Egypt, commonly known as “The Motherland of the World”, “Land of Civilizations” and “The Greatest Power in Human History”,
Amongst all civilizations and nations, Egypt has always maintained a unique position. Historically, Egypt is universally acknowledged as the world’s most ancient state with a unified societal entity within its current geographical borders.
Egypt has been referred to as the "Gift of the Nile" due to the river that has nourished the desert land and sustained one of the most ancient and ever-lasting civilizations in the world.
The country has long captured the world’s imagination as the magic land of the Pharaohs and their awe-inspiring Pyramids of Giza, the only one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World to survive.
|Egypt in World Map|
|Egypt in Africa Map|
Egypt, a country located in the far north -east of Africa, bordered to the north, south-east coast of the Mediterranean Sea and east coast of north-west of the Red Sea and an area of 1,002,450 square kilometers.
Egypt is a state most of the territories in Africa, but part of its territory, and the Sinai Peninsula, is located in the continent of Asia.
Egypt shares borders to the west with Libya, and South with the Sudan, and overlooking the Red Sea from the eastern side. Pass through its territory the Suez Canal that separates the Asian part of the section of Africa.
The focus of most of Egypt's population in the valley of the Nile, particularly in Greater Cairo, which nearly a quarter of the population, and Alexandria; also live most of the remaining population in the Delta and on both coasts of the Mediterranean and the Red Sea and the cities of the Suez Canal, and running these places are a 40 thousand square kilometers. While a majority of the desert area of the Republic and is not built. Most of the population in Egypt is now urban, a quarter in Cairo.
Name of Egypt
The ancient Egyptian name of the country is Kemet, which means "black land", referring to the fertile black soils of the Nile flood plains,
The name is realized as (kīmi) and (kīmə) in the Coptic stage of the Egyptian language, and appeared in early Greek as (Khēmía).
While the Hebrew name Mizraim. To be the son of Ham son of Noah, a grandfather who hails from the Egyptian people.
The name Egypt is an English rendering of the Greek name Aiguptos, which in turn is a transliteration of the Egyptian Hwt-Ptah, which means Temple of Ptah. The Egyptians themselves named their country Keme, which means the Black Land.
The Egyptian civilization was one of the great civilizations that had deep-rooted values and persistent traditions. Despite the succession of different political rules, the Egyptian people kept their customs and traditions, most of which are still prevalent in daily life and social behaviors.
Since Egyptians believed in an afterlife, they believed that people enjoyed many of the same activities after death as they did in their current life. They prepared for their afterlife by filling their tombs with small and large statutes of friends and family, and with other items they might need to keep them company and to help them have a good time in the afterlife.
The ancient Egyptians enjoyed their life to the fullest. They worked very hard, but saved time to enjoy family, friends, music, parties, swimming, fishing, hunting, sailing, and especially their children, all of which were very important to them.
|History of Egypt|
Egyptian history can be divided to the following periods:
The Predynastic Period extends over a very long span of time marking the first evidence of human civilization beginning to appear in Egypt.
It is the period that preceded the invention of writing and recording, a period that witnessed the first man recording his ideas and achievement and expressing himself using written language on papyrus.
Discovered monuments contributed in clearing the vision over the prehistoric man through adding information about his origin, culture, religious beliefs, houses, tools and tombs.
Prehistoric period is divided into three important phases, Paleolithic, Mesolithic and Neolithic Age in Egypt, the Neolithic Age witnessed man's efforts in creating stable life either from the social, economic or religious aspects. Emerging from the surrounding environment and relying on nature imitation, his thoughts carried the meaning of creation and hard work.
The Nile has been the lifeline for Egyptian culture since nomadic hunter-gatherers began living along the Nile during the Pleistocene. Traces of these early people appear in the form of artifacts and rock carvings along the terraces of the Nile and in the oases.
Along the Nile, in the 11th millennium BC, a grain-grinding culture using the earliest type of sickle blades had been replaced by another culture of hunters, fishers, and gathering people using stone tools. Evidence also indicates human habitation and cattle herding in the southwestern corner of Egypt, near the Sudan border, before 8000 BC.
Geological evidence and computer climate modeling studies suggest that natural climate changes around 8000 BC began to desiccate the extensive pastoral lands of northern Africa, eventually forming the Sahara.
Continued desiccation forced the early ancestors of the Egyptians to settle around the Nile more permanently and forced them to adopt a more sedentary lifestyle. However, the period from 9,000 to 6,000 BC has left very little in the way of archaeological evidence.
The Neolithic Age Culture is distinguished by general features, most importantly are:
1- Raising animals and livestock (like sheep, goats, oxen, pigs, and dogs) of which man availed in houses and farms
2- Learning cultivation and establishing a stable settled life.
3- Smoothing stones to create tools and producing various kinds of them.
4- Making pottery, baskets, mats, and ropes, weaving flax, and producing leather.
This age is divided into two phases:
The first phrase is the one in which tools were made of stone rather than metal. This stage is called Neolithic.
The second stage began with man using metals, particularly copper. Thus, it is called Chalcolithic Age.
The main centers of the first phase for the Neolithic Age, discovered up till now in Egypt are:
Some of the oldest known buildings were discovered in Egypt, along the southern border near Wadi Halfa.
The period between 9,000 and 6,000 BC has left very little in the way of archaeological evidence. Around 6,000 BC Neolithic settlements appear all over Egypt.
Weaving is evidenced for the first time during the Faiyum A Period, functioned for trade and protection of livestock, for protection from the flood on high ground. Also their dead were buried very close to and sometimes, inside their own settlements.
Marmadat Bany Salama
Marmadat Bany Salama is a village and an archeological site in Giza. It is a city of a great history that dates back to the Predynastic Period.
The remains of Marmadat Bani Salama proves that the inhabitants of this city discovered the ways of agriculture, storing agricultural products, pottery making and burying their dead people next to their houses or in the left side of the house.
|Marmadat Bany Salama culture|
El-Omari was located in Lower Egypt, El-Omari has not been extensively excavated that the sites were occupied from 4000 BC and continued to be inhabited until the Archaic Period.
The pottery is made with the local clay. The stone tool repertoire consists of small flakes, axes, sickles and point.
The dead were buried in abandoned storage pits near houses. The body was placed on the left side with the head to the south and facing west. Many burials contained a small pot place in front of the body
Many of the dead were buried with a very simple ornament. This was done to show some sort of authority.
Maadi is the most important Lower Egyptian prehistoric culture.
Copper was known, and some copper adzes have been found. The pottery is simple and undecorated.
People lived in small huts, partly dug into the ground. The dead were buried in cemeteries, but there were only a few burial goods.
Tasian is a site on the east bank of the Nile between Asyut and Akhmim. , The Tasian people knew cultivation and planted different cereals. Women interested in cosmetics, knew green and red colors and used them in their make-up and wore ornaments.
Pottery of Deir Tasa was distinguished with red and black edges. There was also a kind of pottery smoothed and decorated with white paintings. People in Deir Tasa produced other kinds, such as the brown and gray potteries.
Tombs of Deir Tasa took the shape of small oval holes with a small hole in its western wall designed in order to preserve the objects of the dead person. These objects were important for man in the Ancient Egypt, because of his belief in the Afterlife. The dead person was buried in fetus position and directed to the south. He was wrapped in mat, leather or linen.
El-Badari City, Asyut.
The Badarian Culture that is distinguished by discovering copper and other metals. The Badarian people were keen in developing the industry of pottery, seeking to render it smoother and more decorated. They produced red black-edged pottery and decorated their pots with drawings of plants and figures.
This culture was distinguished by its small female statues made of pottery, ivory or clay.
Women were interested in decoration, ornament, and cosmetics and used the blue and red colors in their make-up. They wore linen and leather clothes. They also used spoons, which is a behavior quite similar to what happens nowadays.
Niqada I is a city located in Qena where a huge number of potteries were found in more than 900 tombs. More than 1500 tombs had been discovered up till now.
The culture of Niqada I is distinguished with smooth red pottery, black-edged red pottery and a third kind of pottery with white paintings. Pottery at this phase had various shapes. People used it in making bowls, pots, plates and cups.
Tombs of Niqada I resembled oval holes, where the dead person was to be buried in fetus position and directed to the south. Dead people's corpses were wrapped with goatskin or mat and there were mass graves as well.
These tombs suggest that either they were family graves or that the servants of the dead were killed and buried to serve their masters in the Second Life. Also discovered are tombs for animals and humans buried together.
Niqada II culture is extends to Lower Nubia area on the south; there are not discoveries of Niqada II's ancient monuments in Delta.
The Ancient Egyptians used diorite, basalt and Alolpastr for making stony vessels. Also, they used green slate for making bird-like, fish-like and turtle-like vases. In addition, they made rectangle vases with their edges decorated shapes of birds and animal heads.
The cemetery in Niqada II is like a square or a rectangle. The Egyptians tried to outline the interior boundaries of cemetery by using mud then by ditch reeds or boards. The dead person was buried in fetus position and shrouded in flax.
Niqada III is the last phase of period of ancient Egyptian prehistory, from 3200 to 3000 BC.
It is the period during which the process of state formation, which had begun to take place in Naqada II, Naqada III extends all over Egypt.