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The First Steps of Civilization History: Water and Clay


In the story of the water, we have narrated the changes that the world we live on has undergone and the effect of this on humanity. For thousands of years water was the most important factor that directed humanity. The people who lived in the Palaeolithic age had no chance other than following weak water sources and rains. Since they were living in a world that most of it was covered with glaciers, in the region where no glaciers were found it was incredibly deserted. However by warming up of world climate and increase of freshwater bodies the roles started to change. That time onwards human began to control water. So that change of task formed the first big steps of civilization history, his means agriculture. And afterwards a settled life order.

Villages and the cities

First villages and next the cities we know. This is to say it is not just food. It means to have enough time and energy to discover the world in front of us. Transition to settled life naturally changed our relation to death as well as life. As a matter of fact maybe the biggest challenge of humanity throughout history was with this conception which is full of unknowns. We have also witnessed in the life how different societies and different ages confront death. Bizarre stories from the people who bury their dead inside the house, to mountain builders out of zero for the dead.

The human cranium

However, the experiences of humanity regarding death is not only related to the custom of burial of the dead. It also has a role in forming different ideas and practises. Especially of belief and architecture history. Think about the most famous structures in the world. There are not many memorial that has no connection to belief and death. And their building attempts are the most effective factor for humanity to be able to improve construction technologies. But when we say construction, it is not possible to pass without opening a parenthesis for a special material. The most ancient construction material of humanity: Clay.

The first houses

It is there in many materials, from the first houses we built, to first containers that preserved the grains we succeeded to domesticate and figures and figurines which reflected our spiritual world. Although we have been using stones and obsidian since much older dates, clay achieved to stay in our life without ever losing its impact up till today. And actually clay should not be looked at as a construction material only. This is one of the most important parts of the process of humanity discovering the earth. When learning to use clay we also learned how different soil types work.

Different soil types

For a very simple example, we use kaolin in toothpaste in recent years that is used for making porcelain for centuries. To make our teeth whiter. However the most important thing we learned in our relation to clay is the technology that we used to process soil: Fire. We’ve been doing an important research about the history of fire. Seems like many things will be changing in our lives anymore. Let’s see where this tunnel will lead us. Therefore, we will complete what we left unfinished about fire and you will probably see more than this in the next post.


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