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Transcript of Ancient Civilizations -

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 Chapter One Ancient Civilizations Section One How Civilization Began the Paleolithic Era Unlike modern humans, early people who lived in the Paleolithic Era did not live in cities. These people did not know how to plant seeds to make food grow, and were not capable of taming wild animals to raise for food. As a result, they were nomads who had to be able to move around wherever food could be obtained. Since they had to be ready to follow the animals they hunted or to go where wild plants could be found, these early humans could not accumulate very many possessions or build permanent structures. They also had to spend most of their time hunting or gathering food, so they had little time to spare to make art or create a system of writing. How Historians Know If these people lived so long ago, and had no system of writing, how do historians know anything about them? Historians and archaeologists dig for artifacts left by early people, and then make inferences about their lives based on these primary sources. In reference to later time periods, historians will combine what they can find out from artifacts with information from other types of written primary sources. Some of the primary sources they use include diaries, newspapers, government records, and eyewitness accounts. Historians then use the information they obtain from primary sources to create secondary sources, such as History books and documentaries. the Neolithic Revolution Around 10,000 BCE, people in the Arabian peninsula began to figure out that they could plant seeds to grow food. They also learned to domesticate, or tame, animals. This development is called the Neolithic Revolution. Gradually, this new method of food production began to spread, and the people who adopted agriculture no longer had to worry about wandering around to find food. As a result, they could stay in one place and build permanent structures. This discovery of agriculture is what allowed civilization to begin.
The Paleolithic Era was a time period from about 2.6 million years ago to 10,000 BCE during which humans began to use stone tools.
Nomads are people who do not live in a permanent spot and instead move from place to place.
Artifacts are everyday objects left behind by historical people, which historians use to make inferences about their lives.
Primary sources are historical sources that come from the time period being studied. Examples include artifacts, diaries, newspapers, government records, and eyewitness accounts.
Secondary sources are historical sources written by historians based on what they have learned from various primary sources. Examples include History books and historical documentaries.
illustration of Paleolithic blades
The Neolithic Era has different dates for different civilizations, because each discovered agriculture at a different time. Approximate dates for this period are 10,000 BCE 3000 BCE.
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Accounting for Dates in History
account for time when studying history. BC dates are telling us how many years before the birth of Christ something happened, so they count down, like negative numbers. For example, 4000 BC stands for 4000 years before Christ, so it is longer ago than 3000 years before Christ. AD dates are telling us how many years after the birth of Christ something happened, so AD dates count forward, like positive numbers. Recently, some scholars have suggested that the use of the BC/ AD system is ethnocentric, since not all people in the world are Christian. So now, instead of BC and AD, historians have begun
The Features of Civilization Once people had discovered agriculture, they could stay in one place, and did not have to devote all their time to finding food. This allowed civilizations to develop. All civilizations share the following eight features: Cities People began to live in larger settlements. Most early cities were situated near a river or other large water source.
1000 BCE
2000 BCE
3000 BCE
4000 BCE
1 CE
2000 CE
1000 CE
CE dates count forward, like positive numbers.
Ethnocentrism refers to the study of history from the point of view of a particular ethnic or cultural group. For example, people of European descent who studied only the history of Europe while ignoring the history of the rest of the world would be considered ethnocentric.
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 Job Specialization In the Paleolithic Era, each person or family took care of most every task themselves. In cities, individuals would do one or two tasks that they were good at (such as baking, shoemaking, carpentry, etc.) and then trade with others to get what they needed. Social Classes Different groups, or social classes, usually based on occupation, formed within early cities. Each social class had its own privileges and obligations.
Writing Early civilizations needed to be able to keep records, so systems of writing developed. Most early systems of writing used pictographs. Because of these complex systems, it was difficult and time -­consuming to learn to read & write. Very few people were literate, and scribes usually enjoyed high social status.
Complex Religion polytheistic. Centralized Government Governments originally developed to make sure that food and water were distributed fairly, then began to perform other functions, such as keeping order and protecting property. Public Works Governments would pay for large projects, such as roads, dams, and irrigation systems, that would benefit everyone. Arts & Architecture Permanent structures were now more practical since people were no longer wandering around in search of food. Also, individuals did not need to spend all their time looking for food, so they had extra time to create artworks for purely aesthetic reasons.
Sumerian tablet with cuneiform writing
from a Sumerian banner
Pictographs are symbols which stand for a word or an idea. As there is a different symbol for every word, alphabets which use pictographs can have thousands of characters.
Polytheistic religions have many gods. Root words: poly many; the god(s).
Public works are structures paid for by the government that everyone can use.
The main purpose of an item created for aesthetic reasons is simply to be beautiful.
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Section Two Mesopotamian Civilization The earliest civilizations developed around 4000 B.C. in the modern-­day Middle East in an area known as Mesopotamia. Mesopotamia
It refers to the area between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in the Middle East. Sometimes this area is
because it is shaped like, well, a
civilization began. It makes sense that the first civilization would be near two rivers, since farming is necessary to begin civilization, and farming requires a source of water. Ancient Civilizations in Mesopotamia Over time, many different civilizations have settled in Mesopotamia. The ancient civilizations there, in chronological order, included Sumer, Babylon, Assyria, Chaldea, and Persia. Sumerian City-­States The earliest Mesopotamian civilization, Sumer, was divided into city-­states. Each city-­state had a king who ruled along with the advice of noblemen. Sumerian city-­ states included Ur, Uruk, Kish, and Lagash.
Sumerian Writing The Sumerian tale the Epic of Gilgamesh is the oldest known piece of fictional literature in the world. It tells a story of a hero, Gilgamesh, who is trying to find immortality. In one part of the story, he meets a man who was instructed by the gods to build a boat because a flood is coming. The portion of the Epic of Gilgamesh that refers to the flood is similar to the story of
ancient cultures have such stories about floods. Some historians believe that this is because there was a catastrophic flood sometime around 5600 BCE. Early people may have told these tales as a way to explain the purpose of natural occurrences that they
the Fertile Crescent
Memory Trick To remember the order of Mesopotamian civilizations, think about how cuddly a baby sumo wrestler would be. Sumo Sumer Babies Babylon Are Assyria Cuddly Chaldea People Persia
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Gilgamesh
A city-­state is a city that governs itself more or less
as if each city is a separate country.
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  Sumerians used a pictographic alphabet called cuneiform to record their literature and for other writing purposes. The Babylonians and Assyrians also used this alphabet.  
Babylonian Law In Babylonia, King Hammurabi put his code of law into
the earliest codes of law and also one of the earliest surviving written documents. In the code, laws and punishments were set out clearly so that potential law-­breakers might be deterred from misbehaving. Punishments differed according to the law-­ social status. Upper-­class people usually had to pay fines. Lower-­class people suffered physical consequences for their misbehavior. Many of the punishments for lower-­class people followed the
punishment for breaking a law was related to the crime. (For example, a thief might have a hand cut off; a liar might have a tongue cut out.) Assyrian Warfare The Assyrians, a very warlike people, conquered Babylonia around 1200 BCE. They are best known for their efficient army, and were the first to use cavalry and to recognize the advantages of iron weapons (rather than bronze weapons).
Sumerian, Babylonian, and Assyrian Architecture The Sumerians, Babylonians, and Assyrians all built ziggurats, which were terraced pyramids that housed religious shrines at the top.

o M
Cuneiform is Greek -­
This is an accurate name for the Sumerian alphabet, since many of the characters have triangular elements.
Deterrence occurs when people are made aware that a strict punishment will be administered if they commit a crime. This causes them not to want to commit the crime
want to be punished.
got to remember about the Assyrians is that they were
say it out loud or anything, but look at the first three letters of the word
decent way to remember that the Assyrians liked conflict!
Cavalry soldiers fight while mounted on horseback.
Terracing refers to the carving of stair-­ stepped levels into a steep slope.
a ziggurat
cuneiform script

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Persian Empire Around 550 BCE, Cyrus, the chief of a small Mesopotamian tribe, began to conquer the area around the Tigris and Euphrates. He did this because he felt it was his duty to spread his religion, Zoroastrianism, as far as he could. In doing so, he created the Persian Empire. Around 520 BCE, the Persian king Darius divided the empire into 120 satrapies, or small states. Each satrapy was ruled by a governor called a satrap. This division of the empire made it more efficient and easier to govern. Mesopotamian Currency & Trade Most of the economies of the Mesopotamian civilizations were based on farming and used a barter system for trade. In 546 BCE, the Persian king Cyrus conquered Lydia, a small kingdom in modern-­day Turkey. The Lydians were the first to use coins for trade, and so the Persians adopted the use of coins instead of bartering in order to trade. Phoenician Sea Traders Unlike the other civilizations in this section, the Phoenicians never controlled the entire Fertile Crescent. They were primarily sea traders who sailed and traded all around the Mediterranean Sea (a little southwest of Mesopotamia). As they traveled, they established colonies, such as Carthage, in Mediterranean port cities. This gave them a unique opportunity to promote cultural diffusion. The most important idea that the Phoenicians spread was that of the phonetic alphabet. In this type of alphabet, each character stood for a sound. Characters could then be put together to make words. This was much easier than using a pictographic alphabet, in which there was a different character for each word. Most languages have thousands of words, so that would require people to learn thousands of characters. In contrast, the Phoenician alphabet had only twenty-­two symbols. In fact, our own alphabet is derived from that of the Phoenicians.
Zoroastrianism is a religion which originated in ancient Persia. It emphasizes the importance of the triumph of good over evil.
In a barter economy, people trade goods directly for other goods instead of using money. For example, a person might trade a chicken for a bushel of wheat.
King Darius the Great
Cultural diffusion is the spread of ideas from one place to another.
Phoenician alphabet
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Egyptian C ivilization
Section Three Egyptian Civilization Importance of the Nile Like all other early civilizations in the Eastern hemisphere, Egyptian civilization sprang up around a river, the Nile. Rivers were necessary for all early civilizations to provide irrigation for crops, but the Nile was especially important for Egypt since most of Egypt is a desert. The Greek historian Herodotus summed it up well
meant that, without the Nile, there could be no civilization in Egypt. Egyptians divided their land into two categories, and felt that each served an
barren desert that surrounded the black land. This seemingly useless terrain actually helped to protect Egypt from invasion, since it would have been difficult for armies to cross the desert. Additionally, many precious metals and minerals could be mined from the red land, providing Egypt with trade goods. Egyptian Historical Records The Egyptians left behind lots of primary sources which historians can study to learn about their
civilization. Official Egyptian records were carved into clay tablets or onto monuments in hieroglyphics, a pictographic alphabet. Egyptians also used papyrus for other records, but not as many of these records have survived.
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Hieroglyphics were pictographic symbols which the Egyptians used for record-­keeping.
Papyrus is a reedy plant that grows in Egypt. It was used to make a paper-­ like substance for record-­keeping. Egyptian hieroglyphics
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 Historians are able to read hieroglyphics because of the Rosetta Stone. This stone was dug up in 1799 by French soldiers who were laying the foundation for a fort in Egypt. Because there is a message written on the stone in both Greek and hieroglyphics, scholars who knew Greek were able to decode the hieroglyphics. Egyptian Society and Economy Like most ancient civilizations, Egypt had a hierarchical social structure. At the top of society was the pharaoh, who was not only the monarch, but also considered to be a living god. Next were government officials and priests, and then there was a large middle class composed of merchants, soldiers, farmers, and artisans. Most Egyptians belonged to this class, and farming was the most usual occupation. At the bottom of the social ladder were slaves and servants. Because of its location near the Mediterranean & Red Seas, it was easy for Egyptians to trade with other civilizations nearby, such as Nubia, Palestine, and Greece. Exports included grain, linen, and papyrus; imports included lumber, gold, and incense. The female pharaoh Hatshepsut is especially well-­known for promoting trade. Egyptian Religion Traditional Egyptian religion was both polytheistic and ethical. Important gods included Anubis, Osiris, and Horus. It was believed that when people died, they went to a place where their behavior in life would be judged. If they were deemed to have been good, they would spend eternity in paradise. If they were deemed to have been evil, then a crocodile-­headed dog called the Eater of the Dead would consume their souls. Deceased Egyptians were buried with all of their possessions, because it was believed that they would need them in the afterlife. Most corpses were buried with a copy of the Book of the Dead in their arms. The Book of the Dead was a sort of manual to help a person get to paradise in the afterlife, and contained instructions on how to live a virtuous life. Short-­lived Monotheism One pharaoh, Ahkenaton, embraced a monotheistic religion in which only one god, the sun god, was
returned to their traditional polytheism.
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Ammit, the Eater of the Dead
In a hierarchical society, some social classes are higher than others, and higher social classes have fewer members.
A pharaoh was an Egyptian god-­king (or god-­queen, sometimes).
Artisans are skilled workers who create useful objects, such as weapons, shoes, prepared food, or tools.
In an ethical religion, proper behavior is considered important. Followers of such religions usually follow a set of rules that tell them what is acceptable.
A virtuous person makes an effort to do what is considered to be right or good.
In a monotheistic religion, only one god is worshipped. Root words: mono one; the god.
Memory Trick
Imagine that if you were wearing a sheep suit, you would be hot and glad to trade with someone else.
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Egyptian C ivilization
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Mummification & the Pyramids Due to the Egyptian idea that a person needed all of his or her possessions in the afterlife, including body and organs, the process of mummification developed to preserve these items. Mummification was very expensive, however, so only pharaohs and very wealthy nobles could afford it. Pyramids were built as burial tombs for pharaohs. The first Egyptian pyramids had stepped sides, like the ziggurats of Mesopotamia.
Giza, was built around 2550 BCE by Pharaoh Khufu. When a pharaoh died, his mummified body would be enclosed in a decorated coffin, called a sarcophagus. The sarcophagus would then be placed inside the pyramid, along with all of the
Most of the largest pyramids were robbed before modern times, so
placed inside. But in 1922, the undisturbed tomb of King Tutankhamen was discovered. The tomb contained huge amounts of precious objects, even though King Tut was only a minor pharaoh. We can only imagine what must have been in the tombs of the major pharaohs. Egyptian Art Many examples of Egyptian art are still around
dry climate is good for preserving old things. Surviving artworks include sculptures, friezes, and paintings. The artworks portray pharaohs, the gods, and sometimes even everyday life. Egyptian art features stylized bodies. They look unnatural and are often posed awkwardly, with their feet and heads pointed to the sides, but with their chests turned toward the front.
Egyptian painting with stylized bodies
The mummified remains of a pharaoh were put inside a sarcophagus made of precious metals and carved
likeness.
A frieze is a sculpture carved into a wall.
Stylized bodies in art do not look natural and are often strangely posed.
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Section Four Hebrew Civilization Hebrew civilization is considered to have begun with the patriarch Abraham. The Torah is the main source for information about Abraham and the other patriarchs of Ancient Israel. Since it is a religious text, there is some controversy about the accuracy of the information. When we study the ancient Hebrews, it is important to…