Further examination revealed that the clay had originated in the Jerusalem area and that the scribe responsible was highly skilled. , In 2010, a clay fragment bearing Akkadian cuneiform, comparable in size to that of an olive, was discovered by Israeli archaeologists during the excavation of a tower, the tower itself dating back to the 10th century BCE, in Jerusalem, that was determined to have originated in 14th century BCE. It was used by the people of Sumer in Southern Mesopotamia and is an isolate language, which means it’s not related to any other existing language.  It is the only cuneiform text to have ever been discovered in the area. A.D. 125. Of all the ancient writings, most scholars agree that the Old Testament of the Bible is the oldest of religious books. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Jerusalem archaeologists are excited by a new find that is believed to be the earliest written text that has ever been discovered in this ancient city. The fragments contain parts of the Ten Commandments and the Shema Yisrael. However, an artefact was found over a decade ago which contradicts this belief – and perhaps this is the reason why few people know about the discovery. The following is a list of the world's oldest surviving physical documents. Since the dawn of writing an incredible array of different materials have been used for recording text, including clay, silk, pottery, papyrus, even coffins – so the question of the oldest surviving book depends very much on how you classify one. This is normal for ancient texts. 1885: Motu: grammar by W.G. It is about the adventures of the historical King of Uruk (somewhere between 2750 and 2500 BCE). This fact alone proved that the original Gospel of John was written earlier, viz. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. https://www.deadseascrolls.org.il/?locale=en_US, https://cudl.lib.cam.ac.uk/view/MS-OR-00233/1, https://cudl.lib.cam.ac.uk/view/MS-OR-00233/1 (Accessed, http://dss.collections.imj.org.il/significance, https://www.deadseascrolls.org.il/explore-the-archive/manuscript/4Q17-1, http://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/2010/01/06/The-Blessing-of-the-Silver-Scrolls.aspx, http://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/2010/01/10/Ancient-Hebrew-Inscription-Dated-to-time-of-David.aspx, http://cojs.org/the_passover_papyrus_from_elephantine-_419_bce/, https://www.timesofisrael.com/newly-discovered-caves-may-hold-more-dead-sea-scrolls/, Top Ten Discoveries in Biblical Archaeology in 2020, Top Three Reports in Biblical Archaeology – Dec. 2020, Herod the Great: An Archaeological Biography, Discussions with the Diggers: Dr. Leen Ritmeyer. Evidence of written language dates back only 4,000 years. They also contain the oldest extra-biblical reference to YHWH. But if we want a clue as to how the building blocks of language developed, we can take a look at the oldest identified words. 2 https://cudl.lib.cam.ac.uk/view/MS-OR-00233/1 (Accessed January 24, 2019), 3 https://cudl.lib.cam.ac.uk/view/MS-OR-00233/1 (Accessed January 24, 2019), 4 http://dss.collections.imj.org.il/significance (Accessed January 24, 2019), 5 https://www.deadseascrolls.org.il/explore-the-archive/manuscript/4Q17-1 (Accessed January 24, 2019), 6 http://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/2010/01/06/The-Blessing-of-the-Silver-Scrolls.aspx (Accessed January 24, 2019), 7 http://www.biblearchaeology.org/post/2010/01/10/Ancient-Hebrew-Inscription-Dated-to-time-of-David.aspx (Accessed January 24, 2019), 8 http://cojs.org/the_passover_papyrus_from_elephantine-_419_bce/ (Accessed January 24, 2019), 9 https://www.timesofisrael.com/newly-discovered-caves-may-hold-more-dead-sea-scrolls/ (Accessed January 24, 2019). Lawes: 1886: Guugu Yimidhirr Written in Hebrew and dating to the second century B.C. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. According to conventional archaeology, writing wasn’t invented until 3000 to 4000 BC in Sumeria. It was made by the monastery at the Santa María la Real of Nájera, "Oldest written document ever found in Jerusalem discovered", "Oldest Known Document Uncovered in Jerusalem", "Tiny fragment bears oldest script found in Jerusalem", "Scotland's oldest surviving book still in Scotland: The Celtic Psalter | Transceltic - Home of the Celtic nations", "Search Results: All Fields similar to 'Celtic and Psalter' and What equal to 'Celtic Psalter, 11th C.' - University of Edinburgh", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_oldest_documents&oldid=999857487, Wikipedia articles needing factual verification from November 2020, Short description with empty Wikidata description, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 12 January 2021, at 08:43. Change ). With the number of archaeological excavations under way throughout the Middle East, it is only a matter of time until we see more ancient biblical texts uncovered. ( Log Out / The Dead Sea Scrolls are a collection of over 900 manuscripts discovered in the caves around Qumran near the Dead Sea. Ancient Jewish sources state that it was common practice to read the Ten Commandments before saying the Shema prayer.3 Some scholars believe the Nash Papyrus was used by an Egyptian Jew in his daily worship. Read Later. Scholars place Old English in the Anglo-Frisian group of West Germanic languages. The Palermo Stone, a stele, containing the names of Pharaohs and other information, is made of basalt. Writing gave the Sumerians and Egyptians a massive advantage which they seem to have rigourously explioted. Photos of its pages show that while its original binding is lost, the pages are still in remarkable condition, their colors still vibrant and words legible. This employs points between the words and horizontal strokes between the sense section as punctuation. The Kojiki text was compiled from oral tradition in 712. According to Harald Haarmann, a German linguistic and cultural scientist says the Danube script predates the Sumerian writings and should be considered as the oldest writing in the world. Kojiki, (Japanese: “Records of Ancient Matters”), together with the Nihon shoki (q.v. The documents were acquired in Egypt, by W. L. Nash, and are believed to have originated in Faiyum, though it's possible they originated elsewhere. Old English language, language spoken and written in England before 1100; it is the ancestor of Middle English and Modern English. The Kish tablet, a small limestone tablet from the middle Uruk period of ancient Mesopotamia, contains pictographic inscriptions exemplifying an early precursor to Cuneiform. Pg. Writing and literature are thought to have been first developed between the 7th and 4th millenium BC. It was located in 1932, when the lake level fell. These rolled-up pieces of silver were discovered in 1979-80, during excavations led by Gabriel Barklay in a series of burial caves at Ketef Hinnom. The Dispilio Tablet, the first writing? The oldest texts that have been successfully deciphered are from Sumer (Southern Iraq) and Egypt. Between in 1947 and 1956 numerous excavations discovered a variety of scrolls and fragments in 11 caves, including copies of every book of the Old Testament except for Nehemiah and Esther.4 The manuscripts date from the third century B.C. The Nash Papyrus, a collection of four papyrus fragments written in Hebrew, was found in 1898, was, prior to the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest known example of the written Hebrew language. They discovered that very little had changed and that the Hebrew Bible had been transmitted with incredible accuracy over a millennium.  The document, nearly 3,400 years old at the time of its discovery, was older than any other ancient text discovered in Jerusalem by at least 600 years.