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Ancient Civilizations

Mesopotamia (Sumer) Cities and Architecture
1.often rectangular in shape surrounded by high wide walls b.c of few natural barriers
2. organized into city-states
3. Ziggurats- center of city and were temples that honored deity of that city state.
4. structures made out of sun dried bricks
5. rulers occupied in palaces
Mesopotamia(Sumer) Economy
1.Money was made by trade.
2.Traders sailed through rivers or traveled thru the deserts to distant regions.
Mesopotamia(Sumer) Government
1.Rival city-states often battled for control over land and water.
2. People turned to courageous and resourceful war leader for protection.
3. War leaders became into hereditary rulers. They were responsible for maintaining the city walls and irrigation in each city-state. They led war, enforced the laws employed scribes to carry out functions, and was the chief servant of the gods, and led ceremonies to please them.
Mesopotamia(Sumer) Social Classes
top- Kings, landholders, and some priests
next- wealthy merchants
middle- ordinary people who worked wit their hands in fields and workshops
lowest- slaves
some slaves were there for debt off parents.
Mesopotamia(Sumer) Women
could work as merchants, farmers, or artisans
could hold property in their own names, and join priesthood
upper-class women could learn to read and write and become scribes
Mesopotamia(Sumer) Writing
Cuneiform. written in clay tablets.
Mesopotamia(Sumer) Religion
Egyptian Geography
Yearly Predictable flooding brought the water and rich soil that allowed settlements to grow
The change from fertile land and desert were stand ably close
The Rivers had a catch-22
The deserts on either side of the Nile river acted as natural barriers and spared Egypt warfare constantly
Nile provided a reliable system of trans. btw upper and lower Egypt. Nile = flows north Winds = North to south
Egyptian Cities/ Architecture
Ancient Egypt, divided into 3 main periods: Old, Middle, and New Kingdom
Kings were expected to live forever so their tombs were very important
Lived in farming villages
The Kings in Old Kingdom resting place was a pyramid.
Old Kingdom = Age of Pyramid building in Egypt
Had a good supply of lime-stone and granite
Egyptian Government
31 dynasties over 2600 years
Kings were gods called pharaohs. they were almost as splendid and powerful as the god in the heavens
The Pharaoh stood at the center of government, religion, and the army
The pharaoh was thought to be the one who caused the sun to rise, the Nile to flood, and the crops to grow, and the pharaoh promoted truth and justice.
Egyptian Social Classes
top upper class- King, Queen, and Royal Fam.
Next upper class- Wealthy landowners, gov. officials, priests, and army commanders
Next middle class- merchants and artisans
Last lower class- peasant farmers and laborers
Lower and middle class could gain higher stats. by marriage or success in their jobs.
Slavery came along in later periods of history & was a widespread of labor.
To win the highest positions people had to be able to read&write. after that any careers opened up.
Egyptian Women
Wealthy middle class woman could own and trade property, propose marriage or seek divorce.
If granted a divorce she would be entitled to 1/3 of the couples property.
Egyptian Writing
It started off wit simple pictographs and then scribes soon developed a more simpler writing system called hieroglyphics.
A pic. stood for a idea and/ or sound.
Hieroglyphics were first written on stone and clay but soon after papyrus seed was invented. (paper like sheet.)
Egyptian Religion
import. gods were Re- Sun God and Osiris- the god of the dead. most import. goddess was Isis- the ideal mother and wife
They believed in ova 2000 gods and goddesses and built huge temples to honor the major gods/ goddesses
Believed in an afterlife
type of government where rule is based on religious authority
usually captives from foreign wars (both)
Hitties Location
the Hitties occupied Anatolia A.K.A Asia Minor. It's a huge penninsula in modern day Turkey that goes out into the Black and Mediterranean seas. Anatolia is a high, rocky, plateau, rich in timber and agriculture.
Hitties Achievements
the Hitties excellled in technology of war, they used iron in their chariots and they owned many of their military victories to the skill of their iron workers. They were the first in Southwest Asia to work with iron and harden it into weapons of warm around 1500 B.C.
Assyrians Location
The Assyrians came from the northern part of Mesopotamia. Their flat, exposed land made them easy for other people to attack.
Assyrians Achievements
Assyria had a large empire. It achieved it by the means of a highly advanced military, organization, and state-of-the-art weaponry. For a time this made Assyria the greatest power in Southwest Asia.
Phoenicians Location
Phoenicia was mainly the area now knows as Lebanon. Phoenicians never united as a country instead the founded a number of welathy city-states around the Mediterranean that sometimes competed with one another.
Phoenicians Achievements
They were the most powerful traders along the Mediterranean and also created the alphabet.
The founder of the Hebrew people originally came from Ur, in Mesopotamia but soon moved to Canaan because of their religious beliefs. The Hebrews were actually a monotheistic religion because they only belived in one God. Also the ten commandments were served as moral and legal code.
The Aryans where apart of a larger group called Indo-Europeans. The Arryans were responsible for developing the more complex social system called the Caste System. The Aryans were also Nomadic and then turned to Farmers and settled.
Aryans Caste System
Social classs structure into which people could not change. The 3 basic groups were: Top- Brahmins/ Priests who were responsible for the caste creation. After- Kshatriyas/ warriors and fighters. Aryans were big on conquering for land. Third- Uasyas/ herders, farmers, merchants, and artisans.
Other lower class groups included the Sudras: Non- Aryans (Dravidians) and the Untouchables: who were the lowest possible rank and were considered dirty.
Aryans Religion
Aryans were polytheistic and they worshipped gods and godesses that embodied natural forces. ex. sky. but they also honored animals ex. snake god, monkey god.
Nomads to Farmers
The Aryans learned farming and other techniques/ skills from the local people. Also they developed new crafts of their own.
They were a collection of stories, and religious teachings.
Haung He
"Yellow River" also called China's Sorrow
Middle Kingdom
Two Major river systems
Yellow R. and Yangtze R.
Fertile Silt that came form the Yellow R.
Mandate of Heaven
A just ruler that had divine approval
Dynastic Cycle
The pattern of the rise, decline, and replacement of dynasties.