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Ancient Egypt

by: Myrissa Webb

Ancient Egypt HIST 1010

Myrissa Webb
GPA 4.0

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Lecture on 8/26/16
World history 1
Dr. Bohannan
Class Notes
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Myrissa Webb on Friday August 26, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to HIST 1010 at Auburn University taught by Dr. Bohannan in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 16 views.


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Date Created: 08/26/16
Ancient Egypt. Ancient Egypt is in modern day Northwest Africa. It is on the Nile River and all around the Nile river was desert. The Nile ran south to North (instead of the usual north to south) so Lower Egypt was in the North and Upper Egypt was in the South. The different regions had different cultures. However, they started off as one region ruled by one king, King Namar (3100 BCE). He ruled for 60 years and then died. The pharaoh sometimes was looked upon as a god or demi-god. One thing that was very important to the Egyptians was Order. Pharaoh's job was to maintain order in chaos (Ma 'at: justice and the correct order of things; worldly order as a reflection of cosmic order.) We couldn’t read hieroglyphics (a stylized picture of an object representing a word, symbol, or sound, as found in ancient Egyptian and other writing systems) for a long time. However, some soldiers found the "Rosetta Stone" which had hieroglyphics and Greek on it. They were then able to translate the hieroglyphics because it was next to the Greek. They Egyptian hieroglyphics was different that the Mesopotamia's Cuneiform. A lot of what we know from Egypt came from the writings on Papyrus. This is how we get the word paper, yet the way paper is made is nothing like how papyrus was made. They wrote hieroglyphics when they wanted something permanent so they would write it on stone. When they wrote on papyrus, it would be quick notes written in Hieratic (easier and more well know by common Egyptians.) Not a lot of people knew how to write/read hieroglyphics, so they had scribes who devoted their lives to learning, reading, and writing hieroglyphics. The worked for Pharaoh. They Pyramid of Giza (2600-2500 BCE). Ancient Egyptian society was a highly centralized society (like a pyramid.) The pyramids were funerary monuments. There are multiple pyramids throughout Egypt. They testify to high degree of government centralization and power. Pharaoh Khufu's is the largest. They were finished 1000 years before the Israelites were in Egypt. There were originally made of marble, but later stripped of it for other building projects. A lot of people think slaves built the pyramids. However, they are wrong. Two different theories are 1) They had paid workers building it or 2) it was a part of their religious devotions to Pharaoh so they did it to please him. Egyptian Religion. Today they are predominately Muslim. In ancient Egypt they were polytheistic. Also, Pharaohs were divine and semi-divine so they were a god figure to the people. The Egyptians Book of the Dead was the Egyptians "Bible". That is how historians know most of what they know about Egyptian religion. It had a heavy emphasis on the after-life. At first, only Pharaohs got to go to Heaven. Then they added Priests and Scribes to the Heaven list. Lastly, everyone was able to get to Heaven. Basic Belief: you would go to the underworld and you would meet the god of judgement and he would weigh your soul. If the scale goes up, you could get into heaven. If not, you would not be able to go. There were a lot of holidays and rituals celebrated by the Egyptians. The rituals were performed by the priests. (Priest=Scribe) People wanted after-life so they did what the priest said because only the priest knew how to contact the gods. Overall, the priest had a monopoly of the people of Egypt. Egyptians were the first to accept Christianity as a whole. Gods. Osiris and Isis. Osiris is the husband of Isis and the brother of Seth. Seth killed Osiris and cut him up. Isis gathered all of his body parts and put him back together long enough for him to impregnate Isis. Their son was Horus. Osiris became the god of judgement. Most Pharaohs identified themselves with Horus. Pharaohs job was to keep order in Egypt. When there was chaos, the people realized that the Pharaoh was not a god and overtook him. The people believed it was sinful to go against the Pharaoh because he said he was a god. They did not disobey him. Hatshepsut. (1473-1458 BCE) Most of the Pharaohs were men. Hatshepsut was a female and the one exception. Her husband was the king and when he died the only males in his lineage were too young to rule. Therefore, she took over and was a political genius. Her P.R. was "Yes I am a woman and that is not ideal, however, I will do the best I can to rule in place of the young king." She gradually started presenting herself more and more as a man to make the people of Egypt happy. She appointed the most capable scribes and generals so that Egypt would prosper. Because of this, the people of Egypt were okay with her being queen. She moved Egypt's focus from war to trade. This made a lot of people happy because Egypt was prospering especially financially. Akhenaton. (1353-1336 BCE) Not a very fit or attractive king however in his monuments he was portrayed accurately (with a potbelly.) The monuments were very expensive. Usually, in Egyptian art they portrayed how things should be, not as they are. He attempted to make Egypt monotheistic. He worshiped Atem/Aton, the disc of the sun. This created a much simpler religion. Ramses ii (1279-1213 BCE) He was one of the great archetypical Pharaohs. He was a sort of egomaniac. He put his name over the names of earlier pharaoh's inscriptions. Even though he built many massive temples, he didn’t create all of them. Treaty of Kadesh is the oldest extant written peace treaty. Ancient Nubea. It is south of Egypt, modern Sudan. A lot of people thought it was a part of southern Egypt, however it is its own culture and entity.


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