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54 terms

History Test 11/3/10

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civilization
a form of culture characterized by cities, specialized workers, complex institutions, record keeping, and advanced technology
Bronze Age
a period in human history, beginning around 3000 B.C. in some areas, during which people began using bronze, rather than copper or stone, to fashion tools and weapons
irrigation
the bringing of water to crop fields by means of canals and ditches
specialization
the development of skills in a particular kind of work, such as trading or record keeping
barter
a form of trade in which people exchange goods and services without the use of money
artisan
a skilled worker, such as a weaver or potter, who makes goods by hand
scribe
one of the professional record keepers in early civilizations
cuneiform
a system of writing with wedge-shaped symbols invented by the Sumerians around 3000 B.C.
institution
a long-lasting pattern of organization in a community
ziggurat
a tiered, pyramid-shaped structure that formed part of a Sumerian temple
polytheism
a belief in many gods
Fertile Crescent
an arc of rich farmland in Southwest Asia, between the Persian Gulf and Mediterranean Sea
silt
the fine soil carried in the water of rivers
city-state
a city and its surrounding lands functioning as an independent political unit
dynasty
a series of rulers from a single family
empire
a political unit in which a number of peoples or countries are controlled by a single ruler
cultural diffusion
the spreading of ideas or products from one culture to another
Sumer
a region the size of Massachusetts that was the site of the first civilization
Gilgamesh
a legendary king of Mesopotamia whose adventures are detailed in one of the world's earliest works of literature
pyramids
were used in Egypt as tombs
cataracts
along the Nile, most similar to rapids
pharaoh
Egyptian king
mummification
process that the Egyptians used that was connected to the belief in an afterlife
hieroglyphics
Egyptian writing system
Menes
king of Egypt famous for being the first ruler to unite all of Egypt
Indus Valley
the buildings were constructed of oven-baked bricks, "Harrapan civilization"
subcontinent
a large landmass that forms a distinct part of a continent
monsoons
seasonal winds that occur within regularity and have a great affect on India
Indus River
flooded unpredictably and sometimes changed its course
Peking man
the age of this refers to the time that established that there were people in northern China 500,000 years ago
Huang He River
China's first cities arose along this
loess
yellow silt found in Huang He River
Shang dynasty
largely shaped the Chinese civilization and this ruled for 500 years and was the first family of rulers to leave written records
Shang Di
a supreme Chinese god during China's first several hundred years as a civilization
oracle bones
one of the animal bones or tortoise shells used by ancient Chinese priests to communicate with the gods
Zhou dynasty
after an invasion of nomads from the north, this dynasty fell from power but pretended to rule from the city of Luoyang for another 500 years, overthrew Shang dynasty around 1027 B.C.
dynastic cycle
the rise, decline, and replacement of families of rulers
feudalism
a political system in which nobles are granted the use of lands that legally belong to their king, in exchange for their loyalty, military service, and protection of the people who live on the land
migration
the process by which people or groups of people move from their home area to a new area
Aryans
group of people who settled in what is now India
Hittites
a group undefeated by the Egyptians but unable to defeat them so they made peace with them
Indo-European
people who spoke related languages that form the basis of a family of languages spoken by half of the current world population
Vedas
the name of sacred literature of the Aryan people, for many years only existed in oral form
Mahabhrata
a poem with 106,000 verses and is the longest poem ever composed, tells the story of a great battle between two groups of cousins
Anatolia
a huge peninsula also known as Asia Minor
Brahmin
a member of the highest Indian social class and a Hindu priest
steppes
the name for the dry grasslands north of the Caucasus
untouchable
names someone so lowly that he or she exists outside the caste system
karma
what Hindus believed is the good and bad deeds that a person engages in over one or more lifetimes
caste
circumstances of one's life are largely reflected by this, one is born into this
Buddha
Siddhartha Guatama was called this after 49 days of meditation
nirvana
the state of perfect contentment that results from perfect understanding frees one from all suffering in the Buddhist faith
monotheism
the Hebrews' belief that their was the one and only God
Moses
the man who got the Ten Commandments from Mt. Sinai