How Were Messages Sent in Ancient Times?

In ancient times, messages were sent in various ways depending on the era and location. The absence of modern communication technologies made it a challenge to send and receive information quickly. This article highlights some of the methods used to send messages in ancient times.

Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphics

One of the earliest forms of written communication was hieroglyphics used by the ancient Egyptians. Hieroglyphics were pictures that represented words and ideas. Scribes would write on papyrus or stone using reed pens and ink made from soot or charcoal mixed with water.

Incan Quipus

The Incan civilization used a unique system of knots tied on strings called quipus to communicate messages. Different knots represented different numbers and colors represented different categories such as crops, taxes, or military forces.

Chinese Smoke Signals

The Chinese developed a smoke signal system where they would use fires to create smoke signals that could be seen from miles away. This method was used primarily for military communications during battles.

Carrier Pigeons

Carrier pigeons were used by various civilizations throughout history, including ancient Persians and Romans. The pigeons were trained to fly back to their home base with messages attached to their legs. This method was widely used during wars and conflicts when communication lines were down.

Morse Code Telegraphs

In the 19th century, Samuel Morse invented Morse code, a system of dots and dashes representing letters and numbers that could be transmitted over long distances via telegraphs. This revolutionary technology allowed for almost instant communication across great distances.


In conclusion, before the advent of modern communication technologies such as telephones, radios, and computers, people relied on creative ways to communicate with each other over long distances. From hieroglyphics to Morse code, each method of communication had its unique advantages and limitations. These methods paved the way for modern communication technologies that we use today.