The sumerian civilization - Sample Essay
The world without its greatest invention-the wheel-is a world that does not exist. Imagine what it would be like if such an important invention as the wheel did not come into being? Or, just think how it would be if the concept of writing had not been introduced? I believe that such integral inventions make much of our lives today. The Sumerian civilization was not just a civilization, but also a foundation for many civilizations that followed, which adopted and implemented many of its developments and inventions.
What I find ironic is that being one of the first civilizations ever, “having existed from 4000 BC to 2000 BC”1, it was also the innovative catalyst that first introduced certain inventions, such as those mentioned above, that are used in the everyday life of almost every human being today. “It was one that had to struggle for its existence owing to the many floods that often overwhelmed the city of Sumer, which was located between the Tigris River and Euphrates River. However, regardless, life did not cease to exist owing to these deluges for they brought vegetation and agricultural abundance, which attracted its many inhabitants.
We Will Write A Custom Essay Sample On The sumerian civilization
FOR YOUFor Only $13.90/page
” 2 The skills of the Sumerian-speaking farmers also rouse awe in me for they formed small communities to drain the swamps, and direct the water from floods into irrigation canals. “Each community culture had its protector god who supposedly would favor them, and also each community was dominated by the god’s rectangular brick temple. A special class of priests conducted rituals and controlled agriculture, crafts, and trade, which was carried on in sailing vessels on the rivers. Gradually, the Sumerians expanded to different regions of Mesopotamia.
” 3 As time passed, the Sumerians’ innovative developments also furthered. They began to organize irrigation and flood control on a much larger scale and to use wood plows. This proved to be a smart idea for they extended the area of their cultivated land and increased their production. Such an organization lead to larger units of government. Simultaneously, with the abundance of food, population also became larger. “The Sumerians experienced a revolution in urban areas, in which their small farm villages became great cities of specialized workers.
Although floods perpetually destroyed many cities, they were rebuilt and flourished for many hundreds of years. That period shaped the Sumerian civilization. “4 Not much has changed from the time of the Sumerians to this day regarding the composition of the cities since “the Sumerians lived in a number of city-states that were each composed of a main city with its own towns, villages, and farmlands surrounding it. ” The only difference, I think, is just that each city-state was thought to belong to a god, who supposedly owned all property that was headed by a hierarchy of priests.
Many men formed an assembly that conducted several local affairs. “The assembly was guided by a council of richer, older men. In times of crisis like war over water rights or against invaders, a powerful individual had command as a kind of temporary king. He might be the chief priest, a man chosen by the assembly, or one who took over power by military force. This temporary king was believed to be chosen by the city god to represent him. At different times different kings were recognized as lords of all of Sumer according to what was interpreted as the changing will of the gods. “5.
Essay on Early Civilizations
522 Words3 Pages
From 3000 BC to 1500 BC four civilizations arose that historians to this day marvel at, the Egyptians, the Sumerians, the Indus River Valley people, and the Shang dynasty in China. They all had great accomplishments in government, and religion and inventions. While they had their own different civilizations many similarities arise, such as depending on the river and their polytheistic religions. They had very isolated civilizations with the exception of the Sumerians. The geography, religion, and their governments all contributed to their success as a civilization.
The Egyptians were situated in northern Africa around the Nile. The Mediterranean Sea,…show more content…
Sumerians also had a polytheistic religion, and like the Egyptians each region or city-state worship a local god primarily. They pictured their gods as having little regard for human life. The Sumerians did not believe in an afterlife. The Shang dynasty’s religion is rather different compared to the others Shang Ti was a god that ruled over lesser gods. They also believed that ancestors were able to go between through gods and people. Also Oracle Bones were used to tell the future. Lastly, The IRVC was also polytheistic religion they revered bulls and some trees, and held them as sacred.
The governments of these four civilizations were rather different with kings, pharaohs, and nobles. In Egypt a pharaoh had god’s blood and was an absolute monarch. In Sumeria had twelve city-states that were very populated somewhere from 20,000 to 250,000 people in each. Each city-state was governed independently and had their own kings. The king was a military leader, and a priest, making Sumeria a theocracy. The IRVC had a centralized government, which is indicated, by very intricately planned cities. Priest-kings were the leaders of the land. The Shang dynasty had kings that ruled over nobles who ruled over providences.
All four civilizations were different but significantly similarly in the sense