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City-States of Ancient Sumer 2.1. Was a region of the Middle East named for its rich soils and golden wheat fields Lying within the Fertile Crescent.

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Presentation on theme: "City-States of Ancient Sumer 2.1. Was a region of the Middle East named for its rich soils and golden wheat fields Lying within the Fertile Crescent."— Presentation transcript:

1 City-States of Ancient Sumer 2.1


3 Was a region of the Middle East named for its rich soils and golden wheat fields Lying within the Fertile Crescent is Mesopotamia “Between the rivers”


5 Lies between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers Modern day Turkey through Iraq First civilization was Sumer, located in southeastern Mesopotamia

6 Had to control flooding Could completely wash away the topsoil and the mud- brick villages The Epic of Gilgamesh describes a great flood that destroys the world Archaeologists confirm that catastrophic floods occurred regularly

7 Lacked timber and stone, so learned to build with clay and water Used clay to make bricks and dried in the sun Made the first wheeled vehicles

8 Each city-state had a social hierarchy  system of ranking groups Highest level made up of ruling family, leading officials and priests Middle class were scribes, merchants, and artisans Lowest, and majority of people were peasant farmers

9 Goddesses were highly honored in religious practice Women held higher status in Sumer compared to other civilizations Never had legal rights equal to men Rulers’ wives had supervisory powers and some wrote songs about their husbands (Why would that be significant?)


11 Polytheistic Thought the gods behaved like ordinary people, ate, drank, married, had families, etc Felt highest duty was to keep them happy which ensured the safety of the city-state


13 Large, stepped platform thought to have been topped by a temple dedicated to the city’s chief god or goddess Believed in afterlife “The place where they live on dust, their food is mud, and they see no light, living in blackness, on the door and door-bolt, deeply settled dust”

14 Cuneiform

15 Scribes wrote by making wedge- shaped marks on clay tablets Used to record economic exchanges, myths, prayers, laws, and business contracts Had to go through many years of school to acquire these skills Caned for making any mistakes

16 Cuneiform was adapted into different cultures Established a number system based on dividing the hour into 60 minutes and the circle into 360 degrees Studies the skies and recorded the movements of the planets and stars

17 Chapter 2: Section 2

18 Sargon of Akkad 2300 BC Invaded and Conquered Sumer

19 Didn’t stop after conquering Sumer, expanded his territory and created the first empire known in history Appointed local rulers, each of whom served as king of the land he oversaw Did not last long; After Sargon’s death other invaders took over


21 King of Babylon Took control of Mesopotamia in 1790 BC Best known for his publication of a set of laws: Hammurabi’s Code

22 Wanted to ensure that everyone knew the law Had Artisans carve nearly 300 laws on a stone pillar for all to see First attempt by a ruler to codify, or arrange and set down in writing

23 Dealt with private rights and matters Examples include contracts, inheritances, taxes, marriage, and divorce Designed to protect the powerless….Slaves and Women

24 For Women: If a woman is blameless for the problems between herself and her husband, she could leave the marriage If she were at fault however, the law instructed that she be thrown into the river

25 Deals with offenses against others, such as robbery, assault, or murder Limited personal vengeance and encouraged order May seem cruel based on today’s standards Eye for an eye, If a house falls due to poor construction and kills the owner, the house’s builder could be put to death


27 Conquered Mesopotamia in 1400 BC Brought with them a major advancement, the knowledge of how to extract iron from ore Their tools and weapons were harder and sharper Wanted to keep this process a secret, but their secret got out as their empire collapsed


29 Most feared Warriors Always involved in warfare Encouraged a well planned society; Used riches from trade and war to pay for palaces


31 Founded the first library in Nineveh


33 Defeated the Assyrians after Assurbanipal’s death Oversaw the rebuilding of canals, temples, walls, and palaces of Babylon Built a defensive moat and an 85 feet thick wall

34 Had 9 gates dedicated to important gods Most famous was Ishtar Gate, made of bricks glazed bright blue Covered in lions to represent Ishtar, dragons representing Marduk, and bulls representing Hadad



37 One of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World Remains have not been found Planted trees and plants on steps of a ziggurat According to legend, he did it to please his wife who was homesick for the hills where she grew up

38 Would defeat and conquer Babylon in 539 BC Leader was Cyrus the Great

39 Built the largest empire ever seen Pursued policies of tolerance towards the people they conquered Respected the customs of different people

40 Unified the Empire

41 Set up a bureaucracy, or a system of government Became a model for later rulers Divided empire into provinces, called satrapy. Headed by a governor called a satrap

42 Adopted laws from the people he conquered Drew up a single code of laws, like Hammurabi Had hundreds of miles of roads built or repaired

43 Set up a common set of weights and measures Encouraged the use of coins This transitioned a barter economy (one in which you trade for goods) into a money economy (where you use coins)

44 Zoroaster Taught of ONE God Ahura Mazda Constant battle with Ahriman Prince of lies and evil Had to choose


46 Known for being sailors and traders Made glass from sand A purple dye from sea snails Set up colonies

47 They spread civilization around the Mediterranean Most significant contribution was their alphabet Had a system of 22 symbols that stood for consonant sounds Greeks would later add vowels, and that became OUR alphabet

48 Chapter 2, Section 3

49 “Egypt is wholly the gift of the Nile” Without the Nile River, Egypt would just be a desert

50 The annual (yearly) flooding was a GOOD thing It soaked the land with water and deposited silt Still work to be done, had to build reservoirs and ditches to control the flooding

51 Upper Egypt located in the south Lower Egypt located in the north

52 Menes, the King of Upper Egypt, united the two regions in 3100 B.C. Founded Egypt’s first capital, Memphis Used the Nile as a highway to transport goods, officials, and armies between the north and south


54 2575 B.C. – 2130 B.C. Egyptian Kings, later called pharaohs, organized a strong, centralized state Pharaohs had absolute power Egyptians believed that each pharaohs was a god

55 System of government that includes departments and levels of authority Each pharaoh depended on their vizier  chief minister who supervised the government

56 Tax collection Farming Irrigation systems Scribes followed them around to carry out their instructions

57 Vizier Wrote a book Instructions of the Vizier Ptah-hotep Emphasized being humble & honest Obedient to superiors Fair

58 Pyramids are built Tombs  considered to be a home where they would live for eternity Preserved bodies Buried with items they may need Pharaoh began their tombs as soon as they came to power



61 Very turbulent period 1938 B.C. – 1630 B.C. The Nile did not flood as regularly as before Lots of corruption and rebellion

62 The Hyksos invaded the Nile delta region Little conflict between the Hyksos and the Egyptian people

63 Egyptians were impressed by the horse-drawn war chariots of the Hyksos Hyksos were impressed by Egyptian civilization They adopted Egyptian customs, beliefs, and names

64 1539 B.C. 1075 B.C. Age of conquest Powerful pharaohs created large empires


66 Egypt’s first female ruler Had all the rights and powers of a pharaoh Her stepson, Thutmose II took over after her death and stretched Egypt’s borders to their greatest extent ever


68 Pharaoh of the New Kingdom Ruled for 66 years Best known for his boastful attitude Bragged about his achievements on monuments and temples

69 Ramses II was in constant battle with the Hittites Would eventually sign a peace treaty with one another

70 Section 2.4 Identify the role of Amon-Re in the daily lives of Egyptians Infer what the structure of Egypt’s class system informs us about the importance of religion in Egyptian society Discuss how Egyptian writing has helped historians understand the details of Egyptian medical practices

71 Religious beliefs about gods, values, and life after death affected the daily lives of Egyptians. Much of what we know about Egyptian religion comes from inscriptions on monuments and paintings on the walls in tombs.

72 Main Egyptian god The sun god Originally call “Ra”, morphed into “Amon-Re” by the Middle Kingdom. Pharaohs received right to rule from him.

73 Most Egyptians related more to other gods & goddesses. Osiris and Isis Story touched human emotions of love and jealousy

74 Religious rebel who in 1380 b.c. devoted his life to the worship of another god, Aton Akhenaton means “he who serves Aton”

75 He, along with his wife, Queen Nefertiti, attempted to make Aton the chief god of Egypt Why did he do this? Either to introduce a single god religion, or to make Aton the most important Not very successful, Egyptians were fearful of abandoning Amon-Re

76 Egyptians believed each soul must pass a test in order to enter the afterlife Osiris Plays big role

77 Dead soul would be ferried across a lake of fire to the hall of Osiris Osiris would then weigh the soul / heart against the “feather of truth” Sinner are sent to the “eater of the dead”, a crocodile- like creature Worthy souls enter the “Happy Field of Food”


79 The Book of the Dead contained spells, charms, and other useful hints for the dead to use in the afterlife It was written on scrolls and placed in the tomb with the body


81 The preservation of the dead Brain was removed through the nostrils Incisions were made on the body to remove organs Body would then be filled with spices then wrapped in linen

82 Would take months to complete Was a privilege at first, only for rulers and nobles Eventually ordinary citizens were allowed as well





87 Howard Carter discovered it in 1922 Had remained untouched for more than 3,000 years Contained chariots, weapons, jewelry, toys, games, and food And he was just a minor king….


89 Held higher status compared to other civilizations Ramses II, “The foot of an Egyptian woman may walk where it pleases her and no one may deny her” Could inherit property, enter into business deals, go to court, and obtain divorces Few knew how to read or write; Could not hold government jobs


91 Picture writing Carved into stone and on temples Ideograms  pictures that symbolized an idea or action

92 A paper-like writing material Came from papyrus  a plant that grew along the Nile Much easier than chiseling into stone


94 Unlocked the secrets of Hieroglyphics Discovered by Jean Champollion in early 1800s Flat black stone with the same message carved in 3 different forms of writing Hieroglyphics, Demotic (used in Egypt for documents for 1000 years), and Greek

95 Learned about human body through mummification Could diagnose illness and symptoms Developed a calender that had 12 months and 30 days each with 5 days added at end of year

96 Statues, paintings in tombs, carvings on temples Some human figures have animal heads Oldest literature are hymns and prayers

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