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Transcript of Mesopotamia
By:Megan Overby,Miranda Nelson,Haley Huff, and Alex Medley
Mesopotamia and The Assyrian Empire
Art Styles in Ancient Mesopotamia
Sumerians first style of language was based on pictograms.
Pictograms were pictorial symbols for words and other phrases.
As the need for writing increased they developed a script called cuneiform.
One of the first maps wads made around 2300 B.C.
They made these marks on clay tablets and their writing utensils were blunt reeds
The Sumerians recorded daily events, trade, astronomy, and literature on these tablets.
This language was used for thousands of years.
A uniform code of laws
Art relating to Religion:
Art relating to the State:
Art for personal reasons:
Sumerian art and culture often revolved around their religion.
Sargon of Akkad
Sargon defeats city-states of Sumer. Adopts aspects of Sumerian culture, creating first empire.
Conquered many lands between 850 and 650 B.C.
They fell to the Babylonians in 612 B.C. when the Medes and chaldeans burned their capital city
Art relating to the government often intertwined with religious art to pay glory to kings and gods.
Geography (Environmental features and challenges)
Beginning of organized government developed through the creation of irrigation systems
Formed city states
Temple priests controlled earliest governments
Eventually commanders became full-time rulers
Most people in Mesopotamian cultures kept small pieces of personal art.
Part of the "Fertile Crescent"
Civilizations arose there because food was grown so easily
Was located in what is now modern day Southern Iraq
In between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers
They faced unpredictable flooding and periods of little or no rain.
There weren't any natural barriers so the Sumerians were basically defenseless.
Their natural resources were limited.
Religion in Mesopotamia
Kings choose governors to be in charge of small territories but the king controlled the governors.
The Assyrian empire was able to conquer many lands due to its powerful and warlike kings.
Collected taxes from the regions they ruled
Organized social hierarchy
Every city had their own deity
Both public and private worship
They dug irrigation ditches that provided a way for them to get river water to their crops
Built walls out of mud bricks to protect themselves
Traded grain, cloth and tools with other peoples to receive raw materials like stone and wood.
Ziggurats most often functioned as temples
Entire civilization revolved around religion
Religion's role in Art
Religion/Art in the Government
3300 B.C. -People began farming (agrarian)
Fertile Crescent-perfect soil,surplus food
Creation of City-States
City-state: A governmental system unique to each city,acts like an independent country to neighboring cities
Ex:Uruk,Kish, Lagash,Umma, and Ur
850 B.C. acquired large empire though war
Warlike people because of geographical position
Kings were considered the Highest Priests
Kings were descended from Gods, not Gods themselves
Surplus food lead to specializations: Merchants,Artisans
Banners and carved reliefs were common to pay homage to kings
Personal worship and Art
Sacrifices and Rites
Important People And Their Roles
Hammurabi-Babylonian Leader who conquered Sumeria, reigned during the peak the Babylonian Empire. Reigned from 1792 B.C.-1750 B.C.
Creation of Hammurabi's Code-collection of rules,judgements,and laws to unify empire.
Sennacherib-Assyrian king who bragged about all the land he had conquered,Burned Babylon, aided in the extending the empire
Ashurbanipal- Assyrian king who collected a large amount of literature in the form of clay tablets
Medes-Army that helped defeat Assyria
Chaldeans-Army that helped defeat Asyria
The Sumerians invented the wheel, the sail and the plow. Along with libraries, chariots, wine and the modern idea of time.
Some of the Assyrians inventions include anti-depressants and the concepts of Algebra.
Assyrians were the first to use iron weapons in war.
The Assyrians were definitely a military oriented people.
This was because their land was exposed and an easy target for attack, they had to adapt and thus became fighters.
Assyria's fighters had iron swords, spears, a combination of leather and metal armor, metal helmets, and skirts studded with metal scales.
They were very organized and inventive and often used battering rams to enter fortresses.
Some of the many lands they conquered were Syria, Palestine, and Babylonia.
Although, the Assyrian's were aggressive they also had architectural skill and their capital held one of the largest libraries.
The thousands of clay tablets stored in there made it through the fire that was Assyria's demise
Ziggurats were pyramidal structures with flat tops built in receding tiers upon a square or rectangular base. They were built using sun dried mud bricks.
The ziggurats were used as temples to the patron god of the city. Only priests were permitted inside.
Why did these empire succeed?