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Global Ch. 2

Early River Valley Civilizations

Fertile Crescent rich farmland in Southwest Asia, between the Persian Gulf and the Mediterranean Sea (Mesopotamia)
Mesopotamia "land between the rivers"
city-state a city and its surrounding lands functioning as an independent political unit
dynasty a series of rulers from a single family
cultural diffusion the spreading of ideas or products from one culture to another
polytheism belief in many gods
empire a political unit in which a number of peoples or countries are controlled by a single ruler
Hammurabi leader of the Babylonian Empire that created a code of laws to unify the diverse people in his empire
delta a marshy region formed by deposits of silt at the mouth of a river
Narmer Egyptian king who united Lower and Upper Egypt
pharaoh king of ancient Egypt, considered a god as well as a political and military leader
theocracy government in which the ruler is viewed as a divine figure; a government controlled by religious leaders
pyramid a massive structure with a rectangular base and four triangular sides, like those that were built in Egypt as burial places for Old Kingdom pharaohs
mummification a process of embalming and drying corpses to prevent them from decaying
hieroglyphics an ancient Egyptian writing system in which pictures were used to represent ideas and sounds
papyrus a tall reed that grows in the Nile delta, used by the ancient Egyptians to make a paper-like material for writing on
subcontinent a large landmass that forms a distinct part of a continent
monsoon a wind that shifts in direction at certain times of each year
Harappan civilization another name for the Indus Valley civilization that arose along the Indus River, possibly as early as 7000 BC, characterized by sophisticated city planning
loess a fertile deposit of windblown soil
oracle bone one of the animal bones or tortoise shells used by ancient Chinese priests to communicate with the gods
Mandate of Heaven in Chinese history, the divine approval thought to be the basis of royal authority
dynastic cycle the historical pattern of the rise, decline, and replacement of dynasties
feudalism a political system in which nobles are granted the use of lands that legally belong to their king, in exchange for their loyalty, military service, and protection of the people who live on the land
Created by: WGZimm