Ancient Civilizations

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorUniversity, Bachelor's February 2008

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It is no coincidence that the three most advanced early civilizations are all situated in a river valley were rainfall is sufficient for agriculture. Dependable agriculture is a key element in the development of civilization, but differences in the environment and location of Mesopotamia, Egypt, and the Indus river valley led to differences in technology, religion, and political organization.

Technology plays an important role in the evolution of a society, and is effected greatly by the environment and location of the civilization. In order to control Mesopotamia's overall harsh environment a need for technological advances emerged. The hot, dry, arid climate in addition to the unpredictable flooding required complex irrigation systems. Mesopotamia was resources deprived, but had an abundance of clay. This may loosely have contributed to the invention of writing in Mesopotamia; cuneiform was wedged into clay tablets. Egypt had a more pleasant of an environment and was ,therefore, this had less impact on their technology.

The annual and grain-supporting flooding the Nile caused a belief that life is beneficial and harmless. Through this, the belief in afterlife and mummification came, which led to technological advances in chemistry and human anatomy. The Indus river valley civilization had a great abundance of metal, more than both Mesopotamia and Egypt. Metals were available to all classes not only the higher classes. This led to advanced metal tools and an understanding of metallurgy. Like the other civilizations, the location of the river valley caused an advanced irrigation system. Through the technological development of the early civilizations, it is apparent how geography and environment effect the region The origin of a religion in a civilization is in its geography and location. Mesopotamia's agriculture was based around the Tigris and Euphrates river which flooded irregularly twice a year. Sometimes the...