Name- ____________________ Social Studies, Six-Huebner

Name- ____________________
Social Studies, Six-Huebner
The Land Between Two Rivers
 The first know schools were set up in Sumer, where boys and possibly a few girls were
taught the new invention of writing. When graduated, they became scribeskeeping records for kings and priests.
The Location of Mesopotamia
 Mesopotamia, or the land between two rivers, had rich soil, life-giving rivers, and a
central location that brought traders from other areas.
 Mesopotamia is part of the Fertile Crescent, which goes from the Mediterranean
Sea in the east to the Persian Gulf in the south.
 The _______________ and ____________________ Rivers made Mesopotamia one of the
best places to grow crops.
Rivers of Life and Death
 Spring… melting snow picked up topsoil… flooded the land… leaving the rich soil on
the land… rivers also had fish, clay and tall, strong reeds to build boats
 The floods could also be destructive.
The First Cities
 Farming in Mesopotamia succeeded… food was in surplus… populations grew…
cities developed
Independent Cities Form
 Mesopotamia cities shared common languages and culture, but were not ruled by
a single ruler.
 Instead, the cities remained independent _______________-_______________.
Each Sumerian city had its own special _______________ or __________________, its
own ____________________, and later its own _______________.
Read “A Brief Tour of a Sumerian City” on page 33. Use the chart to list how
Sumerians lived.
In the marketplaces Sumerian houses
For a fee, scribes wrote letters for people who could not read or write.
Sumerian Religion
A ziggurat was _____________________________________________________________________.
Ziggurats were pyramids made of terraces, one on top of another, linked by ramps and
stairs. Some were more than 8 stories high.
At the top of the ziggurat was a
The Sumerians believed that gods came to earth using the ziggurat as a stairway.
Ancient Religious Beliefs
 The people of Sumer worshipped many gods and goddesses. This is known as
____________________ (poly + theism).
Sumerian _______________ warned that gods would punish people who angered
them and reward people who served them well.
Honoring the Gods
 The Sumerians honored their gods in _______________ ____________________.
Temple priests ___________________________________________________________________
_______________ sounded and _______________ burned as plates of food were laid
out for the gods and goddesses.
The Fall of Sumer
 City-states fought with each other over land and the use of river water.
The Akkadian King Sargon conquered the city-states, united them, and improved
the government and military.
Sumer and Akkadia eventually fell to Babylonia.
Farming in Mesopotamia
Farmers cultivated wheat, barley, cucumbers, and figs.
What inventions improved the way Mesopotamian people farmed?
1. _________________________
2. _________________________