, Syria & Iran)
The Mesopotamian civilization shares credit for some of the most remarkable inventions of the modern-day world and is has thus been rightly called the “cradle of civilization”.
From the invention of the wheel and the independent development of art of written language to the more important development of the concept of a city, this civilization is among the finest examples of the advancements in the ancient times.
In fact, the invention of wine, domestication of animals and the development of agriculture too are attributable to this civilization, much before any other civilization.
7) Ancient Rome (753 B.C. – 476 A.D.)
Ancient Rome, that started as a small town on the banks of Tiber in Italy and grew to include most of Europe, northern Africa, Britain, western Asia and many Mediterranean islands, is undoubtedly one of the more prominent ancient civilizations that became synonymous with some of the most profound advancements in engineering and architecture.
The architectural innovations of the time like use of arches and grid-based cities (though in existence since before) were given a fresh dimension and used on a large scale during this time. Most of the structures built around the time continue to withstand the ravages of nature even today!!
Sophisticated sewage system and aqueducts, construction of roads and highways and the invention of concrete are just the surface of an iceberg when it comes to the advancements made during Ancient Rome.
The major advancements come in way of the inventions like the Roman numerals, newspapers and Julian Calendar – all that are embraced even in the computer age! Another major contribution of this civilization was in the field of medicine through the introduction of several sophisticated surgical tools. Thus, this civilization marked a new era in the development of human race.
8) Inca Civilization 1200 – 1542 AD
(Modern day: Peru)
The Inca civilization is renowned for its contributions to the modern-day civilizations. This 13th-century civilization with an estimated population of 9-16 million, dwelled in the current-day southwestern Peru until they were conquered by the Spanish in 1532.
Originally from the Andes Mountains, this civilization expanded up to South Colombia and central Chile with their headquarters at Cusco, Peru.
One of the major inventions during the Inca civilization was the construction of one of the most erudite and elaborate transportation system in pre-Columbian South America. Remains of this ancient transportation system include the Inca Trail that leads to the famed Machu Picchu.
A trek up the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu is even today a reminiscent of the skill of the Inca people.
The ancient civilizations were rife with possibilities of new discoveries and inventions. Throughout history, one can see the way these ancient civilizations with their ground-breaking inventions, have defined civilizations and made life-changing contributions that have paved way for the modern-day living to be more enduring.