Sumer, lower Mesopotamia, Middle East- Sumeria is the first civilization to appear, 3200 BCE. The Sumerian civilization lasted until 2340 BCE. The Sumerian civilization consisted of a confederation of city-states, including Uruk, Umma, Lagash, Ur and Eridu. Sumerians flourished in Southern Mesopotamia. The origin of the Sumerian people is unknown. However, it is known that Sumerian people built their cities from mud brick. The Sumerians were an inventive people, with significant achievements in the invention of 'the wheel' and writing. Sumerians are known to have used architectural features including arches and domes. The most important building in Sumerian cities were temples. The Sumerians were a polytheistic people, but they dedicated temples to a single god or goddess. The god or goddess was selected based on it's importance to the region where the temple was located. The temples where built on top of stepped towers called Ziggurat. Sumerian government was based on monarchy, and Sumerians believed their kings established rule through divine right. The Sumerians system of writing was based on Cuneiform.