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HIS 105 Chapter 1. The Birth of Civilization. Earth : approximately 6 billion years old Human-Like Creatures: appeared 3-5 million years ago in Africa Erect, Tool-Using Early Humans: spread over Africa, Europe, & Asia 1-2 million years ago Homo Sapiens: emerged some 200,000 years ago

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his 105 chapter 1

HIS 105Chapter 1

The Birth of Civilization

Earth : approximately 6 billion years old
  • Human-Like Creatures: appeared 3-5 million years ago in Africa
  • Erect, Tool-Using Early Humans: spread over Africa, Europe, & Asia 1-2 million years ago
  • Homo Sapiens: emerged some 200,000 years ago
  • Earliest Fully Modern Human Remains : date to about 90,000 years ago
Earliest Humans: hunter/gatherers/fishers
  • Agriculture began 8000 B.C.E.
    • Cultivated plants
    • Raised livestock
    • Made air-tight pottery for food storage

Humans settled in small communities now that they could produce their own food.

civilization characteristics
Civilization: Characteristics
  • Producers of food
  • Settled and more complex life
  • Increased harvests through use of irrigation
  • Towns and cities with impressive structures
  • Flourishing commerce
  • Developed writing to keep records and and inventories
Specialized occupations
  • Complex religions
  • Social hierarchy
  • Ways of living built up by a group and passed on from one generation to another
  • It includes:
    • Courtship practices
    • Child-rearing techniques
    • Material goods: Ex.- types of shelter & clothing
    • Ideas
    • Institutions
    • Beliefs
    • Language
paleolithic age old stone
Paleolithic Age (Old Stone)
  • Dates from 1-2 million years ago to about 10,000 B.C.E.
  • Small groups of hunters, gatherers, & fishers - not producers of food
  • Used tools of stone and wood
  • Learned to make and use fire
  • Acquired language to pass on knowledge
Depended on and feared nature
  • Practiced religion and magic to help them with their fears
  • Sexual division of labor
    • Men hunted & fished
    • Women gathered plants to eat, had babies, made clothing
    • Because women worked with plants, the beginnings of agriculture have been attributed to them

The beginning of agriculture began the Neolithic Age

neolithic age new stone
Neolithic Age (New Stone)
  • Began about 8,000 B.C.E. in the Near East
  • Shifted from just hunting and gathering to a settled agricultural way of life
    • Domesticated animals
    • Domesticated plants
    • Made pottery
    • Wove cloth from flax & wool
    • Cared for crops from planting to harvest
Built permanent buildings like those in Catal Hayuk
  • Populations grew when there was a steady supply of food
  • Humans were beginning to control nature and this was an important pre-condition for the beginnings of civilization
Neolithic societies began in:
    • Near East – around 8000 B.C.E. (wheat)
    • China - around 4000 B.C.E. (millet, rice)
    • India - around 5500 B.C.E. (wheat)
    • Americas - around 2500 B.C. E. (corn, beans, & squash)
emergence of civilization 4000 1000 b c e
Emergence of Civilization4000-1000 B.C.E.
  • Mesopotamia in Tigris-Euphrates River Valley
  • Egypt in Nile River Valley
  • Indus River Valley Civilization in India
  • Yellow River Basin Civilization in China
    • All took form during the Bronze Age
    • All had urban centers, monumental architecture, hierarchical societies, & writing
Cities were administrative, religious, manufacturing, entertainment, & commercial centers
  • Writing was complex
  • Kings were divine
  • Civilizations had a king, military, aristocrats, priests, peasants, & slaves
  • Emerged around 3500 to 3000 B.C.E.
  • First city was Sumer
    • Farming community
    • People worked together for survival
    • As more towns formed, there was a need for central control
    • A king became the central ruler
    • Writing system was cuneiform used for records and literature like Gilgamesh
    • Polytheistic
    • Gods of nature
    • People worked to keep gods happy
    • Life was harsh and gods seemed whimsical
    • This led to a pessimistic outlook on life and felt afterlife would be worse
    • Written about in Gilgamesh – prince is looking for immortality
Priests used to share the responsibility of governing, but there was a gradual separation of church and state
  • Ziggurats- temples of mud brick built on mound to be closer to gods and to protect it from flooding; Ex – ziggurat at Ur still exists
Sumer had basic elements of civilization:
    • Well-defined government
    • Hierarchical society
    • Regular economic surpluses
    • Trade, artisans, & merchants
    • Writing
    • Religion
    • Unified

Lasted until about 2000 B.C.E.

akkadian empire
Akkadian Empire
  • King Sargon I conquered Sumer and other city-states of Mesopotamia between 2370 and 2130 B.C.E. and created the Akkadian Empire
  • Introduced new language but kept cuneiform for records and literary works
  • Empire lasted only 200 years; overthrown by invaders
  • Sumerian city-states re-emerged until 2000 B.C.E.
babylonian empire
Babylonian Empire
  • Established in early 18th century B.C.E. by Hammurabi and the Amorites when they unified Mesopotamia
  • Hammurabi
    • Seen as one of the greatest rulers of early civilizations
    • Brought order out of chaos
    • Had officials around his empire to carry out his laws
    • Codified his laws: The Code of Hammurabi
Code of Hammurabi
    • Listing of cases; what happens if…
    • Regulated the rights of the 3 Amorite classes: free people, state dependents, & slaves
    • Penalties differed according to social status: fines, corporal punishment, mutilation, & execution
accomplishments of babylonians
Accomplishments of Babylonians
  • Extended Sumerian knowledge in astronomy & mathematics
  • Set up 60 minute hour & 360o circle
  • Expanded commerce
  • Used a common language
  • Built elaborate public buildings, royal palaces, & the hanging gardens
Babylonian Empire fell around 1600 B.C.E. to the Hittites from Central Asia
  • The Hittites fell to other invaders and small kingdoms arose from 1200 – 900 B.C.E.
  • Emerged N.E. Africa around 3000 B.C.E.
  • Benefited from Mesopotamian technology and trade
  • Flourished for 2000 years but lasted for 3000 years
  • Located in fertile delta along the Nile River
  • Nile flooded at regular, predictable intervals
  • The silt left behind contributed to bountiful crops
  • Because of this, Egyptians felt they were pleasing their gods and so had an optimistic outlook
Egypt was divided into 2 parts, upper and lower, until united by Narmer, the first pharaoh
  • Its history has been divided into 3 Kingdoms
    • Old Kingdom 2575-2130 B.C.E
    • Middle Kingdom 1938-1600 B.C.E.
    • New Kingdom 1540-1075 B.C.E.

There were times of instability between each period

    • Divine rulers who were to keep gods happy
    • Developed large bureaucracy of priests & officials
    • Local governors supervised irrigation and public works
    • Most Egyptians were peasant farmers who were supervised and heavily taxed; some built pyramids for pharaohs like Khufu at Giza
    • Polytheistic for the most part
    • Amon-Re was the sun god who created the universe
    • Osiris was god of the Nile and offered the hope of immortality to masses
    • Pharaoh Amenhotep IV tried to create a monotheistic faith for his people
    • Used for texts and records
    • Hieroglyphics - picture symbols
    • Wrote on papyrus made from plant of same name
    • Deciphered finally by a Frenchman named Jean-Francois Champollian using Rosetta Stone
    • Established 12-month year with 3 10-day weeks
    • Had some working knowledge of some medicines and contraceptives
    • Knew how to mummify a body
    • Virtually unchanged for thousands of years
    • stability and optimism reflected in their view of life and the afterlife
    • Static and stratified society
    • Fairly isolated
indus civilization 2250 1750 b c e
Indus Civilization 2250-1750 B.C.E.
  • Known as the Indus-Valley Culture or the Harappan Civilization
  • Lasted only a few centuries
  • This Indus culture was truly discovered in the 1920s at the Harappa site
  • Today there are 2 main sites Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro plus some smaller towns
They had
    • Bronze tools
    • Large cities with similar lay-outs; population of 35,000+
    • Writing (not yet deciphered)
    • A diversified social and economic organization

Having 2 cities that are so alike indicates a strong central government with good economic and communication systems

Each city had
    • Walled citadel on raised platform to the west; contained main public buildings, large bath, and temples
    • town proper to the east laid out in a grid pattern
    • Each town had a granary, a cemetery, covered drains and sewers
    • House were built around a central courtyard with rooms facing inward; no windows
Economy based on agriculture
  • Had cloth woven from cotton
  • Made metal tools
  • Used a potter’s wheel
  • It is believed there was trade between the Indus Valley and Mesopotamia because Indus stamps have been found in Mesopotamia
Material culture
    • Bronze and stone sculptures
    • Copper and bronze tools and vessels
    • Black on red painted pottery
    • Stone and terra cotta figurines
    • Toys
    • Silver vessels
    • Gold jewelry
    • Some decorative brick work
There were no mosaics, no friezes, and no large sculpture
  • Religion
    • Dominated by priestly class who were intermediaries between the people and their gods
    • Fertility and reproduction were the main themes
    • Ritual bathing
Around 2000 B.C.E. the Indus Civilization went into decline
  • We aren’t sure what caused its demise:
    • Invasion?
    • Flooding?
    • Perhaps a combination of factors
  • Semi-nomadic invaders who reached India about 1800 B.C.E
  • They were horsemen, cattle-herders
  • They brought a new language, a new social organization, new techniques of warfare, and new religious ideas found in their Vedas, a sacred text
  • Patrilineal society
Gods were predominantly male
  • Marriage was monogamous but polygamy did exist; widows could remarry
  • Tribes ruled by chieftain chosen for his military prowess
  • Originally there were 2 social classes:nobles and commoners
  • A third was later added: Dasas or darker conquered people
Later, 4 classes or varnas:
    • Priestly Brahmans
    • Warrior nobles
    • Peasants and tradesmen
    • Servants

Dasas were excluded

This was a precursor to the rigid Indian caste system

Material culture:
    • Semi-nomads who had little
    • Had gray painted pottery
    • Built wood, thatch, or mud-brick houses
    • Measured wealth in cattle
    • Were good at carpentry and bronze work
    • Used gold for ornamentation
    • Made cloth from wool
Planted grains
  • Made and drank Soma, intoxicating drink used in religious ceremonies
  • Sang, danced, had chariot races, and gambled
  • Artisans made gold products, baskets, cloth, and pottery
  • Products found their way into Mesopotamia
    • Polytheists
    • Gods resembled humans
    • Chief god was Indra, god of war and storm
    • Worship based on animal sacrifice or made offerings of food
    • Increasing formalism as the years passed
    • Not yet the concept of reincarnation or transmigration
  • 4000 B.C.E. agriculture began in the southern end of Yellow River
  • Raised millet, cabbage, rice, and soybeans
  • When soil was exhausted, the town would move
  • Used axes, hoes, spades, and sickle-shaped knives
  • Had domesticated pigs, sheep, cattle, dogs, and Chickens
  • Used pottery for storage
  • Lived in pit houses
Traditional history speaks of 3 ancient dynasties:
    • Xia 2205 -1766 B.C.E.; founded by Yu who controlled the flooding with dikes and canals
    • Shang 1766-1050 B.C.E. ; conquered other tribes and laid foundation for Chinese civilization
    • Zhou 1050-256 B.C.E.
    • Made up of warlike nomads
    • Military aristocracy went to war in chariots
    • Non-Shang subject people were the foot soldiers
    • Used spears and compound bows
    • Captured prisoners were enslaved
    • Ruled by hereditary kings with strong authority
    • Made sacrifices to their ancestors who interceded with the gods; also had human sacrifices
Had writing
  • Had calendar with a month of 30 days and a year of 360 days; made adjustments periodically
  • Calendar told when to plant and when to harvest
  • Writing taught to those in bureaucracy
  • Bronze first used around 2000 B.C.E. and had advanced methods of casting
  • Used bronze for weapons, armor, chariot fittings, and ceremonial vessels
Social Classes
    • Stratifies society
    • Weapons in the hands of aristocrats
    • King and his court lived in a walled city in spacious houses with opulent lifestyle
    • Peasants lived outside the city in cramped pit houses, underground hovels
Last Shang kings were weak, cruel, and tyrannical
  • Subjects rebelled
  • The Zhou conquered the Shang by 1050 B.C.E
    • Continued Shang pattern of life and rule
    • Formed agrarian- based city-stae
    • Social hierarchy was similar to Shang
    • Zhou were backward people until they adopted Shang culture
    • Used Chinese ideographic writing
    • Cast bronze for ceremonial vessels
Mandate from Heaven
    • Explained why Zhou were ruling and not the Shang
    • Said the “deity above” was appalled by the Shang wickedness and had withdrawn their favor from the Shang and had given it to the Zhou

Zhou Dynasty lasted until the late 3rd century B.C.E.

Zhou king was the head of the senior branch of the family
  • Other relatives ruled in outlying towns
  • King had a group of professional bureaucrats known as the “shi” – educated men who acted as clerks, scribes, overseers, and advisors
  • Practiced agriculture – mainly millet, wheat, and rice
Had irrigation and iron farm equipment
  • As the population expanded, so did their territory
  • Religion
    • Human sacrifice ended
    • Males became more dominant in the family
Manners were very important to the Zhou

The rough nomads had become civilized

By 8th century B.C.E., Zhou Dynasty was in decline. Control diminished. Rebellions occurred

Out of this chaos came some of China’s greatest thinkers

  • 30,000 years ago, it is believed that Asians crossed over a frozen land bridge called Beringia, to follow herds of animals
  • They moved into the Americas going southward and to the east
  • They were hunters, gatherers, & fishermen
  • Found fish and small game to be plentiful
  • Grew maize, potatoes, squash, peppers, manioc, beans, & tomatoes
As people moved further south, strong states emerged in Mesoamerica –the central part of Mexico and Central America
  • Before Spanish conquest, its history is divide into 3 periods
    • Pre-Classic 2000 B.C.E. – 150 C.E.
    • Classic 150 – 900 C.E.
    • Post-Classic 900 – 1521 C.E.
    • Earliest civilization
    • 2 centers: San Lorenzo 1200 – 900 B.C.E. And La Venta 900 – 400 B.C.E.
    • They had monumental structures and plazas
    • They had large sculptures
Andean Civilization
    • In South America
    • Farming was possible in coastal valleys near rivers
    • They also fished
    • Chavin de Huantar 800 – 200 B.C.E. emerged in highlands of Peru
      • Had pottery, textiles, & metals
Moche and Nazca were 2 other distinctive cultures in that area
  • Nazca became known for its lines depicting birds