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Ancient writing in Turkey dates back to 2000 BC

Ancient writing in Turkey dates back to 2000 BC

The ancient writing on clay tablets was found in Turkey, the artefact date back to 2000 BC, say the researchers from the Ankara University. The excavations in the central Anatolian province of Kayseri shed light on the beginnings of writing and literacy in ancient Turkey.

Kayseri writings shed light on the writing’s development in the middle of modern-day Turkey, said Fikri Kulakoğlu, head of the excavation team. Professor of archaeology also added that the 23,000 cuneiform-script tablets are able to tell the scientists a lot about the writing from around 2,000 B.C. So far, Istanbul Archaeology Museum keeps about 1,000 tablets, the rest are in the Kayseri Archaeology Museum.

‘Excavations have been ongoing in Kültepe for 70 years but Kültepe has been known in the world literature since 1871. The most important reason it is well-known is because these cuneiform tablets were created by the Assyrian and Anatolian traders in Kültepe, especially in Karum.’

Ancient Turkish learned how to read and write in Kültepe


Professor Kulakoğlu explains that Kültepe (a candidate for the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2014) is a very special place for the Turkish culture, Anatolian people learned how to read and write in here. The first-ever literate people in Anatolia were from Kayseri, many from the excavated tablets are exercise tablets, apparently used by children to practice their writing.

Another useful application of such clay tablets was for trade or business, the tablets were used to record anything “valuable” by local merchants who made their presence in Anatolia alongside the well-educated Assyrians. According to Professor from the Ankara University, clay tablets excavated from Kültepe are among the rarest in the world.