What did people use before toilet paper was invented?

Mar 3, 2020
Here how the ancient nation of Israel some 3,500 years ago was commanded to do when they had to go "to the bathroom" while on their 40 year trek from Egypt (for toilet tissue was only mass-produced, commercially available in the mid-1800s onward), that they were to go to "a private place......designated outside the camp.......A peg (or piece of wood for digging) should be part of your equipment. When you squat outside (the camp at the designated place), you should dig a hole with it and then cover your excrement. For Jehovah your God is walking about within your camp to deliver you and to hand over your enemies to you, and your camp must be holy (or clean both physically and ceremonially), so that he does not see anything indecent (or unclean such as having human excrement within the camp) and turn away from accompanying you".(Deut 23:12-14)

At the time, Egypt was the world power who did not have hygiene restrictions, using excrement of flies (as well as the blood of mice, urine) in their remedies for health issues, revealing their ignorance and fundamental understanding of the what constitutes "good health".

Such lack of understanding may have contributed to some of the ' terrible diseases known in Egypt ' (Deut 7:15) that likely included elephantiasis (gross enlargement of an area of the body, especially the limbs), dysentary (infection of the intestines), smallpox (a virus that causes a rash first on the face, hands and forearms and then later appears on the trunk or midsection), bubonic plague, ophthalmia (inflammation of the eye) and other ailments, while the nation of Israel, in dramatic contrast with "medical" practices described in Egyptian texts, was protected from such diseases by adhering to the hygiene requirements established by Jehovah God.

Some 25 years ago, in a manual advising how to avoid diarrhea—a common disease that leads to many infant deaths—the World Health Organization states: “If there is no latrine: defecate away from the house, and from areas where children play, and at least 10 metres [30 feet] from the water supply; cover the faeces with earth".
Oct 12, 2020
The answer is simple: they used leaves. Leaves are used in some countries event today.
But sometimes the toilet paper just wants to run away.