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CH1 - The Earth and Its Peoples


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001. civilization
An ambiguous term often used to denote more complex societies but sometimes used by anthropologists to describe any group of people sharing a set of cultural traits. (p. 6)
002. culture
Socially transmitted patterns of action and expression. "Material culture" refers to physical objects, such as dwellings, clothing, tools, and crafts. Culture also includes arts, beliefs, knowledge, and technology. (p. 6)
003. history
The study of past events and changes in the development, transmission, and transformation of cultural practices. (p. 6)
004. Stone Age
The historical period characterized by the production of tools from stone and other nonmetallic substances. It was followed in some places by the Bronze Age and more generally by the Iron Age. (p. 6)
005. Paleolithic
The period of the Stone Age associated with the evolution of humans. It predates the Neolithic period. (p. 7)
006. Neolithic
The period of the Stone Age associated with the ancient Agricultural Revolution(s). It follows the Paleolithic period. (p. 7)
007. foragers
People who supported themselves by hunting wild animals and gathering wild edible plants and insects. (p. 7)
008. Agricultural Revolutions (ancient)
The change from food gathering to food production that occurred between ca. 8000 and 2000 B.C.E. Also known as the Neolithic Revolution. (p. 8)
009. Holocene
The geological era since the end of the Great Ice Age about 11,000 years ago.
010. megalith
Structures and complexes of very large stones constructed for ceremonial and religious purposes in Neolithic times. (p. 12)
011. Babylon
The largest and most important city in Mesopotamia. It achieved particular eminence as the capital of the Amorite king Hammurabi in the eighteenth century B.C.E. and the Neo-Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar in the sixth century B.C.E. (p. 14)
012. Sumerians
The people who dominated southern Mesopotamia though the end of the third millennium B.C.E. They were responsible for the creation of many fundamental elements of Mesopotamian culture—such as irrigation technology, cuneiform, and religious conceptions—taken over by their Semitic successors. (p. 15)
013. Semitic
Family of related languages long spoken across parts of western Asia and northern Africa. In antiquity these languages included Hebrew, Aramaic, and Phoenician. The most widespread modern member of the Semitic family is Arabic. (p. 15)
014. city-state
A small independent state consisting of an urban center and the surrounding agricultural territory. A characteristic political form in early Mesopotamia, Archaic and Classical Greece, Phoenicia, and early Italy. (See also polis.) (p. 16)
015. Hammurabi
Amorite ruler of Babylon (r. 1792-1750 B.C.E.). He conquered many city-states in southern and northern Mesopotamia and is best known for a code of laws, inscribed on a black stone pillar, illustrating the principles to be used in legal cases. (p. 17)
016. scribe
In the governments of many ancient societies, a professional position reserved for men who had undergone the lengthy training required to be able to read and write using cuneiforms, hieroglyphics, or other early, cumbersome writing systems. (p. 18)
017. ziggurat
A massive pyramidal stepped tower made of mudbricks. It is associated with religious complexes in ancient Mesopotamian cities, but its function is unknown. (p. 20)
018. amulet
Small charm meant to protect the bearer from evil. Found frequently in archaeological excavations in Mesopotamia and Egypt, amulets reflect the religious practices of the common people. (p. 20)

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