Map of Egypt The Egypt Timeline 3100 B.C. King Narmer brought together Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt 2750 B.C. to 2250 B.C. Old Kingdom 2250 B.C. to 2025 B.C. First Intermediate Period 2025 B.C. to 1606 B.C. Middle Kingdom 1606 B.C. to 1539 B.C. Second Intermediate Period 1539 B.C. to 1070 B.C. New Kingdom
In around 3100 B. C. The Egyptian civilization started along the Nile River in Africa. Egypt was the longest lasting civilization of an ancient world.
At first, Egypt was made of two kingdoms, Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt. Around 3100 B.C., King Narmer of Upper Egypt took over Lower Egypt. He then formed one government for all of Egypt. Most of the history of ancient Egypt is broken into the Old, Middle and New Kingdoms. The Old Kingdom lasted from around 2750 to 2250 B.C. The first pyramids were built during the old kingdom. The Middle Kingdom lasted from around 2025 to 1606 B.C. Egypt became powerful and traded with many peoples. Lastly the New Kingdom began in 1539 B.C. and lasted until 1070 B.C. Egyptians began calling their rulers pharaohs during this time.
Egyptians built large cities, pyramids, temples, and statues. Pyramids are huge tombs which are build for kings. Also pyramids were made with large rocks that can be held in place for years and years. The remains of some ancient Egyptian tombs, temples, and cities are still standing today.
The Egyptian civilization grew on the land near the Nile River, from the Mediterranean Sea down to the top of Nubia (Nubia country south of Egypt). The Egyptians also took over many other countries. Most of Egypt was desert, so Egyptian people built large cities near the Nile river, because the land around the Nile had rich soil. People could grow crops there to feed people living in the cities. Most Egyptians were farmers. They raised wheat, barley, and melons. The people also planted fruit trees, and grew grapes in vineyards. Other Egyptians were merchants (people who sell goods). Merchants loaded ships with goods and sailed to places far away. They sold or traded their goods with other people, this way Egyptians got to learn about life in other areas/places.
There are 3 classes of people in ancient Egypt. Which were “the largest class”, “the middle class”, and “the highest class”.
The largest class was poor working people. These people worked as servants, farmers, or shepherds. The middle class was made of merchants, soldiers, craftspeople, and scribes. The highest class was made of the king and ruling family and the families of the powerful. These families usually have servants working for them.
Because of the Nile River floods, Egyptians built their houses on high ground. They used dried mud-brick to build their homes. Houses had narrow doorways and small windows high in the walls. Also woven mats covered the windows to keep out flies and desert sand. The roofs had quite a few vents or holes so it wouldn’t get to stuffy inside the house. The roofs were flat so the families could sleep or cook on the roofs when it was hot.
Homes in the country usually had a small courtyard in front (an open place surrounded by walls or buildings). People usually cooked in the courtyard, and sometimes had a small pool of water there.
Rich Egyptians had larger homes with large courtyards, the courtyards had large pools and gardens. Rooms to greet guests were on the first floor, and a hallway led into the rest of the house. The family lived in the back or upper levels of the house. There were colourful wall paintings on the walls and ceilings.
Egypt was very dry, and mostly relied on the Nile River to water the crops. The Egyptians could only grow certain kinds of food, including wheat and barley.
Egyptian farmers learned how to irrigate (bring water to dry land), they dug canals from the Nile to their land. Also they dug deep holes called storage ditches. When the Nile flooded, the canals and ditches would get filled with water which was then used for farmers to water their crops.
Barley was the main crop of the Egyptians, they used it to make bread. Egyptians also grew fruit and vegetables, such as figs, dates, grapes, lettuce, cucumbers, and olives.
Egyptians also ate meat, they raised cattle, goats, and sheep. Also they hunted animals, including gazelle and birds. Fish was an important food in Egypt, Egyptians caught and ate fish from the Nile River.
Egyptian bread from the New Kingdom
The Egyptians made wheat into bread, soup, and porridge.
The Egyptians also ate meat.
For dessert the Egyptians liked to eat dates.
Archaeologists have also found seeds which show that Egyptians grew watermelons, and other kind of melons.
Family was important to the Egyptian’s life, especially in the lower and middle class. Most families had around four or five children. In the Egyptian family the father was responsible for providing for his family, and the mother stayed home and raised the children. Small children and other female relatives lived in a special part of the house. Most of the children’s time was spent in training for their adulthood.
A bride in Ancient Egypt would be young, around 14 or 15 years old. Her husband would be around 17 to 20 years old, or older. The Ancient Egyptians were encouraged to marry young, because their life was quite short (the life span of an Egyptian was only around 40 years old). Girls from more wealthy families married a little older men. Many marriages were arranged by parents .
In Ancient Egypt, children were the main part of the family. If a couple could not have a child, they adopted a child.
Children were taught to be kind and honest, to respect their parents, to help with the family business, and to care for the elder members of their family. It was important that children learn to be caring. The Ancient Egyptians believed in “ma’at” order and justice. The Ancient Egyptians believed that you could only reach your afterlife if your heart was light. The only was your heart would be light is if you had spent your childhood and life being kind and honest. Anyone who made a mistake or lost their temper made up for it by doing good deeds to balance the scale.
Not many boys and girls went to school in Ancient Egypt. Most of these boys and girls came form rich families and went to scribal school. They went to school, so maybe one day they could enter the royal service, and maybe even be a famous pharaoh or wealthy scribe. In scribal school they still used the utensils of a scribe: a reed brush, ink make out of soot and water, and the world’s first paper papyrus.
If you weren’t going to study to be a scribe, you would most likely not go to scribal school. But some people who were not scribes did go to a scribal school to get educated. Instead you would become an apprentice. For example, if you wanted to become a doctor, you would go to work with a doctor and learn from him. If you wanted to become a baker, you would become a baker’s apprentice and work with him to learn how to be a baker.
Some children between the ages of 4 and 14 went to school to learn to read, write, and do arithmetic. When a boy turned 14 he began working in his father's profession. The girls stayed at home with their mothers to learn how to run a house.
The people of ancient Egypt were polytheistic in the Old Kingdom, the Middle Kingdom, and the New Kingdom. That means that they believed in many gods. Some of these gods were Anubis, Set, Osiris, Isis, and Horus. People believed that all of Egypt belonged to the gods, and that the Pharaoh was the representative on earth of the gods. Everything in Egypt belonged to the Pharaoh. Egyptians thought that when you died Anubis would weigh your soul against a feather, and if your soul was heavier than the feather (with bad deeds) you would be punished. As well, Egyptians thought that after you died you went to a new world. (which is just like this one) So they put everything into your grave that you would need in the next world.
The weather in Egypt was very hot in summer, the Egyptians wore simple clothes that helped them cool. Their clothes were made of a light, thin fabric called linen. Egyptians sometimes wore tunics, which is a straight, loose-fitting piece of clothing. Tunics could have short sleeves or no sleeves, and they could be different lengths. Women and older men wore tunics.
Women sometimes wore straight, sleeveless dresses that came to their ankles. And they wore short skirts while they were working. On special events/days rich women would wear fancy dresses decorated with beads and feathers.
Egyptians men also wore kilts. The clothing Egyptians wore changed with the season, men on occasion wore loincloths when they were working in the heat (a piece of cloth wrapped between the legs and around the waste). During the winter, people often wore robes over their clothes
Rich Egyptians wore jewellery to dress up their clothes. They wore necklaces, jewelled collars, bracelets, and earrings. Often there was a picture of their gods on their jewellery.
Egyptian art comes from the paintings the Egyptians in the tombs of rich people when they died. These pictures were supposed to help the dead person when he or she reached the next world. (where the Egyptians thought you lived after you died) So the paintings showed all the sorts of things that people did in their regular lives. Also a lot of people think that the Egyptians always painted in the same style, but there actually are big changes in style over the two thousand years that these tomb paintings were being painted.
Egyptian Music: People in Egypt have probably been playing music since the early Stone Age, long before there was any evidence of it. The earliest evidence of music from Egypt was about 3100 BC. (at the beginning of the Old Kingdom) There wasn’t any way of recording or writing down notes in ancient Egypt, so we don’t know for sure what Egyptian music sounded like. From pictures we do know what kind of instruments the Egyptians had. The instruments in Ancient Egypt were stringed instruments like guitars and harps. There were also wind instruments like recorders or clarinets, with reeds for the mouthpiece like clarinets today. And by the New Kingdom there were bronze trumpets. As well there were percussion instruments like drums and rattles.
Egyptian Music and Painting Egyptian painting on Papyrus Egyptian music
The Egyptians built different kinds of buildings at different times. In the early part of the Old Kingdom the Egyptians mostly built Mastabas , which is a kind of tomb with a flat roof like house. Egyptians built the amazing pyramid tombs which are not so famous. As well they built smaller buildings like houses and butcher shops. In the middle Kingdom the Mastaba tomb came back again. Then in the New Kingdom there were a lot of buildings that weren’t tombs.
Overall Egyptians were quite intelligent, they created the pyramids, and were kind, caring people. When people think of Egypt, they usually think of The amazing Nile River. The Nile River was the heart of Ancient Egypt. The Ancient Egyptian was basically broken into the Old, Middle and New Kingdoms. Many changes happened during these times .