People of ancient times faced many problems that we don’t experience in the modern world, but they also had some ancient technology tools at their disposal that are hard to believe when you look at them today.
For example, you’ll be surprised to learn that people in the past used horse urine as an effective cleaning agent to keep their weapons and armor clean! Without further ado, here are 10 ancient technologies that you won’t believe existed.
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It wasn’t until 1500 BCE that humans began to realize just how special glass could be. But once they did, they wasted no time putting it to use.
The ancient Egyptians used glass for everything from artwork and containers to windows and tools; it was even found in their mummies.
Centuries later, Romans were using glass for decorations on goblets and as cutting surfaces, while Chinese inventors began experimenting with lenses to correct vision problems.
It’s hard to believe, but all of these technologies were considered revolutionary thousands of years ago!
The idea of a wired Internet is something we take for granted now, but that wasn’t always true. The Internet as we know it didn’t really start to take shape until 1969 when ARPANET was created by American engineers.
Only four years later did the email come into play and another four years after that, Telnet was introduced to allow for terminal connections on remote computers.
From there, things got fast: In 1989, Tim Berners-Lee invented hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP), which allowed users to retrieve files from a server using only an address rather than a long series of numbers and letters.
By 1992, communication protocol HTTP/1.0 was standardized across ARPANET’s and remains in use today.
It’s safe to say that without wheels, life would be much different. Wheels make it easy to move heavy loads with little effort, and their use goes back at least 8,000 years.
The Egyptians are believed to have created wooden wheels around 5,000 B.C., but they were used primarily for pottery transport; it wasn’t until about 2,500 B.C. that Mesopotamians started building wheeled chariots.
By 1,200 B.C., Indo-European peoples in central Asia had developed two-wheeled wagons and carts pulled by horses or oxen.
Beer is one of humanity’s oldest and most important technologies. The desire to consume beer predates recorded history, as brewing dates back at least 9,000 years.
Archaeologists have discovered a 6,000-year-old Sumerian tablet that includes recipes for making beer—one that used wheat and barley to make a drink thought to be like modern-day ale.
Not only was beer a large part of society and culture thousands of years ago, but it also had medicinal uses. There are records from 1,500 B.C., for example, which describe how doctors would prescribe beer as medicine for all sorts of ailments—from snakebites to gout.
Incense burners have been around for thousands of years and were instrumental in many early religious practices.
They’re most commonly associated with Asian religions, but their origins can be traced back to ancient Egypt and China as well.
The burner was used in several different ways, with some serving solely as decoration while others were filled with water or oils.
Incense is one of the oldest forms of aromatherapy, so it’s no surprise that incense burners also found their way into our homes before becoming more closely associated with religion.
It was first made and practiced by Sebastien Lenormand in 1793, which is also sketched by Leonardo Da Vinci.
Before Sebastien Lenormand, Croatian Faust Vrancic also tried it.
Since 1960, Parachute has become a sport.
7. Incense Burner
Used for worship and aromatherapy, incense burners have existed since 3500 BC. So basically, what we consider an essential oil diffuser is just a fancy version of something people were doing thousands of years ago.
And don’t you just love how it uses heat instead of a fan to disperse mist? It really doesn’t get much more ancient than that.
8. Air Conditioning
Ancient civilizations like the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans all had ways of keeping cool in the hot summers, but these methods pale in comparison to the modern technology used today.
In fact, it wasn’t until the 20th century that air conditioning became popular in the United States and other parts of the world. This guide will tell you everything you need to know about air conditioning history, including the first air conditioner invented and some really cool ways to use it today!
We typically think of air conditioning as something new, but it’s actually much older than you might think! If you’re interested in learning more about the history of air conditioning
9. Gasoline Pump
Having been invented in the 15th century, the pump has had quite a long history of providing people with water from their wells and other areas that were underground.
In ancient Rome, water was a very valuable resource. Water was pumped from underground wells into aqueducts using basic suction pumps called noria, invented by Archimedes.
The ancient Egyptians were among the first to harness wind power. One way they did so was by using pump devices to irrigate their lands, though these pumps worked differently than many of today’s pumps.
10. Underwater Communications System
Shout underwater to talk across long distances. To speak in short bursts, cover your mouth with your hand or cupped hands and say as you exhale; to listen, just cup your ears.
The ancient Romans used a version of this system that involved a buccina (ancient trumpet) and an inflated animal bladder; they would blow into one end of it and listen at the other.
Breathing from an inflated pig’s bladder underwater was easier than holding one’s breath while listening, and even today compressed-air breathing equipment is still called breathing bags.