Ancient Civilizations

What is a Civilization?
 The mystery of being human….survival, intelligence,
leaders, competition, emotions, greed
 When did it all begin…putting the pieces together
 Archaeologists: “Diggers”: scientists who study past
human life: putting pieces together for the whole story
 Artifacts: items from the past such as tools, pottery,
bones, arrowheads, shelters. Fossils
 Anthropologist: “the man”: scientists who study past
human life, concentrating on the human himself
 Historians: people who study the past, use of primary
and secondary sources.
Primary and Secondary Sources
 Primary Source: first hand information, “I was there”, witnessed the
information: current newspapers/magazines, pictures/drawings, diaries,
journals, document, map, autobiography
 personal correspondence and diaries
works of art and literature
speeches and oral histories
audio and video recordings
photographs and posters
newspaper ads and stories
laws and legislative hearings
census or demographic records
plant and animal specimens
coins and tools
More Primary and Secondary
 Secondary Source: information that comes from
research, “after the fact”…passing information on
 Research papers, biographies, reports…history
books, historical magazines,
Primary and Secondary Sources:
Another Look….
How long ago?
 Use of scientific method: a procedure based on logic
and reason…conducted in an orderly
manner…looking to find answers
 1 method: radiocarbon dating: study the amount of
carbon in an item/artifact
 2. deoxyribonucleic acid: DNA, genetic make-up of
The Dig…
 1. Let’s look here….a new site
 2. create a site grid: the method of dividing the site
into sections…easier to keep track of what was found
where…level of the find
 3. The higher the level find the most recent the item
 4. The tools: shovels, trowels, wooden picks,
brushes, sifters….(delicate)
 5. Every item is a piece of information
 6. Environmental information: study soil, plant
Early Man
 It is all a theory: an idea of how something may have
happened…need to find clues to prove a theory
 Early human being: Homo sapiens: lived in central east
Africa: 100,000 to 200,000 years ago: similar appearance to
modern man
 Movement: modern man moved, migrated, to other parts of
Africa, intoAsia…..impact of movement??????
 Other early human beings: Homo erectus and Neanderthals:
moved throughout Africa and Asia
 Beringia: area where Asia and North America met…Homo
Sapiens move throughout North and South America
Just Roaming
 1. Early man did not live in organized communities
 2. They were hunters and gatherers…wanderers
 3. Survival was most important…looking for food
 4. Man uses intelligence to survive…began to settle
 5. Plants seeds, grow crops, tame animals, build
 6. Development of laws…government
What makes a Civilization?
 1. A civilization is an advanced society with agriculture, division of
labor, multiple cities, organized religion, science/technology, some
form of government, and a written language.
 Five Elements of a Civilization
 A. People learn how to grow crops and domesticate animals
 B. People build permanent homes…settlements, towns, cities
 C. People began to develop technology..advanced tools and
weapons: wheel, spear, plow
 D. People made intellectual achievements…use of the mind:
THINKING: PROBLEM SOLVING: writing, calendar
 E. People began to create rules/laws. Need for order.
Beginning of a government
Today’s Civilization
 Create a picture of our civilization today including
all 5 elements of a civilization.
 Be creative
15 points
 In color
10 points
 Neatness matters
10 points
 Show details/examples 25 points
 Give a title
10 points
 Total Points
70 points
Begin by looking, reading, and
 A time line: pp 82: write 5 statements based on the
information pp 82—83
 A map pp 84-85: Write 5 statements based on the
information on pp 84—85…what is the title of this
 Let’s read: “Gilgamesh the King”…Response Corner
The Land Between Two
 Importance of Major River Systems
 River systems formed valleys
 Importance of water—uses
 River valleys location of permanent settlements
River Valley….
 4 major river systems….earliest civilizations
 Tigris-Euphrates: southwestern Asia
 Nile River: Africa
 Indus river: southern Asia
 Huang He: eastern Asia
The Tigris and Euphrates
 Civilization: Sumer: located in fertile crescent of
Tigris and Euphrates River valley
 Very fertile land
 Smaller rivers flow into the Tigris and Euphrates
Rivers: tributaries
 Tigris meets Euphrates: flow into Persian Gulf
 Land between Tigris and Euphrates: Mesopotamia:
“land between the rivers”
 Sumer became first civilization in Mesopotamia
Need for Irrigation
 Flooding: saint and demon…fertile soil but floods
could destroy
 Northern Mesopotamia: enough rainfall
 Not true of Southern Mesopotamia…hot sun…baked
 Learned to make use of the river…irrigation…water
the water
 Building of dikes to protect from floods
 Dams: to control the flow of river water
 Allowed for farming to become a way of life
First Settlement in Sumer
 First known settlement in southern Mesopotamia:
Ubaid: 5000 BC
 Grew enough crops to survive
 Use of stone hoes and clay sickles
 Wheat and barley
 Lived close to fields in huts of reeds and mud
 Worshiped gods in one-room temples
Changes in Ubaid
 More advanced irrigation
 Surplus crops
 Need for rules and regulations…need for
 Larger homes…larger temples
 Painted pottery
 Ubaid culture: foundation for civilization in
Reading a
 Pp 100—101: Read
 Practice the skill: 1--5
Independent Sumerian
 The Emergence of Cities
 Sumerian cities: Ur, Kish, Uruk, Eridu: grew to be
powerful..cities of culture and achievement
 By 3000 BC: 12 cities had developed into citi-states
 Characteristics of citi-states
 independent
 Walled city
 Land around city
 Own government
 Populations of over 5,000..eventually over 60,000
 Individual citi-states became part of the civilization
 Common language, writing, arts, and crafts among the entire
Government and Religion
 Government: made up of small group of leaders and a chief
 Made laws, settled disputes, decided what work had to be
done, waged war
 Need for ONE leader: idea of monarchy, a government ruled
by a king or queen
 Monarchy passed on by blood-line
 King had complete control: autocracy…rule by one
 King had power, authority, and legitimacy
 Sumerians practiced polytheism: belief in many gods: one god
for each natural event or element of life: god of agriculture, god
of transportation, god of war
 Gods must be kept pleased…worshiped the gods in temples
 Agricultural Techniques: innovations: new ways of
doing tasks, problem solving: creative: innovative
 Example: irrigation
 From clay…copper….bronze
 Each new way: innovation: life improved, more
productive, benefits
 Passing on information: almanacs…giving advice:
planting, irrigation, crops
 Land critical element of Sumerian life
 How much do we have????...need for measurement
 iku or ikum: the field: an iku equaled 37,600 square
 From iku to acre: one acre equals 43,560 square feet
 Measurement for weight/volume: quart
 Sumerian numbers based on 60….our number
system developed FROM the Sumerian number
system ( hours, minutes, seconds)
 Sumerian calendar: 360 day
 Use what you have…few trees in southern Mesopotamia but
plenty of MUD..make bricks out of mud
 Building of houses: flat-roofed, built close together, facing an
open court, thick walls: cool in summer, warm in winter
 Higher your rank…higher your house, more detail
 Ziggurat: temple, highest and tallest building, as wealth and
power grew so did ziggurat
 Top of each ziggurat a shrine for city’s god
 Other buildings built around the of activity
 Wheels: Sumerians attached wheels to carts: twowheeled/four wheeled
 Chariots pulled by donkeys or oxen
 Use of caravans
 Boat transportation: built like basket made from
reeds and covered by animal skins: mast and sail in
center; first sailboat
 Also canoes
Writing and Literature
 Sumerians: first written records: clay tablet in Kish
3500 BC: picture symbols that recorded trade
 Clay tablets found at Uruk: writing system:
cuneiform: wedge shaped symbols: over 700
 Scribes: those people who knew how to write;
recorded history: very important
Your turn
 Make an alphabet in cuneiform and then write three
words using your alphabet. Symbols in color.
Daily Life in Sumer
 Sumerian cities: center of trade, religion, government
 Key to Sumer: agriculture: meat, fish, grain: surplus:
trade: money: power
 Government and Law: more important/closer to ziggurat
 Role of government: trade, settle disputes, collect taxes,
oversaw temples and monuments
 Rights given to people, except in time of war
 Property rights/land and animals taken
 More taxes to support a war
More daily life…
 Urukagina: ruler of Lagash: laws to prevent
government leaders or wealthy from taking
advantage of poor
 Ur-Nammu: leader of Ur…laws written down: if
you do…then this will happen
 7 laws carved on monument: written
government…oldest know record of ancient law
Life goes on…
 Specialization of labor: skills and information to do ONE
job WELL
 Traded services with each other…I give give me
 Occupations: priests, government officials, scribes,
craftsmen, merchants, farmers, fishermen
 Government officials: building projects, distribution of
food, schools, taxes
 Scribes: records, wrote letters, stories, songs
 Craftsmen: jewelers: lapis lazuli, carpenters: ships
 Weavers, potters, stonemasons, bricklayers
 Merchants: buying and selling
 Sumerians: wheat, barley, metal tools for wood salt,
precious stones, copper and tin
Pleasing the Gods
 Mother nature: storms, insects…impact on life
 Sumerians worshipped gods: deities…gods who
controlled nature
 Offered gifts to please the gods
 Worshipped thousands of gods
 Most important: air god, Enlil…water god, Enki,
also god of wisdom
Social Structure of
 Social classes: a division of the people based on
power and wealth
 Highest rank: king, nobles, priests, military leaders
 Middle class: merchants, scribes, craft workers,
 Could move up the “social ladder”: work and effort
 Lowest rank: slaves: debtors
 Sumerian women: more rights than most
civilization: could own property, divorce, could be
priestesses, or scribes
The First Empires
Akkadian Empire
Sumerian city-states: wealth: war
Sumerians defeated by Sargon and his army
Sargon: defeated…defeated…defeated…across all of
Mesopotamia…building an empire
Capital city of empire: Akkad/Akkadian Empire
Sargon became emperor, ruled by military rule, kept a standing
Governors appointed to control conquered cities, paid tribute to
Empire stretched from what is now Iran to the Mediterranean
Empire will fall
Hammurabi and the
 1790—1750 BC: Hammurabi, king of Babylon….united
most of Mesopotamia
 Became the Babylonian empire
 Encouraged trade, agriculture, irrigation
 Instituted a fair tax system
 Code of Hammurabi: one collection of laws for all of
Babylonian Empire (national laws)
 Consisted of 282 laws: family relations, taxes, land and
business deals, trade, loans, debts, crimes…”so that the
strong should not harm the weak.”
 “eye for an eye”
 Babylonian Empire falls around 1600 BC
Hammurabi and His
Kassite and Assyrian
 1600’s BC: Hittites captured and looted Babylon
 Next came the Kassites…ruled for more than 500
years…adopted Babylonian way of life
 Next: Assyrian Empire: wanted to control trade routes…new
weapons to defeat: battering ram, lance
 By 700 BC: Assyrian largest empire in world..all of
Mesopotamia, present-day Turkey, Egypt, Persian Gulf area
 Developed paved roads…postal system: united empire…locks
that opened with keys, magnifying glass, first libraries
 Assyrian Empire falls in 600 BC…New Babylonian
Empire…ruler Nebuchadnezar: Hanging Gardens of
Babylon…one of the Seven Wonders of the World
Hanging Gardens
Another Picture
Skill Time: Map
 Using the map on page 123 answer the following
 A. What is the title of the map
 B. Name 4 bodies of water found on the map
 C Name 5 cities found on the map
 D. What information is found in the key?
A Review
Mesopotamia Rap