These considerable reductions in the dates of the earlier dynasties of Babylonia necessarily react upon our estimate of the age of Babylonian civilization The very high dates of 5000 or 6000 B.C., formerly assigned by many writers to the earliest remains of the Sumerians and tl e Babylonian Semites, 12 depended to a great extent on the statem nt of Nabonidus that 3200 years separated his own age from th: t of Naram-Sin, the son of Sargon of Agade; for to Sargon, on this statement alone, a date of 3800 B.C. has usually been assigned.
This double method of writing words arises from the circumstance that the cuneiform syllabary is of non-Semitic origin, the system being derived from the non-Semitic settlers of the Euphrates valley, commonly termed Sumerians (or Sumero-Akkadians), to whom, as the earlier settlers, the origin of the cuneiform script is due.
If the bald Sumerians wore wigs in time of war (Meyer, 81, 86), war itself from beginning to end was essentially a religious rite; see W.
Whether we should deduce from its common occurrence in Babylonia the existence of an Elamite population there in early times, later displaced by the Sumerians, we do not know.
An argument for discontinuity of race is found in the fact that whereas the Sumerians are never represented as using the bow, their predecessors certainly made flint arrowheads.