How Water Was Used in Ancient Times?

Water is one of the most important resources for human civilization. It has been used in various ways throughout history, especially in ancient times. In this article, we will explore how water was used in ancient times and how it contributed to the development of human civilization.

Domestic Use:
One of the most common uses of water in ancient times was for domestic purposes. People used water for drinking, cooking, bathing, and cleaning.

However, access to clean and safe water was a challenge during those times. People had to fetch water from rivers, lakes or wells which were often far away from their homes. Women and children were usually responsible for fetching water using pots or jars that they carried on their heads.

Water played a crucial role in agriculture during ancient times. Farmers used irrigation systems to provide crops with the necessary amount of water required for their growth.

They built canals and ditches to divert water from rivers or other sources towards fields. In Mesopotamia, people built dams across rivers to control the flow of water and use it for irrigation purposes.

Water was also used in medicine during ancient times. Greek physicians believed that bathing in hot springs could cure various ailments such as skin diseases and joint pains. They also used water for hydrotherapy where patients soaked themselves in hot or cold baths to treat illnesses.


In many religions around the world, water has played a significant role since ancient times. For example, Hindus consider the river Ganges as a sacred river that can purify one’s soul by washing away sins during ritual bathing ceremonies. Similarly, Muslims perform ablution before prayer by washing their hands, mouth, nose, face, arms and feet with clean water.


Waterways were important means of transportation during ancient times as they provided an efficient way to transport goods and people. Rivers and seas were used for transportation, and boats and ships were constructed to make travel easier.

  • Ancient Egyptians used the Nile River for transportation of goods and people.
  • The Phoenicians developed the first shipbuilding techniques in the Mediterranean, which enabled them to trade with other civilizations.
  • The Greeks built triremes – warships with three rows of oars – which allowed them to dominate the Mediterranean Sea.


In conclusion, water played a crucial role in ancient times. It was used for domestic purposes, agriculture, medicine, religion, and transportation.

Although access to clean water was a challenge during those times, people developed various techniques to manage water resources efficiently. Water continues to be an essential resource today, and it is important that we use it responsibly and sustainably.