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His 101 2014 ch 2 peoples, gods and empires



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  • 1. Chapter 2 Peoples, Gods and Empires 1700 – 500 B.C.E.
  • 2. Key Issues • What was the impact of migrations and new settlements on existing kingdoms? • How did the transnational networks of trade in the late Bronze Age function? • What new empires and kingdoms emerged in the Iron Age? • What is the historical importance of monotheism?
  • 3. Sir William Jones (1746-1794) Discovered that Greek, Latin, early Germanic, Celtic and Old Persian languages have startling commonalities with Sanskrit. Photo, Portrait of Sir William Jones by J. Pfselwhite, Wikipedia, accessed August 9, 2012. {{PD-US}}.
  • 4. Language Groups and Migrations • Indo-European linguistic forms: • appear in Near East around 2000 B.C.E. • Combine with indigenous linguistic groups in the Aegean Basin & produce early form of Greek • Semitic linguistic forms • Appear after 3000 B.C.E. • Assyrians, Phoenicians, Canaanites, Hebrews
  • 5. Migrations in the Early Bronze Age Timeline Minoan Thalassocra cy Centered at Crete Minoans IndoEuropean Groups enter Greek Mainland Hittite Warriors move from Anatolia Mittanians Assyrian introduce Caravan War Chariots Networks Established Mycenaean Greece 2500-1600 B.C.E. 2000-1500 B.C.E. 2000-1700 B.C.E. 2000-1800 B.C. E 1900 B.C. E 2000-1500 B.C.E. Control trade Impose in central culture and Mediterranean language. Linear A Warrior Aristocracy Chariots and Iron Weaponry Impose culture and language. Warrior Aristocracy Chariots and Iron Weaponry Perfected by Hittites in 18th century B.C.E. Adopted by Egyptians and Assyrians Used for war Established across Anatolia and Mesopotami a Cultural DIffusion IndoEuropean Groups enter Greek Mainland Warrior Kings Linear B Age of
  • 6. Eastern Mediterranean
  • 7. Minoan Thalassocracy Empire of the sea centered at Crete around 2500 B.C.E. •Minoans controlled trade around the central Mediterranean for about 1,000 years •Mysterious language (Linear A) not deciphered •Before 1600 B.C.E. Minoan civilization dominated Greek mainland Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Minoans Traders: Wall Painting From Acrotiri In Thera (Santorini) Showing Minoan Ships. Bronze Age (3200-1050 BC).
  • 8. Mycenaean Greece • Indo-European groups entered Greek mainland between 2000 and 1500 B.C.E. • Citadels along the Greek landscape • Warrior Kings • Reward: plunder and control of strategic trading sites • Trade and piracy as important economic systems • By 1400 B.C.E. Mycenaeans had subjugated Crete • Hittite ruler addressed Mycenaean King as ―my brother‖ • Mycenaean Greece: powerful king, warrior aristocracy, palace bureaucracy, complex economy and large territorial kingdoms • Linear B deciphered in early 1950’s
  • 9. Mycenaean Greece and the Age of Heroes Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Ruins Of Mycenae, UNESCO World Heritage Site, Greece, Europe",
  • 10. Assyrians and Hittites Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Hittite Sculpture, Museum Of Old Anatolian Civilizations, Ankara, Anatolia, Turkey, Asia Minor, Eurasia", Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Statue Of The Winged Bull With The Head Of A Man ('Lamassu'),
  • 11. Assyrian Caravans and Hittite Warriors • 1900 B.C.E. Assyrian caravan networks established across Anatolia and Mesopotamia • Cultural Diffusion • 2000-1700 Hittite warriors, conquerors and colonists spread out from Anatolia imposing their culture and language on other groups • Warrior aristocracy • Imposed laws and language • Chariots and iron weaponry • Sought to control trade routes for copper and arsenic • 1595 B.C.E. capture of Babylon
  • 12. Chariots • 2000-1800 B.C.E. War chariots introduced by Mittanians • Used horses rather than oxen • Archers • Perfected by Hittites during 18th century B.C.E. • • • • Lighter construction 4 spokes rather than 8 Driver and archer Armaments: shield and arrow • Hittite innovations adopted by Egyptians and Assyrians • Used for war and parades of power • ―Chariot‖ = Latin ―carrus” • A chariot of war or in a triumphal procession • English translation= ―car‖
  • 13. Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "HITTITE CHARIOT. - Neo-Hittite Stone Relief Of A War Chariot Riding Over A Defeated Enemy, 8th Century B.C.", Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Tetradrachma From Syracuse (Reverse: Triumphal Chariot)",
  • 14. Chariots, Cars & Parades Wikipedia, “Standard of UR War Panel/26th century B.C.E. Accessed, August 9, 2012, {{PD Art}} Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Eisenhower In Washington / June 1945",
  • 15. Egypt NEW KINGDOM (1550-1075 B.C.E.)
  • 16. Egypt: New Kingdom • 1550-1075 B.C.E. • Eighteenth Dynasty • New Nobility—aristocracy of military commanders • Wealth acquired through war • Plunder • Crown lands (territory given to successful commanders by the Pharaoh –and the slaves to work the land • Gold: standard of commerce and wealth • Nubian gold fields • Thutmose I control/influence Palestine and Syria • Strategy: defense through offense • Employed horse-drawn chariots
  • 17. Ahhotep I Warrior Queen of Egypt Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Egypt, Ceremonial Necklace Belonged To Ahhotep I (circa 1560-1530 B.C.), New Kingdom, Seventeenth Dynasty", Jewels and Weapons of Queen Ahhotep I, Délié, Hippolyte and Émile Béchard Planche 31 Monuments Historiques (1872). From Travelers in the Middle East Archive (TIMEA).
  • 18. New Kingdom of Egypt • Ahhotep I (c. 1560-1530) rallied Thebes to defeat Hyksos • mother of Ahmose I who expelled the Hyksos from Egypt and founded the 18th dynasty. • 18th dynasty pharaohs and new imperialism • Rise of new aristocracy: wealth acquired through warfare and conquest of foreign lands • Thutmose I (1504-1492 B.C.E.) unknown warrior who married Ahmose’s daughter
  • 19. Pharaohs and Intermarriage • Customary: Pharaoh married sister and proclaim her Queen • Heirs: Pharaoh’s liaisons with concubines or sister (unlikely that Pharaoh and sister had same mother).
  • 20. Hatshepsut’s Reign • Thutmose II married Hatshepsut • After Thutmose II died, Hatshepsut ruled as Pharaoh not as the Queen Regent. • Thutmose III was co-regent without real power until Hatshepsut died. • Thutmose III attempted to destroy or disfigure Hatshepsut’s statues and temple after her death.
  • 21. Hatshepsut’s legitimacy as Pharaoh Encyclopedia Britannica Image Quest, "AMEN-RA & HATSHEPSUT. -Amen-Ra Protecting Queen Hatshepsut On An Obelisk At Karnack, -18 Dynasty.",
  • 22. Hatshepsut (R. 1492-1479 B.C.E.) Encyclopedia Britannica Image Quest, "Seated Figure Of Hatshepsut", accessed 9 Aug 2012, Queen Hatshepsut As King. Fine Art. Encyclopedia Britannica Image Quest. Web. 9 Aug 2012 .
  • 23. Defaced head of Hatshepsut (left) Undefaced statue of Hatshepsut (right)
  • 24. Thutmose III (R. 1479-1425 B.C.E.) • 17 military campaigns • Increase Egyptian dominance in Near East • Diminish power of Mittani Kingdom • Mittani ceased to buffer Egypt from growing Assyrian strength. • Spoils of war devoted to building grand temples, tombs and monuments to the Pharaoh. • Capitol: Thebes Amon: patron god of Thebes • Amon increased in power with Pharaoh’s success and Amon became combined with Ra (the sun god). • Priests of Amon-Ra became a force with which successive Pharaohs must negotiate.
  • 25. Amon-Ra Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "EGYPT: RELIEF OF AMEN-RA. - Egyptian Chief Deity Amen-Ra (Amun-Ra) On Stone Relief From Elephantine, 18th-19th Dynasty.", accessed 9 Aug 2012,
  • 26. Thutmose III & Priests of Amon- Ra Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Thutmose III, Sixth Pharaoh Of The Eighteenth Dynasty. During The First Twenty-two Years Of Thutmose's Reign He Was Co-regent With His Stepmother, Hatshepsut, Who Was Named The Pharaoh. Thutmose III Ruled Egypt For Almost Fifty-four Years.", accessed 9 Aug 2012,
  • 27. Akhenaten (1352-1336 B.C.E.) • • • • Changed his name from Amenhotep IV to Akhenaten I Changed patron deity from Amon to Aten Built new capitol halfway between Memphis and Thebes Aten (god of light) worship was more monotheistic than Amon worship • Why did Akhenaten change gods? • Intellectual revolutionary • Reactionary who attempted to reassert traditional worship of the sun • Cagey politician attempting to undermine the power of Amon’s priests. • Akhenaten not particularly interested in military affairs
  • 28. Tutankhaten (R. 1332-1323 B.C.E.) • Changed his name to Tutankhamon (King Tut). • Reflected restoration of Amon. and the Amon priesthood to power. • Destroyed father’s city and perhaps desecrated Hatshepsut’s temple and images.
  • 29. Akhenaten & Tutankhaten Encyclopædia Britannica Image Quest, "Akhenaten Painted Limestone The Amarna Period: Latter Half Of The Eighteenth Dynasty. {{Tuthankamen's famous burial mask, on display in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.}}
  • 30. International Diplomacy in the late Bronze Age • Warfare and letters • Letters between powerful rules ―Brother‖ • Letters between smaller and powerful states ―Father‖ • Lavish gifts • Marriage alliances • Diplomats often were merchants sent to handle trade negotiations •
  • 31. Ugaritic Alphabet • 30 symbols represented consonants (vowels inferred) • Phonetic not pictographic • More conducive to use for people of multiple language backgrounds
  • 32. Trade and War • Causes of war in the late Bronze Age? • Relationship between trade and war? • How did the introduction of war chariots impact trade in the late Bronze Age? • How did trade influence peace? • Who participated in trade negotiations and territorial alliances? • Did a ―free market‖ exist in the Late Bronze Age?
  • 33. The Sea Peoples Wikipedia Commons, “Battle of the Delta” from the mortuary temple of Ramesses III at Medinet Habu, Egypt,, accessed August 9, 2012 {{PD}}
  • 34. Who were the Sea Peoples? • Nobody knows– many theories • Appeared in Nile Delta around 1207 B.C.E. • Documentary evidence • Egypt: Ramses III • 90% depopulation of mainland Greece • Hittite Empire destroyed • Technology • Iron • Less strong than Bronze • Iron more plentiful and cheaper material
  • 35. Minoan Eruption Hypothesis Wikipedia Commons, “Volcaninc Craters on Santorini,” Photo by Nia Kameni, 2006, accessed August 9, 2012, {{}}
  • 36. States of the Early Iron Age (1200500 B.C.E.) PHOENICIANS, HEBREWS, PHILISTINES, NEO-ASSYRIANS
  • 37. The States of the Early Iron Age • The Phoenicians • • • • • Roots in ancient Near East Independence of Phoenician cities Aristocratic form of government Egyptian connections and the papyrus trade Cities • Planted Mediterranean trading colonies • Established Carthage in modern Tunisia
  • 38. Phoenician colonization
  • 39. Hebrews, Philistines, Assyrians
  • 40. Mythopoeic vs. Monotheistic World View • Mythopoeic World View • World appears as a ―thou‖ • Life has individuality in man, beast, plant, heavens • Life as story rather than fact • Drought caused by a god who has own reasons for conduct not necessarily related to man’s actions • universal principles of morality or ethics did not explain fortune or misfortune • Life confronting life • Priests and Kings as mediators • Egyptian Pharaohs = gods
  • 41. Sumerian Deities
  • 42. Egyptian Deities
  • 43. The Development of Hebrew Monotheism • From monolatry to monotheism • A world conditioned by polytheism • Monolatry—exclusive worship of one god above other gods • Egyptians: Aten • Hebrews: Yahweh before Babylonian captivity • Assyrians: Assur(?) The goddess Asherah (right)
  • 44. The Development of Hebrew Monotheism • From monolatry to monotheism • • • • • Ethical considerations and commandments Regional distinctions in the Yahweh cult The Assyrian threat Demands for an exclusive monotheism The prophets • Religious and political figures • Only by worshiping Yahweh could the Hebrews combat Assyrian religious imperialism
  • 45. Hebrews in Ancient Near East • Biblical Text: Abraham moves to Canaan around 1800 B.C.E. • Historical documentary evidence (outside the Bible) • 1200 B.C.E. arrival in Canaan • By 1000 B.C.E. division between South (Judah) and North (Israel) • Northern Kingdom conquered by Assyrian Empire in 722 B.C.E. • Southern Kingdom Conquered by Chaldean Empire in 586 B.C.E. • Southern Kingdom captives returned to Jerusalem under Prophet Ezra by King Cyrus of Persia in 539 B.C.E.
  • 46. The Hebrews and Monotheism • The Hebrews and their scriptures • Origins: the Old Testament as historical resource • God and his chosen people • The covenant • The creation and the flood • The twelve tribes and the Land of Israel • Outside the Old Testament: no records of a people called ― the Hebrews‖ by other ancient civilizations before 1200 B.C.E. • Theories but wide disagreement • s.html
  • 47. Merneptah Stele (c. 1208 B.C.E.)
  • 48. The Jewish Bible (Christians-Old Testament) • Jewish tradition and historians • Bible is a library • 24 books over 1,000 years • Jewish tradition • Old Testament cannon: 450 B.C.E. “Men of the Great Assembly” • Historians • 1100 B.C.E. – 250 B.C.E. • Organization • Law • Prophets • Writings • 2 versions • Masoretic (Hebrew 2nd century A.D.) considered superior version • Septuagint (Greek 2nd century B.C.E.)
  • 49. Hebrew Monotheism • The belief that a single god is the creator and ruler of all things • Earlier Hebrew texts (written before Ezra) Yahweh is the greatest god but did not deny the existence of other gods • Upon the return from exile in Babylon, prophets insisted that there were no other gods and that Yahweh alone should be worshipped • Yahweh is transcendent: exists outside of time, nature, place and Kingship • Ethical monotheism: obligations owed by all human beings toward their creator, independent of place or political identity • Yahweh created man in His image • Yahweh is exclusively a god of righteousness • Evil comes from man not Yahweh • Micah 6:8 Yahweh requires man to live justly, love mercy and walk humbly
  • 50. The States of the Early Iron Age • The Philistines • Great national enemy of the Hebrews • Retention of a separate identity • The Pentapolis (heavily fortified citadels) • Gaza, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Ekron, and Gath • Virtually no written records
  • 51. Philistine Captives in Egypt
  • 52. Assyrian Kingdom
  • 53. Neo-Assyrian Empire • • • • Established under Ahsurnasurpahl (r. 883-859) Sargon II (r. 722-705) destroyed Northern Israel Sennacherib (r. 704-681) rebuilt Nineveh Assurbanipal (r. 669-627) • Library • Military-religious ethos • • • • • • King: hereditary monarch and earthly representative of the god, Assur Centralized government Standing force of 100,000 soldiers Offered peace and assimilation or destruction Assur demanded worship through military conquest Humiliation of gods of defeated peoples
  • 54. Assyrian Siege of Israeli city of Lachish (c. 701B.C.E.)
  • 55. Relief of Siege of Lachish from Sennacherib’s Palace
  • 56. Rise of the Persians THE PERSIAN EMPIRE (550-330 B.C.E.)
  • 57. Cyrus the Great
  • 58. The Persian Empire under Darius I, 521–486 B.C.E.
  • 59. The Rise of the Persians • The origins of the Persian empire • Emerged from obscurity when Cyrus II became ruler of all Persians • Coveted Lydian gold and silver • Croesus (King of Lydia) launched a war against the Persians (546 B.C.E.) • Cyrus defeated Lydia and annexed it to the Persian empire • Cyrus invaded Mesopotamia (539 B.C.E.)
  • 60. Croesus and Cyrus according to Herodotus Croesus was the richest man alive at the time and is credited with minting the 1st gold coins. He was warned by the Oracle at Delphi that he would destroy a great empire if he made war against the Persians. He was also advised to seek an alliance with the strongest Greek city. Croesus formed an alliance with Sparta the Egyptians and Babylonia. After an indecisive battle, Croesus disbanded for the winter but Cyrus did not. His army was destroyed at Sardis. Cyrus placed him on a pyre and lit it on fire to see if the gods would intervene. As he was burning, Apollo sent a great rain and doused the fire
  • 61. The Rise of the Persians • The consolidation of the Persian empire • Darius I (521–486 B.C.E.) • • • • • • Consolidated military gains Improved state administration (satraps) Allowed various people to retain local institutions The Royal Road (Susa to Sardis) Postal systems and spy networks Marathon (490 B.C.E.)—Greeks vs. Persians
  • 62. Persepolis Ruins
  • 63. Persian Religion • Zoroastrianism (10th -6th Century B.C.E.) dates are hotly debated based on language dates. • Zoroaster sought to purify traditional customs • There is one god—Ahura-Mazda (―the wise lord‖) • The counter deity—Ahriman • • • • A personal religion based on concept of ―free will‖ Important to the conduct of Persian government Toleration The resurrection of the dead on judgment day • Hotly contested issue: which belief about judgment day came first? Hebrew or Persian