WORLD HISTORYDAY FIVE1. ANCIENT EGYPT'S CLIMATE AND GEOGRAPHY:The ancient Egyptians thought of being divided into two types of land, the "Black land" and the "Red land" (1).The black land got its name from the layer of rich, black silt that was deposited there each year after heavy rainfall in eastern Africa. This rainfall caused the Nile river to rise and overflow its banks. For thousands of years, farmers depended on the flooding of the Nile to make their farmland new again. Why? Because after the flood waters from the Nile drained away, the silt that was carried by the river was left behind on the land. This rich silt acted as a natural fertilizer, therefore helping the farmer's crops to grow. In contrast to the fertile "black land", the dry and barren lands of the Sahara were known as the "red land".The "red land" was the barren desert that protected Egypt on two sides by separating ancient Egypt from neighboring countries and invading armies. The red land of Egypt features six deserts--four major deserts, and two smaller deserts. Egypt's deserts encompass regions on either side of the Nile, coveringmore than 90 percent of the country's land surface (2). The red lands also provided the ancient Egyptians with a source for precious metals and semi-precious stones that could be used for trade with ancient Greece and Rome or used as a currency.2. WHAT ROLE DID THE NILE RIVER PLAY IN THE LIVES OF THE EGYPTIANS?: The Nile river provided the Egyptians with easy transportation, fertile soil for growing crops, a regular pattern of the rising and falling of the water, and a rich hunting ground for fish, birds, and a variety of other animals. These convenient resources and circumstances that were set enabled the Egyptians to settle down, build farms, and create food surpluses, encouraging a concentration of people that grew into villages, and then cities over time.3. DESCRIBE SOME RELIGIOUS BELIEFS OF THE EGYPTIANS AND THE SIGNIFICANCE OF PYRAMIDS:Ancient Egyptian religion was a complex system based on polytheistic beliefs and rituals. The practices of polytheistic Egyptian religion were efforts made to provide for and gain the favor of their gods. The formal religious practices were centered and focused on the pharaoh, the king of Egypt, who was by the Egyptian people, believed to hold a divine power by virtue of his position. He acted as the middle ground, the messenger between his people and the gods, and was obligated to sustain theirgods through rituals and offerings so that his people could maintain a calm or order in the universe. Ancient Egyptians built pyramids as tombs for the pharaohs and their queens. Egypt's pyramids date back from between 2750 B.C to 2150 B.C.For the Egyptians, it was of significant importance that when one of their people died, their physical body should continue in existence on earth, allowing for them to progress properly through the afterlife. So, providing proper eternal accommodation for their body after they died was very important to them. The afterlife they wished to attain was thought of to be a bigger, better version of earthly Egypt-- and in it, they could live near to their loved ones.4. WHAT KIND OF GOVERNMENT EXISTED?:The ancient Egyptian government was ruled first and foremost by the pharaoh. The pharaoh was the supreme leader- not only of the government but also of the religion (3).Pharaoh owned all of Egypt and everything in it. However, the Pharaoh couldn't run the government and all of Egypt alone, so he had a hierarchy of rulers and leadersbelow him who had their own places and ran different aspects of the government. (1) http://ancientegypt.co.uk/geography/home.html(2) http://traveltips.usatoday.com/deserts-red-land-egypt-64026.html(3) http://www.ducksters.com/history/ancient_egyptian_government.php
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