The earliest writing is recorded in eastern Asia about 5,000 years ago. The spread was westwards with the use of earthen (cuneiform) tablets that are still found today in the Tells of modern Iraq and in the Fertile Valley. Cuneiform tablets were mainly used for recording stock control items and account balances; at the same time Egyptian hieroglyphs were starting to record the stories of the Pharaohs.
Cuneiform and Hieroglyphs
The Greeks and Romans introduced writing to the Mediterranean countries and it spread across Europe to Britain with the arrival of the first Roman invasion in 55BC.
Ogham is the first recorded writing in Ireland, based on inscriptions on stone. Ogham is a language based on the Roman alphabet. The influence of the Roman empire had introduced the Latin language and writing to most of Europe. Only two other societies used stone – Pictish symbols in Scotland and Norse Runes in northern Europe. Ogham stones are found in Ireland and in the Irish areas of influence in Scotland and Wales.