The Fourth Millennium BCE

This was a time of innovation. Somewhere between 4,000 and 3,001 BCE (6,000-5000 years ago):

  • Beginning of the Bronze Age
  • Writing systems emerged (Mesopotamian cuneiform and Egyptian hieroglyphics), proto-writing may have emerged earlier
  • Probable first domestication of the horse (Ukraine)
  • Earliest known numerals (Egypt)
  • Lyres, harps, flutes and clarinets (Egypt)
  • Desertification of Northern Africa begins
  • The world's oldest living non-clonal tree was born (USA)
  • The Yamna/Yamnaya culture of the Caspian Steppe, believed to be the locus of Proto-Indo-Europeans and their language
  • Newgrange and Stonehenge (Ireland, England)