Ancient Egypt • Egypt made use of the Nile River, much like Ancient Mesopotamians. • Every year, the Nile flooded and deposited silt along the banks. • Farmers used the silt to grow crops. • In order to get water from the river, Egyptian farmers used shadoofsto fill irrigation canals.
Ancient Egypt The silt deposited from yearly floods allowed for fertile soil to grow crops. Staple crops (barley, wheat), vegetables, and fruit were grown by farmers Egyptian houses were made mud bricks mixed with chopped straw; painted white to reflect heat. Sticks of palm branches were woven together to make roofs; woven reed mats were used as beds inside house.
Ancient Egypt • Egyptian economy was dependent on farming; 3 other resources also used in trade: • Mining • Fishing • Hunting • Egyptians mined different minerals and metals used to make: • Jewelry • Weapons • Tools • Building materials
Ancient Egypt Gold, precious stones, and turquoise were mined to create jewelry to trade. Limestone was quarried to use for special building projects (tombs, pyramids, etc.) Nile provided a food and transportation source besides being a water source for farmers.
Ancient Egypt Fishing was used by Egyptians as both food source and trade. Nile also attracted animals which made it a prime hunting ground. Animals such as crocodiles, hippopotamus, and wild birds were hunted by Egyptians. The bones were used to create jewelry, weapons, & tools; useful in trade.
Ancient Egypt Nile was also used by Egyptians as a transportation route for trade throughout the country. Egyptians usually traded surplus for other goods they couldn’t produce (barter).
Homework #1 – 10/31/12 What did Egyptians use to get water from the Nile and fill irrigation canals? What did the flood waters of the Nile deposit that farmers used? Why were Egyptian houses painted white? Besides farming, what other 3 resources were used in trade? What 3 minerals/metals did Egyptians use to make jewelry? What is trading a surplus for other goods called?
Ancient Egypt • Farm surpluses allowed for specialized jobs to be created. • Egypt had scribes that were created to keep records of business deals and Egyptian history. • Egyptian society grew more complex as less farm and scribe work was available. • Artisans began creating: • Pottery • Mats • Furniture • Linen • Sandals/Jewelry
Ancient Egypt • As Egyptian society grew complex, it also needed to be socially organized. • There were 6 classes of people in Egyptian society: • Pharaoh – viewed as a living god • Priests & Nobles – in charge of gov’t & religion • Scribes & Gov’t Officials – organized gov’t & kept it running • Craftspeople & Merchants – produced & sold goods • Farmers – supplied food for Egypt • Laborers & Slaves – did most difficult & dangerous work
Ancient Egypt • Pharaoh’s were viewed as a living god among the Egyptian people (and was treated as one). • Priests were responsible for conducting formal rituals & ceremonies to please the gods. • Egyptians believed if gods were angry, Nile wouldn’t flood. • Slaves were the lowest part of the social class; typically captured people from other empires.
Ancient Egypt • Women had fairly equal rights compared to men in Egypt. • Could both own property • Main job of women in Egypt was to take care of the household & children. • Some women wove cloth or worked with husbands in shops/fields • Upper class children (boys & girls) attended school; middle-lower class children learned parent’s jobs.
Ancient Egypt • Around 3000 B.C., Egyptians developed a writing system called hieroglyphics*. • * - Pictures represented sounds/words. • Near the end of the Egyptian empire, the hieroglyphic system included more than 6,000 symbols/characters. • To keep records, Egyptians developed a paper-like material called papyrus*. • * - Reed stems that were pressed, dried, and rolled into scrolls. • Using papyrus scrolls, Egyptians were able to write the world’s first books.
Ancient Egypt • Egyptians are credited with creating/using the first type of geometry. • Geometric shapes like triangles & squares were sacred in Egypt. • Tombs, monuments, & temples were constructed w/ these shapes. • As part of their religion, Egyptians studied the sky. • Noticed that a star (Sirius) would reappear in the same place 365 days apart. • Discovery led to creating the first yearly calendar.
Ancient Egypt • Egyptian doctors were responsible for preparing bodies for burial, so they knew the human body well. • Egyptians were known for being the world’s first surgeons. • A papyrus scroll showed details on how to perform a basic surgery. • Other scrolls gave directions on how to place moldy bread on cuts (penicillin) and chew willow bark for headaches (aspirin).
Ancient Egypt • Egyptians believed in life after death; believed all people could achieve life after death, not just upper class. • In order to achieve life after death, Egyptians would learn prayers from the “Book of the Dead”. • Their belief stated: • After death, Egyptian’s heart would be weighed on a scale against a feather. • If they lived good lives, the scale would be balanced; if not, feather would outweigh heart. • If life was even with feather, granted afterlife; if not, no afterlife. • Final step was to recite whatever prayer from Book of Dead that was asked by Osiris (God of Death/Judgment) to achieve the afterlife.
Ancient Egypt • Religion of Egypt was based on polytheism (belief of many gods) • Egyptian gods/goddesses were based on the afterlife and forces of nature that weren’t controlled by man. • Anubis – God of Death • Re – God of Sun • Osiris – God of Death/Judgment of life • Isis – Goddess of fertility/ Osiris’ wife
Homework #2 – 11/7/12 What did farm surpluses allow to be created? How many classes of people were Egypt? Who was at the top of the list? What did upper class children attend? What did middle & lower class children do? What are pictures that represented sounds/words called in Egypt? What paper-like material did Egyptians use to keep records/history on? In hopes of achieving life after death, what did Egyptians study? What is polytheism?
Ancient Egypt • Egyptians were the first known civilization to embalm* bodies before burial. • * - Preserve a body after death. • Embalmers would remove all internal organs (except heart) through one small incision near the hip. • All organs were kept in canopic jars. • Brain was believed to be unimportant; removed and discarded.
Ancient Egypt Body was cleansed inside & out; packed with natron (natural antiseptic drying agent w/ salt). The body then sat in a room for upwards of a month to dry out; dried out body would preserve better/longer. Body was then wrapped in linen strips and buried in tomb/pyramid.
Ancient Egypt • Tombs & pyramids demonstrated the amount of respect Egyptians had towards afterlife/death. • People (and pharaohs) were often buried with everyday items, such as: • Food/Drink • Clothing • Furniture • Tools • Jewelry • Living relatives were expected to bring fresh food & drink to the tomb daily • Daily prayers for the dead were said by all family members as well.
Homework #3 – 11/9/12 What does embalm mean? Who were the first people credited with doing this? What organ was left inside the body during the mummification process? What were most internal organs kept in? What organ did Egyptians believe was unimportant and usually discarded during mummification? In order to dry out the body, what did Egyptians use? What were mummies wrapped in? What 5 items were people & pharaohs buried with?
Ancient Egypt • Egyptian history is divided into 3 separate sections: • Old Kingdom • Middle Kingdom • New Kingdom • Egypt was ruled through more than 30 dynasties* throughout its history. • * - Line of rulers from same family. • Pharaohs “succeeded” (or inherited) their throne from the previous family member.
Ancient Egypt Old Kingdom starts around 2575 B.C.; pyramids were built during this era. Pharaohs wanted a temple built in their honor that would last forever; pyramids were created for this reason. The Great Pyramid was built in honor of the pharaoh Khufu.
Ancient Egypt • The Great Pyramid was built using huge blocks of limestone cut with copper chisels. • Teams of workers pulled the slabs of rock hundreds of feet to the pyramid to be placed. • The Great pyramid took 20 years to build; roughly 2.3 millions blocks of stone used to build. • Pyramids were built by: • Farmers • Slaves • Stonecutters
Ancient Egypt • After building a few pyramids, construction stopped due to grave robbers. • Egyptians believed that a robbed tomb would ruin that person’s chance at a happy afterlife. • Pharaohs were buried in secret tombs to protect them from grave robbers; didn’t help. • The only pharaoh’s tomb found undisturbed was King Tut’s.
Homework #4 – 11/12/12 How many kingdoms was Ancient Egypt broken into? What is a dynasty? Why did pharaoh’s want pyramids built? How long did the Great Pyramid take to build? How many blocks of limestone were used? What 3 groups of people built the Great Pyramid? What caused Egyptians to stop building pyramids? How did a robbed tomb affect Egyptian afterlife, according to their beliefs?
Ancient Egypt • The Old Kingdom begins to fall apart as families fight to become ruling family of Egypt. • Egypt appears weak due to uncertainty of who would rule the country. • Middle Kingdom begins as Mentuhotep II took power in 2055 B.C. • Brought unification, stability, & order to Egypt
Ancient Egypt • The Middle Kingdom expanded Egypt’s borders through military power. • During the Middle Kingdom: • Arts flourished. • Trade expanded into Mediterranean & Asia. • Succession of pharaohs was stable & orderly. • The Middle Kingdom begins to crumble as weaker pharaoh’s take over. • Hyksos (group of Egyptians) overtake Egypt with better weapons (horse-drawn chariots & better swords).
Ancient Egypt • The New Kingdom of Egypt begins with: • The Hyksos being driven out of the country. • A new line of pharaohs take power • The first pharaoh of the New Kingdom was Hatshepsut, the only woman pharaoh in Egyptian history. • Took power after husband died; step-son too young to rule. • When Thutmose III (step-son) became old enough, mom and step-son ruled together.
Ancient Egypt • Under Hatshepsut’s rule, Egypt’s borders expand through trade, not force. • New trade introduced goods such as: • Herbs/Spices • Scented wood (cedar – used for boats & caskets) • Potted trees • Live animals
Ancient Egypt • After 15 year reign, Hatshepsut disappeared; Thutmose III took control of Egypt • All records of Hatshepsut were destroyed • Some guess that Thutmose III killed his step-mom; no proof • The New Kingdom continues on with pharaoh’s who often went to war to expand Egypt’s borders. • Ramses II (Ramses the Great), used military to strengthen Egypt & it’s borders.
Ancient Egypt During his 66 year rule, Ramses went to war with the Hittites in order to expand trade; war ended in tie. Following war with the Hittites, Egypt was stabilized & peaceful under Ramses’ 66 year rule. Following Ramses’ death, Egypt declined & central gov’t weakened. For the next 1,000 years, foreign powers began to take over Egypt and rule the country.
Homework #5 Who brought unification, stability, & order to Egypt in the Middle Kingdom? What happened to Egypt’s borders during the Middle Kingdom? What group of people took over Egypt to end the Middle Kingdom? What was unique about Hatshepsut? What happened to Egypt’s borders under Hatshepsut’s leadership? What pharaoh ruled for 66 years?