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History Review by Chapter
Terms in this set (67)
Mesopotamia had a hot, dry climate. In the spring, the rivers often flooded, leaving behind rich soil for farming. The problem was that the flooding was very unpredictable. It might flood one year, but not the next. Every year, farmers worried about their crops. They came to believe they needed their gods to bless their efforts.
Egyptian civilization began in this fertile River valley. The Egyptians depended on this and its dependable floods for survival. They also relied on the river for trade and transportation. The geographic features of the region—cataracts, deltas, and deserts—protected the Egyptians from invasions.
This is the river in which the Egyptians relied on to bathe in and they also used water from the river. This river is located in the heart of Africa and it runs all the way to the Mediterranean. It is the largest river in the world and is 4,000 miles long.
Egyptian kings, called ____________, were believed to be the sons of Re, Egypt's sun god.
Who created Egypt's first dynasty?
How many dynasties did Egypt have?
Describe the 3 kingdoms
31 and they were divided into 3 Kingdoms.
Old - Egypt experienced growth and prosperity during the Old Kingdom
Middle - The Middle Kingdom was marked with peace, prosperity, and accomplishments in art, literature, and architecture.
New - During the New Kingdom, Egypt gained new territory and reached the height of its power. The rulers of this period are some of Egypt's most famous pharaohs. They included Hatshepsut, Thutmose III, Akhenaton, Tutankhamen, and Ramses II.
This religeon influenced Christianity and Islam, and also helped shape the beliefs and practices of societies in Europe and America.
The Jewish Diet Under Jewish law, Jews could eat only certain animals. For example, they could eat beef and lamb but not pork. They could eat scaly fish, like salmon, but not smooth-skinned fish, like eels. Laws about food were known as kashrut, which means "that which is proper."
Today, food that is prepared according to Jewish dietary laws is called kosher. Animals used for kosher meat must be killed in a special way. The meat must be inspected, salted, and soaked. To be kosher, Jews must not cook or eat milk products with meat.
In ancient times, everyday meals were made up of fish, fruit, vegetables, and barley bread. Beverages included mainly milk, water, wine, and beer.
Tell how the Pharoah forced the Israelis out of Egypt.
The 12 tribes of Israel lived in Canaan for about 100 years. A drought forced them into Egypt. The Egyptian pharaoh enslaved the Israelites to build pyramids. Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt. According to the Bible, Moses received the moral laws known as the Torah from God. Included in the Torah are the Ten Commandments.
After Darius died in 486 B.C., his son Xerxes (ZUHRK•SEEZ) became the Persian king. Xerxes vowed revenge against the Athenians. In 480 B.C. he launched a new invasion of Greece, this time with about 180,000 troops and thousands of warships and supply vessels.
Herodotus described the conflict between the Greeks and Persians as one between freedom and dictatorship. Here he tells of Xerxes' address to Persian nobles:
"And truly I have pondered upon this, until at last I have found out a way whereby we may at once win glory, and likewise get possession of a land which is as large and as rich as our own . . . while at the same time we obtain satisfaction and revenge . . . My intent is to . . . march an army through Europe against Greece, that thereby I may obtain vengeance from the Athenians from the wrongs committed by them against the Persians and against my father."
Tell about Alexander the Great
Alexander was only 20 when he became king of Macedonia. Philip had carefully trained his son for leadership. While still a boy, Alexander often went with his father to the battlefront. At age 16 he rose to commander in the Macedonian army. After his father's death, Alexander was ready to fulfill his father's dream—the invasion of the Persian Empire.
Alexander the Great, accomplished his father's goal when he defeated the Persian Empire in the 330s B.C. Alexander planned to unite the Macedonians, Greeks, and Persians in his new empire, but he died unexpectedly and his empire was divided into four kingdoms: Macedonia, Egypt, Pergamum, and the Seleucid Empire. Alexander the Great left behind a legacy of courage. His conquests of southwest Asia marked the beginning of the Hellenistic Era. Alexander and his armies spread Greek culture throughout southwest Asia and northern Africa.
Compare Athens and America
Athens was a democracy. Same type of government in america
In ancient Greece, only men could participate in and view the Olympic games. Athletes competed by themselves, not as part of a team. Contests included running, jumping, wrestling, and boxing. Each winning athlete won a crown of olive leaves and brought glory to his city.
In today' s Olympic games, both men and women compete. These athletes come from all over the world. They may compete in either individual or team sporting events. Olympic athletes strive to win gold, silver, or bronze medals.
The most important leader after Peisistratus died was Cleisthenes (KLYS•thuh•NEEZ). When he came to power in 508 B.C., he reorganized the assembly to play the central role in governing. As before, all male citizens could belong to the assembly and vote on laws. However, members had new powers. They could debate matters openly, hear court cases, and appoint army generals.
Most importantly, Cleisthenes created a new council of 500 citizens to help the assembly carry out daily business. The council proposed laws, dealt with foreign countries, and oversaw the treasury.
Athenians chose the members of the council each year in a lottery. They believed this system was fairer than an election, which might favor the rich.
Cleisthenes' reforms did not bring all Athenians into the political process. Non-citizens, which included all women, foreign-born men, and slaves, were still excluded. Nonetheless, Cleisthenes is credited with making the government of Athens a democracy.
Women in India
One custom shows how the lives of Indian men were considered more important than the lives of Indian women. In India, people were cremated or burned when they died. When a man from a high-caste family died, his wife was expected to leap into the flames. This practice was called suttee (suh•TEE). If the wife resisted and did not kill herself, it was a great shame. Everyone would avoid the woman from then on.
In India, parents arranged marriages for their children. Even today, parents arrange 90 percent of marriages in India. Girls often married as young as 13. Divorce was not allowed, but if a couple could not have children, the husband could marry a second wife.
Ancient Indians made important contributions in other scientific fields, especially astronomy. They followed and mapped movements of planets and stars. They understood that the Earth was round and revolved around the sun. They also seem to have understood gravity.
Indians developed ideas about what the universe was made of. As early as the 500s B.C., Indian thinkers believed that the universe was made up of many very tiny particles. They came up with ideas of atoms before the Greeks in the West did.
Tell about the Shang Dynasty
Archaeologists have found huge walls, royal palaces, and royal tombs from the time of the Shang. These remains show that the Shang may have built the first Chinese cities. One of these cities was Anyang (AHN•YAHNG) in northern China. Anyang was China's first capital. From there, the Shang kings ruled the early Chinese people.
The people of the Shang dynasty were divided into groups. The most powerful group was the king and his family. The first Shang king ruled over a small area in northern China. His armies used chariots and bronze weapons to take over nearby areas. In time, the Shang kings ruled over most of the Huang He valley.
Later, Shang kings chose warlords to govern the kingdom's territories. Warlords are military leaders who command their own armies. However, the king controlled even larger armies who defended the kingdom's borders. The king's armies helped him stay in power.
In Shang China, a few people were traders and artisans. Most Chinese, however, were farmers. They worked the land that belonged to the aristocrats. They grew grains, such as millet, wheat, and rice, and raised cattle, sheep, and chickens. A small number of enslaved people captured in war also lived in Shang China.
Spirits and Ancestors People in Shang China worshiped gods and spirits. Spirits were believed to live in mountains, rivers, and seas. The people believed that they had to keep the gods and spirits happy by making offerings of food and other goods. They believed that the gods and spirits would be angry if they were not treated well. Angry gods and spirits might cause farmers to have a poor harvest or armies to lose a battle.
People also honored their ancestors, or departed family members. Offerings were made in the hope that ancestors would help in times of need and bring good luck. To this day, many Chinese still remember their ancestors by going to temples and burning small paper copies of food and clothing. These copies represent things that their departed relatives need in the afterlife.
Telling the Future Shang kings believed that they received power and wisdom from the gods, the spirits, and their ancestors. Shang religion and government were closely linked, just as they were in ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt. An important duty of Shang kings was to contact the gods, the spirits, and ancestors before making important decisions.
Shang Artists The people in Shang China developed many skills. Farmers produced silk, which weavers used to make colorful clothes. Artisans made vases and dishes from fine white clay. They also carved statues from ivory and a green stone called jade.
The Shang are best known for their works of bronze. To make bronze objects, artisans made clay molds in several sections. Next, they carved detailed designs into the clay. Then, they fit the pieces of the mold tightly together and poured in melted bronze. When the bronze cooled, the mold was removed. A beautifully decorated work of art remained.
Shang bronze objects included sculptures, vases, drinking cups, and containers called urns. The Shang used bronze urns to prepare and serve food for rituals honoring ancestors.
Tell about the Zhou Dynasty
The Zhou dynasty ruled for more than 800 years—longer than any other dynasty in Chinese history.
Zhou kings ruled much like Shang rulers. The Zhou king was at the head of the government. Under him was a large bureaucracy (byu•RAH•kruh•see). A bureaucracy is made up of appointed officials who are responsible for different areas of government. Like the Shang rulers, the Zhou king was in charge of defending the kingdom.
The Zhou kings copied the Shang system of dividing the kingdom into smaller territories. The kings put aristocrats they trusted in charge of each territory. The positions the aristocrats held were hereditary. That meant that when an aristocrat died, his son or another relative would take over as ruler of the territory.
The Chinese considered the king their link between heaven and earth. His chief duty was to carry out religious rituals. The Chinese believed these rituals strengthened the link between them and the gods. This belief paved the way for a new idea that the Zhou kings introduced to government. They claimed that kings ruled China because they had the Mandate of Heaven.
What Was the Mandate of Heaven? According to Zhou rulers, a heavenly law gave the Zhou king the power to rule. This mandate (MAN•DAYT), or formal order, was called the Mandate of Heaven. Based on the mandate, the king was chosen by heavenly order because of his talent and virtue. Therefore, he would rule the people with goodness and wisdom.
The Mandate of Heaven worked in two ways. First, the people expected the king to rule according to the proper "Way," called the Dao (DOW). His duty was to keep the gods happy. A natural disaster or a bad harvest was a sign that he had failed in his duty. People then had the right to overthrow and replace the king.
The Mandate of Heaven also worked another way. It gave the people, as well as the king, important rights. For example, people had the right to overthrow a dishonest or evil ruler. It also made clear that the king was not a god himself. Of course, each new dynasty claimed it had the Mandate of Heaven. The only way people could question the claim was by overthrowing the dynasty.
New Tools and Trade For thousands of years, Chinese farmers depended on rain to water their crops. During the Zhou dynasty, the Chinese developed irrigation and flood-control systems. As a result, farmers could grow more crops than ever before.
Improvements in farming tools also helped farmers produce more crops. By 550 B.C., the Chinese were using iron plows. These sturdy plows broke up land that had been too hard to farm with wooden plows. As a result, the Chinese could plow more and produce more crops. Because more food could support more people, the population increased. During the late Zhou dynasty, China had a population of about 50 million people.
Trade and manufacturing grew along with farming. An important trade item during the Zhou dynasty was silk. Pieces of Chinese silk have been found throughout central Asia and as far away as Greece. This suggests that the Chinese traded far and wide.
The Zhou Empire Falls Over time, the local rulers of the Zhou territories became powerful. They stopped obeying the Zhou kings and set up their own states. In 403 B.C. fighting broke out. For almost 200 years, the states battled each other. Historians call this time the "Period of the Warring States."
Instead of nobles driving chariots, the warring states used large armies of foot soldiers. To get enough soldiers, they issued laws forcing peasants to serve in the army. The armies fought with swords, spears, and crossbows. A crossbow uses a crank to pull the string and shoots arrows with great force.
As the fighting went on, the Chinese invented the saddle and stirrup. These let soldiers ride horses and use spears and crossbows while riding. In 221 B.C. the ruler of Qin (CHIN), one of the warring states, used a large cavalry force to defeat the other states and set up a new dynasty.
What is Legalism
There were 3 chinese philosophies which grew out of a need for order. Confucianism, Daoism & Legalism.
Confucianism - Confucius believed that people needed to have a sense of duty. Duty meant that a person must put the needs of family and community before his or her own needs. Each person owed a duty to another person.
Daoism - Daoists believed that people should give up worldly desires. They should turn to nature and the Dao—the force that guides all things. To show how to follow the Dao, Daoists used examples from nature.
A third group of thinkers disagreed with the idea that honorable men in government could bring peace to society. Instead, they argued for a system of laws. People called their thinking Legalism (LEE • guh • LIH • zuhm), or the "School of Law."
A scholar named Hanfeizi (HAN • fay • DZOO) developed the teachings of Legalism during the 200s B.C. Unlike Confucius or Laozi, Hanfeizi taught that humans were naturally evil. He believed that they needed harsh laws and stiff punishments to force them to do their duty. His followers believed that a strong ruler was needed to keep order in society.
Many aristocrats liked Legalism because it favored force and power, and did not require rulers to show kindness or understanding. Its ideas led to the cruel laws and punishments often used to control Chinese farmers.
Tell about the Qin Dynasty
Qin based his rule on the ideas of Legalism. He had everyone who opposed him punished or killed. Books opposing his views were publicly burned. Qin made the central government stronger than ever before. He appointed government officials, called censors, to make sure government officials did their jobs.
Second in power to the central government were provinces and counties. Under Zhou kings, officials who ran these areas passed on their posts to sons or relatives. Under Qin, only he could fill these posts.
Qin Shihuangdi unified China. He created one currency, or type of money, to be used throughout the empire. He also ordered the building of roads and a huge canal. The canal connected the Chang Jiang river in central China to what is today the city of Guangzhou (GWAHNG • JOH) in southern China. He used the canal to ship supplies to his troops in far-off territories.
Tell about the Han Dynasty
Liu Bang (lee " OO BAHNG) founded the Han dynasty. Liu Bang, who was once a peasant, became a military leader and defeated his rivals. He declared himself Han Gaozu—"Exalted Emperor of Han." Although Han Gaozu threw out the harsh policies of the Qin dynasty, he continued to use censors and also divided the empire into provinces and countiesThe Han reached its peak under the leadership of Han Wudi (HAHN WOO • DEE), which means "Martial Emperor of Han." He ruled from 141 B.C. to 87 B.C. Because Wudi wanted talented people to fill government posts, job seekers had to take long, difficult tests to qualify for openings in the bureaucracy. Those with the highest scores got the jobs.
In time, Wudi's tests became the civil service examinations. This system for choosing officials remained part of Chinese civilization for 2,000 years. The system was supposed to help anyone with the right skills get a job with the government. However, it actually favored the rich. Only wealthy families could afford to educate their sons for the difficult exams.
Students preparing for these tests learned law, history, and the teachings of Confucius. They began to memorize the works of Confucius at age seven. Students were not allowed to do physical labor or to play most sports. They could go fishing, however, because it was considered the sport of scholars. After many years of schooling, the students took their civil service examinations. Only one in five passed. Those who failed taught school, took jobs as assistants to officials, or were supported by their families.
China's empire grew in size as well as in population. Han armies added lands to the south and pushed Chinese borders westward. The Han dynasty also made the country more secure. Wudi's armies drove back the Xiongnu—the nomads to the north. After Wudi's death, the Chinese lived in peace for almost 150 years.
Tell about chinese warloards
Under the king, the warlords and other royal officials made up the upper class. They were aristocrats (uh•RIHS•tuh•KRATS), nobles whose wealth came from the land they owned. Aristocrats passed their land and their power from one generation to the next.
Earlier you read that China's Han empire ended in A.D. 220. For the next 300 years, China had no central government. It broke into 17 kingdoms. War and poverty were everywhere. Chinese warlords-military leaders who run a government—fought with each other while nomads conquered parts of northern China.
Tell about the Sui Dynasty
China finally reunited in A.D. 581. In that year, a general who called himself Wendi (WHEHN • DEE) declared himself emperor. Wendi won battle after battle and finally reunited China. He then founded a new dynasty called the Sui (SWEE).
After Wendi died, his son Yangdi (YAHNG • DEE) took the Chinese throne. Yangdi wanted to expand China's territory. He sent an army to fight the neighboring Koreans, but the Chinese were badly defeated. At home, Yangdi took on many ambitious building projects. For example, the Great Wall had fallen into ruins, and Yangdi had it rebuilt.
Yangdi's greatest effort went into building the Grand Canal. This system of waterways linked the Chang Jiang (Yangtze River) and Huang He (Yellow River). The Grand Canal became an important route for shipping products between northern and southern China. It helped unite China's economy. An economy (ih • KAH • nuh • mee) is an organized way in which people produce, sell, and buy things.
Yangdi rebuilt China, but he did it by placing hardships on the Chinese people. Farmers were forced to work on the Great Wall and the Grand Canal. They also had to pay high taxes to the government for these projects. Finally, the farmers became so angry that they revolted. The army took control and killed Yangdi. With Yangdi gone, the Sui dynasty came to an end.
Tell about the Tang Dynasty
In A.D. 618 one of Yangdi's generals took over China. He made himself emperor and set up a new dynasty called the Tang (TAHNG). Unlike the short-lived Sui, the Tang dynasty was in power for about 300 years—from A.D. 618 to A.D. 907. The Tang capital at Changan became a magnificent city, with about one million people living there.
Tang rulers worked to strengthen China's government. They carried out a number of reforms, or changes that brought improvements. The most powerful Tang emperor was named Taizong (TY • ZAWNG). He restored the civil service exam system. Government officials were once again hired based on how well they did on exams rather than on their family connections. Taizong also gave land to farmers and brought order to the countryside.
During the late A.D. 600s, a woman named Wu ruled China as empress. She was the only woman in Chinese history to rule the country on her own. A forceful leader, Empress Wu (WOO) added more officials to the government. She also strengthened China's military forces.
Under the Tang, China regained much of its power in Asia and expanded the areas under its control. Tang armies pushed west into central Asia, invaded Tibet, and took control of the Silk Road. They marched into Korea and forced the Korean kingdoms to pay tribute, a special kind of tax that one country pays to another to be left alone. The Tang also moved south and took control of northern Vietnam.
By the mid-A.D. 700s, however, the Tang dynasty began to have problems. A new group of nomads—the Turks that you read about earlier—drove the Tang armies out of central Asia and took control of the Silk Road. This damaged China's economy. Revolts in Tibet and among Chinese farmers at home further weakened the Tang. In A.D. 907 all of this disorder brought down the Tang dynasty.
The Tang dynasty gave its support to a new kind of Confucianism called neo-Confucianism. This new Confucianism was created, in part, to reduce Buddhism's popularity. It taught that life in this world was just as important as the afterlife. Followers were expected to take part in life and help others.
Tell about the Song Dynasty
For about 50 years after the fall of the Tang, military leaders ruled China. Then, in A.D. 960, one of the generals declared himself emperor and set up the Song (SOONG) dynasty.
The Song dy-nasty ruled from A.D. 960 to 1279. This period was a time of prosperity and cultural achievement for China. From the start, however, the Song faced problems that threatened their hold on China. Song rulers did not have enough soldiers to control their large empire. Tibet broke away, and nomads took over much of northern China. For safety, the Song moved their capital farther south to the city of Hangzhou (HAHNG • JOH). Hangzhou was on the coast near the Chang Jiang delta.
China also enjoyed a golden age of art and literature during the Tang and Song dynasties.
The Ming Dynasty
This dynasty rebuilt and reformed China after the Mongols were driven out. Their dynasty restored peace and prosperity to China.
Tell about Chinese Inventions
Qin - Single currency, roads, canals
Han - waterwheel, paper, acupuncture, rudder, silk
The Printing Process Another Chinese invention was a method for printing books. Before printing, books had to be copied by hand. As a result, few books were made, and they were very expensive. The Chinese began printing in the A.D. 600s. They used blocks of wood on which they cut the characters of an entire page. Ink was placed over the wooden block. Then paper was laid on the block to make a print. Cutting the block took a long time. When they were completed, however, the woodblocks could be used again and again to make many copies.
In the A.D. 1000s, a Chinese printer named Pi Sheng (BEE SHUHNG) invented movable type for printing. With movable type, each character is a separate piece. The pieces can be moved around to make sentences and used again and again. Pi Sheng made his pieces from clay and put them together to produce book pages. However, because written Chinese has so many characters, woodblock printing was easier and quicker than using movable type.
Other Chinese Inventions The Chinese made gunpowder for use in explosives. One weapon was the fire lance, an ancestor of the gun. It used gunpowder and helped make the Chinese army a strong force. The Chinese also used gunpowder to make fireworks.
The Chinese also built large ships with rudders and sails. About 1150, Chinese sailors began using the compass to help them find their way. This let ships sail farther from land.
The ancient Chinese invented many thing's we use today such as, paper, silk, gun powder, matches, the decimal system, the waterwheel, the sundial, astronomy, porcelain, pottery wheel, firework's, paper money, compass, dominoes, jumps rope, kites, folding umbrella, ink, animal harness, playing card's, printing, ice cream, the crossbow, etc.
Tell about Chinese Porcelain
During the Tang period, Chinese artisans perfected the making of porcelain. Because porcelain later came from China to the West, people today sometimes call porcelain by the name "china."
Porcelain can be made into plates, cups, figurines, and vases. In A.D. 851 an Arab traveler described the quality of Tang porcelain: "There is in China a very fine clay from which are made vases. . . . Water in these vases is visible through them, and yet they are made of clay."
The technology for making porcelain spread to other parts of the world. It finally reached Europe in the 1700s.
two elected officials who headed Rome's government
people who interpreted Roman Law & acted as judges
The most important legislative body
What was Roman law based upon?
Tell about the 12 Tables
These are large stone tablets that state the Roman laws. Apply only to Roman citizens. These became the basis for all other Roman law.
Tell about the 3 Punic Wars
There were 3
The First Punic War Both Carthage and Rome wanted to control the island of Sicily. In 264 B.C. the dispute brought the two powers to blows. The war that began in 264 B.C. is called the First Punic War.
Punicus is the Latin word for "Phoenician." The war started when the Romans sent an army to Sicily to prevent a Carthaginian takeover. The Carthaginians, who already had colonies on the island, were determined to stop this invasion.
Up until then, the Romans had fought their wars on land. However, they soon realized they could not defeat a sea power like Carthage without a navy. They quickly built a large fleet of ships and confronted their enemy at sea. The war dragged on for more than 20 years. Finally, in 241 B.C., Rome crushed Carthage's navy off the coast of Sicily. Carthage was forced to leave Sicily and pay a huge fine to the Romans. The island then came under Roman rule.
The Second Punic War To make up for its loss of Sicily, Carthage expanded its empire into southern Spain. Roman leaders were not happy about Carthage gaining land near Rome's northern border. They helped the people living in Spain rebel against Carthage. Of course, Carthaginians were angry. To punish Rome, Carthage sent its greatest general, Hannibal (HA • nuh • buhl), to attack Rome in 218 B.C. This started the Second Punic War.
Hannibal's strategy was to take the fighting into Italy itself. To do this, Hannibal gathered an army of about 46,000 men, many horses, and 37 elephants. He landed his forces in Spain and then marched east to attack Italy.
Even before reaching Italy, Hannibal's forces suffered severe losses crossing the steep, snowy Alps into Italy. The brutal cold, gnawing hunger, and attacks by mountain tribes killed almost half of the soldiers and most of the elephants. The remaining army, however, was still a powerful fighting force when it reached Italy.
The Romans suffered a severe loss in 216 B.C. at the Battle of Cannae (KA • nee) in southern Italy. Even though Hannibal's army was outnumbered, it overpowered the Ro-man force and began raiding much of Italy.
The Romans, however, raised another army. In 202 B.C. a Roman force led by a general named Scipio (SIH • pee • OH) in-vaded Carthage. Hannibal, who was waging a war in Italy, had no choice but to return home to defend his people.
At the Battle of Zama (ZAY • muh), Scipio's troops defeated the Carthaginians. Carthage gave up Spain to Rome. It also had to give up its navy and pay a large fine. Rome now ruled the western Mediterranean.
More Conquests While Carthage was no longer a military power, it remained a trading center. In 146 B.C. Rome finally destroyed its great rival in the Third Punic War. Roman soldiers burned Carthage and enslaved 50,000 men, women, and children. Legend says that the Romans even spread salt on the earth so no crops would grow. Carthage became a Roman province, or regional district.
During the Punic Wars, Rome successfully battled states in the eastern Med- iterranean. In 148 B.C. Macedonia came under Roman rule. Two years later, the rest of Greece became Roman. In 129 B.C. Rome gained its first province in Asia. It was no wonder that the Romans began to call the Mediterranean mare nostrum-"our sea."
Tell about Roman Engineering
The Colosseum in Rome could hold some 60,000 people. The arena even had a removable canvas awning to protect spectators from the hot Roman sun. What was concrete made from? A system of cages, ropes, and pulleys brought wild animals up to the Colosseum floor from rooms underground.
Transporting water is a complex problem. Roman engineers solved it by building aqueducts. Roman aqueducts carried water across a valley or hillside using gravity
Tell about the Byzanitne Empire
The Eastern Roman Empire became the Byzantine Empire. The location of its capital city, Constantinople, helped to make it safe from invaders and accessible to trade. The policies and reforms of Emperor Justinian and his wife, Empress Theodora, helped make the Byzantine Empire strong. Byzantines developed a rich culture based on Roman, Greek, and Christian ideas. The religious center of the empire, Hagia Sophia, features mosaics of saints.
Religeon was Eastern Orthodox
Church and government worked closely together in the Byzantine Empire. The people believed their emperor represented Jesus on Earth, and they believed that God wanted them to preserve and spread Christianity. Arguments arose over the use of icons and how the church should be run. A power struggle between the pope in the West and the patriarch of Constantinople in the East caused the two leaders to excommunicate each other, causing a schism between the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church that still exists.
After the Roman Empire fell, what happened to the Byzantine Empire
It became one of the most prosperous, religious and powerful empires
became emperor of the Byzantine Empire in A.D. 527 and ruled until A.D. 565. He was a strong leader. He controlled the military, made laws, and was supreme judge. His order could not be questioned. He ruled with Empress Theodora.
Justinian decided that the empire's laws were disorganized and too difficult to understand. He ordered a group of legal scholars to reform the law code.
The group's new simplified code became known as the ____________ . Officials, businesspeople, and individuals could now more easily understand the empire's laws. Over the years, this has had a great influence on the laws of almost every country in Europe.
This Byzantine woman began life in the lower class of Byzantine society but rose to the rank of empress.
passed many laws for women,
in A.D. 548 she died of cancer.
Tell about the Chritian hierarchy, who is at the top?
Monks & Nuns
Pope (Bishop of Rome)
Clergy (Church Leaders)
Laity (church members)
Missionaries (teach religeon to non-believers)
Monks & Nuns
Water in the desert
Leader of an Arab tribe
The one Arab god
Followers of Islam
Provides guidelines for Muslims' lives and the government of Muslim states
Muslim houses of worship & centers of learning
A prophet who brought the message of Islam to the people of Arabia
In A.D. 570 a man named Muhammad (moh • HAH • muhd) was born in Makkah. An orphan, he was raised by an uncle. As a teenager, he worked in the trusted job of caravan leader and eventually became a successful merchant. He married and had children.
Despite his success, Muhammad was dissatisfied. He felt that the wealthy town leaders should return to the old ways. He thought they should honor their families, be fair in business, and help the poor.
Muhammad went into the hills to pray. In about A.D. 610, he said he was visited by an angel and told to preach Islam. Islam means "surrendering to the will of Allah." Allah is the Arabic word for "God."
Inspired, Muhammad returned to Makkah. Everywhere he went, he told people to destroy statues of false gods and to worship only Allah, the one true God.
Muhammad also preached that all people were equal and that the rich should share their goods. In Makkah, where most people lived humbly, this vision of a just society was very powerful. Muhammad was saying that wealth was not as important as leading a good life. When the Day of Judgment arrived, he said God would reward the good people and punish the evildoers.
Slowly Muhammad convinced people that his message was true. At first, only his family became Muslims, or followers of Islam. Soon, however, many of the poor were attracted to his message that goods should be shared.
Wealthy merchants and religious leaders did not like Muhammad's message. They thought he was trying to take away their power. They made his life difficult and beat and tortured his followers.
In A.D. 622 Muhammad and his followers left Makkah. They moved north to a town called Yathrib (YA • thruhb). The journey of Muhammad and his followers to Yathrib became known as the Hijrah (HIH • jruh). The word comes from Arabic and means "breaking off relationships." Later Muslims made the year A.D. 622 the first year of a new Muslim calendar. Yathrib welcomed Muhammad and his followers. Their city was renamed Madinah (mah • DEE • nah), which means "the city of the prophet."
The people of Madinah accepted Muhammad as God's prophet and their ruler. Muhammad proved to be an able leader. He applied the laws he believed God had given him to all areas of life. He used these laws to settle disputes among the people. Muhammad created an Islamic state-a government that uses its political power to uphold Islam. He required all Muslims to place loyalty to the Islamic state above loyalty to their tribe.
To defend his new government, Muhammad built an army. His soldiers conquered Makkah in A.D. 630, and Muhammad then made it a holy city of Islam. Two years later, Muhammad died. By this time, Islam was spreading to all of Arabia.
Successor to Muhammad
In the late 1200s, a group of Turks in the northwest corner of Asia Minor began to build a new empire. The ruler of these Turks was named Osman, and as a result, these Turks became known as the Ottoman Turks.
The Ottomans quickly conquered most of the land that today makes up the country of Turkey. They attacked the Byzantine Empire and pushed north into Europe. In 1453 they seized Constantinople, the Byzantine capital. They changed the city's name to Istanbul and made it the center of their empire.
Ottoman armies also marched south, conquering Syria, Palestine, Egypt, Mesopotamia, and parts of Arabia and North Africa. They used guns and cannons to fight their battles and built a large navy to control the Mediterranean Sea.
Like the Seljuks, the Ottomans called their leader a sultan. The most famous sultan was Suleiman I (SOO • lay • MAHN), who ruled in the 1500s. Suleiman was a man of many talents. He was enthusiastic about architecture and built many schools and mosques.
Suleiman was also a brilliant general, who brought Ottoman armies north into Europe. He even threatened the great European capital of Vienna. For all these reasons, Ottomans called him Suleiman the Magnificent.
After his rule, the Ottoman empire began to weaken. Little by little, they lost territory. The empire finally collapsed at the end of World War I.
Apostles, monks, and nuns spread Christianity throughout western Asia and the Roman Empire. Paul of Tarsus traveled to Greece, Turkey, and Damascus to tell Jews and Gentiles about Christianity. Monks and nuns served as missionaries, in addition to providing community services such as medical care and education.
Despite restrictions, ideas from Europe did reach China. Christian missionaries traveled to China on European ships. Many of these missionaries were Jesuits, a special group of Roman Catholic priests. They were highly educated, and their scientific knowledge impressed the Chinese. To get China to accept European ideas, the Jesuits brought with them clocks, eyeglasses, and scientific instruments. Although they tried, the Jesuits did not convince many Chinese to become Christians.
Most African groups shared this belief in one supreme god
They understood the Christian and Muslim idea of a single god, but many wanted to continue their own religious practices.
Most Africans believed in one supreme god. Although practices varied from place to place, traditional African religions shared certain beliefs and provided a guide for living together. Islam played an important role in medieval Africa. In East Africa, Muslim and African influences blended together, creating a unique culture and language called Swahili. Islam advanced learning and influenced African art and architecture
In 1441 a Portuguese sea captain sailed down Africa's western coast. His goal was to bring the first African captives back to Portugal. During the voyage, the captain and his nine sailors seized 12 Africans—men, women, and boys. The ship then sailed back to Portugal. These captives represented only a small portion of a slave trade that would grow into the millions.
Slavery Within Africa Europeans did not invent slavery. For a long time, it had existed throughout the world. In Africa, Bantu chiefs raided nearby villages for captives. These captives became laborers or were freed for a payment.
Africans also enslaved criminals or enemies taken in war. These enslaved Africans became part of the Saharan trade. However, as long as Africans stayed in Africa, hope of escape still existed. Enslaved Africans might also win their freedom through hard work or by marrying a free person.
The trade in humans also grew as the trade with Muslim merchants increased. The Quran forbade enslavement of Muslims. Muslims, however, could enslave non-Muslims. Arab traders, therefore, began to trade horses, cotton, and other goods for enslaved, non-Muslim Africans.
When Europeans arrived in West Africa, a new market for enslaved Africans opened. Africans armed with European guns began raiding villages to seize captives to sell.
The European Slave Trade In 1444 a Portuguese ship docked at a port in Portugal. Sailors unloaded the cargo—235 enslaved Africans. Tears ran down the faces of some. Others cried for help. A Portuguese official described the scene:
But to increase their sufferings still more, . . . was it needful to part fathers from sons, husbands from wives, brothers from brothers.
—Gomes Eannes de Zurara, as quoted in The Slave Trade
Barely three years had passed since the arrival of the first African captives in Portugal. Some merchants who had hoped to sell gold brought from Africa now sold humans instead. At first, most enslaved Africans stayed in Portugal, working as laborers. This changed when the Portuguese settled the Atlantic islands of Madeira, the Azores, and Cape Verde. There the climate was perfect for growing cotton, grapes, and sugarcane on plantations, or huge farms.
Harvesting sugarcane was hard labor. Planters could not pay high wages to get workers, so they used enslaved Africans instead. Many Africans had farming skills and the ability to make tools. Enslaved people were not paid and could be fed and kept cheaply. By 1500, Portugal was the world's leading supplier of sugar.
The rest of Europe followed Portugal's example. In the late 1400s, Europeans arrived in the Americas. They set up sugar plantations and brought enslaved Africans across the Atlantic Ocean to work the fields. They also used enslaved people to grow tobacco, rice, and cotton.
African Trade Routes
Stories of golden lands south of the Sahara seemed hard to believe. There's a country, claimed one story, "where gold grows like plants in the same way as carrots do, and is plucked at sunset."
A number of empires in West Africa, including Ghana, grew wealthy from the salt and gold trade.
1. About how many miles was it from the kingdom of Ghana to Cairo?
2. In general, where were many of the sources of salt found in West Africa?
The Berbers who told the tales had seen the gold with their own eyes. The Berbers, the first known people to settle in North Africa, crossed the Sahara to trade with people in western Africa. They began making the trip about 400 B.C.
For hundreds of years, Berber traders carried goods on horses and donkeys, which often died in the hot Sahara. When the Romans conquered North Africa, they introduced camels from central Asia. Camels, nicknamed "ships of the desert," revolutionized trade. Their broad feet did not sink in the sand, and their humps stored fat for food. In addition, they could travel many days without water.
Traders grouped hundreds, maybe even thousands, of camels together to form caravans. They traded salt and cloth from North Africa and the Sahara for gold and ivory from western Africa. The trade led to the growth of cities in western Africa. Eventually, rulers of these cities began to build a series of empires. During the Middle Ages, these African empires were bigger than most European kingdoms in wealth and size. The first empire to develop was Ghana.
Rise of Ghana Ghana (GAH • nuh) rose to power in the A.D. 400s. It was a "crossroads of trade," a place where trade routes come together. Trade routes reached across the Sahara into North Africa and down the Niger River (NY • juhr) to kingdoms in the rain forest. Some extended all the way to Africa's northeastern coast.
For traders to meet, they had to pass through Ghana. Passage came at a price—a tax paid to Ghana's rulers. These taxes made Ghana rich. Why did traders pay the taxes? First, Ghana knew how to make iron weapons. Like ancient Kush, it used these weapons to conquer its neighbors. Although Ghana owned no gold mines, it controlled the people who did. Second, Ghana built a huge army. "When the king of Ghana calls up his army," said one trader, "he can put 200,000 men in the field."
Third, people wanted the trade items, especially salt and gold, at almost any price. West Africans needed salt to flavor and preserve food, and their bodies needed salt to stay healthy. They paid taxes to get salt from Berber mines in the Sahara. In turn, the Berbers paid taxes to get gold to sell at a huge profit in Europe.
Prince Shotoku created Japan's first constitution and borrowed many ideas from China.
Reading Focus When you try something new, are you tempted to use what someone else has done as a model? Read to find out how Shotoku used China as a model for his reforms in Japan.
About A.D. 600, a Yamato prince named Shotoku (shoh•TOH•koo) took charge of Japan on behalf of his aunt, the empress Suiko (swee•koh). He wanted to create a strong government, and he looked to China as an example of what to do. You remember that in China, a powerful emperor ruled with the help of trained officials chosen for their abilities.
To reach this goal for Japan, Shotoku created a constitution (KAHN•stuh•TOO•shuhn), or a plan of government. Shotoku's constitution gave all power to the emperor, who had to be obeyed by the Japanese people. He also created a bureaucracy and gave the emperor the power to appoint all the officials. The constitution listed rules for working in the government. The rules were taken from the ideas of Confucius.
Shotoku also wanted Japan to learn from China's brilliant civilization. He sent officials and students to China to study. The Japanese not only learned about Buddhist teachings but also absorbed a great deal about Chinese art, medicine, and philosophy.
Shotoku ordered Buddhist temples and monasteries to be built throughout Japan. One of them, called Horyuji (HOHR•yoo•JEE), still stands. It is Japan's oldest temple and the world's oldest surviving wooden building.
After Shotoku, other officials continued to make Japan's government look like China's. In A.D. 646 the Yamato began the Taika, or Great Change. They divided Japan into provinces, or regional districts, all run by officials who reported to the emperor. In addition, all land in Japan came under the emperor's control.
Clan leaders could direct the farmers working the land, but they could not collect taxes anymore. Instead, government officials were to gather part of the farmers' harvest in taxes for the emperor. Together with Shotoku's reforms, this plan created Japan's first strong central government.
Prince Shotoku was born into the powerful Soga family, as the second son of Emperor Yomei. Shotoku's real name is Umayado, which means "the prince of the stable door." According to legend, Shotoku's mother gave birth to him while she was inspecting the emperor's stables. During Shotoku's childhood, Japan was a society of clans, or large extended families. There was fighting between Shotoku's own Soga family and their rival, the Mononobe family. The Soga and Mononobe clans were Japan's two most powerful families, and each wanted to rule Japan.
Shotoku was a very bright, articulate child. He learned about Buddhism from one of his great uncles. He then studied with two Buddhist priests and became devoted to Buddhism.
At the age of 20, Shotoku became Japan's crown prince. The early teachings of Buddhism strongly influenced his leadership. He introduced political and religious reforms that helped build a strong central government in Japan modeled after China. At the request of his aunt, the empress, Shotoku often spoke about Buddhism and the process of enlightenment. He also wrote the first book of Japanese history.
When Prince Shotoku died, the elderly people of the empire mourned as if they had lost a dear child of their own. A written account describes their words of grief: "The sun and moon have lost their brightness; heaven and earth have crumbled to ruin: henceforward, in whom shall we put our trust?"
The leader of the Minamoto was a man named Minamoto Yoritomo (mee • nah • moh • toh yoh • ree • toh • moh). (In Japanese a person s family name comes first, followed by the personal name.) Yoritomo was the commander of the Minamoto armies. After Yoritomo won the Gempei War, the emperor worried that the Minamoto family would try to replace the Yamato family as the rulers of Japan. He decided it would be better to reward Yoritomo to keep him loyal.
In 1192 the emperor gave Yoritomo the title of shogun (SHOH• guhn) commander of all of the emperor s military forces. This decision created two governments in Japan. The emperor stayed in his palace at Heian with his bureaucracy. He was still officially the head of the country, but he had no power. Meanwhile the shogun set up his own government at his headquarters in Kamakura (kah • MAH•kuh• RAH), a small seaside town. This military government was known as a shogunate. Japan's government was run by a series of shoguns for the next 700 years.
Yoritomo proved to be a ruthless ruler. He killed most of his relatives, fearing that they would try to take power from him. Yoritomo and the shoguns after him appointed high-ranking samurai to serve as advisers and to run the provinces. Bound by an oath of loyalty, these samurai lords ruled Japan's villages, kept the peace, and gathered taxes. They became the leading group in Japanese society.
The path to becoming a samurai was difficult and dangerous. Mothers in samurai families began teaching their sons Bushido at a young age. They taught their sons to place bravery, honor, and loyalty above all else. Each young warrior knew and could recite from memory the brave feats of his samurai ancestors.
For centuries, young samurai lived apart from their families in the castle of their lords or in the barracks of their lord s town. Beginning in the 1800s, samurai schools were built, and boys lived there to continue the educations their mothers had started. From the age of 10, they trained in the martial arts and studied other subjects, such as math and astronomy. By the age of 16, some young men were already promising warriors who distinguished themselves in battle.
The Kamakura shogunate ruled Japan until 1333. By that time, many samurai had become resentful. Over the years, as samurai divided their lands among their sons, the piece of land each samurai owned became smaller and smaller. By the 1300s, many samurai felt they no longer owed the shogun loyalty because he had not given them enough land.
In 1331 the emperor rebelled, and many samurai came to his aid. The revolt succeeded, but the emperor was not able to gain control of Japan because he too refused to give more land to the samurai. Instead, a general named Ashikaga Takauji (ah • shee • kah • gah tah •kow• jee) turned against the emperor and made himself shogun in 1333. A new government known as the Ashikaga shogunate began.
The Ashikaga shoguns proved to be weak rulers, and revolts broke out across Japan. The country soon divided into a number of small territories. These areas were headed by powerful military lords known as daimyo (DY•mee•OH).
The daimyo pledged loyalty to the emperor and the shogun. However, they ruled their lands as if they were independent kingdoms. To protect their lands, the daimyo created their own local armies made up of samurai warriors, just as other nobles had done in the past.
Many samurai became vassals (VA • suhlz) of a daimyo. That is, a samurai gave an oath of loyalty to his daimyo and promised to serve him in times of war. In return, each daimyo gave land to his samurai warriors more land than they had been given by the shogun. This bond of loyalty between a lord and a vassal is known as feudalism (FYOO• duhl• IH •zuhm). In the next chapter, you will learn about a similar form of feudalism that arose in Europe during the Middle Ages.
With the breakdown of central government, Japan's warriors fought each other. From 1467 to 1477, the country suffered through the disastrous Onin War. During this conflict, the city of Kyoto (Heian) was almost completely destroyed. Armies passed back and forth through the city,8 burning temples and palaces.
For 100 years after the Onin War, a series of weak shoguns tried to reunite Japan. Powerful daimyo, however, resisted their control. Fighting spread throughout the country. The violence finally brought down the Ashikaga shogunate in 1567. By that time, only a handful of powerful daimyo remained. Each of these daimyo was eager to defeat his rivals and rule all of Japan.
During the Middle Ages, religion was a part of everyday life for the Japanese. Most Japanese came to believe in both Buddhism and Shinto, and worshiped at Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples. To them, each religion met different needs. Shinto was concerned with daily life, while Buddhism prepared people for the life to come. During the Middle Ages, Buddhist ideas inspired many Japanese to build temples, produce paintings, and write poems and plays.
Pure Land Buddhism As you have already learned, Mahayana Buddhism began in India and spread to China and Korea. By the time Buddhism reached Japan, it had developed into many different sects (SEHKTS), or smaller religious groups.
One of the most important sects in Japan was Pure Land Buddhism. Pure Land Buddhism was a type of Mahayana Buddhism. It won many followers in Japan because of its message about a happy life after death. Pure Land Buddhists looked to Lord Amida, a buddha of love and mercy. They believed Amida had founded a paradise above the clouds. To get there, all they had to do was have faith in Amida and chant his name.
What Is Zen Buddhism? Another important Buddhist sect in Japan was Zen. Buddhist monks brought Zen to Japan from China during the 1100s. Zen taught that people could find inner peace through self- control and a simple way of life.
Followers of Zen learned to control their bodies through martial arts (MAHR•shuhl), or sports that involved combat and self-defense. This appealed to the samurai, who trained to fight bravely and fearlessly.
Followers of Zen Buddhism also practiced meditation (MEH•duh•TAY•shuhn). In meditation, a person sat cross-legged and motionless for hours, with the mind cleared of all thoughts and desires. Meditation helped people to relax and find inner peace.
The Black Death
A terrible plague, known as the Black Death, swept across Europe and Asia. A plague is a disease that spreads quickly and kills many people. Most scientists think the Black Death was bubonic plague a disease caused by a type of bacteria carried by fleas. These fleas infested black rats, and in the Middle Ages, these rats were everywhere.
The Black Death probably began somewhere in the Gobi, a desert in central Asia. It had been around for centuries, but in the 1300s, it began to spread farther and more quickly than ever before. Scientists are still not sure why this happened.
Historians believe the Mongol Empire was partly responsible for the plague spreading so fast. The empire covered all the land from Eastern Europe through central Asia to China. The Mongols opened up trade between China, India, the Middle East, and Europe. They encouraged the use of the Silk Road and other trade routes.
By the early 1300s, more goods were being shipped across central Asia than ever before. This made it possible for the Black Death to spread rapidly, as caravans infested with rats carried it from city to city.
The first outbreak took place in China in 1331. It erupted there again in 1353. The disease killed between 40 and 60 million people, cutting China's population nearly in half. The disease appeared in India in the 1340s and reached Makkah, deep inside Muslim lands, in 1349. In the meantime, it also spread to Europe.
The Black Death appeared in Europe in 1346 at the city of Caffa on the Black Sea. The city had been under attack by Mongols when the plague erupted. The Mongols, with their troops dying, called off the attack. In anger they also threw bodies of infected soldiers into the city.
Caffa was a trade colony controlled by Italian merchants from the city of Genoa. Their ships carried the plague to Sicily in October 1347. From there it spread into Europe. By the end of 1349, it had spread through France and Germany and had arrived in England. By 1351, it had reached Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, and Russia. As many as 38 million Europeans-nearly one out of every two people-died of the Black Death between 1347 and 1351.
The death of so many people in the 1300s turned Europe's economy upside down. Trade declined and wages rose sharply because workers were few and in demand. At the same time, fewer people meant less demand for food, and food prices fell.
Landlords found they had to pay workers more and charge lower rents. Some peasants bargained with their lords to pay rent instead of owing services. This meant that they were no longer serfs. In this way, the plague, like the Crusades, helped to weaken the feudal system and change European society.
After Pepin died, his son Charles became king. Like his father, Charles went to the aid of the pope when the Lombards tried to regain their territory. He also invaded Germany and defeated the Saxons living there. He ordered them to convert to Christianity. He then invaded Spain and gained control of the northeastern corner from the Muslims.
By A.D. 800, Charles's kingdom had grown into an empire. It covered much of western and central Europe. Charles's conquests earned him the name of Charlemagne (SHAHR • luh • mayne), or Charles the Great.
The pope was impressed with Charlemagne. On Christmas day in A.D. 800, Charlemagne was worshiping at the church of St. Peter in Rome. After the service, the pope placed a crown on Charlemagne's head and declared him the new Roman emperor. Charlemagne was pleased but also concerned. He did not want people to think the pope had the power to choose who was emperor.
Charlemagne made Aachen (AH • kuhn) the capital of his empire. To uphold his laws, he set up courts throughout the empire. Nobles called counts ran the courts. To keep the counts under control, Charlemagne sent out inspectors called "the lord's messengers" to make sure the counts were obeying orders.
Unlike other earlier Frankish rulers, Charlemagne believed in education. He had tried late in life to learn to write and wanted his people to be educated too. He asked a scholar named Alcuin (AL • kwuhn) to start a school in one of the royal palaces. Alcuin trained the children of government officials. His students studied religion, Latin, music, literature, and arithmetic.
Charles the Great (Charlemagne) became king of the Franks at age 29. He married and divorced many different women and had at least 18 children.
Charlemagne was an intelligent person. He studied many subjects and especially enjoyed astronomy. He could speak many languages, including German, Latin, and Greek. He also could read but had trouble writing. Einhard, the king's historian and scribe, wrote that Charlemagne "used to keep tablets under his pillow in order that at leisure hours he might accustom his hand to form the letters; but as he began these efforts so late in life, they met with ill success."
Charlemagne was disappointed to learn that the Franks were not as educated as the people of Britain and Ireland. In A.D. 782 he arranged for several famous scholars to come to his capital in Aachen and create a school in the royal palace. During his reign, schools opened throughout his empire, and many people were educated.
The Rise of Moscow
A new Russian State headed by a czar. This city became the headqauarters of the Eastern Orthodox Church and grew wealthy from trade.
As the Slavs recovered from the damage caused by the Mongols, the city of Moscow (MAHS • koh) began to grow. Moscow was located at the crossroads of several important trade routes. Alexander Nevsky's son Daniel and his descendants became grand dukes of Moscow.
The dukes of Moscow married women from the ruling families in other Slavic towns. They also fought wars to expand Moscow's territory. Moscow became even more important when it became the headquarters for the Russian branch of the Eastern Orthodox Church. When Ivan I, the Grand Duke of Moscow from 1328 to 1341, was given permission to collect taxes for the Mongols, Moscow grew even greater.
In 1462 Ivan III, known as Ivan the Great, became the grand duke. He married Sophia, the niece of the last Byzantine emperor. Afterward, Ivan began living in the style of an emperor. He had architects build fine palaces and large cathedrals in the Kremlin-the fortress at the center of Moscow. He even began calling himself czar. Czar was a shortened version of Caesar. In Russian, czar means emperor.
Ivan IV lived up to his title. In 1480 he finally ended Mongol rule over Moscow's territory. Then he expanded his territory to the north and west. When Ivan IV died in 1505, the Russians were well on the way toward building a vast empire.
Hunting & Gathering
Hunters in the Americas were constantly on the move in search of food. They fished and gathered nuts, fruits, or roots. They also hunted massive prey, such as the woolly mammoth, antelope, caribou, and bison.
It took several hunters to kill a woolly mammoth, which could weigh as much as 9 tons. These big animals provided meat, hides for clothing, and bones for tools.
As the Ice Age ended, some animals became extinct, or disappeared from the earth. The warm weather, however, opened new opportunities to early Americans.
The first Americans were hunter-gatherers, but as the Ice Age ended and the climate warmed, people in America made an amazing discovery. They learned that seeds could be planted and they would grow into crops that people could eat.
Farming began in Mesoamerica (MEH • zoh •uh •MEHR• ih • kuh) 9,000 to 10,000 years ago. Meso comes from the Greek word for "middle." This region includes lands stretching from the Valley of Mexico to Costa Rica in Central America.
The region's geography was ideal for farming. Much of the area had a rich, volcanic soil and a mild climate. Rains fell in the spring, helping seeds to sprout. They decreased in the summer, allowing crops to ripen for harvest. Then, in the autumn, the rains returned, soaking the soil for the next year's crop.
The first crops grown in the Americas included pumpkins, peppers, squash, gourds, and beans. It took longer to develop corn, which grew as a wild grass. Early plants produced a single, one-inch cob. After hundreds of years, the early Americans finally learned how to cross corn with other grasses to get bigger cobs and more cobs per plant. With this discovery, corn, also known as maize, became the most important food in the Americas.
Explorers / Aztecs
The warlike Aztec nomads who arrived in the Valley of Mexico about A.D. 1250 were anything but welcome. One king was sure he knew a way to get rid of them. He granted the Aztec a patch of snake-filled land. He expected the deadly serpents to destroy them. Instead, the Aztec feasted on roasted snakes and eventually built their own kingdom.
The Aztec Government The Aztec clearly knew how to survive. They had wandered for hundreds of years in search of a home that they believed their sun god-the feathered serpent Quetzalcoatl (KWEHT• suhl • kuh•WAH• tuhl)-had promised them. According to legend, the Aztec would know they had found this place when an eagle "screams and spreads its wings, and eats . . . the serpent."
According to Aztec legend, they found their homeland after they sacrificed a local princess to one of their gods. The princess's father vowed to wipe out the Aztec, who only numbered several hundred. The Aztec went on the run. In A.D. 1325, they took shelter on a soggy, swampy island in Lake Texcoco (tehs •KOH• koh). There an eagle greeted them from its perch on a prickly pear cactus. It tore apart a snake dangling from its beak. Then it spread its wings and screamed in triumph. Filled with wonder at this sight, the Aztec believed that they had reached the end of their journey.
Priests, speaking for the gods, told the Aztec what to do next: build a great city. Workers toiled day and night. They dug soil from the lake bottom to build bridges to the mainland. They built floating gardens, piling soil on rafts anchored to the lake bottom.
The Aztec called their new city Tenochtitlán (tay • NAWCH• teet • LAHN), which means "place of the prickly pear cactus." As the city rose from the marshes, the Aztec dreamed of conquest and wealth. They wanted to collect tribute, or payment for protection, from conquered peoples.
To fulfill their goal, the Aztec turned to strong kings who claimed descent from the gods. A council of warriors, priests, and nobles picked each king from the royal family. Council members usually chose the last king's son, but not always. They looked for a king who would bring glory to the Aztec. They expected a king to prove himself by leading troops into battle.
Life in the Aztec Empire The king, or emperor, was at the top of Aztec society. The rest of the population fell into four classes: nobles, commoners, unskilled laborers, and enslaved people. Commoners formed the largest group, working as farmers, artisans, or traders. They could join the noble class by performing one act of bravery in war. They, or their children if the soldier died, received land and the rank of noble.
In serving their gods, the Aztec saw death as honorable. Those worthy of an afterlife included soldiers who died in battle, captives who gave their lives in sacrifice, and women who died in childbirth. Others went to the "Land of the Dead," the lowest level in the underworld.
From an early age, children learned about the glories of war and their duties as an Aztec. When a baby boy came into the world, the midwife, or woman who helped with the birth, cried: "You must understand that your home is not here where you have been born, for you are a warrior!"
A baby girl heard different words. As she drew her first breath, the midwife declared: "As the heart stays in the body, so you must stay in the house." Although women stayed at home, those who gave birth were honored as heroes by Aztec society.
Nearly everything the Aztec did grew out of a promise. Speaking through priests, the god Huitzilopochtli (wee • tsee • loh • POHKT• lee) vowed: "We shall conquer all the people in the universe."
This promise inspired the Aztec to honor the god with a huge pyramid in the center of Tenochtitlán. Known as the Great Temple, it rose 135 feet (41 m) high and had more than 100 steps. Thousands of victims were taken to the top, where they were sacrificed to the gods.
In a few cases, Native Americans in the Woodlands set up confederations (kuhn• FEH • duh•RAY• shuhnz), or governments that link several groups. The most famous was the league formed by the Iroquois (IHR • uh • KWOY). The Iroquois League included five groups: Onondaga, Seneca, Mohawk, Oneida, and Cayuga.
The Iroquois formed the league to end the fighting among themselves. A code of laws, known as the Great Peace, governed the league. Women, who controlled Iroquois land, selected male members to sit on a Grand Council. Together council members worked out their differences and made decisions in complete agreement. The Council helped members unite against other Woodland peoples, such as the powerful Algonquian (al •GAHN•kwee • uhn).
When Cortés arrived, the Aztec emperor was Montezuma II (MAHN • tuh •ZOO•muh), also called Moctezuma. Montezuma expected the invaders. In a dream, he looked into a mirror and saw a huge army headed over the mountains. "What shall I do?" cried the emperor. "Where shall I hide?"
The dreaded invasion began in April 1519 when Cortés stepped onto a beach near present-day Veracruz. He came with 550 soldiers, 16 horses, 14 cannons, and a few dogs. How could such a small force conquer a huge warrior empire
First, Cortés knew how to use Spanish horses and guns to shock Native Americans. In a display of power, he forced thousands of Tabascans (tuh •BAS• kuhnz), a people living in Mesoamerica, to surrender. Second, the Tabascans gave Cortés another weapon-a Mayan woman named Malintzin (mah • LIHNT • suhn). She spoke both Mayan and Nahuatl (NAH• WAH • tuhl), the language of the Aztec.
Speaking through a Spaniard who knew Mayan, Malintzin described the Aztec Empire to Cortés. She also told Cortés how subjects of the Aztec resented their rulers and would join with him to fight Montezuma. Acting as a translator, she helped Cortés form alliances.
Finally, Cortés had the help of invisible allies-germs that carried diseases, such as measles and smallpox. These diseases would eventually kill more Aztec than the Spanish swords.
Cortés Defeats the Aztec The Spaniards traveled 400 miles (644 km) to reach Tenochtitlán, the Aztec capital. Messengers reported their every move to Montezuma. The Aztec believed in a light-skinned god named Quetzalcoatl. This god, who opposed sacrifice, had sailed away long ago, promising to return someday to reclaim his land. Montezuma was afraid Cortés was the god returning home. As a result, he did not want to attack the Spaniards right away.
As Cortés marched closer, Montezuma decided to ambush the Spanish troops. Cortés learned of the plan and attacked first, killing 6,000 people. In November 1519, the Spaniards marched into Tenochtitlán and took control of the city. To prevent the Aztec from rebelling, Cortés took Montezuma hostage. He then ordered the Aztec to stop sacrificing people.
Although Montezuma II became known as the emperor who let the Spanish capture the Aztec Empire, most of his years as a ruler had been very successful. Montezuma Xocoyotl was the youngest son of Emperor Axacayatl. Aztec leadership was not hereditary, so after Axacayatl's death a man named Ahuitzotl was selected emperor. Montezuma was in his early twenties when he was chosen emperor. He became a popular leader. He led his armies in battle and won over 40 battles against kingdoms south of the Aztec Empire. His one major mistake was in his dealings with the Spanish conquistadors.
Leading the Spanish march into the Aztec Empire in 1519 was a 34-year-old Spaniard named Hernán Cortés. Cortés was born in the province of Extremadura, Spain. At age 19, Cortés left the university and boarded a ship for the Spanish lands in America. He was determined to make his fortune.
Leading the Spanish march into the Aztec Empire in 1519 was a 34-year-old Spaniard named Hernán Cortés. Cortés was born in the province of Extremadura, Spain. At age 19, Cortés left the university and boarded a ship for the Spanish lands in America. He was determined to make his fortune.
No city was more famous in the Renaissance than Florence. It was the first to grow wealthy, and it produced many famous artists. It sat on the banks of the Arno River surrounded by beautiful hills. It was walled and had many tall towers for defense. Its people were known for their love of elegant clothing.
At first, Florence's wealth came from trading cloth, especially wool. The city's merchants sailed to England to get sheep's wool. Artisans in Florence then wove it into fine fabrics. Florentines also found another way to make money— banking.
With goods pouring into Italy from around the world, merchants needed to know the value of coins from different countries. Florentine bankers became the experts. They used the florin, the gold coin of Florence, to measure the value of other money. Bankers also began lending money and charging interest. Florence's richest family, the Medici (MEH • duh • chee), were bankers. They had branch banks as far away as London.
In Florence, the powerful Medici family gained control of the government in 1434. The Medici ran Florence for many decades. Lorenzo de' Medici ruled the city from 1469 to 1492. Known as "the Magnificent," Lorenzo used his wealth to support artists, architects, and writers. Many of Italy's Renaissance artists owed their success to his support.
Leonardo da Vinci
Leonardo da Vinci's notebooks contained sketches of inventions that would not be produced for hundreds of years.
One of the best Renaissance scientists was also a great artist, Leonardo da Vinci (LEE • uh • NAHR • doh•duh VIHN • chee). Leonardo dissected corpses to learn anatomy and studied fossils to understand the world's history. He was also an inventor and an engineer.
Most of what we know about Leonardo comes from his notebooks. Leonardo filled their pages with sketches of his scientific and artistic ideas. Centuries before the airplane was invented, Leonardo drew sketches of a glider, a helicopter, and a parachute. Other sketches show a version of a military tank and a scuba diving suit.
Leonardo was born in Vinci, Italy, to a peasant woman named Caterina. Shortly after Leonardo's birth, she left the boy in the care of his father. By the time Leonardo was 15 years old, his father knew his son had artistic talent. He arranged for Leonardo to become an apprentice to the famous painter Andrea del Verrocchio.
By 1472, Leonardo had become a master in the painters' guild of Florence. He worked in Florence until 1481, and then he went to the city of Milan. There he kept a large workshop and employed many apprentices. During this time, Leonardo began keeping small pads of paper tucked in his belt for sketching. Later he organized the drawings by theme and assembled the pages into notebooks.
Seventeen years later, Leonardo returned to Florence, where he was welcomed with great honor. During this time, Leonardo painted some of his masterpieces. He also made scientific studies, including dissections, observations of the flight of birds, and research on the movement of water currents.
In 1516 Leonardo accepted an invitation to live in France. The king admired Leonardo and gave him freedom to pursue his interests. During the last three years of his life, Leonardo lived in a small house near the king's summer palace. He spent most of his time sketching and working on his scientific studies.
In 1517 a young monk named Martin Luther challenged the Roman Catholic Church. He publicly argued that the pope could not decide what a person had to do to get into heaven. Eventually, his challenge to the pope's authority led to the creation of new churches in Western Europe.
At first, Luther only wanted to reform the Catholic Church. This is why we call these events the Reformation (reh • fuhr • may • shuhn). The Reformation, however, became the beginning of a movement in Christianity known as Protestantism. By the end of the Reformation, many new Christian churches had appeared in Europe. The religious unity the Catholic Church had created in Western Europe, and which had lasted for hundreds of years, had been broken.
By the 1300s, many people felt the Church had problems. It taxed peasants heavily, and some bishops behaved like they were kings. They built palaces, spent money on fine art, and made sure that their relatives had good jobs. In many villages, priests could barely read or give a good sermon.
Many Catholics became angry at the Church's focus on money. One Church practice that especially angered them was the selling of indulgences. An indulgence (ihn • DUHL • juhns) was a pardon from the Church for a person's sins. The Church had given out indulgences before, but it did not usually sell them. In the 1500s, however,the pope needed money to repair the church of St. Peter's in Rome. To get that money, he decided to sell indulgences in northern Germany.
The sale of indulgences outraged Martin Luther. Luther had looked in the Bible and found nothing that said an indulgence could pardon sin. The whole idea of selling God's forgiveness seemed unholy to him.
Martin Luther was not the first person to question the pope's power. As early as the 1370s, an English priest named John Wycliffe (WIH • KLIHF) had opposed Church policies. He preached that Christians needed only to recognize Jesus Christ as a power above them, not the pope.
On both sides of the Nile Valley and its delta, deserts unfold as far as the eye can see. To the west is a vast desert that forms part of the Sahara (suh har uh), the largest desert in the world. To the east, stretching to the Red Sea, is the Eastern Desert. In some places, the change from green land to barren sand is so abrupt that a person can stand with one foot in each.
Wycliffe and Luther both challenged the pope's power, but they had something else in common-their respect for the Bible. Wycliffe wanted everyone to read the Bible. After Wycliffe died, his followers translated the Bible into English for the first time.
Who Was Martin Luther? Martin Luther became one of the most famous men in history. His break with the Catholic Church led to a revolution in Christianity. Why would a religious man disagree with his faith? First of all, Luther was angered by the behavior of Church leaders. Secondly, he was worried about his own soul.
Luther was born in 1483 in a small German village. A bright and sensitive boy, he grew up in a disciplined family. His father wanted him to study law, but Luther often thought about serving the Church. One day, he was out riding when a bolt of lightning knocked him to the ground. According to legend, Luther made up his mind to be a monk at that moment.
When Luther went to Rome on a pilgrimage, he was shocked at the behavior of the Roman clergy. Back home in Germany, he taught at a university in the town of Wittenberg (WIH • tuhn • BUHRG). He worried about the Church's problems and also about his own soul. With the plague killing people all around him, it is not surprising that Luther worried about whether he would go to heaven when he died.
The Church said that Luther would be saved and would go to heaven if he performed good works and received the sacraments. Still Luther worried that this was not true. He prayed and fasted long hours as he searched for answers to his questions. He prayed so long that sometimes he fell unconscious on the cold church floor.
Luther found his answers by studying the Bible. He concluded that only faith, not good works, brought salvation. He believed that salvation was a gift from God, not something earned by doing good works.
In 1517, when the Church began selling indulgences, Luther was astonished. How could the Church tell peasants that buying an indulgence would save them? He angrily prepared a list of 95 arguments against indulgences and sent them to his bishop. Some accounts say that Luther also nailed them to the door of Wittenberg Cathedral for everyone to read. The list became known as the Ninety-Five Theses. Thousands of copies were printed and read all across the German kingdoms.
Revolt Leads to New Churches At first the Church did not take Luther very seriously. Soon, though, Church leaders saw that Luther was dangerous. If people believed Luther, they would rely on the Bible, not priests. Who would need priests if the sacraments were not needed to get to heaven?
The pope and Luther argued for several years, but Luther refused to change his position. Finally, the pope excommunicated Luther. This meant Luther was no longer a member of the Church and could no longer receive the sacraments. He was also no longer considered a monk.
In the following years, Luther's ideas led to the creation of a new denomination (dih • nah • muh • NAY • shuhn), or organized branch of Christianity. It was known as Lutheranism and was the first Protestant denomination.
Lutheranism has three main ideas. The first is that faith in Jesus, not good works, brings salvation. The second is that the Bible is the final source for truth about God, not a church or its ministers. Finally, Lutheranism said that the church was made up of all its believers, not just the clergy.
Peasant Revolts Luthers debate with the pope was so famous that even peasants in the countryside had heard about it. They liked what they heard about Luther.
The life of a peasant had always been hard, but in the 1520s, it was terrible. The crops had been poor for several years. On top of that, noble landowners increased the taxes that peasants had to pay.
Because of their suffering, Luther's ideas stirred the peasants to revolt. If Luther had a right to rebel against an unjust pope, then the peasants must have a right to stand up to greedy nobles.
The peasants began by listing their demands. Like Luther, they based their ideas on the Bible. One leader said the peasants would no longer work for the nobles, "unless it should be shown us from the Gospel that we are serfs."
When the nobles did not give in, huge revolts broke out. It was not long, however, before the peasants were defeated. The nobles had better weapons and horses and won easily, killing at least 70,000 peasants.
At first Luther sympathized with the peasants, but he soon changed his mind. He was afraid of what might happen without a strong government. Luther used his powerful sermons to tell peasants that God had set the government above them and they must obey it.
As Europeans watched Spain and Portugal grow wealthy from their empires, they tried to figure out how they had become rich. They came up with the idea of mercantilism (MUHR • kuhn • TUH • LIH • zuhm). Mercantilism is the idea that a country gains power by building up its supply of gold and silver. Mercantilists believe the best way to do this is to export (EHK • SPOHRT), or sell to other countries, more goods than you import (IHM • POHRT), or buy from them. If you export more than you import, more gold and silver flows in from other countries than goes out.
Mercantilists also thought countries should set up colonies. A colony (KAH • luh • nee) is a settlement of people living in a new territory controlled by their home country. Colonists are supposed to produce goods their country does not have at home. That way, the home country will not have to import those goods from other countries.
As scientists made new discoveries, European thinkers began to apply science to society. For these thinkers, science had proven that the physical universe followed natural laws. By using their reason, people could learn how the universe worked. Using this knowledge, people also could solve existing human problems and make life better.
Scientific thought was also influenced by English thinker Francis Bacon, who lived from 1561 to 1626. Bacon believed that ideas based on tradition should be put aside. He developed the scientific method, an orderly way of collecting and analyzing evidence. It is still the process used in scientific research today.
The scientific method is made up of several steps. First a scientist begins with careful observation of facts and then tries to find a hypothesis (hy • PAH • thuh • suhs), or explanation of the facts. Through experiments, the scientist tests the hypothesis under all possible conditions to see if it is true. Finally, if repeated, experiments show that the hypothesis is true, and then it is considered a scientific law.
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