NEST101-FinalNotes - :Archaeology...

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NEST 101 ­ Introduction to Near Eastern and Egyptian Archaeology ­ Lecture 16: Archaeology of Ancient Egypt ­ Geography and Early Exploration Wednesday, February 25, 2015 9:59 AM Introduction: Geography: Egypt is part of the continent of Africa Relatively isolated from its African neighbors Absorbed some other aspects from other regions Expansive desert on the west, desert in the east, Mediterranean sea in the north, the Nile in the south ­ well protected Inhabitants of Egypt lived with peace, and no worries of outside attack Cataracts ­ rocky outcrops in the river that make it difficult for people to navigate through them Isolation responsible for the long lived Egypt Very little change throughout Egyptian history Most outstanding feature: the Nile River More than 6,700 km in length One of the longest river in the world Hardly matched by any other river for its incredible life giving qualities Watering crops, navigation, drink, wash Not only a vital provider of water, but also brings incredible fertility in the form of rich alluvial soil carried by the highlands of eastern Africa Two sources of the Nile: the white Nile (origins in lake Victoria), the blue Nile (starts in Ethiopia) Both flows north in the city of Khartoum and they flow together from there to the Mediterranean sea First cataract marked the border of the ancient kingdom of Nubia and Egypt Two regions of Egypt Upper Egypt (southern part) Nile river valley is quite narrow Begins about the area of the first cataract right up to the city of Memphis One of the most important cities of upper Egypt: Luxor (was called Thebes) Capital of Egypt during the New Kingdom Center of the worship Amun (major temple dedicated at Luxor) Desert on either side Western Desert To the country of Libya A few oasis ­ used by ancient Egyptians Eastern Desert Extends from the Nile river to the Red Sea Old river stream that runs through the area ­ Wadi Hammamat Often left graffiti made by ancient Egyptians
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Red sea used to be in contact with other Mesopotamian people Lower Egypt (northern part) Fans out into the deltaic area Triangular shape of Egypt starting at the modern city of Cairo Cairo marks the beginning of Lower Egypt Divides into several streams Two main branches: Rosetta Branch (western stream) Damietta Branch (eastern stream) Low and flat Fertile Often finds a lot of swamps and marshes in lower Egypt Northern end on the Mediterranean sea we find the major ports of Alexandria The Nile continued… Notable feature of the Nile river is the flooding that took place once a year caused by spring and summer rainfall that occurs in eastern Africa During the flooding, the river is carrying sediments deposited all along side its banks Soil is rich in minerals ­ excellent earth Egyptians regarded this river with great reverence
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