Development of farming in the Middle East.
Patriarchal society begins.
The main competitor to a sedentary agriculture was a nomadic herding way of life.
Nomadic societies had a lot of positive influence on settled peoples.
Introduction of writing, bronze metalwork, wheel, plow.
Developed cuneiform alphabet.
Number system based on 10,60, and 360.
Founded the science of astronomy.
Ziggurats: religious temples where rituals were conducted.
Polytheism, deifyed nature, afterlife(Hell).
City-states, with king holding divine power.
Slavery included prisoners of war.
Egypt civilizations arises.
Benefited from trade and technological influence of Mesopotamia.
Retained unified state throughout most of it's history due to isolation.
Pharaoh held immense divine power.
Economy was more fully government-directed than Mesopotamia.
2700 BCE: pyramids start being built as tombs.
Mathematics was advanced(24 hour day), and art was lively. Architectural forms were quite influential not only in Egypt but throughout the Mediterranean.
Major cities like Harappa and Mohenjo Daro are established.
Indus River had trade with Mesopotamia, but they developed their own distinctive alphabet and artistic form.
Indo-European migrants called Aryans invaded and combined their religious and political ideas with those that had taken root in the early cities.
Yellow River Valley Civilization.
Developed in considerable isolation, although some trade with India and Middle East is established.
History is part fact, part fiction.
2000 BCE: Chinese had advanced technology and an elaborate intellectual life. Learned how to use horses, pottery, and bronze.
1500 BCE:Shang dynasty, ended by invasions.
Mandate of Heaven.
1000 BCE: Iron and coal working introduced. Ideographic writing.
No massive monuments but simple houses.
Hammurabi's Law Code: First written law code, demonstrated stratification with harsher punishments for lower classes than upper classes. Demonstrated importance of agriculture, with laws pertaining to animals.
Persians and Assyrians create large new empires in the Middle East.
600 BCE-224 CE
Zhou used a feudal government, which means the social classes owed loyalty to the class above them. Extended territory by taking over Yangtze River Valley. Heightened focus of central government.
The Zhou banned human sacrifice, promoted linguistic unity, and emphasized Confucianism. The Mandate of Heaven emerged during the Zhou Dynasty, making the the emperors "sons of God". This put fear into the people and lessened any thoughts of revolt. The Zhou expanded the Chinese Empire to the Yangtze River. Eventually, expansion led to conflicts with feudal lords in different regions and the Age of Warring States. The Wars began the decline of the Zhou Dynasty.
The Zhou were feudal and aristocratic, which means there was regional power. The Qin were legalist. The Qin were centralized. And Shi Huangdi, the sole ruler of the Qin dynasty, was heavily opposed to Daoism, because Daoism gave power to the people. The Qin were also centralized with authority. Shi Huangdi eliminated regional rulers so he could have more power. The Han expanded the power of the bureaucracy, as opposed to the autocratic rule of the Qin. Both the Qin and Han attacked local landlords. Han created examinations to produce more skilled bureaucrats, to have a more effective checks and balance system on the emperor.
The Zhou endorsed Confucianism during it’s fall because the thinkers and religious prophets began to question Chinese traditions. Qin supported legalism and opposed Daoism and Confucianism, which gave less power to the common people. The Qin burned books on Daoism and Confucianism because he thought all knowledge should be supporting his autocratic rule, which supports his ideas on social hierarchy. Although, the Qin provided some extremely positive attributes of China. China was unified through a single language under the Qin. During the Han period, trade on the silk road started, but merchants, although extremely wealthy, were still not able to rise in the social class. The Han supported Daoism because they believed in harmony and unification of the common people. The Han’s support of Daoism of and Confucianism also gave more power to the lower classes. The Han wanted to unite the people because Daoism, the religion, promised a better life through a harmonious and virtuous life.
Zhou dynasty begins to decline. The Age of Warring States.
Chinese philosopher who emphasized personal virtue. He believed in a patriarchal society with respect for social superiors. He shunned abusive power. Emphasized harmony and balance, and the ruler should possess virtue.
Daoism filled a void that Confucianism and Legalism could not fill. Appealed to elaborate spirituality. Added sense of mystery to nature. Believed in humility and frugal living. It spread to peasants.
Zhou Dynasty was divided into 8 states who fought. Ended when Qin Dynasty conquered them all.
Shi Huangdi was the sole ruler of this dynasty. His attacks on intellectuals, high taxes, and the building of the Great Wall made him fiercely unpopular.
Shi Huangdi crushed regional power by inviting the regional landlords to court. He made sure his bureaucrats were not aristocrats, therefore they would have loyalty to him.
Unified China through standardized coinage, weights and measures, and a single written language for all of China.
Promoted legalism and opposed Confucianism and Daoism. Legalism supported his autocratic rule and his idea of social hierarchy. He burned books on Daoism and Confucianism. The Qin had centralized power.
The Han rounded out China's basic political and intellectual structure. They reduced the brutal oppression of the Qin. They expanded trade through conquest, but enforced peace throughout China.
They improved the state bureaucracy by creating examinations and training their bureaucrats. People from lower ranks were occasionally recruited to become bureaucrats. The bureaucracy limited and checked the arbitrary power of the emperor.
The Han encouraged Daoism and Confucianism to promote happiness and unity in the lower classes.
The Han's weakened central control and invasions by the Huns led to their decline.
Increased bureaucracy; examinations, spread of confucianism.
Aryans destroy the river valley civilizations.
A formative period where the Aryans came to terms with sedentary agriculture but also had their own impact on the culture and social structure of their new home. The extended territory to the Ganges.
Sanskrit was the first literary language of the Aryans.
They created sacred books called the Vedas.
The first epic: Rig-Veda.
India's greatest epic poem: Mahabharata
Ramayana was another epic poem.
Upanishads: Epic poems with a more mystical religious flavour.
The Aryans created tight levels of village organization. The caste system was created as a means of establishing relationships with the indigenous people.
Social classes: Brahmans(priestly class), Kshatriyas(warriors), Vaisyas(traders and farmers), Sudra(worked on estates), and untouchables(awful jobs like hauling the dead or refuse).
The Aryans also brought a new polytheistic religion to India. It served as the basis for Hinduism, but Hinduism added reincarnation.
Religion: Hinduism and Buddhism were very similar with reincarnation, but differed because Buddhism disagreed with caste. Hinduism was more popular because of the Brahmans and the Guptas supporting it strongly. Hinduism also showed more of a mystical side.
Kamasutra: Laws of love, 4th century CE.
Classical stories were often secular, and Indian drama also flourished with romantic themes.
Science and Mathematics: Astronomy and Medicine. Calculated length of solar year, understood rotation of earth on it's axis, predicted and explained eclipses, developed a theory of gravity, and identified seven planets. Medicine was hampered by religious constraints to dissect, but still bone setting and plastic surgery was improved.
Mathematics: Number system we use today. Concept of negative numbers, zero, decimal system, square roots, table of sines, and computed value of pi more accurately than Greeks.
Art: Stupas and stylized, lively sculptures and paintings.
Patriarchal, tight knit families. The caste system assigned people to occupations and marriages.
Economy: Invented new uses for chemistry, and their steel was the best in the world. Techniques in ironmaking and textiles were advanced. Emphasis on trade and merchant activity. The Indian economy remained firmly agricultural at its base.
A young soldier Chandragupta Maurya founded this dynasty on the Ganges River.
The Mauryan was highly military. They also developed a substantial bureaucracy. Chandragupta was highly autocratic.
Ashoka gained control of all but the southern tip of India through fierce fighting. Ashoka encouraged Buddhism but respected Hinduism. Ashoka improved trade and communication, sponsoring an extensive trade network dotted with wells and rest stops.
Indian Ocean was dominated by Indian merchants and missionaries, who were the most active linkage point among different cultures.
India affected China through Buddhism and art by end of classical period. They also affected Middle East and Mediterranean with new ethical thinking.
Regional Kingdoms surfaced once again after Ashoka.
Period of instability between Kushan empire and Gupta empire.
Gupta rulers intermarried with local families which expanded influence without constant fighting.
Regionalism was the main political institution throughout Indian history.
Guptas favoured Hinduism to support a sort of "Mandate of Heaven".
They created a demanding taxation system.
They allowed local rulers to maintain control so long as they deferred to Gupta dominance.
Indo-Europeans conquer the peninsula in 1700.
1400: Early kingdom arises in southern Greece around the city of Mycenae.
This kingdom was then conquered by subsequent invasions of Indo-European people which destroyed civilization until about 800 BCE.
Rapid rise of civilization that was based on strong city states. Each city-state had its own government, whether it be aristocratic assemblies or tyrannical.
They joined in competitions like the Olympic Games.
Sparta and Athens: Two major city-states. Sparta a military aristocracy, Athens a more diverse commercial state with direct democracy.
5th century BCE: Pericles founded democracy.
Greeks were influenced by Egyptian architecture. Romans adopted these Greek styles, but added even more size and new forms. Rome produced aqueducts and great public baths.
Doric: Square simplicity
Corinthian: Foliage, plants.
There was a tendency for landlords to squeeze the farmers, forcing them to become tenants or laborers. Farming in Greece and Italy was complicated by the bad soil conditions. Grain was the staple of life, but farmers were tempted to switch to grapes and olives because of the soil conditions.
The rise of commercial agriculture in Greece and then around Rome was one of the prime forces leading to efforts to establish an empire.
Greek city-states established colonies in the Middle East and then Sicily to gain access to grain production.
Rome pushed south and used Sicilian grain fields and later used much of north africa as its granary.
Private merchants operated most trading ships. The goods of the Mediterranean were less sophisticated than that of east Asia.
Slavery was a key ingredient of the classical economy. Aristotle and other philosophers supported and showed evidence for the necessity of slaves. The slaves were used for agriculture, mining, and military expansion after they themselves were conquered.
Neither Greece or Rome created a significant, world religion. It left the people dissatisfied and wanting a more spiritual passion.
Stoics emphasized inner moral independence and strict discipline of the body. This was an ethical system largely different from religion.
Cyrus the Great forms the Persian Empire.
The Romans acquired a strong military orientation through conquest of surrounding civilization, including Greece.
Punic Wars(264-146 BCE): Rome fought the Phoenician city of Carthage.
Following the Punic Wars, Rome conquered the entire western Mediterranean, including Greece and Egypt.
Decline was brought on by victorious generals wanting more power, and the poor rebelling.
Julius Caesar: Wins civil wars and ends traditional institutions of Roman State.
There was a senate and two consuls, but in times of crisis a dictator could be chosen by the senate.
Sparta and Athens cooperate to defeat a huge Persian invasion. After the war, Athens emerged a strong city-state, causing Sparta and other city states to become threatened. This lead to the Peloponnesian Wars.
• Socrates of Athens (469-399 BCE). Widely popular in Athens, although he was eventually tried and convicted of corrupting the youth of Athens. Questioned ideas such as virtue, ethics, justice and courage. His method was based on questioning everything and when it seemed like an answer had been reached, ask more questions. "The unexamined life is not worth living." -- Socrates
• Plato of Athens (428-348 BCE). A disciple of Socrates. He unified the beliefs of Socrates into the Theory of Forms. The highest form of wisdom is reason without reliance on the senses – this is called the form of the Good. Virtue is knowledge and reason gained through courage, justice and ethics leads to the Good.
• Aristotle was Plato’s best student and would eventually become the tutor of Alexander the Great. Aristotle was also a great scientist and is given credit for extensive work in the classification of animals. In philosophy, he advocated the Golden Mean, a way of life in which one avoids extremes and seeks happiness in what one has. Wisdom is a virtue, but it must be earned through hard work – Aristotle brought philosophy to a more practical level whereas Socrates and Plato were theoretical.
• Stoicism: emotions resulted from errors in judgment and placing too much faith on emotions. Stoics believed in reason and logic, and that one must find a balance between pleasure and pain.
Romes first code of law. Both Greece and Rome believed in codified, equitable law.
Sparta and Athens vied for control of Greece. This war weakened the city-states, causing Macedonia to conquer them later.
Phillip II defeats the Greek peninsula. His son extends the empire through the Middle East, across Persia to the border of India, and southward through Egypt.
There was little political activity during this time. However, this period did see the consolidation of Greek civilization.
Significant centers were founded such as Alexandria.
Augustus Caesar seized power in 27 BCE, beginning the Roman Empire.
Pax Romana until 180 CE. Rome moved north and conquered France and Southern Britain pushing into Germany.
Empire suffered a slow fall for over 250 years. Economic deterioration, population loss, trade levels and birth rate fell. Germanic invaders from the north.
313 CE: Constantine adopts Christianity.
Herodotus and Thucydides were famous historians. Herodotus was known for believing anything, even if it was exaggerated. Thucydides was more reliable and unbiased in the telling of events such as the Peloponnesian war.
Kush (1000 BCE-300 BCE): Possessed a form of writing like hieroglyphics and mastered iron. In 750 BCE they briefly conquered Egypt.
Axum defeats Kush in 300 BCE, Axum is then defeated by Ethiopia.
1000 BCE: They reach Fiji and Samoa
400 CE: They reach Hawaii
The Olmecs were a civilization in Central America between 800 and 400 BCE. Corn was the staple food. Culturally, they used precious stones, built religious statues and icons, an accurate calendar, and pyramids. The Olmecs set the stage for the Mayas, who developed a hieroglyphic alphabet, and built Teotihuacan, the first great city. The Incas developed independently with their own agriculture, religious monuments, and agriculture.
Christianity originated in Israel with Jesus. Christianity and Jesus were persecuted in Rome because they would not put the Roman state first. Christianity gained many followers in times of political instability and poor economics. Paul, a bishop, began to teach followers that they were a part of a new religion, instead of Jewish reform. Constantine encouraged Christianity in the Byzantine Empire. In the West Rome, Christianity became the central organization for both politics and religion under the Pope.
Han dynasty began to seriously decline in 100 CE. The popularity of Daoism and Buddhism increased. The Chinese adapted Buddhism with the yellow turbans, adding secular beliefs to Buddhism. They also promised a golden age, but failed. The spread of Buddhism threatened china’s cultural unity. In the 6th century CE, the Sui managed to drive out nomadic invaders and re-establish political unity. The Sui were followed by the Tang, who established a glorious period in Chinese history. They revived Confucianism and bureaucracy, but minor Buddhism still remained.
It began in 180 CE. Roman decline began with political corruption and widespread diseases. The population declined, causing difficulty for armies. The tax system became ineffective. The black plague killed 750,000 out of 1,000,000 Romans. Imperial rule began to weaken, causing farmers to become dependent on local landlords. Rome does not technically fall, as the Eastern half, known as the Byzantine empire, still lives after the West falls.
The Gupta’s ability to control local princes declined after the Huns invaded in the 5th century. After the Huns, new regional princes called the Rajput started controlling small states emphasizing military power. After the Guptas, Hinduism gained ground on Buddhism. After Islam emerged, the Hindus strengthened devotion and they wrote in vernacular instead of Sanskrit.
Hinduism continued to believe in reincarnation. After the fall of the Guptas, Hinduism became more popular and gained ground on Buddhism. Buddhism spread to China and East Asia but remained a minority in India. The bodhisattvas allowed ordinary people to still achieve nirvana. East Asia altered Buddhism and created Mahayana, which was more organized and depicted Buddha as a much more divine figure. Buddhist believed men and women’s souls were equal, and they thought husband and wife should respect each other. The Chinese also changed this aspect of Buddhism to fit their patriarchal society.
Result of migrations from Korea over 200,000 year span. Had elaborate agriculture, tribal groups, ironworking, fishing, scribes, and Shintoism. Shintoism was an animistic religion.
By 600 CE Japan was ready for more elaborate contacts with China.
Byzantine is the former Eastern Roman Empire. The capital was in Constantinople, which was already established before the fall of Western Rome. The official language was Greek, but Byzantine maintained the authoritarian rule of Rome. Justinian (527-565 CE) tried to restore the original Roman Empire, but failed, and also lost North Africa. Justinian’s most important legacy was his code of laws. The Sassanids controlled Northern Middle East, who revived original Persian culture, including Zoroastrianism. After Justinian failed, small kingdoms controlled North Africa. Regional kingdoms controlled Western Europe as well.
Until 1000 CE, Northern Europe remained one of the most backward areas in the world.
Muhammad’s parents died when he was quite young, therefore members of his father’s family raised him. They were rich merchants who taught Muhammad the trading business. Muhammad went on the caravan route to Syria, where Christian and Jews influenced him. The Bedouin clans of the Arabian Peninsula were becoming increasingly divided as some clans became excessively wealthy from trade, while others that held on to traditional society were poverty-stricken. These early influences would shape Muhammad’s beliefs about Islam. He eventually became tired of a life of material gain, and spent much of his time meditating in the hills. This is where he received his first revelation. The Umayyad saw Islam as a threat, and were planning to have Muhammad assassinated, which resulted in hijra, or his flight to Medina.
The Bedouins were nomads in the Middle East who herded camels and goats. They were organized in clans and tribes. Key towns such as Mecca and Medina were extensions of Bedouin culture. In fact, Mecca was similar to the nomads in culture, language, and religion. Kin-related clans that were heavily reliant on kin. Bedouins were patriarchal, with the shaykhs (leaders) being men who had several wives, many children, and large herds. Under the shaykhs were the warriors. Under the warriors were slave families, who were loyal to the shaykh or clan.
The Bedouins were constantly having inter-clan wars, which weakened them so they could be manipulated by other peoples.
The Umayyad clan of the Quraysh Bedouin tribe founded Mecca. Mecca is where Muhammad was raised.
Tribes practiced animism and polytheism. Some tribes recognized supreme god Allah, but hardly paid attention to him.
These wars made both empires weak, causing the Arabs to more easily conquer them.
Muhammad and his followers win and he destroys the polytheistic shrines in Mecca. He keeps the Kaaba.
Led Ridda Wars. He also defeated present-day Iraq, Syria, and Egypt.
Wars in which rival prophets and larger clans were defeated and brought back into Islam.
The fighting between the Byzantine and Sasanian caused them the weakness necessary for the Muslims to defeat them.
Ali led the Shi'a against the Sunni in the first civil war. The shi'a had the Sunni beat at the battle of Siffin, but Ali accepted a plea for mediation. After the Umayyad regrouped, the destroyed the Shi'a, murdering Husayn and his party. The Shi'a mounted sustained resistance to the Sunni and the Umayyad caliphate from that point forward.
Warriors murdered Uthman, who belonged to the Umayyad clan. When Ali and his followers failed to punish Uthman’s murderers, warfare erupted. The Sunnis backed the Umayyads, and the Shi’a supported Ali. Although, there was even a split between the Shi’a. The ones who agreed and disagreed with Ali’s arbitration with the Umayyads.
Broke into central Asia(600s) and northwest India(700s) and started war with Buddhism. They conquered north Africa and Spain(700s).
They discouraged converts by not lowering taxes for converts. However, people still converted, but the number was very low. Women’s rights were excellent during this period.
Muslim Arabs were first-class citizens, and all others were characterized as dhimmi.
The Umayyad caliphate became corrupt and spent money on a life contradictory to Muhammad's. After they sent troops to a town called Merv, the people revolted under the Abassid flag. They beat the Umayyads at the Battle of the River Zab.
From the 7th century onward, waves of Muslim traders, invaders, and migrants carried Islam to much of India. By the 12th and 13th centuries, near the end of the Abbasid dynasty, Muslim dynasties controlled and ruled vast areas of north and central India.
Islam was highly egalitarian as compared to the caste system of India. However, The religion of Islam was more strict and closed than the adaptive and open Hinduism.
At first, contacts were violent, but as time passed it became more peaceful. Muslim rulers employed a large number of local Hindus to govern their conquered lands. Hindu and Muslim mystics strove to find similarities between their religions. Regardless, warfare still erupted between Hindu and Muslim overlords.
711: First Muslim intrusion. Indian pirates attacking Arab-trading ships caused it. Muhammad ibn Qasim sought revenge and attacked Sind. After several battles, he won and declared that region Umayyad territory. The Arabs decided to treat the Hindus and Buddhists as “people of the book”.
962: Turkish slave dynasty led by Mahmud of Ghazni attacked north and northwest India.
This ended when Muhammad of Ghur focused on seizing political power in northern India. After he was assassinated in 1206, Qutb-ud-din Aibak seized power. The capital of this new Muslim dynasty was in Delhi for the next 300 years.
Although the means of control were initially violent, Islam and India were more peaceful.
Arts: Mosques and palaces grew larger and more ornate in most parts of the empire. Tapestries and rugs were in great demand outside of the empire in Europe and China. Artisans also produced fine bronzes and superb ceramics.
Literature: Persian became the language of Abbasid court and of Arabs, Turks, and Muslims of Persian descent in literary expression, administration, and scholarship. In major cities, Persian was the language of “high culture”. Shah-Nama (Book of Kings, history of Persia from beginning of time to Islamic conquests). There was a blend of mystical and commonplace events.
Science: After they preserved and compiled learning of ancient civilizations they had conquered, they became creators and inventors in their own right. These achievements included; major corrections to the algebraic and geometric theories of the ancient Greeks and advances in sine, cosine, and tangent. There were two important discoveries in chemistry, creation of the objective experiment and classification of all material substances into animal, vegetable, and mineral. Their astronomical tables and measurements were accurate and valuable. Cities such as Cairo had some of best hospitals in the world. They also had some of the world’s best maps.
As with the threat of Buddhism before, Hindus stressed greater significance on devotion of cults of gods and goddesses. These bhaktic cults were open to all people, including untouchables and women. Mystics like Kabir tried to downplay the differences between Islam and Hinduism, however these attempts won very few followers. Overall, both Islam and Hinduism stuck to their traditions in India.
However, in Southeast Asia, Islam won over Malacca, Demak, and other Javanese ports. Port cities were very receptive to Islam.
The harem and the veil were signs of women’s seclusion and subjugation to men. Women from the lower classes wove clothing and rugs, and farmed. Women from the upper classes were allowed almost no career outlets beyond the home. They had brief incursions with politics.
Female and male slaves were prized for their intelligence and beauty. Caliphs often spent more time with the slaves than with their wives. They tended to domestic duties. They often had more rights than free born wives.
Active conversion and acceptance of converts as full Muslims. Bureaucratic, centralized, imperial rule. Wazirs, chief administrators, built infrastructure to allow tribute to farthest reaches of empire.
For over a century, the Abbassids were effective at collecting revenue and retaining law and order. As the Abbasids lost interest in state affairs, the Persians gained power.
Growing status of merchants and landlords.
Dhows, or ships, carried goods.
Handicraft production increased greatly.
As their intellect was sparse, they were able to accept many forms of knowledge including, Egypt(Alexandria), Mesopotamia, Hellenistic, Persian, Indian, Christian, and Jewish.
Works of Plato, Aristotle, Galen, Hippocrates, Ptolemy, and Euclid.
Indian number system transmitted by Arabs.
Revived commerce in Mediterranean and Indian Ocean.
Al-Mahdi (775-785) tried to reconcile the opposing Shi’a, but failed. Since he failed, Shi’a revolts and assassination attempts would plague the Abbasid dynasty until it ultimately fell. Al-Mahdi was also much less frugal than his predecessors; he developed a taste for luxury and monumental buildings. This luxurious life would drain the finances of future caliphs.
Al-Mahdi did not solve the problem of succession; he wavered between his sons, wives, and even concubines. His first successor was poisoned within a year, paving the way for his son Harun al-Rashid.
Harun al-Rashid (786-809) shared his father’s taste for sumptuous living. Partly because he was young, he relied heavily on a family of Persian advisors. Eventually he resisted their influence, but Persian power as royal advisors became a clear trend in succeeding reigns.
It convinced the sons of the winning caliph to build their own personal armies for the fight of the throne after their father died. These armies of slave mercenaries became powerful and assassinated caliphs. They became the real power behind the Abbasid throne and leaders of violent social unrest.
They were also the cause for financial crisis. Caliphs spent money trying to establish new capitals near Baghdad. The taxation increased for the peasants. Some of them fled, others formed bands against taxation. The Shi’a sparked revolts against the dynasty.
By 1291, Acre fell and the Muslims gained back control of all lost lands in Crusades.