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Today, Mesopotamia is the region of Iraq. In Greek, the word Mesopotamia means “the land between the rivers.” Mesopotamia was located between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. The Tigris and Euphrates rivers flooded unpredictably. Northern Mesopotamia had fertile land and seasonal rain. In southern Mesopotamia the temperature was able to get over 110 degrees Fahrenheit, although certain times of the year it can get pretty cool. Southern Mesopotamia was mostly barren and flat with little rain. Mesopotamia had limited resources and no natural barriers.


History of the Sumerians: 2900 BC to 1800 BC

The first people of Mesopotamia were the Sumerians. The Sumerian civilizations probably started some time around 5000 BCE. Around 3000 BC they started building large city-states in southern Mesopotamia. Sumerians grew crops. The Sumerians were always at war with each other and other people. This was because there was not much water. The formation of larger city-states was the result of these wars. The more powerful city-states attracted many Sumerians that some smaller city-states ended. The Sumerians would eventually battle Semitic people, the Akkadians. When they fought, the Sumerians lost control of their city-states and fell to the dominance of the Akkadian Kingdom. The Akkadians used a lot of the Sumerian religion, culture, writing, literature, law and government structure. Under the control of the Akkadians, the Sumerians had some power over many of their fallen city-states. The Sumerian city of Ur revolted against the Akkadians in 2125 BC and gained control of the city-states of Southern Mesopotamia. The Sumerians eventually disappeared from history around 2000 BC due to more Semitic migrates. The Semitic migrates who overthrew the Sumerians adapted their religion, culture, writing, law, government and economy.

Sumerian InventionsThe Sumerians invented frying pans, cosmetic sets, harps, razors, shepherd’s pipes, axes, hammers, kilns to cook pottery and bricks, the sailboat, the wheel, the plow, the plow seeder, the first written language and a system of law with retribution.


The Sumerian Government

At first, the Sumerian government was a theocracy run by priests. Then the Sumerian government eventually became

a combination of monarchy, democracy and bureaucracy. The Sumerians were ruled by kings. The Sumerians were also ruled by elected officials who served in an assembly. In order for the kings to do certain things, they needed permission from the assembly.

Sumerian Writing

Sumerians kept records. Records of distributed goods were kept on stone tablets. The early Sumerian writings were sketches and pictures. This was pictographic writing. They used reeds to write. They wrote on wet clay which would dry into hard tablets. The Sumerians eventually changed their picture words to a short-hand that consisted of wedged lines formed by bending a reed and moving the end of the reed closest to one’s hand once back and forth against wet clay. .


The Sumerian Calendar

The Sumerians developed a calendar based on the cycle of the moon. The calendar had 12 months. In order to catch up with the sun, every three years the Sumerians added a “leap month.”

The Sumerian Religion

Sumerians were polytheistic. The gods Sumerians worshipped were anthropomorphic. Sumerians believed that the gods were associated with astronomical bodies like the sun, controlled natural forces, created the world and had emotions. The Sumerians believed that the gods’ biggest regret was the creation of humans. The Sumerians believed that the gods sent a flood to kill them but one man built a boat and survived


When you have an answer to a question press enter to see the write answer for that question.

Which choice is correct about the Sumerians’ beliefs?

a. The Sumerians believed in more than one god.

b. The Sumerians believed in only one god.

c. The Sumerians believed in no gods.

d. The Sumerians believed they were gods.

2. What did the Sumerians believe was the gods biggest regret?

a. The creation of the world.

b. The creation of animals.

c. The creation of Humans.

d. None of the above.


When you have an answer to a question press enter to see the write answer for that question.

3. What does the word Mesopotamia mean in Greek?a. The land between the seas.

b. The land between the rivers.

c. The land between the mountains.

d. The land between the woods.

4. Today, the region of __________is where Mesopotamia was located.

a. Israel

b. New York

c. Rome

d. Iraq


When you have an answer to a question press enter to see the write answer for that question.

5. What is correct about the Sumerian government?

a. It was a democracy.

b. It was a monarchy.

c. It was a dictatorship.

d. Both a and b.

e. All the above.

What was the approximate time period of the Sumerians?

a. 1000 BC - 3000 BC

b. 2900 BC to 1500 BC

c. 2100 BC to 1800 BC

d. 2900 BC to 1800 BC


When you have an answer to a question press enter to see the write answer for that question.

True or False

7. The Sumerians used reeds as a writing tool. _____

8. The Sumerians wrote on wet clay with reeds. _____

9. The Sumerians did not have a calendar. _____

10. The Sumerians had elected officials who served in an assembly. _____





Ancient Egypt


Egypt is located all along the Nile River. Ancient Egypt was isolated by deserts to the east and west of the Nile river and by mountains to the south of the Nile river. This isolation forced Egypt to develop by it’s self without any human influence.

The Nile River

The Nile river is over 4000 miles long is actually the longest river in the world. Water would run down the mountains into the river and it would flood every spring. Fertile soil was left behind when the flood water retreated. The Nile provided water for drinking and bathing. The Nile helped make transportation and trade faster and easier. Papyrus weeds grew along the Nile’s shores. These papyrus weeds were used to make paper, building materials and clothes. The Nile river was very useful in Ancient Egypt.

Ancient Egypt

History TimeLine

3100 BC- The beginning of the Egyptian civilization, the first Egyptian Dynasty was founded by King Menes.

3100 BC-2950 BC- Egypt was being ruled by the first and second dynasties, hieroglyphics were being used, Memphis became the capital of Egypt, The first dynasty’s king was considered to be Hor-Aha.

2950 BC-2575 BC- The first pyramid was built at Saqqara and built for a third dynasty king- king Zoser.

2575 BC-2150 BC- During the Old Kingdom at Giza and Dahshur the pyramids of Egypt were built, The final ruler of the fifth dynasty King Unas had, in his pyramid, the burial chamber inscribed with spells that were for the after life. These may be called the Pyramid Texts.

2125 BC-1975 BC- A collapse of the Egyptian central government during the ninth, tenth and eleventh dynasties.

1975 BC-1640 BC- The time period of the eleventh, twelfth, thirteenth and fourteenth dynasties, the middle Kingdom’s pharaoh Amenemhet overthrew Mentuhotep III.

1630 BC-1520 BC- The time period of the fifteenth, sixteenth and seventeenth dynasties, from Asia, Hyksos people moved into the Delta and showed the chariot to the Egyptians, the Hykos were eventually expelled from Egypt by Ahmose.

1400s BC- Egypt ruled the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea because of military expeditions.

1539 BC-1075 BC- The time period of the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth dynasties, the tombs of the valley of kings were being built, Ramesses II, Tuthmosis, Tutankhamun, Akhenaten and Hatshepsut were all pharoahs during this time period, a new religious order worshipping Aten the sun god was created by King Akhenaten, an army was developed, the final ruler of the new kingdom was Ramesses XI.

1075 BC-715 BC- The time period of the twenty-first to the twenty-fifth dynasties, Egypt was conquered by the Nubians.

715 BC-332 BC- The time period of the twentieth to the thirtyeth dynasties, in 525 BC Egypt was conquered by Persians that were led by Cambyses II.

332 BC- Egypt is conquered by Alexander the Great, Ptolemy, Alexander’s general, becomes kind and

forms a dynasty, during this dynasty the spread of Greek culture took place throughout Egypt, the city of Alexandria was formed and had a lighthouse and a library.

196 BC- The Rosetta Stone was carved.

51 BC-30 BC- Cleopatra VII rules and became Julius Caesar’s mistress and they had a boy named Octavian.

37 BC- The marriage of Mark Antony and Cleopatra VII takes place.

31 BC- In the sea Battle of Actium, Cleopatra and Antony were defeated by Octavian, Cleopatra and Antony both committed suicide.

30 BC- The Roman Empire gets a new province- Egypt.

384 AD- The adherence to Christianity was ordered by Theodosius.

395 AD- Egypt became part of the Byzantine Empire and the Roman empire split into west and east.

642 AD- Egypt became a part of the Islamic Empire and Alexandria was captured by Arabs.

868-969- Egypt is ruled by the Ikhshidid and the Tulunid dynasty.

969- Egypt was seized by Fatimid rulers and Al-Qahirah, an Egyptian city, was founded by the Fatimid rulers.


The ancient Egyptians were polytheistic. Some of the gods the ancient Egyptians worshipped were Horus, Osiris, Isis, Seth, Ra and Anubis. The ancient Egyptians sacrificed animals as a way of worshiping the gods. The Egyptians believed that their pharaoh was a god. The ancient Egyptians believed that Anubis would weigh someone’s soul, when they died, against a feather to see if that person’s soul was heavier, with bad deeds, than the feather. If it was, that person would be punished. In 323 BC Ptolemy took control of Egypt. Because of this, Egyptians worshiped some Greek gods along with worshipping their original gods. In 30 BC Romans took over Egypt and Egyptians began worshipping some Roman gods as well. Some Egyptians converted to Christianity. In the late 600s AD, Islam arrived. Many Egyptians converted to Islam. Most people in Egypt have followed Islam since 700 AD.


Ancient Egypt was a theocracy. The pharaoh was believed to be a god and controlled Egypt. Priests in Ancient Egypt were important and had a high status. Ancient Egyptians payed taxes in labor and goods. There was a labor tax called corvèe. In order for Egyptians to pay this tax they were forced to do labor and drafted into the army.


One famous pyramid that the ancient Egyptians built is the Great Pyramid at Giza. Approximately 2,300,000 limestone blocks make up this pyramid. About 2.5 tons is the average weight of each block. The weight of over fifteen tons is the weight of the heaviest blocks. There are other pyramids that the ancient Egyptians built. At Giza there is another amazing monument called the Great Sphinx.

The Great Sphinx


When you have an answer to a question press enter to see the right answer for that question.

1. What river is Egypt located next to?

a. Hudson River.

b. Nile River.

c. Indus River.

d. Mississippi River.

e. None of the above.

The pharaoh was believed to be __________.

a. a alien

b. a bird

c. a god

d. just a regular person

3. The Nile River is the world’s____________.

a. longest river

b. widest river

c. deepest river

d. cleanest river


When you have an answer to a question press enter to see the right answer for that question.

What god did the ancient Egyptians believed weighed one’s soul?

a. Zeus

b. Seth

c. Ra

d. Anubis

e. none of the above

Why was Egypt a theocracy?

a. The Egyptians were polytheistic.

b. Egypt was conquered multiple times by multiple people.

c. A pharaoh, who was believed to be a god, controlled Egypt.

d. Some Egyptians converted to a different religion.

What was the labor tax called?

a. Corvèe Tax

b. Punishment Tax

c. Pharaoh Tax

d. Labor Tax


When you have an answer to a question press enter to see the right answer for that question.

True or False

7. Most people in Egypt have followed Christianity since 700 AD. _____

8. The first Egyptian pyramid was built at Saqqara. _____

9. About 3.5 tons is the average weight of each block in the Great Pyramid of Giza. _____

10. The Nile river is over 5000 miles long. _____