The first recorded name in history belongs to an accountant

Around 12,000 BC humans began The Agricultural Revolution, when we started to move away from nomadic foraging towards settling on and cultivating land.

Gradually, individual settlements became cities and cities became empires, which led to a new problem for us: there was now a need to manage taxes and therefore collect data about the income and possessions of tens of thousands of people. Handing lots of numbers, about lots of things, is not something that forager brains are genetically programmed to do. A system for recording numerical data was needed for the first time.

First to overcome the problem were the Sumerians, in southern Mesopotamia. About 3,000 BC unknown Sumerian geniuses invented a system for storing and processing information outside of their brains. This system is called "writing '.

This writing was etched on clay tablets and one of the earliest messages from our ancestors that we have unearthed reads: "29,086 measures barley 37 months Kushim". Scholars believe the most probable reading of this sentence is: "A total of 29,086 measures of barley were received over the course of 37 months. Signed Kushim".

If the archaeologists are correct, and Kushim was indeed a person, then the first recorded name in history belongs to an accountant, rather than a prophet, a poet or a great conqueror!

Inspired by Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, by Yuval Noah Harari