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World History: Patterns of Interaction, Vocab for Finals


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The development of skills in a particular kind of work, such as trading or record keeping.
Dry, grass-covered plains.
A large landmass that forms a distinct part of a continent.
A language of southern India- also, the people who speak that language.
The ways in which people apply knowledge, tools, and inventions to meet their needs.
A government in which the ruler is viewed as a divine figure.
A sect of Buddhism focusing on the strict spiritual discipline originally advocated by the Buddah.
A West African storyteller.
The first five books of the Hebrew Bible- the most sacred writings in the Jewsih tradition.
A serious form of drama dealing with the downfall of a heroic or noble character.
In ancient Rome, an official elected by the plebians to protect their rights.
A payment made by a weaker power to a stronger power to obtain an assurance of peace and security.
In ancient Rome, a group of three leaders sharing control of the government.
Trojan War
A war, fought around 1200 BC, in which an army led by Mycenaean kings attacked the independent trading city of Troy in Anatolia.
In ancient Greece, a powerful individual who gained control of a city-state's government by appealing to the poor for support.
A dynast that ruled the Muslim Empire from AD 661 to 750 and later established a kingdom in al-Andalus
Four collections of sacred writings produced by the Aryans during an early stage of their settlement in India.
A Hindu god considered the preserver of the world.
ying and yang
In Chinese thought, the two powers that govern the natural rhythms of life (with yin representing the feminine qualities in the universe, and yang the masculine qualities).
An early Mesoamerican civilization that was centered in the Oaxaca Valley of what is now Mexico.
A tiered, pyramid shaped structure that was centered in the Oaxaca Valley of what is now Mexico.
An early Native American people who lived in teh American Southwest.
In Incan society, a small community or clan whose memebers worked together for the common good.
A book with pages that can be turned.
A member of a Muslim dynasty that traced its ancestry to Muhammad's daughter Fatma and that built an empire in North Africa, Arabia, and Syria in the 10th-12th centuries.
A symbolic picture- especially one used as part of a writing system for carving messages in stone.
A group of Native American peoples who spoke rlated languages, lived in the eastern Greak Lakes region of North America, and formed an alliance in teh late 1500s.
A cultivated cereal grain that bears ins kernels on large ears- usually called corn in the United States.
Relating to a Mound Builder culture that flourished in North America between AD 800 and 1500
In the Inca Empire, the requirement that all able-bodied subjects work for teh state a certain numer of days each year.
A hard, glassy, volcanic rock used by early peoples to make sharp weapons.
Popol Vuh
A book containing a version of the Mayan story of creation.
A ceremonial feast used to display rank and prosperity in some Northwest Coast tribes of Native Americans.
Villages of large apartment-like buildings made of clay and stone, built by the Anasazi and later peoples of the American Southwest.
An arrangement of knotted strings on a cord, used by the Inca to record numerical information.
The Feathered Seperent- a god of the Toltecs and other Mesoamerican peoples.
Animals or other natural objects that serve as symbols of the unity of clans or other groups of people.
New Kingdom
The period of ancient Egyptian history that followed the overthrow of the Hyksos rulers, lasting from about 1570 to 1075 BC.
In Buddhism, the release from pain and suffering achieved after enlightenment.
An African people who lived in what is now Nigeria between 500 BC and AD 200.
A member of a group that has no permanent home, wandering from place to place in search of food and water.
A government in which power is in the hands of a few people- especially one in which rule is based upon wealth.
The earliest known Mesoamerican civilization, which flourished around 1200 BC and influenced later societies throughout the region.
oracle bone
One of the animal bones or tortoise shells used by ancient Chinese priests to communicated with the gods.
Paleolthic Age
A prehistoric period that lasted from about 2,500,000 to 8000 BC during which people made use of crude stone tools and weapons- also called the Old Stone Age.
A tall reed that grows in the Nile delta, used by ancient Egyptians to make a paperlike material for writing on.
Relating to a social system in which the father is head of the family.
Pax Romana
A period of peace and prosperity throughout the Roman Empire, lasting from 27 BC to AD 180.
Peloponnesian War
A war, lasting from 430 to 404 BC, in which Athens and its allies were defeated by Sparta and its allies.
Persian Wars
A series of wars in the fifth century BC, in which Greek city-states battled the Persian Empire.
A military formation of foot soldiers armed with spears and shields.
A king of ancient Egypt, considered a god as well as a political and military leader.
Thinkers who use logic and reason to investigate the nature of the universe, human society, and morality.
A seafaring people of Southwest Asia, who around 1100 BC began to trade and found colonies throughout the Mediterranean region.
In ancient Rome, one of the common farmers, artisans, and merchants who made up most of the population.
A Greek city-state- the fundamental political unit of ancient Greece after about 750 BC.
A belief in many gods.
Qin Dynasty
A short-lived Chinese dynasty that replaced the Zhou Dynasty in the third century BC.
The holy book of Islam.
In Hinduism and Buddhism, the process by which a soul is reborn again and again until it achieves perfect understanding.
religious toleration
A recognition of people's right to hold differing religious beliefs.
A form of government in which power is in the hands of representatives and leaders are elected by the people.
Royal Road
A road in the Persian Empire, stretching over 1,600 miles from Susa in Persia to Sardis in Anatolia.
The African region along the southern border of the Sahara.
A pilgrimage to Mecca, performed as a duty by Muslims.
A flat, grassy plain.
One of the professional record keepers in early civilizations.
In ancient Rome, the supreme governing body, originally made up only of aristocrats.
A body of law governing the lives of Muslims.
The branch of Islam whose members acknowledge Ali and his descendants as the rightful successors of Muhammad.
Silk Roads
A system of ancient caravan routes across Central Asia, along which traders carried silk and other trade goods.
The fine soil carried in the water of rivers.
slash-and-burn farming
A farming method in which people clear fields by cutting and burning trees and grasses, the ashes of which serve to fertilize the soil.
A member of a nomadic group whose food supply depends on hunting animals and collecting plant foods.
A group of nomadic invaders from Southwest Asia who ruled Egypt from 1640 to 1570 BC
Ice Age
A cold period in which huge ice sheets spread outward from the polar regions, the last one of which lasted from about 1,600,000 to 10,000 BC.
I Ching
A Chinese book of oracles consulted to answer ethical and practical problems.
A group of seminomadic peoples who, about 1700 BC, began to migrate from what is now southern Russia to the Indian subcontinent, Europe, and Southwest Asia.
A decline in the value of money, accompanied by a rise in the prices of goods and services.
A long-lasting pattern of organization in a community.
The bringing of water to crop fields by means of canals and ditches.
A monotheistic religion that developed in Arabia in the seventh century AD.
A kingdom of the united Hebrews in Palestine, lasting from about 1020 to 922 BC; later, the northernmost of the two Hebrew kingdoms; now, the Jewish nation that was established in Palestine in 1948.
A religion founded in India in the sixth century BC whose members believe that everything in the universe has a soul and therefore should not be harmed.
A Hebrew kingdom in Palestine, established around 922 BC.
In Hinduism and Buddhism, the totality of the good and bad deeds performed bya person, which is believed to determine his or her fate after rebirth.
An ancient Nubian kingdom whose rulers controlled Egypt from 751 to 671 BC.
A Chinese political philosophy based on the idea that a highly efficient and powerful government is the key to social order.
A military unit of the ancient Roman army, made up of about 5,000 foot soldiers and a group of soldiers on horseback.
A fertile deposit of windblown soil.
An ancient kingdom north of Greece, whose ruler Philip II conquered Greece in 338 BC.
A great Indian epic peom, reflecting the struggles of the Aryans as they moved south into India.
A sect of Buddhism that offers salvation to all and allows popular worship.
Mandate of Heaven
In Chinese history, the divine approval thought to be the basis of royal authority.
Relating to a social system in which the mother is head of the family.
Mauryan Empire
The first empire in India, founded by Chandragupta Mauryta in 321 BC.
A Southwest Asain people who helped to destroy the Assyrian Empire.
A soldier who is paid to fight in a foreign army.
An area extending from central Mexico to Honduras, where several of the ancient complex societies of the Americas developed.
THe act of moving from one place to settle in another.
A seafaring and trading people that lived on the island of Crete from about 2000 to 1400 BC.
A civilization that flourished on what is now the northern coast of Peru from about AD 100 to 700.
A government in which power is in the hands of a single person.
A group's exclusive control over the production and distribution of certain goods.
A belief in a single god.
A wind that shifts in direction at certain times of each year.
An Islamic place of worship.
A process of embalming and drying corpses to prevent them from decaying.
An Indo-European people who settled on the Greek mainland around 2000 BC.
Traditional stories about gods, ancestors, or heroes, told to explain the natural world or the customs and beliefs of a society.
A civilization that flourished on what is now the southern coast of Peru from about 200 BC to AD 600.
Neolithic Age
A prehistoric period that began about 8000 BC and in some areas ended as early as 3000 BC, during which people learned to polish stone tools, make pottery, grow crops, and raise animals- also called the New Stone Age.
Neolithic Revolution
The major change in human life caused by hte beginnings of farming- that is, by people's shift from food gathering to food producing.
Han Dynasty
A Chinese dynasty that ruled from 202 BC to AD 9 and again from AD 23 to 220.
Muhammad's migration from Mecca to Yathrib (Medina) in AD 622.
A political unit in which a number of peoples or countries are controlled by a single ruler.
In Buddhism, a state of perfect wisdom in which one understands basic truths about the universe.
Long narriteive poems celebrating the deeds of legendary or traditional heroes.
extended family
A group that includes a person's parents, children, grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
Fertile Crescent
An arc of rich farmland in Southwest Asia, between the Persian Gulf and the Mediterranean Sea.
A political system in whihc nobles are granted the use of lands that legally belong to their king, in exchange for their loyalty, military service, and protection of the people who live on the land.
filial piety
Respect shown by children for their parents and elders.
In ancient Rome, one of the professional fighters who engaged in battles to the death in public arenas.
Relating to the civilization, language, art, science, and literature of the Greek world from the reign of Alexander the Great to the late second century BC.
In the society of ancient Sparta, a peasant bound to the land.
religious beliefs or opinions that differ from the official teachings of a Christian church.
an ancient Egyptian writing system in which pictures were used to represent ideas and sounds.
an Indo-European people who settled in Anatolia around 2000 BC.
A member of a biological group including human beings and related species that walk upright.
Homo sapiens
The biological species to which modern human beings belong.
a Muslim-ruled region in what is now Spain, established in the eighth century AD
God (an Arabic word, used mainly in Islam).
the Southwest Asian peninsula now occupied by the Asian part of Turkey- also called Asia Minor.
the belief that spirits are present in animals, plants, and other natural objects.
one of the followers of Jesus who preached and spread his teachings
a fortified hilltop in an ancient Greek city
absolute ruler
A ruler who has total power
A dynasty that ruled much of the Muslim Empire from AD 750 to 1258
an African kingdom, in what is now Ethiopia and Eritrea, that reached the heigh of its power in the fourth century AD
A city and its surrounding lands functioning as an independent political unit.
A former of culture characterized by cities, specialized workers, complex institutions, record keeping, and advanced technology.
civil service
The administrative departments of a government- especially those in which employees are hired on teh basis of their scores on examinations.
civil war
A conflict between two political groups within the same country.
A group of people descended from a common ancestor.
classical art
The art of ancient Greece and Rome, in which harmony, order, and balance were emphasized.
In the Roman republic, on of the two powerful officials elected each year to command the army and direct the government.
A mutual promise or agreement- especially an agreement between God and the Hebrew people as recorded in the Bible.
cultural diffusion
The spreading of ideas or products from one culture to another.
A people's unique way of life, as shown by its tools, customs, arts, and ideas.
A system of writing with wedge-shaped symbols, invented by the Sumerians around 3000 BC.
A philosophy based on the ideas of the Chinese thinker Laozi, who taught that people should be guided by a universal force called the Dao (Way).
A marshy region formed by deposits of silt at the mouth of a river.
A government controlled by its citizens, either directly or through representatives.
A transformation of fertile land into desert.
The dispersal of the Jews from their homeland in Palestine- especially during the period of more that 1,800 years that followed the Romans' destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem in AD 70.
In ancient Rome, a political leader given absolute power to make laws and command the army for a limited time.
direct democracy
A government in which citizens rule directly rather than through representatives.
The taming of animals for human use.
A Greek-speaking people that, according to tradition, migrated into mainland Greece after the destruction of the Mycenaean civilization.
dynastic cycle
The historical pattern of the rise, decline, and replacement of dynasties.
A series of rulers from a single family.
a pipeline or channel built to carry water to populated areas.
a government in which power is in the hands of a hereditary ruling class or nobility.
a human-made object, such as a tool, weapon, or piece of jewelry.
a skilled worker, suchas a weaver or potter, who makes goods by hand.
a Southwest Asian kingdom that controlled a large empire from about 850 to 612 BC.
The adoption of a conqueror's culture by a conquered people.
the buying, transporting, and selling of Africans for work in the Americas.
Bantu-speaking peoples
The speakers of a related group of languages, who, beginning about 2,000 years ago, migrated from West Africa into most of the southern half of Africa.
A form of trade in which people exchange goods and serveices without the use of money.
An ancient land bridge over which the earlies Americans are believed to have migrated from Asia into the Americas.
A high-ranking Christian official who supervises a number of local churches.
A Hindu god considered the creator of the world.
In Aryan, society, a member of teh social class made up of priests.
Bronze Age
A period in human history, beginning around 3000 BC in some areas, during which people began using bronze, rather than copper or stone, to fashion tools and weapons.
A system of departments and agencies formed to carry out the work of the government.
A supreme political and religious leader in a Muslim government
The art of beautiful handwriting.
One of the four classes of people in the social system of the Aryans who settled in India- priests, warriors, peasants or traders, and non-Aryan labororers or craftsmen.
A waterfall or stretch of rapids in a river.
cetralized goverment
A government in which power is concentrated in a central authority to which local governments are subject.
A Southwest Asian people who helped to destroy the Assyrian Empire.
The first major South American civilization, which flourished in the highlands of what is now Peru from about 900 to 200 BC.

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