3000 BC, Invention of Straw by the Sumerians

The oldest known drinking straw was found in a Sumerian Royal Tomb of Ur, in the grave of Pu-abi, Queen of Ur. It is a golden tube, over a meter in length, with 17 lapiz lazuli segments and a silver sipping mouthpiece.

In the same tomb were 3 cylinder seals, used to roll designs into wet clay. The second cylinder seal has a banquet scene engraved, in an upper and lower register. The upper register shows 2 figures sitting in chairs, drinking beer from a jar on the ground through long straws. The lower register has 2 figures serving/pouring a beverage (beer or wine) from spouted jars. The rest of the figures on the upper and lower registers are sitting in chairs and drinking from cups. The cylinder seal is 4.3 cm (1.7 in) tall and 2.2 cm (0.9 in) in diameter, made from pure lapis lazuli.

The site was excavated by Sir Leonard Wolley. It presides in modern day Southern Iraq. This archaeological discovery allows us to interpret that the Sumerians invented the straw to avoid the trub layer on the bottom, as well as the krausen floating on the top, while drinking fermenting beer. It also shows that beer was considered a beverage fit for royalty during that time period.

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