Modern Inventions That Are Actually Ancient Part 2: Eccentric Egyptians
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Modern Inventions That Are Actually Ancient Part 2: Eccentric Egyptians

Thought the Egyptians were all pyramids and Sphinxes? Think again!

Modern Inventions That Are Actually Ancient Part 2: Eccentric Egyptians

Last week, I gave you a few inventions we consider to be modern that actually came from Ancient Greece. Shocking how vending machines and shower heads are older than peanut butter (first created in 1895) and electricity (first created in 1879)! The Greeks weren't the only inventors thousands of years ago, however. South of the Mediterranean Sea lay Ancient Egypt, where many other "modern" items were being manufactured. However, unlike the Greeks, who based inventions around technology, Egyptian inventions were based more on trivial items we use in our daily lives.

1. Breath Mints

Back in ancient times, there were no dentists. But that doesn't mean they didn't have dental problems! According to sources, Ancient Egyptians "ground their grain into flour using stones, and therefore a lot of grit from these stones got mixed up with the flour for their bread. This sandy grit wore down the tooth enamel, exposing the tooth pulp and causing the risk of infection." Just like with modern day humans, a lack of dental health and hygiene meant bad breath. To fix this, the first breath mints were created using frankincense, myrrh, and cinnamon boiled with honey that was then molded into pellets. Who knew!

2. Toothpaste

The struggle with halitosis continues in the country of the pyramids! Breath mints were a temporary relief, but it was quickly discovered a longer-lasting solution was needed to remove the tiny bits of stone. Like their "breath mints," the first toothpaste did not contain any sources of mint whatsoever. It was made of a mixture of ingredients, including ostrich eggshells, ox hooves, and even the ashes of a fireplace!

3. Eyeliner

Who hasn't seen pictures of Cleopatra with stallion black hair and striking green eyes? You may have also noticed that her eyes are outlined in black. As you've probably guessed, this is eyeliner. This Egyptian queen made the now commonplace vanity product a statement of fashion and status. Anyone who was anyone wore enough eyeliner to resemble a raccoon. More makeup, higher status was the Egyptians motto. The waxy black sticks were also believed to cure vision-based ailments and offer protection from evil. (For this reason, men were not exempt from having raccoon style eyes and sometimes wore more makeup than their wives!)

4. Bowling

Next time you take a trip to Cinema World for a fun day out, thank the ancient Egyptians for your afternoon of fun. Records show that this common recreational sport was first played around the second or third century AD. Unlike today, the first bowling game did not feature any pins. Rather, it was more of a game of dodgeball, except the aim was to roll your ball and knock out the other balls. There was a hole in the center of the lane, and rolling your ball into this hole snagged you a victory.

5. Marshmallows

S'mores might be an all-American treat, but marshmallows actually come from Egypt! The first version of this candy was made mostly with honey. It was then "thickened with sap from marshmallow plant roots," hence the name. This herb was commonly found in saline rivers and was plentiful and cheap for the Egyptians. I guess this means Egyptians also made the first vegan marshmallow long before PETA proposed them!

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