Eurasian Empires 500 BCE to 500 CE - AP WORLD MODERN HISTORY ...
Eurasian Empires 500 BCE to 500 CE AP World History Notes What is an Empire? Define Empire List the definitions Eurasian Empires of the
Classical Era Persia Greece under Alexander the Great
Rome China during the Qin and Han dynasties India during the Mauryan and Gupta dynasties Common Problems of Empires Come up with a list of issues that may arise with an empire.
The Hittites 2000 BCE = Hittites conquered Asia Minor very powerful military Set up city-states on plateau called Anatolia evolved into a kingdom
1st military in Middle East to have large amounts of iron weapons The Hittites Army used chariots on lighter wheels that could carry 2 soldiers +
a driver Gave them an advantage over their enemies using 2person chariots Hittite Empire covered Asia Minor, Syria, & part of Mesopotamia
The Hittites Hittites got most of their culture from Mesopotamia and Egypt They DID contribute a legal system considered less harsh than Hammurabis Code emphasized payments for damages rather than harsh, violent punishments
The Assyrians Lived in northern Mesopotamia Most lethal army in the Middle East Army organized into units: foot soldiers, charioteers & cavalry on horseback
Fought with iron weapons & used battering rams to run into walled cities The Assyrians Treated people they conquered very cruelly Burned cities; tortured and killed thousands
of captives Deported people from their homelands Forced people to pay heavy taxes to pay for army, buildings, and roads The Assyrians Empire stretched from the Persian Gulf to Egypt Empire divided into provinces
each one ruled by a governor Conquered people began to rebel & the empire began to fall apart 612 BCE = Chaldeans take down Assyrian empire
The Chaldeans Dominated the entire Fertile Crescent Great King = Nebuchadnezzar Extended the empire Made Babylon one of the most beautiful & richest cities
Created the Hanging Gardens (one of the 7 wonders of the ancient world) The Hanging Gardens of Babylon The Chaldeans
Studied the stars & moon phases foundation for modern astronomy Empire started to weaken due to poor harvests and slow trade 539 BCE = Conquered by the Persians
The Persians Lived in present-day Iran King Cyrus added many new territories to the empire Northern Mesopotamia, Syria, Canaan, Phoenician cities, Lydia, Greek city-states in Asia Minor Later his son conquered Egypt brought the
entire Middle East under Persian control The Persians Ruled more than 35 million people Empire stretched more than 3000 miles from Nile to Indus River Best organizer among Persian
kings = Darius Divided empire into 23 provinces Each province ruled by a satrap = governor Persian Empire The Persians
Persians = very tolerant rulers Allowed conquered people to keep own languages, religions, and laws Artisans built city of Persepolis = most
magnificent city in the empire The Persians Big network of roads Allowed for trade between different peoples/cultures in the empire
Allowed for easy movement of soldiers Royal Road = longest road in the empire had stations along it so travelers could get food, water, and fresh horses
The Persians 480 BCE = Dariuss son Xerxes tried to conquer Greece to expand the empire Failed to defeat the Greeks Ancient Greece The Aegean Area Ancient Greece included the Balkan
Peninsula & small rocky islands in the Aegean Sea The Aegean Area 3/4 of Greek mainland = mountains Protected Greeks from foreign invaders/attackers Kept Greeks isolated from
other communities Prevented Greeks from uniting under one government Between the mountain ranges = fertile plains good for farming
The Aegean Area Mild climate So people spent much of their time outdoors Meetings held in public squares Teachers met students in public gardens
Actors performed in open theaters The Aegean Area Despite lack of government -- Greeks spoke same language & practiced same religion (polytheistic) Greeks turned to the seas to earn a living --> no place in Greece is more
than 50 miles from a coast Aegean Civilization [2500 BCE - 1100 BCE] The Minoans Lived on the island of Crete (off the coast of Greece) Ruled by King Minos Had a large palace that
contained labyrinths = mazes Story of Minos and the Minotaur (half man, half bull) The Minoans Murals show that both men and women: Curled their hair Wore gold jewelry Wore wide metal belts
Liked dancing, sporting events, and boxing The Minoans Women enjoyed a higher status in society than in other civilizations Chief deity = goddess of the Earth
Made a living from sea trade -dominated eastern Mediterranean Sea trade Protected the seas from pirates The Minoans Collapsed about 1350 BCE --> 2 theories why: Large tidal wave destroyed cities Mycenaeans (from mainland) attacked &
invaded Crete The Mycenaeans Migrated from central Asia to the Balkan Peninsula (Greece) Intermarried with local people there (called Hellenes) and set up a group of kingdoms The Mycenaeans
Each kingdom centered around a hilltop with a royal fortress Surrounded by stone walls for protection Palaces = centers of government and production of goods Officials kept track of the wealth of every person People were taxed in the form of livestock, wheat, and honey
The Mycenaeans Adopted many parts of Minoan culture Worshipped same Mother Earth Metalworking, shipbuilding, navigation by sun & stars The Mycenaeans Mycenaeans conquered the Minoans but
were then themselves conquered by the Dorians from the north around 1100 BCE Began dark ages of Greek culture Trade stopped, people lost skills, poverty increased Ionians reintroduced Greek culture 300 years later (Ionians = refugees that had escaped when the Dorians took over) New Greek civilization emerged --> called
Hellenic after the original people of Greece Poets and Heroes Bards = singing storytellers that kept the Mycenaean traditions alive during the dark ages Poets and Heroes Two most famous Greek
epics = The Iliad and The Odyssey Written by blind poet named Homer The Iliad = about the Trojan War & features the story of the Trojan Horse The Odyssey = about the journey of King Odysseus after
the fall of Troy Stories were used to teach Greek values A Family of Deities Greeks believed that gods caused the physical events of Earth to occur and controlled how people behaved, as well as what happened to people Unlike other early cultures, Greeks didnt fear their
deities Stressed importance of the individual & self-worth --> this self-respect allowed them to approach the gods with dignity A Family of Deities Greeks humanized their gods & goddesses They had a totally
human form Had human behavior Chief god = Zeus A Family of Deities Each city-state had a particular god as its protector
Each god controlled a part of the natural world (ex: Zeus ruled the sky & weather; Hades ruled the underworld; Poseidon ruled the sea; etc.) A Family of Deities 12 most important gods lived on Mount Olympus
A Family of Deities Every 4 years, athletic contests were held to honor Zeus Called the Olympic Games --> held in Olympia A Family of Deities Greeks began performing plays = beginnings of theater
1st play = tribute to Dionysus = god of wine, fertility, and parties Started off as songs then poems then dialogue Ancient Greece: The Polis The Polis Polis = city-state
Each polis developed independently, but shared certain features with other city-states The Typical Polis Polis included: a city and the
surrounding villages, fields, and orchards At the center of the city = an Acropolis = fortified hill On top of Acropolis = temple of the local god or goddess Foot of Acropolis = the agora = public square
The Typical Polis Public square was political center of the polis Citizens gathered there to choose officials, pass laws, etc. Artisans &
merchants did business there The Typical Polis Citizens = those who took part in government Could vote and hold public office Could speak for themselves in
court Could own property In return: expected to serve in government and protect the polis The Typical Polis Most Greeks were NOT citizens Slaves, foreign-born, and women
couldnt be citizens Greek Colonies & Trade Increase in population after the dark ages --> farmers couldnt grow enough grain to feed everyone Each polis sent out groups of people to set up colonies Colonists sent grain back to the parent
city Greek Colonies & Trade Farmers on mainland produced wine, olive oil, and other cash crops for export Greek trade expanded throughout the Mediterranean region Greek Colonies & Trade
600s BCE = Greeks replaced barter system with money system Began producing textiles (cloth) and pottery Political and Social Change Greek communities first ruled by kings -- kings soon lost power Each polis was then ruled by
landholding aristocrats = nobles Political and Social Change Disputes between aristocrats and commoners (especially farmers) often arose Farmers often had to borrow money from the aristocrats until harvest --> when they couldnt pay back the money, the
aristocrats took the land, made farmers become sharecroppers/day laborers, or sold farmers into slavery Political and Social Change Farmers began to protest Farmers were very powerful in Greek armies because they were the
foot soldiers Greek armies relied on the phalanx = rows of foot soldiers close together with shields to form a wall Political and Social Change Middle-class artisans & merchants
wanted a voice in government & joined the farmers in protest Political and Social Change As a result of the unrest: tyrannies arose Tyrant = one man --> seized power and
ruled the polis Most were fair; a few were cruel and unjust Tyrannies ruled until 500 BCE Political and Social Change 500 BCE - 336 BCE = citystates were oligarchies or democracies
Oligarchy = a few wealthy people hold power Democracy = government by the people 2 most famous Greek city-states: Athens = democracy Sparta = oligarchy
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