WH1-2: Civilizations in the Ancient Middle East Sumerians

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WH1-2: Civilizations in the Ancient Middle East

People/Brief History

• One of the oldest civilizations starting around ____________________________.

• No one knows where they came from, but are believed to be the ___________________________ to settle in the _____________________________________

• Made up of numerous city-states that were constantly fighting over land.

• Their texts include the first mention of the ‘_________________________’ later talked about in the Torah and Bible.

Contributions to civilization

• ____________________________________ – One of the oldest systems of writing and later adopted by cultures including the Akkadians and Hittites.

• Astronomy – Mapped _________________________ that are still used today

• Arithmetic – Invented math by combining and modifying different number systems from other civilizations

• Agriculture – First people to cultivate crop and animals on a grand scale; including _________________, _________________________, and _____________________.


People/Brief History

• _______________________________________________ assumed power of and began conquering the area around Mesopotamia creating the world's first empire (this included the Sumerians).

• Sargon’s Akkadian dynasty lasted around ____________ years before it fell.

• The “Curse of Akkad” is claimed to have destroyed this culture.


People/Brief History

• Invaders from the ______________________________________ entered Mesopotamia & seized the city-state of _______________________________.

________________________________ became the king of Babylon

• Hammurabi took control of the city-states in lower Mesopotamia & established the Babylonian Empire

• The Babylonians adopted many Sumerian ways

Contributions to civilization


o Consisting of _______________________, the code affected all aspects of life, including farming, trade, wages & punishments.

o Hammurabi claimed these laws came from the sun god

• The Babylonians believed in ___________________________, the idea that a person’s life is affected by the movement & position of stars, planets & other heavenly bodies.


People/Brief History

__________________________ tribesmen from Asia Minor called Hittites swept into Mesopotamia & captured _________________________.

• Being far from their homeland, the Hittites eventually withdrew from Babylonia, but continued to occupy the western part of the ______________________________.

Contributions to civilization

• The Hittites were the 1st people to make widespread use of _________________________________________________.

• They used _____________________________________ in battle

• A system of laws was set up with punishments that were ___________________________ than the Code of Hammurabi


People/Brief History

• The ideas & beliefs of the Hebrews, or Jews, are known as ____________________________.

• The founder of Judaism was ________________________. He led his people out of Mesopotamia because the group’s belief in ______________________ ran against the accepted practice of worshipping many gods.

• The Hebrews lived in _____________ for several hundred years, but were forced into __________________. According to the Bible, _________________ began leading the Hebrews (or ______________________________) toward a new homeland in _______________________ (also called “Palestine” & “Israel”.) On the way to Canaan, Moses went up Mount Sinai & brought back the ______________________________________, laws of moral conduct revealed to him by the Hebrew god.

• The Hebrews recorded their history & religious beliefs in the __________________________. The “Old Testament”, which is the 1st part of the Christian Bible, tells how:

o _______________ united the _________ Hebrew tribes, defeated the rival Philistines & became the 1st Hebrew king.

o _____________________ slew the Philistine warrior ____________________, became the 2nd king of Israel & made ___________________________ his capital.

o ______________________ succeeded his father David, and was widely admired for his ___________________ & leadership; and built the magnificent Temple of Jehovah.

Contributions to civilization

• The Hebrews practiced ______________________; the worship of only one god, known as Yahweh in the beginning

o Also referred to as ___________ and ______________(The Name)

______________________, the Hebrew religion, stressed high moral conduct (as seen in the Ten Commandments)

• Judaism influenced ________________________ & __________________ through its emphasis on monotheism & moral principles.

People/Brief History

• The Phoenicians lived north of ____________________ along the Mediterranean Sea.

• They became skilled ___________________ & _________________, and traded throughout the Mediterranean world. They were the greatest seafaring _______________ of ancient times.

• The Phoenicians established many _______________, including the great city of _________________ in North Africa.

Contributions to civilization

• Phoenician traders carried the products & cultures of the Middle East to _______________________________________.

• The most notable contribution of these people was the _______________________. The Greeks & Romans later made some changes that resulted in the alphabet we use today.


People/Brief History

• The Assyrians were ruthless _______________________who overran Phoenicia, Palestine, Babylonia & other parts of the Middle East.

• Their _____________ was the largest one the world had seen at that time.

• In battle, the Assyrians used ______________ with iron-tipped arrows, iron spears & swords and battering rams to break through brick walls that guarded cities. Their armies were the 1st to use ________________________________________________.

• The hated Assyrians terrorized the people with acts of ________________ & __________________.

• The Assyrian empire lasted for ______ years before being destroyed by the _______________ & ___________________.

Contributions to civilization

• The Assyrians were the 1st people to set up an effective system for ______________________________________________.

• A great _______________ was built in the capital city of ________________. It contained thousands of clay tablets which enabled historians to learn about life in the ancient Middle East.


People/Brief History

• The Chaldeans helped overthrow the _______________________.

• They took control of the __________________________ & established the 2nd Babylonian Empire.

• The Chaldeans were led by their strong king __________________________. He rebuilt Babylon, which became the largest & most impressive city in the ancient world.

Contributions to civilization

• The Chaldeans built the beautiful ______________________________ on rooftops in Babylon. The Greeks called them one of the ____________________________________.

The field of ____________________ was further advanced by accurate observations of the sun, moon, planets & stars.


People/Brief History

• The Chaldean Empire declined after the death of _________________________________.

• The _________________________________________ extended for 3,000 miles from Egypt to India. It lasted for about _________ years, reaching its height under King ____________________________.

Contributions to civilization

• A well-organized government was set up in which:

o The empire was divided into provinces, each direct by a ______________ (governor)

o ____________ were built to speed trade and the movement of the armies

o Conquered peoples were allowed to keep their ________________, ___________ & _________________________

_____________________________________, the exchange of ways of living, took place within various parts of the empire.

• The Persians accepted the teachings of the prophet _______________________, who said that the world was a struggle between good & evil.

• After death, people who lived good lives would go to _______________, while those who were evil would be sent to hell. This idea of a ________________________________ is believed to have influenced Judaism & Christianity.

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