- The story of ancient Egypt has survived for thousands of years. Ancient Egypt was one of the greatest civilizations of the past. The monuments and tombs of their Pharaohs continue to stand today. They are over 4,000 years old.
- A good portion of the Old Testament takes place in or around Egypt. Egypt also plays a major role in the life of many Biblical people from Moses and Joseph to Jesus.
- Egypt is situated in the northeast corner of the Africa.
- A large river called the River Nile flows through the country into the Mediterranean Sea. It flows for 960 miles (1545 km). This river allowed the Ancient Egyptian civilization to survive and grow. All of Egypt depended on the Nile for water, food and transportation. The Nile also provided the ancient Egyptians with fertile land which helped them to grow their crops and raise their animals. The Ancient Egyptians lived along the banks of the river Nile in Egypt. Farmers first settled in Egypt along the River Nile around 5000 B.C.
- Egypt is mainly made up of hot deserts and receives little rainfall. Without the River Nile, the area would be entirely desert. Before modern dams were built the Nile River would flood each year coating the land on either side of the river with thick back mud. This mud was ideal for growing crops, because it made the ground very fertile.
- The people in Ancient Egypt divided Egypt into two areas. The ‘red land’ was the deserts protecting Egypt on two sides. These deserts separated ancient Egypt from neighbouring countries and invading armies. The black land was the fertile land (near the Nile River) where the ancient Egyptians grew their crops.
- Two separate kingdoms (ruled by different kings) developed along the Nile River. The kingdom in Upper Egypt was known as the white crown and the kingdom in Lower Egypt was called the red crown. In about 3200 B. C. the pharaoh of the north conquered the south and Egypt became united. The pharaoh’s name was King Narmer or Menes. Menes built a new capital city called Memphis. In the Greek language the word Memphis meant “Balance of the Two Lands.”
- The people of Ancient Egypt mummified the bodies of their dead. They would remove the internal organs and use oils on the body. They would wrap the body in cloth. Items belonging to the dead person would be buried with them and also things that were believed to be needed in the after life. Some of the Pharaohs would build elaborate tombs
called pyramids. They would be buried with their riches. Over the years, many of these tombs have been robbed and destroyed, but some have been found and preserved by archaeologists.
- The Ancient Egyptians were plytheastic which means they believed in many gods and goddesses. Some gods and goddesses offered protection to the people, some took care of them when they died. Many controlled the weather and all were thought to make life run more smoothly if they were worshipped.
- The Ancient Egyptian form of writing was known as hieroglyphics. Hieroglyphics were pictures that represented words or phrases. The pictures told a story, just like modern letters, when put together, form words and words form sentences. The sentences give information or tell a story.
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