The Ancient Sumerians

ANCIENT CIVILIZATIONS - Around 6000 B.C., after the agricultural revolution had begun to spread from its place of origin on the northern fringes of the Fertile Crescent, Neolithic farmers started filtering into the Fertile Crescent itself. Although this broad plain received insufficient rainfall to support agriculture, the eastern section was watered by the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. Known in ancient days as Mesopotamia (Greek for "between the rivers"), the lower reaches of this plain, beginning near the point where the two rivers nearly converge, was called Babylonia. Babylonia in turn encompassed two geographical areas - Akkad in the north and Sumer, the delta of this river system, in the south.

Between 3500 B.C. and 3100 B.C. the foundations were laid for a type of economy and social order markedly different from anything previously known. This far more complex culture, based on large urban centers rather than simple villages, is what we associate with civilization.

The word Mesopotamia , derived from the Greek, means literally "between the rivers," but it is generally used to denote the whole plain between and on either side of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers.

By 3100 B.C. the population of Sumer had increased to the point where people were living in cities and had developed a preponderance of those elements previously noted as constituting civilization. Since these included the first evidence of writing, this first phase of Sumerian civilization, to about 28 B.C., is called the Protoliterate period.

All Sumerian cities recognized a number of gods in common, including Anu the sky god, Enlil the lord of storms, and Ishtar the morning and evening star.

By the 23rd century bc the power of the Sumerians had declined to such an extent that they could no longer defend themselves against foreign invasion. The Semitic ruler Sargon I (reigned about 2335-2279 BC), called The Great, succeeded in conquering the entire country. Sargon founded a new capital, called Agade, in the far north of Sumer and made it the richest and most powerful city in the world. The people of northern Sumer and the conquering invaders, fusing gradually, became known ethnically and linguistically as Akkadians. The land of Sumer acquired the composite name Sumer and Akkad.

The Sumerian Culture, which dates back to 6,000 BC, is the oldest known culture on Earth. Even today we still use the same Mathematical system, Calendar, and Time as they created it so long ago. Since we have the evidence left over today, 6,000 years later, we can see similarities between what they had then, and what we have now.

The Sumerians were also able to measure the distance between stars very precisely. Ancient Sumerian texts indicate that the Earth (" Tiamat ") was struck by a large planet, which moved it into its present orbit, and created the Moon and the Asteroid Belt. In his books, The Twelfth Planet and The Cosmic Code, Zecharia Sitchin outlines this "celestial battle" as described in the Babylonian text called Enuma elish. The planet "Marduk" (the Sumerian " Nibiru "), as it came into the solar system on its clockwise elliptical course, struck Tiamat, which was moving in its ordained counterclockwise orbit.

 The Sumerians tell us that they inherited their knowledge from the gods and of their gods coming down to Earth.

... the star, which shineth in the heavens.
May he hold the Beginning and the Future, may they pay homage unto him,
Saying, "He who forced his way through the midst of Tiamat without resting,
Let his name be Nibiru, 'the Seizer of the Midst'!
For the stars of heaven he upheld the paths,
He shepherded all the gods like sheep!
He conquered Tiamat, he troubled and ended her life,"
In the future of mankind, when the days grow old,
May this be heard without ceasing; may it hold sway forever!

According to Zecharia Sitchin, the Sumerians had advanced astronomical knowledge of the planetary bodies in our solar system. This knowledge was allegedly given to the Sumerians by extraterrestrials, whom Sitchin identifies as the Anunnaki(Sumerian: “those who came down from the heavens”; Old testament Hebrew, Anakeim, Nefilim, Elohim; Egyptian: Neter, an advanced civilization from the tenth planet in our solar system) gods of Sumero-Mesopotamian mythology. In the upper left-hand corner of the seal, Sitchin argues, one sees the sun surrounded by eleven globes. Since ancient peoples (including the Sumerians according to Sitchin) held the sun and moon to be “planets,” these eleven globes plus the sun add up to twelve planets. Of course, since we now know of nine planets plus our sun and moon, part of Sitchin’s argument is that the Sumerians knew of an extra planet beyond Pluto.

This extra planet is considered by Sitchin to be Nibiru, an astronomical body mentioned in Mesopotamian texts. Sitchin’s works detail his contention that Nibiru passes through our solar system every 3600 years, and so some believers in Sitchin’s theory contend that Nibiru will return soon. Some followers of Sitchin’s ideas also refer to Nibiru as “Planet X”.