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Early civilizations

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Early civilizations

  1. 1. Early Civilizations Civilization – complex society with the following characteristics: - cities - organized government - art - religion - class divisions - writing system
  2. 2. Early Civilizations - River valleys provided good farming conditions and easy transportation to trade - Populations and cities began to grow - Governments formed - Religions and arts developed - Writing developed as a form of communication
  3. 3. Early Civilizations - Mesopotamia - the earliest known civilization - Greek word meaning “land between the rivers” - Irrigation – the building of walls, waterways and ditches to bring water to the fields - Sumer – region in southern Mesopotamia - City-states formed - Gods and rulers rose to power - Ziggurats (temples) were built
  4. 4. Early Civilizations Sumerian Life - Most people farmed - Artisans – skilled workers who made metal products, cloth, or pottery - Others were merchants or traders - Traded tools, wheat, and barley for copper, tin and timber
  5. 5. Early Civilizations Sumerian Life - Three social classes: - Upper class – kings, priests and government officials - Middle class – artisans, merchants, farmers, and fishers - Lower class – slaves - Greatest invention was writing called cuneiform - Developed to keep track of business deals and events
  6. 6. Early Civilizations Sumerian Life - Many advances in Science and Math - Irrigation systems - Wagon wheel - Plow - Sailboat - Method of time-keeping - 12 month calendar
  7. 7. Early Civilizations Two important kings: 1) Sargon – conquered all of Mesopotamia and set up the world’s first empire Empire – a group of many different lands under one ruler 2) Hammurabi – king of Babylon, created the Babylonian Empire - best known for his law code or collection of laws

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