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October 20, 2022

Ziggurat / noun / zig·​gu·​rat

The word ziggurat is a noun that refers to mysterious ancient structures. A ziggurat is a pyramid-shaped stone structure built in ancient Mesopotamian civilizations. They were believed to be a "stairway to heaven" that would get the people closer to the gods they worshiped.

Mesopotamians built ziggurats in successive stages, with the widest part of the pyramid forming its base. The earliest ziggurats were built of mud bricks, but later versions were made of fired clay.

In a Sentence

The high school class went on a week-long field trip to visit the ancient ziggurats still standing in Mesopotamia.

A ziggurat is an ancient pyramid that looks like it is made of stone blocks stacked on top of each other.

Most ziggurats are shrouded in mystery and secrecy.


The word ziggurat was derived from a language belonging to an ancient civilization. Francois Lenormant is one of the first people known to use the word as a derivative of an ancient language called "Akkadian."

Ancient Mesopotamians constructed tiered pyramids as a way to get closer to the heavens. English speakers adopted the word ziggurat from the ancient Akkadian word ziqqurratu, which had a similar meaning around 1874.


Pyramid, Pinnacle


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