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Ancient Egypt: Why so stable? Ancient Egypt lasted for 3500 years due to factors in: Geography Politics Social structure Education Economy Religion.

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Presentation on theme: "Ancient Egypt: Why so stable? Ancient Egypt lasted for 3500 years due to factors in: Geography Politics Social structure Education Economy Religion."— Presentation transcript:




4 Ancient Egypt: Why so stable? Ancient Egypt lasted for 3500 years due to factors in: Geography Politics Social structure Education Economy Religion Stability was goal and change slow and cautious

5 What was the “SOUL” of Ancient Egypt? THE NILE was considered the SOUL as it was the source of life and path to immortality Egyptians lived on Eastern side but were buried on Western side River was symbol of passage of one life to next (eternity) Creation story began in swirling waters of the Nile when god Horus gave power to Pharaohs

6 The Fertile Nile Valley

7 The Annual Flooding of the Nile

8 Nile Irrigation-the Shaduf Irrigation means to bring water to farm lands.



11 The Nile floodplain Farming in the Nile floodplain Felucca boats

12 The Nile River Flooded every year Provided fertile soil for crops Was the “Lifeline” for Egypt Transportation Route Used for Irrigation Flows south to north Mouth = “Delta”

13 Perfect Location Deserts provided protection and shelter from outside influences Access to Mediterranean Sea allowed for trading Deserts were an important source of minerals and building supplies (copper, tin, gold and natron) Video

14 What determined Egypt’s economic prosperity? Wealth Agriculture made up most of Egypt’s wealth – grain, vegetables, fruit, cattle, goats, pigs, and fowl Economy Simple economy based on agriculture and minerals from desert Trading was done by bartering goods (grain, oil, wheat) Extensive trading made Egypt a powerful influence on culture, art, ideas and technology Trade eventually grew and expanded, bringing new ideas and goods into Egyptian society


16 Menes: Unifier of Upper & Lower Egypt c B. C. E. ? UNIFICATION OF EGYPT: King Menes unites Upper and Lower Egypt and wears double crown in 3100 BCE. Following Menes came 31 dynasties over 3000 years. VideoVideo

17 A mural of Narmer or Menes conquering Lower Egypt (c.a B.C.)

18 The first pyramid built for King Zoser, which exists even today, in Sakkarah, the necropolis of Memphis. Built in the year 2650 BC by the architect Imhotep, It is the oldest monumental work in stone known to man. Exterior walls of white limestone. The wall has 14 doors, 13 of them false.

19 Stepped Pyramid at Saqqara

20 Pyramids These are the Giza pyramids, the most famous. Pyramids were tombs for the kings. These were built in 2500 B.C. How old are they?

21 “Bent” Pyramid of King Sneferu

22 Plan of the Great Pyramid of Khufu


24 The burial of the king, as well as his passage from this world to the next, was of great importance to everyone. The ritual cycle by which the living pharaoh, the god Horus, became Osiris, Lord of the Underworld, guaranteed the survival of Egypt itself. By building the pyramids all Egyptians believed in a single religion of ancestor worship in which the pyramids served as reminders. VideoVideo about Pyramids VideoVideo- Journals Through History

25 End of the Old Kingdom With a lot of resources being given to build the pyramids, many of the Upper Egyptians were upset. They set up a new King in Thebes and the country became divided. This along with a severe famine brought an end to the Old Kingdom.

26 Professor Fekri Hassan examining ancient hieroglyphs which tell of appalling suffering. A third of the population died and the most ordered of empires was brought to chaos. This marked the end of the Old Kingdom. Relief showing men, women, and children suffering from the effects of severe famine The End of the Old Kingdom

27 Education All children, regardless of social class, received some education Goal for education was to ensure youth exhibited self control and good manners At 14, young boys followed fathers in jobs, and girls learned from mothers in the household Children of priests were schooled more formally Literacy was stressed for government jobs Education respected for creating a well rounded individual

28 Hieroglyphics

29 Papyrus  Paper Papyrus Plant Hieratic Scroll Piece

30 Hieroglyphics “Alphabet” 24 “letters” phonetic symbols

31 History of Writing: 1) pictograms (sun= sun) 2) ideograms (sun = sun, daylight, warmth, light) 3) phonograms: symbols that suggest a particular sound; related ideas and also sound (Sun = sun, son, Sunday) Each hieroglyph found in pyramids and tombs often symbolized more than one consonant. Not only that, but actual Egyptian hieroglyphs were a combination of sound-signs, pictograms, and ideograms. No wonder it was so hard to decode them!

32 Hieroglyphic “Cartouche”

33 Eventually scribes adapted hieroglyphic symbols By 700 BCE, script was used for secular matters such as letters, accounts and record keeping Video

34 Rosetta Stone A stone with writing on it in Egyptian and Greek. It was carved in 196 BC. Written in three scripts (hieroglyphs for religious documents; demotic- common script of Egypt; Greek- language of the rulers of Egypt at that time) Written so that the priests, government officials and rulers of Egypt could read what it said. Found in 1799 Written by a group of priests in Egypt to honor the Egyptian pharaoh. It lists all of the things that the pharaoh had done that were good for the priests and the people of Egypt.

35 Egyptian Math ,000100,0001,000,000 What number is this?

36 Middle Kingdom The Middle Kingdom ( B.C.) was characterized by a new concern of the pharaohs for the people. In the Old Kingdom, the pharaoh had been viewed as an inaccessible god-king. Now he was portrayed as the shepherd of his people. PHARAOHS CROWNED WITH SHEPHERD’S CROOK AND FLAIL

37 The Hyksos were a neighboring group that had new horse-drawn war- chariots. This invention, never seen before in Egypt, allowed the Hyksos to control this region. They utilized superior bronze weapons and chariots to help them take control of Egypt. Within 50 years, they had also managed to take control of the important Egyptian city of Memphis. This was the end of the Middle Kingdom.

38 Ahmose and his army driving out the Hyksos. Starting in 1567 B.C., the pharaoh Ahmose I eventually managed to defeat and expel the Hyksos from Egypt, reuniting Egypt and establishing the New Kingdom (c B.C.). The New Kingdom was characterized by a new militaristic and imperialistic path. A more professional army was developed.

39 Queen Hatshepsut Ruled from B.C. Married to Thutmose II After her husband died, Hatshepsut dressed like a man and ruled as a pharaoh. She became the first female pharaoh in Egyptian history.

40 Hatshepsut’s Accomplishments Worked hard to increase Egyptian trade through trade routes. As a result: –trade expanded –Increase of wealth in the economy

41 Results of Hatshepsut’s Accomplishments She used the money that was gained from trade to support the arts as well as architecture. A temple near Thebes was built to honor Queen Hatshepsut for the many great temples and monuments that were built during her reign.

42 Honoring Queen Hatshepsut Queen Hatshepsut died after ruling for 15 years. After her death, Queen Hatshepsut’s step-son, Thutmose III, took the throne.

43 The Valley of the Queens Temple of Queen Hatshepsut B. C.

44 Ramses II 1297 BCE - Reign of Ramses II. He had over 200 wives and girlfriends, approximately 90 sons and 60 daughters and reigned over 67 years! His reign saw massive building projects in Egypt. The Exodus of Jews from Egypt also may have occurred during his reign. Ramses II B. C.

45 King Ramses’ Accomplishments Although known for being one of Egypt’s greatest warriors, he was also known as a peace- maker, by being the first king in history to ever sign a peace treaty with his enemies, the Hittites.

46 King Ramses’ Death King Ramses died in the early 1200’s BC. His mummy is known to be one of the best preserved.

47 Abu Simbel: Monument to Ramses II B. C.

48 Akhenaton: First Monotheist? B. C. Amenhotep IV (c B.C.) introduced the worship of Aton, god of the sun disk, as the chief god and pursued his worship with enthusiasm. Changing his own name to Akhenaton (“It is well with Aton”), the pharaoh closed the temples of other gods.

49 The Ankh – The “Cross” of Life

50 Queen Nefertiti Nefertiti (ca BC – ca BC) was the Great Royal Wife of the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten. Nefertiti and her husband were known for the worship of only one god. Great Royal WifeEgyptianPharaoh Akhenaten eues_Museum.jpg

51 Invasion of the “Sea Peoples” around 1200 B.C. Egyptian Drawings of Two Different Tribes of Sea People The days of Egyptian empire were ended, and the New Kingdom expired in 1085 B.C. For the next thousand years, despite periodic revivals of strength, Egypt was dominated by Libyans, Nubians, Persians, and Macedonians.

52 Egyptian Social Pyramid Egyptian Social Classes were based on wealth, job and education

53 Social Roles Role of Women Well treated and had considerable legal rights compared to other civilizations Same legal rights as men (land, property, divorce) Left women to be economically independent Primary role was in domestic life Bear and raise children Role of Men Head of the family Men could have numerous wives but economically men had only 1 wife Laborers, craftsmen Jobs were hereditary Jobs Labor required for construction projects and was mostly filled by poor serfs Stability of Egypt thrived as skilled trades were passed from father to son Children always learned the trade from parents; seldom could choose occupation

54 Scenes of Ancient Egyptian Daily Life

55 Food Irrigation systems watered crops Main crops were barley, wheat and flax Main food was bread and beer, fish, vegetables and fruit. Only the wealthy ate meat.

56 Clothing Egypt’s weather is very warm People wore linen robes Women wore make-up and jewelry People shaved their heads and wore wigs for special occasions.

57 Homes People built homes from mud bricks More important people had better houses. Only the wealthy had “bathrooms”

58 Ancient Egyptian Housing Middle Class Homes Peasant Homes

59 An Egyptian Woman’s “Must- Haves” Perfume Wigs Mirror

60 Egyptian Scribe Scribes kept records of everything. Armed with the knowledge of writing and reading, they were highly regarded and considered themselves a superior class of men. Their high standard of living reflected their exalted status.

61 Egypt was divided up into provinces, or nomes. A governor, or nomarch, was at the head of each nome and was responsible to the pharaoh. These governors tended to amass large holding of land and power within their nomes, creating a potential rivalry with the pharaohs.

62 Egyptian Nobility

63 Egyptian Priestly Class

64 Pharaohs Egyptians were led by Pharaohs. They were priest-kings There were at least four female kings. (Hatsheput is pictured) Pharaohs ruled for over 3500 years in Egypt. 31 dynasties in all HatshepsutStatuette_MuseumOf FineArtsBoston.png

65 PoliticsPolitics How did Pharaoh's rule? Absolute rulers of the land Believed to be the earthly embodiment of the god Horus. Therefore they had the divine right to rule. People followed their orders because they believed they were from god No one would challenge the King’s authority and he could rule in peace Pharaohs owned all the land

66 The Valley of the Kings The Valley of the Kings is a place where many pharaohs were buried.

67 Archaeologist, Howard Carter (1922) Howard Carter is the archaeologist who finally discovered King Tut’s tomb. It is so famous because it was untouched by grave robbers.

68 Entrance to King “Tut’s” Tomb

69 Death Mask B. C. Using computers, this image was reconstructed using his remains

70 King Tutankhamen Tutankhamen was the son of Akhenaten. He ascended to the throne in 1333 BC, at the age of nine or ten, taking the reign name of Tutankhamen. What caused Tutankhamen 's death has been the subject of considerable debate.

71 King Tutankhamun’s Tomb

72 Shabtis: The Pharaoh’s Servants in the Afterlife

73 Treasures From Tut’s Tomb

74 End of the Pharaohs Darius III was the last Egyptian pharaoh. Egypt was then taken over by Alexander the Great. After this, Egypt was ruled as a province of the Roman Empire.

75 Life and Death Death viewed as a new beginning Afterlife common to all, regardless of social status 2 Common Principles: 1) body preservation in a lifelike form 2) the deceased must have items necessary for life in the afterworld Personal belongings were usually placed in the tomb to assist the dead in their journey into the afterlife. Text was read from the 'Book of the Dead' which was a collection of spells, charms, passwords, numbers and magical formulas for the use of the deceased in the afterlife. MA’AT

76 Egyptian Book of the Dead

77 This scene depicts what occurs after a person has died, according to the ancient Egyptians. panel of 14 judges Ka (soul /spiritual duplicate), ba (personality) ankh (form mummy took in afterlife / the key of life) Weighing of the heart vs Ma’at Judgment of scale record of the outcome

78 Mummification Egyptians who could afford to do so would have themselves mummified. They believed in a better afterlife if their body was preserved. Afterlife would be spent enjoying best of life experiences Body wrapped in linen coated with resins and oils Middle Kingdom became customary to place a mask over the face

79 Mummification Process Took out internal organs (lungs, stomach, intestines, liver), except the heart. Removed organs were put in canopic jars, that were put in the tomb with the mummy. Jars were closed with stoppers in the shape of a human, baboon, falcon, and jackal - representing the four protective spirits called the Four Sons of Horus.

80 Mummification Process Did not take out the heart because it was believed to be the intelligence and emotion of the person. Thought the brain was worthless, so they took it out through the nose and threw it away. The body was packed and covered with natron (a salty drying agent). After this the body was left for days.

81 Materials Used in Mummification

82 Preparation for the Afterlife

83 Egyptian Mummies Seti I B. C. E. Queen Tiye, wife of Amenhotep II B. C. E. Ramses II B. C. E.

84 Preparations for the Underworld Priests protected your KA, or soul- spirit ANUBIS weighs the dead person’s heart against a feather.

85 Journey to the Underworld A boat for the journey is provided for a dead pharaoh in his tomb. The dead travel on the “Solar Bark.”

86 Creation Story ATUM NUT GEB SHU TEFNUT Gods and Goddesses NUT ATUM ANUBIS MA’ATHORUS ISIS Website: Gods and GoddessesGods and Goddesses Click here for Creation StoryCreation Story

87 Religion: How did it contribute to stability? Deeply religious people Religious roots were in the worship of nature deities – their first gods were in animal forms Those responsible for creation were the most important gods (Atum is the creator God) They later developed national gods around the Middle Kingdom (Amon- local god of Thebes; gods of Dead: Osiris, Anubis, Horus and Thoth) Religion was instrumental to stability of Egypt (life, social structure, education, laws, rule of Pharaoh, economy, death, afterlife) Atum

88 What were the legal traditions? Law was governed by religious principle of Ma’at Laws were applied equally to all classes specifically protected the family (children and wives) Punishments could be quite severe- (Examples: minor crimes had 100 lashes; corrupt officials had their hands amputated; crimes resulted in a death sentence could choose: devoured by a crocodile, suicide, burning alive)

89 Egyptian Inventions Glass and Linen Paper and ink Calendar- 365 day calendar Waterclock Jewelry and metalwork

90 Egyptian Contributions Medicine- including casts, amputation, stitches Architecture- fluted columns, obelisk Mathematics-geometry, algebra, calculations, fractions Writing- symbols to represent sounds and words VideoVideo- Journals through History

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