Did Mesopotamia Invent the Wheel?

Discover the truth behind the invention of the wheel in Mesopotamia. Explore the ancient civilization’s role in revolutionizing transportation and shaping human history. Did Mesopotamia invent the wheel?

When it comes to the invention of the wheel, Mesopotamia is often credited as being the birthplace of this groundbreaking innovation. But did Mesopotamia really invent the wheel? In this article, we will delve into the history and archaeology of Mesopotamia to uncover the truth behind this ancient technological marvel.

Did Mesopotamia Invent the Wheel?

The invention of the wheel is one of the most significant technological advancements in human history, and it is commonly attributed to the ancient Mesopotamian civilization, around 3500 BCE. Mesopotamia, an area that corresponds mostly to present-day Iraq and parts of Iran, Syria, and Turkey, was a cradle of early civilization where urbanization, writing, and organized states began to emerge.

The wheel initially appeared not as a means for transportation but was likely first used by potters. The earliest form of the wheel was the potter’s wheel, used to shape clay into various objects. The concept of the wheel for transportation purposes, such as in carts or chariots, developed later. These early wheels were simple solid discs of wood, joined to a fixed axle, around which the wheel rotated.

The invention and subsequent refinement of the wheel had profound implications for human society, facilitating not only easier transportation of goods and people but also leading to advancements in technology and infrastructure, such as roads and later, vehicles powered by various means. The use of the wheel spread from Mesopotamia to other regions, becoming a fundamental tool in many cultures and civilizations.


While the exact origins of the wheel may be shrouded in mystery, Mesopotamia undeniably played a significant role in its early development. The discovery of wheeled artifacts and the world’s oldest wheel in this ancient civilization are testament to their knowledge and utilization of this revolutionary invention. So, did Mesopotamia invent the wheel? It may be safe to say that they were certainly pioneers in its creation, marking a transformative moment in human history


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