Chapter 1. The Ancient and Near East: The First Civilizations MESOPOTAMIA

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1 Chapter 1 The Ancient and Near East: The First Civilizations MESOPOTAMIA

2 What are the characteristics of Civilization? 1. Urban Urban Revolution, c B.C.

3 The Earliest Civilization: Mesopotamia Mesopotamia the land between the rivers Tigris River and Euphrates River Area occupied by 5000 B.C. 1 st cities, c B.C. Why was the first civilization there? Natural resources Mud, mud, mud (clay) Reliance on irrigation and seasonal flooding that deposited rich silt

4 The Land of Sumer Sumer, B.C. Southern Mesopotamia Why do we call it Sumer? City States Eridu, Ur, Uruk, Umma, Lagash About 30 city states Population 25,000 50,000 Emergence of military leaders Kings [LUGAL in Sumerian] Theocracy The Warka Vase, c B.C.

5 Sumerian Firsts Sumerian Worshippers, ca BC.; Approx. 2 6

6 Sumerian Firsts: Cuneiform Writing Invented about 3100 B.C. Cuneiform (cuneus = wedge + form = shape ) Professional scribes Spielvogel, p. 13

7 Empires in Ancient Mesopotamia Sumerians (Early Dynastic Age), B.C. Akkadian Empire, c B.C. Who were the Akkadians? Semitic language King Sargon of Akkad Akkadian bronze of Sargon This stern faced, life size cast bronze head, with its stylized ringleted beard and carefully arranged hair, shows Mesopotamian craftsmanship at its finest. It is thought to be either King Sargon ( B.C.) or his grandson, King Naram sin (ca B.C.).

8 Empires in Ancient Mesopotamia Third Dynasty of Ur, c B.C. King Gudea of Lagash Ziggurat of Ur (restored) See Spielvogel, p. 11

9 Empires in Ancient Mesopotamia Sumerians (Early Dynastic Age) B.C. Akkadian Empire c B.C. Third Dynasty of Ur c B.C. Old Babylonian Period c B.C. Amorites King Hammurabi, B.C.

10 The Law Code of Hammurabi 282 laws Consumer protection Property rights Trade and commerce Marriage and the family Slavery Stele with Law Code of Hammurabi, Excavated by French archaeologists in 1901 at Susa, Iran, ca BC. Basalt, approx. 7 4 high. Louvre, Paris.

11 How to Read a Primary Source Document Reading a primary source document is an act of interpretation. We need to recognize our own context and biases. Our goal in using primary sources is to understand the past, not judge it. Whenever possible, use sources other than the document itself to help interpret it.

12 How to Read a Primary Source Document Gregory, pp. xi xiv 1. What is the content of the document? (What does it say?); Summarize. 2. Who created/wrote it? If we can t tell the author, can we figure out details (e.g., gender, occupation, social class, education level, intentions, political position, religious beliefs, etc.)? 3. Where did it originate? 4. When was the document created/written? Can time of creation differ from time of writing down? 5. Why was the source created/written down? What is its purpose?

13 Mesopotamian Religion Polytheism Anthropomorphic (=human like in appearance and character) Sumerian gods and their Akkadian equivalents: AN Anu UTU Shamash INANNA Ishtar NANNA Sin Mesopotamian Creation Myth: Atrahasis (Spielvogel, p. 12) What does this excerpt reveal about the religion of Mesopotamia, including the various gods and the relation of the gods to humanity? Ritual Priests and priestesses The care and feeding of the gods No immortality nor rewards and punishments after death

14 Mesopotamian Religion Epic of Gilgamesh Gilgamesh, King of Uruk, c B.C. Enkidu Utnapishtim and The Great Flood (Spielvogel, p. 15) Compare to the biblical Flood Story (Genesis Chapter 6)

15 Mesopotamian Science and Math Base 60 system (sexigesimal) Response to the needs in cultivation, irrigation and commerce Pythagorean Theorem Basic arithmetic multiplication, division, square and cube root Calendar 12 months Astronomy Divination Zodiac

16 Empires in Ancient Mesopotamia Old Babylonian Period c B.C. Amorites King Hammurabi B.C. Babylon invaded and sacked by Hittites, c B.C. Kassite Dynasty, c B.C. Neo Assyrian Dynasty (Chapter 2) Neo Babylonian Dynasty (Chapter 2)

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