10 “Modern” Things That Aren’t as Modern as We Think!

  • RENUKA SHAHANE
  • Nov 26, 2015
  • 49.8K Views
  • Lists

Here we are; landed in the 21st century where technology is one of the biggest virtues. It has reduced the human efforts, taken the living to a next level and awarded us with a life our ancestors could be jealous of!

I mean really, ordering groceries via an app, translating any foreign language in seconds and recording tons of data in a single chip that’s big enough like a nail-extension. We are obnoxious when it comes to being proud of ourselves and the technologies we use.

But you are wrong my friend; Our ancestors have already been there, done that!  

Here’s a list of top 12 things that we think are cool but were actually used in ancient times:

1. Condom

Image Source: Pixabay.com

The saviour of mankind (wow, that’s kind of a paradox), if you think our old folks didn’t know what it was and how and where it would be useful, take a pause. Many ancient inscriptions from Egypt depict men wearing condoms! That’s like thousands of years ago! Although whether or not they were used for birth control is still a topic of debate for historians, there are also findings that show condoms were used before the 15th century in Asia and were made out of oiled paper, animal skin, animal horn, lamb intestine and tortoise shells.

That’s a lot of weird information for my brain to process! 

2. Automatic Doors

Imahe Source: Wikimedia Commons

Holding the door for your date is a cliché and you would believe that it is so since that’s the only way to keep the door open, at least till the automatic doors were invented. Stop there, because there were automatic doors used during the era of Heron of Alexandria. Based on a super-cool hydraulic system which used steam power to automatically open the doors to an Alexandrian Temple!

Read the detailed story of the inventions of Heron of Alexandria.

3. Showers

Image Source: Pixabay.com

This is one thing we can’t just think of living without. Nothing beats early morning blues like a refreshing bath under a shower! The excavation of Pergamum in ancient city has revealed that the community baths had lead pipes that acted like showers; even the locker rooms bars to hang-up clothing have been discovered!

4. Central Heating

Image Source: Pixabay.com

Its November already and yes, Winter is Coming. Thanks to central heating in our homes, at work and in our cars, life’s getting a little better. Central Heating unlike our beliefs is not a new technology; there have always been fire places. But a system that ran underground and heated up the entire space was perfected by Romans and was used by ancient Hellenes. Heated air flowed through underground pipes and maintained heat.

5. Vending Machine

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

We use this practically every day- to grab a packet of chips, to get a hot cup of coffee or just for a bottle of juice. It’s pretty surprising to believe that the first ever vending machine was invented around 50 AD in Roman Egypt. The vending machine dispensed holy water upon insertion of a coin!

Read more about Vending Machine and 10 Things That You Never Imagined Would Come Out of it

6. Alarm Clock

Image Source: Pixabay.com

Attributed to Greek philosopher Plato, this is one the things human beings have hated and loved at the same time. Developed as a water clock, this alarm clock would play a sound with water organ at the set time.

7. Odometer

Image Source: Pixabay.com

If you are an automobile enthusiast, you know what an odometer does; it determines the distance travelled by the vehicle. In ancient Hellas (Modern-day Greece), the exact distance between two cities is documented and historians believe there must be technology involved. 

8. Cartography

Image Source: Pixabay.com

Yes, Google Maps is one of the best boons we’ve got. But think 10 years earlier; we depended on the good old printed maps. And guess when they were originated? Cartography, the art of drawing maps dates back to around 600 BC when Anaximander conceptualised latitude and longitude.

9. High-heel Shoes

Image Source: Pixabay.com

I don’t know who invented High Heels but every woman owes him a lot

Marilyn Monroe was quite right when she said this! Heels elevate the style statement and are one of the top desirable fashion products across the world. And they aren’t new! High heel shoes can be seen in ancient Egyptian murals and were extensively used in Hellenistic times. They were worn on ceremonial occasions by men and women.

10. Makeup

Image Source: Pixabay.com

Make-up was invented in ancient Egypt and was used by both men and women. A symbol for social status, the makeup was believed to have magical healing powers. Given the natural products they must have used in the makeup, this wouldn’t be totally wrong!  

And you thought only our times are cool, Huh?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
RENUKA SHAHANE RENUKA SHAHANE

Living out of a carry-on and traversing through the labyrinths of Europe, exploring the wilderness of America, divulging the eccentric culture of the Latin world and re-connecting her roots that sprawl in the rustic villages of India is one dream that she sees every single night. Once Lost, Now Found; Renuka is still oscillating between the paths to choose and the dreams to chase. A believer of righteousness, she likes to trust that her life is in accordant with her favourite book.

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