Introduction to ancient Egyptian civilization Life in ancient Egypt Ancient Egypt can be thought of as an oasis in the desert of northeastern Africa, dependent on the annual inundation of the Nile River to support its agricultural population. Between the floodplain and the hills is a variable band of low desert that supported a certain amount of game.
Religion Herodotus rightfully called the Egyptians the most religious of all men, for religion was one of the most important elements of ancient Egyptian civilization, playing a major role in the life of the state as well as in the life of the individual.
The notion of the divine made its impact felt on the most diverse of human activities. Egypt differs from other ancient Near Eastern nations, for example, in that the majority of the names for its territorial divisions or nomes referred to some symbol for the divine.
In addition, many of the cities took their names from the local temple or from some epithet or attribute of the god venerated there, and the great majority of the inhabitants bore names referring to the divine in someway.
On the other hand, the fact that the reconstruction of this civilization is based almost entirely on monuments and documents discovered within sacred enclosures, temples, or necropolises must always be borne in mind.
As a consequence, the vestiges of the past tend to place a one-sided emphasis on the religious life of the ancient Egyptians; this leaves a knowledge of their religion nonetheless indispensable for a proper understanding of Egyptian civilization as a whole.
The gods of the Egyptian pantheon can be divided into three classes. The most important consists of animals or fetishes, each originally venerated in a single city. Several goddesses bear on their heads the animals they originally represented.
Thus the goddess Mut, from the Karnak region, wears the skin of a vulture, and Selkis wears a scorpion. Satis, the goddess of the Island of Sehel and of Elephantine, often wears the crown of Upper Egypt combined with antelope horns.
This type of representation is especially typical of divinities who originated as fetishes: Cosmic gods comprise the second category, represented as a general rule in human form, as for example, Shu, the personification of air; the moon-god Khonsu; the ithyphallic god of fertility, Min; and the chthonian god of fertility, Osiris, also a king in prehistoric times.
These gods, however, were identified also with local divinities of animal origin. Thus, Shu forms with Tefnut, the personification of moisture, a pair of lions, and the goddess of the sky, Nut, is considered a cow-goddess.
To the third category belong gods personifying abstractions in human form: Theology and the Myths. As a consequence of the political evolution, which brought the cities in closer contact, the problem of the relationships between these local gods, each supreme master in its locale, developed with increasing urgency.
The establishment of divine families was a first solution. These families frequently formed a triad, composed of father, mother, and son: Families consisting of eight or nine divinities appear later.
How did the Egyptians reconcile the supremacy of the local god with the existence of the gods of other cities, whose power they never dreamed of contesting? The phenomenon of syncretism, or the identification of the gods, came into play here—the other divinities were considered manifestations or emanations of the local god.
There is a text, for example, which in regard to the primordial god Atum, indicates that the other gods are his names, created by him. Similar statements are made concerning other gods, in particular Amon. Syncretism seems to be based on the idea that the divine nature is one and universal.
Vandier — concluded from this: Were the Egyptiansin the last analysis monotheists unawares? The "Monument of Memphite theology" is of primary concern.
On the other hand, in the wisdom literature, the divinity is most of the time evoked by the word ne tter, simply "God.
Five theological systems can be reconstructed from the texts, each explaining in its own way the origin of the universe, the gods, and men. According to one cosmogony, not related to any center of worship, the god of the earth, Geb, and the goddess of the sky, Nut, of unspecified origin, created the sun.
Each evening, Nut receives him into hiding for the night, and each morning she gives him back to the world.The Ancient Dynasties.
Chinese civilization, as described in mythology, begins with Pangu (), the creator of the universe, and a succession of legendary sage-emperors and culture heroes (among them are Huang Di, Yao, and Shun) who taught the ancient Chinese to communicate and to find sustenance, clothing, and shelter.
In Ancient Egyptian history, dynasties are series of rulers sharing a common origin. They are usually, but not always, of the same family. Ancient Egypt's historical period is traditionally divided into thirty-two pharaonic dynasties.
The Ancient Dynasties. Chinese civilization, as described in mythology, begins with Pangu (), the creator of the universe, and a succession of legendary sage-emperors and culture heroes (among them are Huang Di, Yao, and Shun) who taught the ancient Chinese to communicate and to find sustenance, clothing, and shelter. Feb 08, · History Channel Documentary | Ancient China Dynasties of Power. China Dynasties of Power - Lost Ancient Civilizations. Playlist of documentaries about Chinese major dynasties. The Earliest Dynasties. Beginning in about 4, B.C.E., all of Egyptian society existed in two kingdoms, Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt. Around 3, B.C.E., Menes, the king of Upper Egypt, started the long string of dynasties by conquering Lower Egypt.
Ancient Egyptian history falls into a number of periods. The highlight of the Old Kingdom was the building of the pyramids of Giza during the 4th dynasty. The Great Pyramid was Khufu's; the other two pyramids were those of his son Khafre and grandson Menkaure.
Feb 17, · In order to understand the evolution of food in the Ancient World and certain norms that would be labelled as hygiene habits today, as with studying the Middle Ages, we need to differentiate Early Antiquity from Late Antiquity..
The former began with the appearance of writing in around 3, BC, in the case of Ancient Egypt and some Mesopotamian peoples, and lasted until the 5th century BC.5/5(9). Feb 08, · History Channel Documentary | Ancient China Dynasties of Power.
China Dynasties of Power - Lost Ancient Civilizations. Playlist of documentaries about Chinese major dynasties. Ancient China 's Trade and Economy From as early as BCE to as late as CE, China lived and prospered in the period of the dynasties (Timeline of Chinese History and Dynasties).
The dynastic period included successions of rulers who usually descended from the same family.