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Transcript
Ancient Egypt:
An Overview
Old Kingdom
• 2650 BC – 2134 BC
• Pharaohs organized a strong
central state, were absolute
rulers, and were considered
gods.
Egyptians built pyramids
at Giza!!
Middle Kingdom
• 2125 BC – 1550 BC
• Large drainage project created usable
farmland.
• Traders had contacts with Middle East and
Crete.
But corruption and
rebellion were
common!!
New Kingdom
• 1550 BC – 1295 BC
• Powerful pharaohs created a
large empire that reached the
Euphrates River.
– Hatshepsut encouraged
trade.
– Ramses II expanded
Egyptian rule to Syria.
• Egyptian power declined.
Do you think Miss
Cooney will be
my girlfriend??
Geography
• Egypt is located in
northeastern Africa.
• The Nile River runs
the length of the
country flowing south
to north.
• The climate is hot and
dry, part of the
Sahara Desert.
Geography
• Ancient Egypt was divided into
two regions: Upper and Lower
Egypt
• Lower (northern) Egypt consisted
of the Nile River's delta made by
the river as it empties into the
Mediterranean.
• Upper Egypt was the long,
narrow strip of ancient Egypt
located south of the Delta.
Google
Earth shot
of the Nile
delta and
flood
plains!
The Nile River
• The Nile was the lifeblood of
ancient Egypt. It made life
possible in the otherwise barren
desert of Egypt.
• It is the longest river in the world
(over 4,000 miles).
• It served as a source of food for
the people of ancient Egypt.
• It was the major source of water
for bathing and drinking.
• The Nile was crucial for farming
and transportation.
Denial is not
just a river
in Egypt!
Flood Plains
• The flood plains were the low strips of
fertile land located on either side of the
Nile River.
• The land was inundated (overwhelmed)
with water during the annual floods.
• When the inundation subsided, it left the
earth soaked and overlaid with a fresh
layer of black silt, which is why the area is
referred to as “Black Land.”
• This is where most of the farming
occurred.
Nile Delta
• Located in northern
Egypt where the Nile
River spreads out and
empties into the
Mediterranean Sea.
• Most fertile soil in
Africa!
Concerns about the Nile River
• Upriver, there were • Sometimes, there
light rains which
was too much rain
could result in
at river’s source,
flooding!
which lead to:
• The land was
• Wild flooding
baked in the sun
• Crops washing
so crops died.
away
• People and
animals drowning
Natural Barriers for Protection
Bordered on the south, east and west by the
Sahara Desert, and on the north by the sea, ancient
Egypt was protected from outside influences.
Let’s go
swimming!!
Religion
• Egyptians were
polytheistic, meaning
they believed in many
gods.
– Amon-Ra: Sun God
– Osiris: God of the
Underworld and of the
Nile
• The pharaoh was
believed to be a god
as well as a ruler!
Falcon Headed Sun God
Religion
• Egyptians used
stories about the
Gods to explain
events in nature.
• They believed the
sun was a god that
was born each day
and died each
night.
The eye of Ra is
watching you! No
chit-chatting!!
Religion
• Book of the Dead: a description of the
ancient Egyptian idea of the afterlife and
instructions to allow the dead to pass
through obstacles in the afterlife
– Placed in the coffin or burial chamber of the
deceased
• Practiced mummification, the act of
preserving a dead body from
decomposition
Mummy Dearest!
• Preserving a body took about 70 days
• All internal organs removed from body by
a hook through the nose -- except the
heart!
– The heart was believed to be the home of the
soul.
• Body covered a type of salt to absorb the
water and wrapped in linens.
Mummy Dearest!
• Egyptians were buried with
all the possessions they
might need in the afterlife.
• The Egyptians believed the
soul appeared before the
god Osiris and a group of
judges.
• The dead person’s heart
was placed on one side of a
scale and the feather of truth
Mummy Dearest
• A balanced scale meant the soul would
live forever.
• An unbalanced scale meant the soul was
heavy with sin.
• Egyptians believed the sinful soul would
be eaten by an animal that was part
crocodile, lion, and hippopotamus!
Book of the Dead
Collection of spells, hymns, and prayers intended to secure a
safe passage to the underworld for the deceased
What is hieroglyphics?
• Hieroglyphics is the picture-writing used in
ancient Egypt.
• The word ‘hieroglyphic’ is made up of two Greek
words - hieros, which means sacred, and
glyphe, which means carving.
• The Egyptian hieroglyphic writing system
consists of several hundred picture signs.
– The signs can be divided into two classes:
phonograms and ideograms .
Phonograms
represent sounds,
much as alphabet
letters do.
Ideograms are signs
that represent whole
words or concepts.
2
Social Classes
PHARAOH
Earthly leader; considered a god
HIGH PRIESTS AND PRIESTESSES
Served gods and goddesses
NOBLES
Fought pharaoh’s wars
MERCHANTS, SCRIBES, AND ARTISANS
Made furniture, jewelry, and fabrics for
pharaohs and nobles, and provided for other needs
PEASANT FARMERS AND SLAVES
Worked in the fields and served the pharaoh
Clothing
• Women: Long sleeveless linen dresses
• Men: Knee-length linen skirts sometimes
with short-sleeved shirts
Men and women wore
jewelry and makeup.
Wealthy often wore fancy
wigs, like mine!
Jobs
• Farmers worked
• Women were in
for the government
charge of household
during the flooding.
matters. They could
own property and had
• Men were artists,
full legal rights.
carpenters,
builders, and
• Some women were
stonecutters.
craftworkers but most
• They worked ten days
were weavers.
and had one day off.
Children
• Children were seen
as gifts from the gods.
• They played games
such as leap frog,
tug-of-war, and
wrestling.
• Girls learned weaving
and household skills
from their mothers.
• Boys learned their
father’s trade.
Upper class
children learned
math,
literature, and
writing.
Isn’t
Social
Studies
fun!?