Oldest country in the world: 10 of the most ancient states
There are many different nations around the globe, each with its own distinct history and culture. However, some nations rank among the oldest in the world and can track their origins back further than others. These nations have withstood the test of time and are still significant hubs of history and culture today, whether one measures this by the age of their civilizations, the longevity of their political systems, or the tenacity of their cultural traditions. What is the oldest country in the world?
What was the first country? It is challenging know when a country officially began because some countries have existed for a long time like Egypt, China, Japan and India. Moreover, there are complex scenarios that can be used to define the origin of a country, for instance, the date of the earliest known organized government and the date of self-sovereignty.
Oldest country in the world
What is the oldest country in the world? Japan is considered to be the oldest country in the world. It qualifies to be an ancient nation because of the time it was founded. Here is a list of the most ancient countries in the world.
Japan, known as the land of the rising sun, is arguably the first country in the world. According to historians, Japan dates back to 660 BCE and was founded by Emperor Jimmu. Japanese inhabitants can be traced back to prehistoric times. Japan has seen many empires rising and falling, and it became an influential country during the Meiji Restoration era.
Buddhism impacted this Asian country's culture to a large extent. The nation was unified under a central government and established the imperial dynasty, which continues today. The first human inhabitants of the Japanese archipelago have been traced to prehistoric times around 30,000 BC.
China is also one of the oldest countries in the world, dating back to 2070 BCE. However, China was not the country known today because ancient China consisted of a series of dynasties. China's longest-ruling dynasty is the Shang Dynasty which ruled from the 17th to the 11th centuries BCE. This dynasty was also the first to create a writing system in which the Chinese script was a descendant.
Historians also debate the existence of an earlier civilization known as the Xia Dynasty, which is believed to represent the first government in ancient China. The Asian country was recognized as a country in 1949 when Mao Zedong formally proclaimed the establishment of the People’s Republic of China. The country has been known to exist for over 3500 years.
Egypt qualifies to be among the oldest countries because it has existed for almost 30 centuries. The history of Egypt is understood due to the hieroglyphs left by the inhabitants of ancient Egypt. These hieroglyphs are writing systems that appeared around 3200 BCE. The name of the founder of Egypt Narmer, who was a ruler.
Namar was able to establish control over the entire navigable length of the Nile and established the capital in Memphis. This first dynasty was the first series of dynasties that ruled over Egypt until it was conquered by Alexander the Great in 332 BCE. Modern Egypt was founded in 1953 after the Egyptian Revolution of 1952.
India is also one of the countries that are considered ancient. The history of this country began at the birth of the Indus Valley Civilizations, also known as the pre-Verdict or Verdict period. This Indian community has existed for at least 250,000 years. The Indus Valley Civilizations thrived between 3,300 BCE and 1300 BCE.
The country's main religion is known to be Hinduism. However, this was not the case because, in the fifth century, the country was converted to Buddhism before Islam was later introduced in the eighth century. Modern India was founded in 1947 once the country won independence from the British Empire.
Greece is an ancient country it dates back to around 700 BCE. Archaeological researches show that humanity has inhabited the region for at least 40000 years. The nation has developed since then.
The history of ancient Greek is still shown in modern western civilization. The nation is known as the first country to hold the first Olympic Games in 776 BCE. The nation's capital of Athens became the first ever democratic system which was established in 508 BCE. It was recognized as a country in 1821.
Vietnam is one of the oldest and most continuous histories of any nation. Archaeologists have found evidence of humans in Vietnam from the Stone Age. The first Vietnamese dynasty was established in 2879 BCE. The history of this nation traces back to 20222 years ago.
Findings suggest the nation has been inhabited by some of the world's earliest societies. Excavations from 1965 have discovered the remains of two hominins. These findings suggest a Middle Pleistocene era and prove that prehistoric Vietnam existed half a million years ago. The country was recognized as a country in 1945.
Ethiopia is Africa’s oldest independent country and the second largest in terms of population. The country is among the ancient countries in the world because of the hominid fossils palaeontologists found on its land. The apelike creature skeleton found by archaeologists is thought to be about 3.4 million to 2.9 million years old.
The first Ethiopian kingdom to rise in power was the D’mt which lasted from 980 BCE – 400 BCE. The kingdom established their capital of Yeha during its reign, which is still home to its large temple complex. Aside from Ethiopia being one of the oldest countries in Africa, it is also the only African country that Europe did not colonize. The world recognized Ethiopia as a nation in 1995.
This is also one of the oldest existing countries in the world founded in 843 BCE. The history of France can be traced back to the separation of Charlemagne’s Holy Roman Empire in 1806. France is known for important events in European records, like the Napoleonic Wars and the 1789 French Revolution.
The region of France was initially known as Gaul, with three main ethnolinguistic groups. The three groups were the Gauls, Belgae and Aquitani. The nation was established out of consolidated power and expanded territory through battles with the English monarchs and the Habsburgs. It was recognized as a nation in 1792.
9. San Marino
This is the oldest country in Europe. San Marino is a tiny country with a long history founded by a Christian stonemason, Saint Marinus, in 301 AD while seeking refuge. At this moment the nation was first recognized by Napoleon's France in 1797.
San Marino is one of the world's smallest countries and part of the Italian Peninsula. The nation has a population amounting to less than 30,000. It has a smaller population but is the world's oldest republic. Other European nations acknowledged the country's existence as a sovereign state in 1243.
This is also one of the Asian countries which cannot be left out when mentioning the oldest countries in the world. Stone inscriptions in caves have provided evidence of Armenia being inhabited by human life in 90000 BCE.
It is also the first country to adopt Christianity as its official religion in 301 CE, making the Armenian Apostolic Church the oldest national church in the world. The history of Armenia spans over 3500 years. The nation was established in 78 BCE and is known for its diaspora of cultures. The world recognized the nation as a country in 1991.
When a country is said to be the oldest country in the world, it means it is known for the earliest known organized government or acquired self-sovereignty earlier than other nations. Countries like Egypt, China, Japan and San Marino are some of the world’s nations that are considered ancient.
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