When were bricks invented?

There is no reliable date or name attached to the invention of bricks. Archeology has found these building materials in every dig from China to the Middle East. Even in the Pueblo cave cities, bricks have been found as a complement to the natural formation. The universality of the common brick precludes giving any "first" with any accuracy. So with great regret, we announce that there is not a reliable answer to this burning question. But...

On The lighter side ...

In the murkiness before recorded history, there was a band of intrepid hunter-gatherers. Ogg the Footsore, also known as Ogg the Cold, had a habit of thinking. While the other members of the band didn't admire him for this habit, it did yield some surprising results such as the invention of shoes. They discovered that this "shoe" business protected them from such problems as thorns and sharp rocks.

Meanwhile, from the north, Gronk the y'eggman happened upon this camp of Ogg the footsore. Having met with violence several times during his trek south, Gronk cautiously watched the activity in hopes of perhaps stealing some food. As he observed, he wondered what sort of people these were and why they had furs wrapped around their feet. From his hiding spot in a mud hole, he gathered clods of clay to use as mudballs in case of attack.

Back at the camp in the cave. Ogg, being a ladies' man, learned quickly that the women were admiring of Blarg the chief hunter but they didn't especially want to hang out with him. Blarg had this disgusting habit of being a caveman which wasn't especially attractive to the ladies. Since Ogg had decided early on that the ladies were much more fun to cuddle than the nearest wolf, he was always thinking of ways to ingratiate himself to these women.

From his position above the cave, Gronk watched Ogg and his antics among the other members of the tribe, Gronk could only wish he had a wolf to keep him warm as it was getting dark and cold. His thoughts turned from food to companionship, wolves were unreliable and smelled terrible on rainy nights. He wondered if he could convince some of this tribe to travel south and explore with him. After all, if this tribe could protect themselves with footwear, what else could they do? Somehow convincing those inventive people to travel with him would be advantageous.

Just about at that point, Gronk was ready to act. He would try to panic the group and in the excitement he would steal food and perhaps one of the ladies. He gathered the balls of clay and threw his first, second and third with accidental accuracy right into the middle of the fire. Hot embers flew everywhere, some landing on Blarg's furs, lighting him up like a bush hit by lightening. Blarg, not being the brightest star in the sky, thought that the women tending the cooking had done this and roared his displeasure and charged the women. The ladies, hearing the roar and seeing a flaming apparition bearing down on them screamed in terror and fled into the night.

Gronk, terrified at the panic he had wrought, stood straight up just as Ogg and the ladies scrambled to the edge of the mudhole. Having no other weapons but the shoes on their feet, Gronk was pummeled by soft furry mukluks (some with tassels). Having spent hours hiding in the mudhole, Gronk was covered in clay and to this already terrified group, he was a nightmare far worse than Blarg. They turned and ran back toward the evil they knew. Gronk snatched up several of the shoes and hid as fast as his bare feet would hobble in a drier and warmer location near a wolf den.

Too tired to continue running, Ogg and the women returned to the cave and a smoldering Blarg. The women restarted the cooking and Ogg went to a quiet area of the cave to ponder the evenings excitement. Casting his inventive eye (always) toward the women, he noticed that while they were burning dinner and Blarg, they had bits of mud roasting in the fire. After Blarg had beaten several people as a matter of principle and retired for the night, Ogg went and got the bits of mud out of the ashes of the cooking fire.

He discovered that the bits of mud were hard like rock and they surprisingly did not break apart like simple dried mud. While he was turning this new development over in his mind, he found Gronk exausted near the mud hole searching for y'eggs or a handy wolf..whichever was nearer. After much posturing and ritualistic shows of machismo, the two unfortunates became allies. The power of thinking squared showed signs of enormous potential.

Together Ogg and Gronk discovered that if one piled mud and packed it into a square that the mud was much easier to throw into a fire. Since the mud was almost as hard as a rock, yet much lighter, this led to more experimentation. Soon the two thinkers had figured out that raw mud could glue the cooked mud together and it could be stacked and it would not fall down. This led to the radical notion that they didn't have to live in caves, but could build their own cave. Thus was born the first strip mall. History was made and shoe stores and breakfast emporiums can be found in every one of them.

It was many, many years later when they decided to start calling these rectangular hardened-mud objects "bricks" ... the cavemen weren't very verbal, and frankly, a good name like "Brick" couldn't come about until women had a few more rights and weren't thought of as one step above wolves for cuddling purposes. It was actually bricks that aided this quest for equality, even before they were called "bricks". You see, they were useful in building other things besides caves, shelters for pets called doghouses and hideouts for sullen mates fearful of coming home at night called "bars".

The story begins in Jericho, an ancient city... which happened to be made entirely of ... rectangular hardened-mud objects. There was a woman there whose husband worked on the impressive and sturdy walls of that city when it was first being built. As the story goes, she got so sick of the dining room conversation being dragged down by his stories of "rectangular hardened-mud objects" that she made up the quick, short nonsense word "Brick" to describe them, and shorten conversations with her (sadly) rather slow husband. ... She was an innovator, but only to a certain extent. The name caught on, but instead of coming up with new names for other things, she also named their dog/tame wolf "Brick" and her son "Brick." ... Which made for an unfortunate misunderstanding at one point... but ah, that is another story.