Ancient Egypt was a civilization of ancient Northeastern Africaconcentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River - geographically Lower Egypt and Upper Egyptin the place that is now occupied by the countries of Egypt and Sudan.
Egypt reached the pinnacle of its power in the New Kingdom, ruling much of Nubia and a sizable portion of the Near Eastafter which it entered a period of slow decline.
During the course of its history Egypt was invaded or conquered by a number of foreign powers, including the Hyksosthe Libyansthe Nubiansthe Assyriansthe Achaemenid Persiansand the Macedonians under the command of Alexander the Great. The success of ancient Egyptian civilization came partly from its ability to adapt to the conditions of the Nile River valley for agriculture.
The predictable flooding and controlled irrigation of the fertile valley produced surplus crops, which supported a more dense population, and social development and culture. With resources to spare, the administration sponsored mineral exploitation of the valley and surrounding desert regions, the early development of an independent writing systemthe organization of collective construction and agricultural projects, trade with surrounding regions, and a military intended to defeat foreign enemies and assert Egyptian dominance.
Motivating and organizing these activities was a bureaucracy of elite scribesreligious leaders, and administrators under the control of a pharaohwho ensured the cooperation and unity of the Egyptian people in the context of an elaborate system of religious beliefs. The many achievements of the ancient Egyptians include the quarryingsurveying and construction techniques that supported the building of monumental pyramidstemplesand obelisks ; a system of mathematicsa practical and effective system of medicineirrigation systems and agricultural production techniques, the first known planked boats,  Egypt gay dating faience and glass technology, new forms of literatureand the earliest known peace treatymade with the Hittites.
Its art and architecture were widely copied, and its antiquities carried off to far corners of the world, egypt gay dating. Its monumental ruins have inspired the imaginations of travelers and writers for centuries. A new-found respect for antiquities and excavations in the early modern period by Europeans and Egyptians led to the scientific investigation of Egypt gay dating civilization and a greater appreciation of its cultural legacy.
The Nile has been the lifeline of its region for much of human history. By the late Paleolithic period, the arid climate of Northern Africa became increasingly hot and dry, forcing the populations of the area to concentrate along the river region.
In Predynastic and Early Dynastic times, the Egyptian climate was much less arid than it is today. Large regions of Egypt were covered in treed savanna and traversed by herds of grazing ungulates. Foliage and fauna were far more prolific in all environs and the Nile region supported large populations of waterfowl. Hunting would have been common for Egyptians, and this is also the period when many animals were first domesticated. The largest of these early cultures in upper Southern Egypt was the Badariwhich probably originated in the Western Desert; it was known for its high quality ceramics, stone toolsand its use of copper.
As early as the Naqada I Period, predynastic Egyptians imported obsidian from Ethiopiaused to shape blades and other objects from flakes. The Naqada culture manufactured a diverse selection of material goods, reflective of the increasing power and wealth of the elite, as well as societal personal-use items, which included combs, small statuary, painted pottery, high quality decorative stone vasescosmetic palettesand jewelry made of gold, lapis, and ivory.
They also developed a ceramic glaze known as faiencewhich was used well into the Roman Period to decorate cups, amulets, and figurines. The Early Dynastic Period was approximately contemporary to the early Sumerian - Akkadian civilisation of Mesopotamia and of ancient Elam. The third-century BC Egyptian priest Manetho grouped the long line of pharaohs from Menes to his own time into 30 dynasties, a system still used today. He began his official history with the king named "Meni" or Menes in Greek who was believed to have united the two kingdoms of Upper and Lower Egypt.
The transition to a unified state happened more gradually than ancient Egyptian writers represented, and there is no contemporary record of Menes. Some scholars now believe, however, that the mythical Menes may have been the pharaoh Narmerwho is depicted wearing royal regalia on the ceremonial Narmer Palette, in a symbolic act of unification.
The increasing power and wealth of the pharaohs during the early dynastic period was reflected in their elaborate mastaba tombs and mortuary cult structures at Abydos, which were used to celebrate the deified pharaoh after his death. Major advances in architecture, art, and technology were made during the Old Kingdomfueled by the increased agricultural productivity and resulting population, made possible by a well-developed central administration.
Under the direction of the vizierstate officials collected taxes, coordinated irrigation projects to improve crop yielddrafted peasants to work on construction projects, and established a justice system to maintain peace and order.
With the rising importance of central administration in Egypt a new class of educated scribes and officials arose who were granted estates by the pharaoh in payment for their services. Pharaohs also made land grants to their mortuary cults and local temples, to ensure that these institutions had the resources to worship the pharaoh after his death.
Scholars believe that five centuries of these practices slowly eroded the economic vitality of Egypt, and that the economy could no longer afford to support a large centralized administration. After Egypt's central government collapsed at the end of the Old Kingdom, the administration could no longer support or stabilize the country's economy.
Regional governors could not rely on the king for help in times of crisis, and the ensuing food shortages and political disputes escalated into famines and small-scale civil wars. Yet despite difficult problems, local leaders, owing no tribute to the pharaoh, used their new-found independence to establish a thriving culture in the provinces.
Once in control of their own resources, the provinces became economically richer—which was demonstrated by larger and better burials among all social classes. Free from their loyalties to the pharaoh, local rulers began competing with each other for territorial control and political power.
As the Intefs grew in power and expanded their control northward, a clash between the two rival dynasties became inevitable. They inaugurated a period of economic and cultural renaissance known as the Middle Kingdom. The pharaohs of the Middle Kingdom restored the country's stability and prosperity, thereby stimulating a resurgence of art, literature, and monumental building projects. Moreover, the military reconquered territory in Nubia that was rich egypt gay dating quarries and gold mines, while laborers built a defensive structure in the Eastern Delta, called the " Walls-of-the-Ruler ", to defend against foreign attack, egypt gay dating.
With the pharaohs having secured the country militarily and politically and with vast agricultural and mineral wealth at their disposal, the nation's population, arts, and religion flourished. In contrast to elitist Old Kingdom attitudes towards the gods, mobofree chat and dating Middle Kingdom displayed an increase in expressions of personal piety.
The last great ruler of the Middle Kingdom, Amenemhat IIIallowed Semitic -speaking Canaanite settlers from the Near East into the Delta region to provide a sufficient labour force for his especially active mining and building campaigns.
These ambitious building and mining activities, however, combined with severe Nile floods later in his reign, strained the economy and precipitated the slow decline into the Second Intermediate Period during the later Thirteenth and Fourteenth dynasties. During this decline, the Canaanite settlers began to assume greater control of the Delta region, eventually coming to power in Egypt as the Hyksos.
The pharaoh was treated as a vassal and expected to pay tribute. They and other invaders introduced new tools of warfare into Egypt, most notably the composite bow and the horse-drawn chariot. After retreating south, the native Theban kings found themselves trapped between the Canaanite Hyksos ruling the north and the Hyksos' Nubian allies, the Kushitesto the south.
That task fell to Kamose's successor, Ahmose Iwho successfully waged a series of campaigns that permanently eradicated the Hyksos' presence in Egypt.
He established a new dynasty and, in the New Kingdom that followed, the military became a central priority for the pharaohs, who sought to expand Egypt's borders and attempted to gain mastery of the Near East. The New Kingdom pharaohs established a period of unprecedented prosperity by securing their borders and strengthening diplomatic ties with their neighbours, including the Mitanni Empire, Assyriaand Canaan. Military campaigns waged under Tuthmosis I and his grandson Tuthmosis III extended the influence of the pharaohs to the largest empire Egypt had ever seen.
Between their reigns, Hatshepsutegypt gay dating, a queen who established herself as pharaoh, launched many building projects, including restoration of temples damaged by the Hyksos, and sent trading expenditions to Punt and the Sinai. The New Kingdom pharaohs began a large-scale building campaign to promote the god Amunwhose growing cult was based in Karnak.
They also constructed monuments to glorify their own achievements, both real and imagined. The Karnak temple is the largest Egyptian temple ever built. Changing his name to Akhenatenhe touted the previously obscure sun deity Aten as the supreme deitysuppressed the worship of most other deities, and moved the capital to the new city of Akhetaten modern-day Amarna. After his death, the cult of the Aten was quickly abandoned and the traditional religious order restored.
The subsequent pharaohs, TutankhamunAyand Horemhebworked to erase all mention of Akhenaten's heresy, now known as the Amarna Period. Egypt's wealth, however, made it a tempting target for invasion, particularly by the Libyan Berbers to the west, and the Sea Peoplesa conjectured   confederation of seafarers from the Aegean Sea. Initially, the military was able to repel these invasions, but Egypt eventually lost control of its remaining territories in southern Canaanmuch of it falling to the Assyrians.
The effects of external threats were exacerbated by internal problems such as corruption, tomb robbery, and civil unrest, egypt gay dating. After regaining their power, the high priests at the temple of Amun in Thebes accumulated vast tracts of land and wealth, and their expanded power splintered the country during the Third Intermediate Period.
The south was effectively controlled by the High Priests of Amun at Thebeswho recognized Smendes in name only. Shoshenq also gained control of southern Egypt by placing his family members in important priestly positions. Libyan control began to erode as a rival dynasty in the delta arose in Leontopolisand Kushites threatened from the south. Egypt's far-reaching prestige declined considerably toward the end of the Third Intermediate Period.
The reigns of both Taharqa and his successor, Tanutamunwere filled with constant conflict with the Assyrians, against whom Egypt enjoyed several victories. Ultimately, the Assyrians pushed the Kushites back into Nubia, occupied Memphis, and sacked the temples of Thebes. The Assyrians left control of Egypt to a series of vassals who became known as the Saite kings of dating an illegal mexican Twenty-Sixth Dynasty.
Greek influence expanded greatly as the city of Naukratis became the home of Greeks in the delta. Cambyses II then assumed the formal title of pharaoh, asian dating indian ruled Egypt from Iran, leaving Egypt under the control of a satrapy.
A few successful revolts against the Persians marked the 5th century BC, but Egypt was never able to permanently overthrow the Persians. The last of these dynasties, the Thirtiethproved to be the last native royal house of ancient Egypt, ending with the kingship of Nectanebo II. The administration established by Alexander's successors, the Macedonian Ptolemaic Kingdomwas based on an Egyptian model and based in the new capital city of Alexandria.
The city showcased the power and prestige of Hellenistic rule, and became a seat of learning and culture, centered at the famous Library of Alexandria. Hellenistic culture did not supplant native Egyptian culture, as the Ptolemies supported time-honored traditions in an effort to secure the loyalty of the populace.
They built new temples in Egyptian style, supported traditional cults, and portrayed themselves as pharaohs. Some traditions merged, as Greek and Egyptian gods were syncretized into composite deities, such as Serapisand classical Greek forms of sculpture influenced traditional Egyptian motifs.
Despite their efforts to appease the Egyptians, the Ptolemies were challenged by native rebellion, bitter family rivalries, and the powerful mob of Alexandria that formed after the death of Ptolemy IV.
Continued Egyptian revolts, ambitious politicians, and powerful opponents from the Near East made this situation unstable, leading Rome to send forces to secure the country as a province of its empire. The Romans relied heavily on grain shipments from Egypt, and the Roman armyunder the control of a prefect appointed by the Emperor, quelled rebellions, strictly enforced the collection of heavy taxes, and prevented attacks by bandits, which had become a notorious problem during the period.
Although the Romans had a more hostile attitude than the Greeks towards the Egyptians, some traditions such as mummification and worship of the traditional gods continued.
The former lived outside Egypt and did not perform the ceremonial functions of Egyptian kingship. Egypt gay dating administration became Roman in style and closed to native Egyptians. From the mid-first century AD, Christianity took root in Egypt and it was originally seen as another cult that could be accepted. However, it was an uncompromising religion that sought to win converts from Egyptian Religion and Greco-Roman religion and threatened popular religious traditions. This led to the persecution of converts to Christianity, culminating in the great purges of Diocletian starting inbut eventually Christianity won out.
While the native population certainly continued to speak their languagethe ability to read hieroglyphic writing slowly disappeared as the role of the Egyptian temple priests and priestesses diminished. The temples themselves were sometimes converted to churches or abandoned to the desert.
In the fourth century, as the Roman Empire divided, Egypt found itself in the Eastern Empire with its capital at Constantinople. The pharaoh was the absolute monarch of the country and, at least in theory, wielded complete control of the land and its resources.
The king was the supreme military commander and head of the government, who egypt gay dating on a bureaucracy of officials to manage his affairs. In charge of the administration was his second in command, the vizierwho acted as the king's representative and coordinated land surveys, the treasury, building projects, the legal system, and the archives.
The temples formed the backbone of the economy. Not only were they houses of worshipbut were also responsible for collecting and storing the nation's wealth in a system of granaries and treasuries administered by overseerswho redistributed grain and goods.
Much of the economy was centrally organized and strictly controlled. At first the coins were used as standardized pieces of precious metal rather than true money, but in the following centuries international traders came to rely on coinage.
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