Incredible Metropolises of the Ancient World

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Humanity gathered in communities, which evolved into cities, from the Neolithic age. Their reasons for creating communities included mutual protection, from the elements as well as from other communities. Gradually, they developed systems for the sharing of water, trade, the disposal of waste, and the means of government. From humble dwellings clustered together larger cities emerged, some with buildings of immense size and considerable luxuries. Cities learned to cope with problems familiar to current times, including housing the poor, enacting laws for the protection of all, and providing places of commerce, worship, entertainment, and governance.

Cities developed over the last 9,000 years, with Jericho regarded as the oldest known. Originally situated on land now submerged, humans have resided on the site for centuries, and archaeologists estimate over 2,000 people lived in Jericho seven millennia before the birth of Christ and the beginning of the Common Era. Natural springs made the spot a desirable one, and fertile land allowed the residents to create oils from plants, a source of lucrative trade. Though 2,000 residents is considered little more than a village today, in its time Jericho represented one of the largest cities in the world. Here are ten ancient cities considered metropolises in their day.


This is an encore of one of our previous lists, as presented by our YouTube host Simon Whistler. Read the full list!


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