Digital Commonwealth

Cuneiform Tablets

Boston Public Library

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Cuneiform script is one of the earliest known writing systems. Cuneiform first appeared in Sumer (present day Iraq), ca. 3400 B.C.E. Glyphs were created by pressing wedge-shaped reeds onto the surface of clay tablets. Surviving cuneiform tablets are written in a number of languages and record a varying range of activities, from secular transactions to religious ceremonies.

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