Sumerians And Egyptians Essay, Research Paper
There are many ways that Ancient Egypt society and Mesopotamia
society are similar and at the same time they are very different. The most
important ways that their society’s differ and are alike are in their government,
religion, social structure, scientific accomplishments, and their outlook on life.
The ways that the Egypt government and the Mesopotamia government
differ are how they are ruled. Egypt was one kingdom and it was divided in to
provinces or names, the kingdom was ruled by one person known as the
Pharaoh. The provinces were ruled by nemarchs. Mesopotamia had many
independent city-states with its own government and ruler. In Egypt there was
political unification achieved and in Mesopotamia political unification was rarely
achieved. The Egyptian government was more of a stronger centralized
government and the Sumerian government was not as strong and more
Egyptian and Sumerian religions have a lot of similarities. For one thing
they were both polytheistic. In Egypt people in each village worshipped a village
god in addition to other gods. Sumerians worshipped others gods in addition to
the god of their city-state. In Egypt the ruler or the Pharaoh was a god, and in
Mesopotamia the rulers weren’t known as gods they were knows as
representatives of gods. Both Egyptians and Sumerians both believed that
different gods controlled the forces of nature. The Egyptians had a positive view
on the afterlife, but the Sumerians had a dark gloomy view of the afterlife
because they thought the gods were always punishing them.
Both Egyptians and Sumerians had their own systems of writing, even
though they were different they had their similarities. Egyptian writing was
known as hieroglyphics, which were basically pictures of objects. They mainly
used hieroglyphics for records of religious rituals. At first Egyptians carved
hieroglyphics on to stone or wood, later they used flattened papyrus reeds and
wrote with ink and brushes. Sumerian writing was known as cuneiform.
Cuneiform was simply symbols representing sounds and syllables. Sumerians
used a stylus, or a sharpened reed instrument, to make write on wet tablets of
clay. They baked the tablets so they would harden up and be saved for records.
The people that did most of their writing were known as scribes. Priest set up
schools for the scribes in temples.
Egyptians and Sumerians both had scientific accomplishments that they
were known for. Sumerians were the first people known to use the wheel. The
wheel helped the Sumerians for a lot of things. The Sumerians made many
improvements on farming. They built complex irrigation systems to channel
water though out the farmland. Both Egyptians and Sumerians used arithmetic
and geometry to survey land and reestablish property likes after floods swept
away boundary markers. The Sumerian system was based on the number 60.
Sumerians were the first to use arches, columns, ramps, and inclined walks.
Egyptians produced a calendar with a 365-day year. They divided the year into
12 months. They also made medical discoveries, they learned how to perform
surgery, how to set fractured bones and to treat spinal injuries. They were
known for their impressive stone monuments. They learned how to cut tall
obelisks from a single rock, using hot fires and cold water to make the
surrounding rocks crack.
The Egyptian outlook on life and the Sumerian outlook on life are totally
different. The Egyptians had a positive outlook on like but on the other hand the
Sumerians had a dark gloomy one. The reasons for this are simple. The
Egyptians were looking forward to their afterlife, their afterlife, they believed,
consisted them being happy, well fed, and busy with the same activities they
had enjoyed during their life. Because of that the Egyptians had something to
look forward to after they died. Also in Egypt, the favorable climate of the Nile
Valley allowed the people to enjoy life and see their gods as kindly forces. By,
contrast, the Sumerians feared of natural disasters and invasions, which
probably contributed to the gloomy outlook on life. They believed that the gods
punished them with floods and or famine. Their gloomy outlook on life made
them have a bad aspect on their afterlife. They believed that at death that they
were going to descend forever into a dark underworld, a huge cave filled with
nothing but dust and silence. Because of this they had nothing to look forward
to after death so this made their like miserable.
This is how the Egyptian society and the Mesopotamia society are alike
and different. They have many alike things and also many differences. They
both have their ups and their downs.