Ancient Egypt is home to a rich history of irrigation technology, and it is believed that the earliest irrigation devices were built in the 3rd century BC.
The earliest irrigation systems were made up of stones and wooden paddles.
According to archaeological evidence, the ancient Egyptians were the first to use stone for irrigation, and the most advanced irrigation systems could have produced irrigated fields up to 15 metres (40 feet) in diameter.
In the 4th century BC, the Pharaonic dynasty in Egypt began to upgrade its irrigation infrastructure and built an elaborate system of water pumps to supply irrigation to irrigation-starved farmland.
Today, it is estimated that more than 10 million hectares (30 million acres) of Egypt’s farmland are irrigated, including about 80 per cent of the country’s agricultural land.
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Egyptian Studies, led by Professors Matthew P. Johnson and William R. Wills, have published their findings in the journal Antiquity.
“Irrigation was a major tool of Egyptians for thousands of years,” Prof Johnson said.
“It was the foundation stone of many Egyptian irrigation structures and it was the source of the irrigation system for the entire kingdom.”
A survey of the Pharoah’s palace, built in 632 BC, shows the elaborate irrigation system.
The archaeologists found evidence that the pharaohs were also experimenting with irrigation, including building elaborate irrigation pipes for their gardens.
But in order to get their irrigation system up and running, the pharoahs had to start using stone to make the paddles, as the clay was too hard.
“Stone was probably the first material used in irrigation,” Prof Wills said.
Ancient Egyptians used a series of irrigation pipes to irrigate the pharaonic palace, the researchers said.
The water was pumped through a small channel at the base of the palace, which was covered with a thick layer of sand.
Water was then passed through the wooden padds, which were used to irrigating fields, and into the main canal, which then flowed through the palace.
The irrigation pipes were made of limestone and clay and weighed about 5 kilograms (12 pounds).
The wooden paddels were made from bone, and weighed around 10 kilograms (22 pounds) each.
“The pharaonists used the wooden paddle for irrigation in order that they would be able to make sure that they had sufficient water to supply their fields, so they could irrigate as much as they wanted,” Prof Williams said.
While the pharons’ irrigation systems did produce a lot of water, they also had to be constructed on a much smaller scale.
“Because they were built on the basis of stone, they were relatively small,” Prof William R Wills explained.
“And they were constructed in a way that they could not be easily replaced.”
The pharaons used a large stone block to hold the paddling paddle, which had to reach the level of a horse’s hooves.
In order to use the paddle, the paddler had to wear a long leather strap attached to his thigh, and had to stand upright on the ground, so that the stone would not break.
“So they had to construct this sort of stone shield around their paddling paddles and then they had this large stone shield to protect them from the water,” Prof R Will said.
It was probably this protective shield that protected the paddlers from being trampled or damaged by the water.
Ancient Egyptian irrigation systems can be traced to the early Bronze Age, around the time of the first Egyptian pharaoh, Tutankhamen.
“Tutankhamens irrigation system was built on a small scale, but the construction techniques of this system are extremely similar to the modern system,” Prof Williamson said.
Archaeologists have discovered large water reservoirs beneath the pyramids, where they built drainage pipes and dug water pits for the pharan’s irrigation system in the 8th century BCE.
The pharaoh used water from the Nile as part of his irrigation system, and also used water collected from wells on his estate to irrigates crops.
“In the 6th and 7th centuries BC, Tut’s irrigation systems developed, and there is evidence that he also had some irrigation systems built around the palace,” Prof T. P. Hall said.
Prof Johnson says the phaeronists’ irrigation system could have been more efficient than the more traditional method of using water collected at the palace and used to make irrigation paddles for their fields.
“This irrigation system is one of the oldest systems that we know of, and one of its most important features is that it uses water that is extracted from the ground to irrigated areas,” he said.
However, the Egyptian pharaonics had to work hard to maintain their irrigation systems, and they were often unable to pay for their construction.
“For the pharistos of the phARAONIC era, there was a need for money, and their own personal income was