Re: Civilizations (was GRB)

Date: Mon Jan 14 2002 - 10:26:58 MST

In a message dated 1/14/02 8:33:03 AM, writes:

>such which never developed the wheel. Why? You could say because their
>ancestors were stupid and exterminated useful animal species rather than
>domesticated them, but the Incas did domesticate the llama, and the very
>IDEA of the wheel, it seems, was not alien to the Inca, they just
>prohibited it as an instrument of blasphemy.

If you want to define round things turning on roads as the be-all and end-all
of human civilization, be prepared for other people like me to have different
definitions. Any group that can organize millions of people to perform large
-scale public works over an area over a thousand miles long, leaving extensive
accounting records and performing complex rituals is a civilization in my
book. I don't consider not using the wheel for jungle and mountain transport
when there never was any good animal to pull carts in the first place of
substantial importance. It was military applications that drove the
of wheeled transport, and llama chariots on mountains slopes just don't cut
the mustard. Wheeled transport wasn't particularly useful prior to the
anyway; it had its place but most transport went by water.

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