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Mauriah Hilton
Mr. Stockton
AP World History 7th Hour
9/20/15

The First Civilizations


The first seven civilizations differed yet compared in multiple ways.
Through their architecture, technology. and religion they either paved the
way or built off of each other. The very first civilizations such as
Mesopotamia, Egypt, Indus River Valley, and China all developed around
rivers.
Due to their similar geographical locations the first four civilizations
were very similar architecturally. In Mesopotamia, there were constant floods
that wipe out buildings and crop causing them to have to built on higher
grounds. They began to build small canals from the feeder streams of the
Tiger and Euphrates Rivers, levees on the river banks to make the water rise
higher before flooding, and they dug ditches and canals to channel the water
onto the field. It was not until the Sumerians that artificial mounds and walls
were beginning to be built. They even built important buildings such as the
Ziggurats on high artificial mounds to be most safe from flood. The Indus
River Valley also had a gated community with walls except they not only
used it to prevent flood but they used it for protection. The Indus River Valley
was talented in architecture due to the Harrapas who laid out grid-like streets
and created buildings with bathrooms. Egypt on the other hand didn't use

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walls to keep away the water but to catch the water, they build walls and
basins to harness the flood water and use it for the soil. But like
Mesopotamia they built important buildings such as their temples on higher
ground. Like Egypt, China welcomed the water. China used the nutrients from
the water to do what no other civilization specialized in and that is to cook.
Although the Indus River Valley were able to create statues, jewelry,
toys, and even manage to create a sewer system, the Chinese were way past
technology advanced. Cooking became a form of art in China, it was done in
several different ways creating a diverse culinary field like we have today.
China had a kiln for baking pottery, technology for raising silkworms and
turning the cocoons into silk clothing, they had the equipment to carve jade,
they had advanced musical instruments like a 7-holed flute, and they even
learned to use diamonds to polish rubies. Mesopotamia always learned ways
to enhance their technology also, they started with wooden wheel/carts and
plows but ended up transferring to bronze making them more efficient. And
we can't forget about Egypt who must have had amazing technology to
create so many advanced pyramids and temples.
Mesopotamia, Indus River Valley, and Egypt all depended on their gods
for good harvest. They only worried about pleasing their deity's for good
fortune. In Mesopotamia they prayed and sacrificed to the gods to survive
the floods and get good harvest. In the Indus River Valley there were multiple
different gods worshiped such as the fire god. In Egypt, along with
Mesopotamia they looked to the gods for good harvest. In Egypt they also

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treated their pharaohs like gods, giving sacrifices, and even building huge
tombs such as the Great Pyramid for each one. In China they didn't worship
god's but rather recorded bloodline of ancestors to worship. They tried to
communicate with their ancestors to help them govern and lead them to a
brighter future. The Sumerians, Egyptians, and Chinese all believed their
leaders need to be provided with things for the afterlife, making sure they
were buried with trophies and treasure.
The first civilizations differed but compared in terms of their
architecture, technology, and religion. They learned and built off of each
other and yet were smart enough to advance and create their own unique
monuments and technology.
Works Cited
Sanchez, Renee Professor. Comparison Of The First Civilizations. History 20 at
West Hills College. 2012. Wordpress. Web.
https://rudyruddell.wordpress.com/2012/12/28/comparison-of-the-firstcivilizations/
Loessin, Mr. 4 Early River Valley Civilizations. Akins High School. Pre-AP World
History. Web.
curriculum.austinisd.org/soc_stud/hs/world_his/CH2.ppt