AP World History: Comparative Essay
Mesopotamia and Egypt were two of the very first civilizations dating back to 3500 BCE. Their cultures were very similar, but were very different. In what ways were their cultures similar and different? Mesopotamia is similar to Egypt in that both were based around a river system and they both created their own form of writing. These two civilizations are very similar, but they are also different in that their structures are used for different purposes and Mesopotamians invented more important things. Mesopotamia and Egypt are both similar because of their civilizations being located on a river system. The Egyptians had the Nile River and its delta that led in to the Mediterranean Sea. The Sumerians had the Tigris and Euphrates rivers that led into the Persian Gulf. Both of these rivers flooded, depositing silt onto the ground that would fertilize the soil. This would allow for agriculture and for huge populations to settle and grow in these regions. The Nile River flooded annually and the Tigris and Euphrates flooded randomly which could lead to a good or bad crop season. For ancient civilizations to exist, they needed to be located along rivers because they were a source of fresh water that is necessary for life. It also gives the settlement a good form of transportation up and down the river. Also, the water is used for farm animals to drink. Mesopotamia and Egypt are both similar because they both have their own form of writing. The Sumerian form of writing was called cuneiform and consisted of pictures that represented letters. It was written on clay tablets with a tool called a stylus. Hieroglyphics (sacred inscriptions) were pictures that represented letters and words or sounds. It was written on papyrus using inks and pens, made out of plants that contained ink inside of them. Both of these forms of writing were used to keep records, document different buildings and structures. In the Mesopotamian and...
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