Early Egypt

6000 to 4000 BC
The River People emerge along Nile, Niger, and Congo Rivers (West-Central Africa); the Isonghee of Zaire (Republic of Congo) introduce mathematical abacus; and Cyclopian stone tombs built in Central African Republic area. Spread of agriculture south of the Sahara Desert supporting a growing population, which mastered animal domestication and agriculture, and forced the San groups into the less hospitable areas.

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By 6000 BC predynastic Egyptians in the southwestern corner of Egypt were herding cattle and constructing large buildings. Subsistence in organized and permanent settlements in predynastic Egypt by the middle of the 6th millennium BC centered predominantly on cereal and animal agriculture: cattle, goats, pigs and sheep. Metal objects replaced prior ones of stone. Tanning of animal skins, pottery and weaving were commonplace in this era also. There are indications of seasonal or only temporary occupation of the Al Fayyum in the 6th millennium BC, with food activities centering on fishing, hunting and food-gathering. Stonearrowheads, knives and scrapers from the era are commonly found.   Burial items included pottery, jewelry, farming and hunting equipment, and assorted foods including dried meat and fruit. Burial in desert environments appears to enhance Egyptian preservation rites, and dead were buried facing due west.  From Wikipedia

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The earliest known hominids in North Africa arrived around 200,000 BC. Through most of the Stone Age the climate in the region was very different than today, the Sahara being far more moist and savanna like. Home to herds of large mammals, this area could support a large hunter-gatherer population and the Aterian culture that developed was one of the most advanced Paleolithic societies.

In the Mesolithic, the Capsian culture dominated the region with Neolithic farmers becoming predominant by 6000 BC. Over this period, the Sahara region was steadily drying, creating a barrier between North Africa and the rest of the African continent. Eventually North Africa became culturally and ethnically quite distinct from the rest of the continent.

The Nile Valley on the Eastern edge of North Africa is one of the richest agricultural areas in the world. The desiccation of the Sahara is believed to have increased the population density in the Nile Valley and large cities developed. Eventually Ancient Egypt unified in one of the world’s first civilizations.  From  Wikipedia

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Ancient Kemet (as the ancient Egyptians called their kingdom, a term dating from ca. 3100 BCE) is also the cradle of Black African civilization. A subject of heated contemporary debate is the ethnicity and/or color of the ancient Egyptians, and Africanist scholars like Molefi Kete Asante and Abu S. Abarry observe that “the more [ancient] Egypt is seen as a society of significance to human civilization, the more its [black African] origins are disputed by some white scholars.” They claim that racist sentiments have led “revisionist historians of the fifteenth to the twentieth centuries, the age of the European slave trade [and European colonization of Africa], …to discredit Africans,” “to explain away the African base” of ancient Egypt, “and to accredit all African achievement to the presence of European genes.” It is well to note that the ancient Greeks described the way the Egyptians looked to them: “The ancient Greek writers Herodotus, Diodorus Siculus, and Aristotle all testified …that the ancient Egyptians were ‘black-skinned'” (Asante and Abarry 3-4).

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By about 6000 BC, organized agriculture and large building construction had appeared in the Nile Valley. At this time, Egyptians in the southwestern corner of Egypt were herding cattle and also constructing large buildings. Mortar was in use by 4000 BC. The Predynastic Period continues through this time, variously held to begin with the Naqada culture..

Between 5500 and 3100 BC, during Egypt’s Predynastic Period, small settlements flourished along the Nile, whose delta empties into the Mediterranean Sea. By 3300 BC, just before the first Egyptian dynasty, Egypt was divided into two kingdoms, known as Upper Egypt, Ta Shemau to the south, and Lower Egypt, Ta Mehu to the north. The dividing line was drawn roughly in the area of modern Cairo.  From Wikipedia 

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Ancient Egypt was an ancient civilization in eastern North Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in what is now the modern nation of Egypt. The civilization began around 3150 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under the first pharaoh, and it developed over the next three millennia. Its history occurred in a series of stable periods, known as kingdoms, separated by periods of relative instability known as Intermediate Periods. After the end of the last kingdom, known as the New Kingdom, the civilization of ancient Egypt entered a period of slow, steady decline, during which Egypt was conquered by a succession of foreign powers. The rule of the pharaohs officially ended in 31 BC when the early Roman Empire conquered Egypt and made it a province.

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The ancient Egyptians chose to begin their official history with a king named “Meni” (or Menes in Greek) who they believed had united the two kingdoms of Upper and Lower Egypt. The transition to a unified state actually happened more gradually than the ancient Egyptian writers would have us believe, and there is no contemporary record of Menes. Scholars now believe, however, that the mythical Menes may have actually been the pharaoh Narmer, who is depicted wearing royal regalia on the ceremonial Narmer Palette in a symbolic act of unification. The third century BC Egyptian priest Manetho grouped the long line of pharaohs following Menes into 30 dynasties, a system still in use today.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_Egypt>
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/pyramid/resources/worldmap.html

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The Hyksos (Egyptian heqa khasewet, “foreign rulers”  were an Asiatic people who invaded the eastern Nile Delta, initiating the Second Intermediate Period of Ancient Egypt. They rose to power in the 17th century BC, (according to the traditional chronology) and ruled Lower and Middle Egypt for 108 years, f d possibly the Sixteenth Dynasties of Egypt, (c. 1648–1540 BC).  This 108-year period follows the Turin Canon, which gives the six kings of the Hyksos 15th Dynasty a total reign length of 108 years.

Traditionally, only the six Fifteenth Dynasty rulers are called Hyksos. The Hyksos had Canaanite names, as seen in those which contain the names of Semitic deities such as Anath or Ba’al. They introduced new tools of warfare into Egypt, most notably the composite bow and the horse-drawn chariot.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyksos

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ca. 4500
Ancient Egyptians begin using burial texts to accompany their dead, first known written documents. Ancient Egyptians, who called their land Kemet (Land of the Blacks) and Ta-Meri (Beloved Land), were primarily agriculturists who, with the practice of irrigation and animal husbandry, transformed the Nile Valley into a vibrant food-producing economy by 5000 B.C. Their settled lifestyle allowed them to develop skills in glass making, pottery, metallurgy, weaving, woodworking, leather work, and masonry. In this latter craft, ancient Egyptian practitioners excelled in architecture, as the pyramids attest.

Ancient Egyptians traced their origins to the Mount Rwenzori range in East Africa known as “the Mountains of the Moon” and some accounts to “Ethiopia,” a term variously designating land south of Egypt (the Upper Nile Valley), or the entire African continent. Thus, Nubia, Egypt’s southern neighbor with its own civilization, probably preceded ancient Egyptian (Kemet) civilization.

4 Responses to Early Egypt

  1. Anonymous says:

    this is great info

  2. P. A., England says:

    What was the herding behaviours of domesticated animals before domestication and what period of time was needed to domesticate and farm these animals and how did these ancient people’s learn that specific animals could be domesticated in this way?

    All these processes would require the amassing of experience and knowledge and practicality to develop the farming skills needed to adapt to this lifestyle and all of which would have had to have evolved over several hundred if not thousands of years before the Nile delta plateau settlements and civilisations came into being.

    Thus it can be reasoned that modern humans and the domestication of animals, go back a lot further than estimated, at least longer than the 4004 BC years calculated by bishop usher and others, and at least as far back as 21,500 BC, all of which would take us well inside the lower palaeolithic era itself. Thus domestication of animals may be seen as having a substantially longer history of cultivation and development into ‘farming practices’ by earlier settlement practices, than of societies and civilization themselves.

    PA.England.

  3. Dean Hall says:

    P A England raises a very good point & I have researched this. It seems that the domestication of Livestock & Cereal grains (& Corn in Americas/ Rice in Asia) all suddenly appeared around 10 000 BC by DNA & genetic manipulation in the hills of Mesopatamia.
    The FACT that homo sapiens sapiens originated in SE Africa 200 000yrs ago, then migrated via “Out of Africa” theory 65 000yrs ago has also been proven by DNA lineage to Mitochondrial Eve.
    We are 95 -98% similar to chimps but have 46 chromosomes instead of 48 & it appears that 2 have been “genetically spliced” to obtain the differences.

    The only theory that fits, is genetic tampering with both humans &,domestic animals & cereals.
    Zec Sitchin’s Anunnaki alien intervention stories fit all the known facts. We were created as a slave race for the gods(Neanderthals original version), the Global Flood 11 000BC wiped out a lot of societies(sudden melting of glaciers,ice-shelf collapses) & then the Anunnaki returned to Earth & helped civillize man with domestication,agriculture & city states.

    Proof of the 200 000yr old GOLD mining operation in Sth East Africa has recently been found at Mpumalunga – ADAMs CALENDER> mine shafts,bldgs,roads & terraces(Michael Tellinger)
    It also explains the global evidence of a Pyramid building culture & earlier destroyed complexes such as Puma Punka & the Nazca lines in Peru

  4. P. A. says:

    P. A. From England Replies

    Thank you Dean, for acknowledging my semi-hypothesis regarding the length of time it must have taken early man to make that change from hunter gatherer to semi domestic farmer and ultimately to a full transition of a domesticated society.

    Alongside this domesticated tradition such a society would also require the need to be equipped with the necesary social learning behaviours (social adaptation) as seen in ancient Japanese History for example, in order to work and live together in the training of specific animals both individually, such as dogs for example, and collectively, such as herding of vast numbers of animal groups the control of which, would be the founding acheivement required by a society that has developed into a community.

    Then over time, into a village and eventually into city states where farming would eventually come under regulated central control of such states, such as those founded by the Akkadians and Sumerians and Egyptians, and so on. Thus i feel confident enough to place the beginnings of modern man (to quote dean’s reference to Homo Sapien, sapien”, in which he also alludes to his deeper studies within this subject in which, he refers to the “out of Africa theory” and the connections with Zec Sitchin’ Annunaki/alien interventions theory, as being Among the list of his own studies to date.

    However, from my own perspective, i have to conclude here that i agree with him: and et al those referees whom he also names in his comment. Thus if i may, to add another piece to the puzzle, by suggesting that there is sufficient evidence around us in construction terms, Archeaologically speaking, where an extraordinary element of building works by peoples unknown, could never be the work of modern human society alone, due largely to the complexities involved in the building processes, as well as the megalithic sizes of the foundations and the structures of some of the worlds most renowned sites in which it can also be suggested that the incredible skills involved in building and placing blocks together, would have had to have been discovered, then learned, then passed down from generation to generation, all of which brings me back to my original point about the length of time involved in establishing such domesticated, religious and political societies that they eventually became.

    I am not an Expert, but do have a sincere interest in our early beginnings. Thank you for taking the time to browse my comment.

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