Sumerian civilization Beginnings of the first civilizations Three   earliest   civilizations:   in   Egypt,   Sumer   (known   as   Mesopotamia,   modern Iraq)   and   in   the   Indus   valley   (modern   Pakistan)   came   into   existence   in   the   fourth millennium   BC.   It   is   surprising   that   all   three   originated   in   very   similar   climatic and    geographical    conditions.    These    are    practically    semi    desert    areas,    across which   flow   big   rivers   -   the   Nile   in   Egypt,   the   Euphrates   and   Tigris   in   the   Sumer and    the    Indus    in    Pakistan.    These    areas,    having        high    yearly    average    air temperature   and   small   rainfall   Rainfall   in   these   regions   of   Pakistan   and   Iraq   is below   250   mm,   and   in   Egypt   is   below   100   mm   per   year..,   were   not   suitable   for efficient    agriculture.    Nonetheless    in    the    run-up    to    the    development    of    these civilizations   the   local   population   was   occupied   with   farming   and   fishery,   and lived   in   very   modest,   primitive   conditions.   As   a   result   of   the   development   of   new civilizations,   in   a   very   short   span   of   time,   in   these   areas   cities   come   into   existence with   wonderful   temples,   with   developed   trade,   with   humanitarian   laws,   and most   importantly   with   a   very   productive   agriculture   providing   everyone   with sufficient amount of food. The   arising   of   civilizations   just   on   large   rivers   could   be   linked   to   drastic   climatic changes    The    latest    climate    and    archaeological    research    results    show    that    the climate   in   the   northern   hemisphere   changed   rapidly   as   a   result   of   the   change   of the   inclination   of   the   Earth   axis   from   24.14º   at   9000   years   ago   to   23.45º   at   present, and    the    changes    to    the    Earth    orbit    around    the    Sun.    This    caused    significant reduction   in   the   rainfall   in   the   region   of   Sahara   and   the   Arab   Peninsula   changing them   into   deserts.   which   occurred   in   the   fourth   millennium   BC.   On   the   account of   a   constantly   reducing   amount   of   rain   many   areas,   lying   on   certain   latitudes such   as   Sahara,   changed   into   deserts.   About   3500   years   BC   a   great   drop   of   rainfall was   also   recorded   in   Egypt.   So   the   big   rivers   ensured   constant   and   reliable   water supply,   without   which   obviously   no   civilization   could   come   into   existence   and could grow.
Egyptian civilization Pre-dynastic period According   to   the   latest   archaeological   research,   in   Egypt   there   are   distinguished three   pre-dynastic   stages   of   development:   Naqada   I   (4400-3500   BC),   Naqada   II (3500-3200 BC), and Naqada III (3200-3000 BC). Naqada   I   represents   a   typical   primitive   Neolithic   culture,   of   which   the   biggest achievements   were   :   simple   painted   pottery,   clay   figurines,   combs   made   of   ivory, stone   vessels   and   maces.   Settlements   consisted   of   houses   made   of   mud,   1-2   m   in diameter. The deceased were buried straight in a pit in graveyards. During   the   short   period   of   Naqada   II   we   witness   in   Upper   Egypt   accelerated development    of    civilization.    New    decorated    ceramics    came    into    existence, especially    large    jars    with    lug    handles    reminiscent    of    Mesopotamian    pottery, copper   tools   and   products   made   from   gold   and   silver.   The   ways   of   burying   the dead   were   changed   which   is   visible   in   the   tombs   of   rulers   containing   many expensive   objects.   Well   developed   trade   existed   with   Sumer   and   Palestine   which is   confirmed   by   many   objects   of   Sumerian   origins   found   in   the   burials.   The country   consisted   of   independent   princedoms   ruled   by   local   masters,   belonging to    the    so-called    dynasty    ‘00’.    It    is    possible    that    in    this    period    about    20 independent   city-states   were   created   A   list   was   discovered   of   first   principalities corresponding     to     the     later     administrative     regions     in     the     united     Egypt. Archaeological     research     confirms     existence     of     4     independent     city-states: Hierakonpolis, Elkab, Abydos and Naqada.. The   period   of   Naqada   III   is   a   continuation   of   Naqada   II   and   is   characterised   by the   further   rapid   development   of   the   civilization,   confirmed   by   such   discoveries, as   the   first   graphical   inscriptions   on   palettes,   the   first   hieroglyphs,   the   first   royal cemeteries   and   sculptures   of   lions   found   at   the   Koptos   temple.   Richly   endowed tombs    of    about    15    rulers    belonging    to    the    so-called    dynasty    ‘0’    were    also identified. In this period the first irrigating systems were introduced. This   period   culminated   in   the   unification   by   the   pharaoh   Narmer,   (in   Greek, Menes)   of   the   Upper   and   the   Lower   Egypt.   It   took   place   about   3100   BC   From   this event   starts   the   dynastic   history   of   Egypt.   This   united   country,   in   spite   of   many wars,   internal   struggles   and   fights,   and   conquests   by   the   barbaric   tribes   survived for    almost    3000    years.    The    Egypt    independence    ends    after    the    conquest    by Alexander the Great and with the establishing the Ptolemaic Dynasty in 332 BC
New hypothesis of the genesis of civilization Why   the   first   civilizations   came   into   existence   at   all   and   what   was   the driving   force   behind   this   huge   step   in   the   development   of   mankind?   In order   to   understand   why   the   first   civilizations   came   into   existence,   first   we have to closely examine conditions in which people lived before this event. Life of the primitive societies In    some    areas    of    the    Middle    East    about    9000    years    BC,    there    already existed    human    agriculture    settlements.    The    Neolithic    societies    were characterised   by   a   settled   way   of   life   and   ability   to   cultivate   soil   and   to produce    basic    primitive    tools.    The    first    large    agricultural    communities originated   from   before   7500   BC   in   the   present   Iran   and   Iraq.   To   the   most important    belongs    a    settlement    discovered    in    Çatal    Hüyük,    in    Turkish Anatolia,   covering   an   area   of   about   60   acres   which   was   inhabited   in   6500 BC   by   about   6000   people.   The   one-storey   houses   discovered   there   did   not have   doors   or   windows,   and   the   entrance   was   located   on   the   roof.   The   city did    not    have    streets,    and    the    houses    were    connected    with    each    other enabling easy passage for people. The    life    of    the    Neolithic    society    earning    its    living    off    the    land    was dominated   by   fear   originating   from   the   uncertain   future.   Above   all   people were   afraid   of   a   crop   failure   which   meant   death   from   starvation.   These societies   were   almost   completely   dependent   on   the   vicissitudes   of   nature, which   laws   they   did   not   understand.   Therefore   they   developed   primitive rituals    and    ceremonies    helping,    in    their    belief,    to    bring    a    rainfall    or ensuring   sufficient   crops.   These   beliefs   are   confirmed   by   the   discoveries   of a   large   number   of   woman   clay   figurines   which   were   associated   with   the fertility worship and with the rites ensuring a good harvest. Their   gods   resembled   a   man,   however   they   were   regarded   as   being   all   powerful Anthropomorphic   gods   existed   in   many   early   societies   and   even   much   later   in Greece   and   Rome.   Since   the   contemporary   people   were   brutal   and   did   not   show compassion   or   mercy,   their   gods   also   were   attributed   with   these   features.   In order   to   appease   their   wrath   and   to   secure   a   good   harvest,   they   practised   ritual human   sacrifices   which   included   offerings   of   even   women   and   children   The human   sacrifices   were   very   common   and   survived   in   the   customs   of   Chinese, Hindu,   Egyptians,   Hebrews,   Greeks,   Romans   and   many   other   groups;   and   with primitive   African   and   Australian   tribes   up   to   the   present   times.   The   acceptance of   such   sacrifices   confirms   the   Bible,   where   God   asking   Abraham   to   kill   his   son Isaac   had   not   caused   revolt   or   surprise.   In   the   place   Luhansk   in   the   present Ukraine   had   been   discovered   burial   mounds   with   thousands   of   ritually   killed victims   in   a   period   from   the   30th   century   BC   till   the   10th   century   BC..   Society lived   at   the   very   rock   bottom   of   their   consciousness,   caring   mainly   about   its material    needs,    differing    little    from    the    needs    of    animals.    However    people managed   to   establish   a   comparatively   stable   existence   for   themselves   and   they developed religious systems which gave them a certain sense of security.
Map showing the genesis of civilizations