The embodiment, of the characteristics of a successful
Geography of Ancient Egypt
The geography of Egypt played a role in the
lifestyles of its earliest settlers.
► Egyptian civilization was created along the Nile
► The Nile flows northward for 4,100 miles, it is the
longest river in the world.
► Egypt and the Nile are located in desert
conditions, it is hot and dry, hence, Egyptian
civilization was built along the Nile in narrow
areas of land made rich by the water of the Nile.
► The term: from the Black Land to the Red Land
refers to the abrupt change from (fertile) soil to
► To the east of Egypt is the Red Sea and Sinai.
► The Mediterranean Sea is located on the north
side of the Nile.
► The Nile river flooded regularly unlike the Tigris
and Euphrates Rivers. It left behind a composite
called silt when the floods receded. It fertilized
the land, and enabled the Egyptians to grow
large amounts of food for surplus.
Upper and lower Egypt
The separation of Upper and Lower Egypt along the Nile
played a large role in Egyptian leadership
► In 3100 BC Egypt was broken up into Upper and Lower
Egypt. They each had their own ruler.
Lower Egypt was on the north part of the Nile. It was
placed in the side of the Nile containing the Nile Delta.
The Nile Delta is where the Nile opens up and drains to
the Mediterranean Sea. Nowadays the Nile Delta is too
salty and can no longer make its banks fertile.
Note: Delta- The triangular opening/ deposit placed at the
opening of a river.
Upper Egypt was on the southern part of the Nile
► In 3100 BC Upper and Lower Egypt united by a pharaoh by
the name of Menes (reined for 62 years), he created what
is called a Pschent, a double crown which combined the
Red Crown of Lower Egypt and the White Crown of Upper
► On a map it appears that Upper Egypt (south) is below
Lower Egypt (north) they are placed like this due to the flow
of the Nile River, where the highlands of East Africa is
upstream and the Mediterranean Sea is downstream.
► The rulers of Ancient Egypt are called
Pharaohs. They were seen as very
important and godly. Elaborate tombs were
built for them and statues were created in
their honor. To the Egyptians Pharaohs were
gods sent to earth to oversee them, and even
after death they remained gods; hence the
tombs made specially for them.
► Advisors helped the pharaoh control and
► The first Pharaoh (pictured here) was King
Marmer aka Menes, he changed his name for
superiority purposes. King Marmer united
upper and lower Egypt, created the Pschent
crown, ruled for 62 years, and ran based on
religious authority. (a Theocracy.)
► Pharaohs had the ability to wage war and
begin conquests. They could have their
people work for years building their tombs
and shines. They created the laws (for their
people and for trade), controlled expenses in
the economy, and obtained slaves.
Different pharaohs ruled differently, even if they
ran by the same belief system, they each had
their own ideas for the civilization.
Religion and leadership
► The Egyptians believed in polytheism, in
other words they believed in many different
► They believed that different gods controlled
and oversaw different elements and forces of
nature. For example: the god Ra (one of their
most important) is the god of the sun, aka the
sun. Isis (another important god to the
Egyptians) represents healing.
► The pharaoh Djoser (2667 BC) was the first
leader in Ancient Egypt to be seen as a god.
► Some pharaohs such as Menes ruled a
theocracy, meaning he ruled by religious
values. Other pharaohs such as Snefrue
(2613 BC- 2589 BC) used their power to
“engineer perfection” and make advances in
technology. There were also Pharaohs who
believed in militaristic power and conquests
such as Sesostris (believed to be a compound
of Seti I and Ramesesse II or Sanusret II)
who forced nubian captives to fight for him.
Religious beliefs greatly effected how pharaohs were viewed by their people
► The step pyramid was designed by the
pharaoh, Djoser,(2667-2648 B.C.)
► It took a very long time to build. Every
worker would bring a heavy rock that
would way about 10 tons. If you didn’t
do thinks correctly, you would be
► Egyptians developed a more advanced
way of written communication called
► Writing and reading were critical of high
social status created first “paper”.
► There are different symbols in different
parts of Egypt.
Records and record keeping
► Egyptians were polytheistic, they believed in gods.
►Egyptians believed in afterlife.
►The Egyptians would be judged for their deeds when they
died. They believed in reincarnation.
►Reincarnation is when people believe in after life.
►Osiris was the most powerful god of the dead. Many people
prayed for Osiris because of the belief of the Reincarnation.
►Kings and queens built great tombs, such as the pyramids, and
other Egyptians built smaller tombs.
►Egyptians preserved a dead person’s body by mummification.
This is done by embalming and drying the corpse to prevent it
►Men were to be very careful with the organs of the pharaohs.
This job was very important and must be done perfectly.
Records and record
► Egyptians changed from copper tools to bronze
tools. They did this because bronze tools were
easier to work with.
► By 200 B.C. they changed from bronze tools to
► Egyptians built their pyramid blocks very tight together.
Even today, over 4,000 years after they were built, you
cannot stick a razor sharp knife in between any two
► The blocks of the pyramids are so heavy and big that
tornadoes or even hurricanes cannot destroy them.
►There were ten days in a week, three weeks
in a month, four months in a season, three
seasons in a year, and five holy days. That
adds up to a 365-day year.
►The Egyptians were the first people to come
up with the idea of 365 days per year.
► Some of the most important workers in
ancient Egypt were the pharaohs. only
were the pharaohs kings and queens, but
they were called the “divine ones”,
because they thought themselves as
Gods. They felt as though their rule would
continue even after they were dead, in
the after life. The spirit that ruled on was
called the ka. The pharaohs required great
elaborate tombs, many of which were
pyramids. These pyramid needed a lot of
people to build them. They needed:
planners, engineers, and many workers.
► To the right is a picture of the great
pharaoh Ramesses. He ruled Egypt during
the New Kingdom. One of his greatest
accomplishments as pharaoh was when
he said “peace and brotherhood between
us forever” to stop Hittites invasions in
► The workers for the pyramids had to
make huge ramps in order for them to
slide the blocks up. They had to align
the blocks into the right shape. Not only
the outside, the workers also had to
build the elaborate maze of a tomb
inside the pyramids. The basic pyramid
had a king’s chamber, many air shafts, a
grand gallery, maybe a queen’s chamber,
and some exit chambers. It was up to
the workers to do all of this. The
working crew was made of mostly
everyone that wasn’t royalty. Even if it
was just providing the manual workers
with food and water, you were still part
of the crew.
► To the right is a picture of a re-
enactment of workers sliding a block up
a ramp, to the top of a pyramid.
► The scribes were very specific workers.
Their job was pretty much to take
dictation from the pharaohs. They were
the professional record keepers in Egypt.
Education was a very important factor in
ancient Egyptian society. The educated
man was valued at higher level then the
uneducated man. Men with education
became scribes, and that meant they
were on their way to success. Scribes
did not only cater to the pharaohs, but
wherever a learned man could be used.
They were very high up on the social
class ladder and lead very fortunate
lives. Scribes could also become wise
men of court, a leader for others or an
► To the right is a statue of a scribe, made
by an ancient artisan.
The artisans in ancient Egypt were skilled workers who crafted things by hand, like
tools weapons, potter, weaver, or sculpture. The artisans would design great
sculptures that decorated the Egyptian landscape. Many of the large statues
showed the pharaohs and their queens. These were usually outside of their
tombs and pyramids. The artisans also made and designed tools for gardening
and building. (so in a way they worked on the pyramids too.)
Chief of the artisans, the draftsman Irtysen says:
I know the secrets of the hieroglyphs, the way to put together feast offerings. All magic I
have prepared . Nothing goes by me unnoticed. Because I am an artisan excellent at my
craft, who has become the foremost at what he has learned. I know the ratios of fluids,
weigh the amount, reckon, remove, insert the tenon into the mortise so every part will be in
I know how to render the posture of a man's statue, the step of a woman's statue, the wing
strength of a dozen birds, the bearing of him who strikes a prisoner, the look an eye casts on
someone else and also make fearful the face of the sacrificial victim, the arm of him who hits
the hippopotamus, the stance of the runner.
I know how to make pigments and incrustations without letting the fire burn them, with
the water being able to wash them away.
This is an excerpt from “Mortuary stela of Irtysen” 2000 B.C, of a
man telling a bout his job as an artisan.
► During the time of the new kingdom,
Egypt had developed many advanced
cities. Such as Memphis, Thebes, and
Napata. These were great cities because
they helped Egypt thrive as a great
empire. Napata was the center for trade
between Egyptian and Nubian societies.
Another great city was Thebes, now
known as Luxor. In ancient times Luxor
was the capital city of the new kingdom.
Luxor was home of the local god called
Amon who was a moon god. Not many
cities had their own God, so this made
Luxor very important. Luxor played a
major role in getting rid of the invading
Hyksos and rebuilding the new kingdom.
► To the top right is a picture of the
ancient Luxor temple
► To the bottom right is a modern day
map of where Luxor would be.
► World History- Patterns of Interaction
By McDougal Littell
Pyramid worker information
pharaoh and scribe in formation
artisan poem excerpt
advanced city information
world history: patterns of interaction
Luxor map and Luxor temple
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