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Sohrab and Rustem – Iran – West Asian stories

By |2018-04-07T17:04:55+00:00September 15th, 2017|Literature, West Asia|

The death of Sohrab (Iranian painting) This story is probably an old Indo-European story that Persian people told even before they moved south into Iran about 2000 BC. It's probably related to the German story of Hildebrand and the Greek story of Achilles and Penthesileia, though sometimes Rustem is also a trickster like Odysseus, or like the Indian Krishna (you may want to compare [...]

When was backgammon invented?

By |2018-04-20T15:22:48+00:00June 23rd, 2017|Central Asia, Games|

Royal Game of Ur (2600 BC; British Museum) Backgammon is descended from much older board games from Africa and West Asia like Senet and Tabula and Nard. It's probably most closely related to the Royal Game of Ur, played in Sumer and in Shahr-i Sokhta (in modern Iran) about 3000 BC. Central [...]

Wine-making and wine presses – History

By |2018-04-20T00:22:01+00:00June 23rd, 2017|Food, West Asia|

Roman slaves treading grapes Wine-making started out pretty simple: you picked the grapes and put them in a big concrete box, and then barefooted people - usually enslaved people - got into the box and stepped on the grapes over and over until they were all crushed and their juice ran out of [...]

Playing backgammon – West Asia projects

By |2018-04-07T17:04:21+00:00June 11th, 2017|Crafts, Games, West Asia|

A backgammon board made by kids at Laurelhurst School, Portland Oregon Beginning about 3000 BC, backgammon was one of the most popular games in ancient Mesopotamia and elsewhere in West Asia (like in Persia (modern Iran)). You can make a backgammon board by painting on a piece of wood, and then making the [...]