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“The Fertile Crescent”

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1 “The Fertile Crescent”
Ancient Mesopotamia “The Fertile Crescent”

2 What is Mesopotamia? Mesopotamia means “The Land Between Two Rivers” in Greek. It is not a country! Called “The Fertile Crescent” because it is good for growing crops and shaped like a crescent of a moon.


4 Why settle in Mesopotamia?
There are two rivers here that make farming possible –the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers!!! These rivers are very different from the Nile though – rough rapids, unpredictable flooding + hard to travel People establish cities by these rivers but they are not united under one government like in Egypt. The first civilizations began here around 3500 B.C. with people setting up different city-states. Together, the early city-states eventually become known as the land of Sumer


6 City-states The word “state” means government and laws. (State of Democracy for example) New York “State” means that the people in NY have different laws and rules from those living in the “State” of Pennsylvania. “City-states” of Mesopotamia are different cities that have their own laws and governments. They are like individual nations all with their own laws and leaders All of the early city-states of Mesopotamia become known as the land of Sumer


8 What Groups Will Live in Here?
Sumerians Babylonians Assyrians Israelites Chaldeans Phoenicians Persians Alexander the Great (Greece) Parthians (During the time of Rome) Today it is Modern Day Iraq!

9 The Tigris and Euphrates Rivers
These rivers were extremely important to the people of ancient Mesopotamia just like the Nile River and Egyptians. However, these were also very quick moving and unpredictable rivers which caused much damage and death. Very different from the gentle and reliable Nile River! Mesopotamians had to learn how to control the rivers in order to use them!

10 How is Mesopotamia similar to Egypt?
Both had farming communities around 10,000 B.C. Civilizations begin to occur in both areas around 3,000 B.C. Both have early writing – hieroglyphics in Egypt and Cuneiform in Mesopotamia. Climates are similar – dry, hot lands. Without the rivers, civilization doesn’t occur! Both societies are polytheistic. Incredible buildings and inventions!

11 How is Mesopotamia different from Egypt?
Their rivers are vastly different. The Tigris and Euphrates flood the land rapidly and need to be controlled by the people. The T and E don’t connect the land like the Nile = difficult to keep the area under the control. Individual city-states form in Mesopotamia that each have their own government and laws. Very different from the kingdoms of Egypt. Mesopotamia is a land of instability and fighting which leads to many different rulers over time – very different from the stability of the Egyptian Pharaohs!

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