How could we live without them?  Part I.

By Nik Kojzek


Thinking about great discoveries, what comes to your mind? Is it the fire, the steam engine, iPhone? We keep saying “the Romans invented that, the British invented that and someone invented that”. But do we ever ask ourselves what did the great Egyptians invent? Not really, right?

After all many believe the Egyptians lived so differently that some even say that they had contact with aliens. With their strange religion, strange writing, by their saving cats before humans, you might say that they were nothing like us, so they couldn’t have invented something that we still use today…

Well, let me tell you that is most certainly not the case.

The great Egyptians were quite like us now. Sure they dressed differently and had different religion but it would seem we are more alike than you might think. The world would not be the same without their inventions.

First of all, let’s start with an invention that you will find in every home and would not be the same without it. It is an object suited for gathering people, talking, eating. It is the table! As far as we know tables were first used in Egypt. This may not seem special but wouldn’t your home be just blank without a table? So the Egyptians used tables to eat and also for playing games.

The next two inventions will be mostly for my ladies. Since the weather in Egypt was very hot and lice were severely feared, hair was very inconvenient hence most Egyptians shaved their heads (men & women). But of course some wanted to have pretty hair and needed a solution. That is why they invented wigs. There was only one catch in wigs – if you were rich your pretty luxurious wig would have been made from real hair, but if you were poor that dream of a pretty wig would have faded to a wig made of sheep wool or vegetable fibres.

The second invention for the ladies will make you fall in love with the Egyptians, namely the invention of eye makeup. Makeup was a sign of nobility and wealth and eye makeup would be applied on women and men alike.  The colour they used was mostly black but they could make it also in green. Imagine Cleopatra VII using makeup to make herself radiate beautiful…One of her most alluring tricks was eye makeup with black and green colour around her eyes, making it impossible to look away from them.

Now let’s take a peek at their dental world. A smile is the first impression of a person and teeth hygiene is very important today and so it was to the Egyptians. To protect their teeth from getting bad the Egyptians invented toothpaste. We have evidence of this since 5000 BC. Like contraception (my previous article, if you have read it good for you, if you haven’t, well naughty you) it was kind of  gross but yet again effective. The paste consisted of ashes, burned eggshells and the powder of ox hooves.

Another great discovery was toothpicks in ancient tombs, which means that they really cared about their teeth.

Imagine yourself going on a date and your breath smells bad, so you are worried, right? It turns out that this worried the Egyptians, too. We are not sure if they had dentists and to avoid bad breath they invented breath mints that were effective. These were made of myrrh and cinnamon and boiled with honey.  Now that actually sounds good.

The last but not least is the fact that they formed the first police during the middle kingdom (ca 2059-1800 BC). The men were loyal warriors, they had beating sticks and were accompanied by dogs or monkeys. The most common crime was not paying taxes and tomb robbing.

Well that’s the end of the second article. Make sure to check the first article on contraception as well and stay in touch for the new one. Bye y’all, are you ready for the next one?