Compare and contrast egypt and mesopotamia essay

Mesopotamia and Egypt were both intellectually similar, because they both had a written language forming.

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The Egyptians had hieroglyphics, and Mesopotamia used clay tablets to draw similar pictograms. They made board games, and other fun activities.

Episode 3.1. Compare and Contrast Egypt and Mesopotamia

They both had greater literacy forming now that they had a written language. In both civilizations religious leaders were given a very high status. They were both polytheistic, meaning they believed their world was ruled by more than one god. They believed that the gods created them, and they were also responsible for good harvests. Now that Mesopotamia and Egypt were more technologically advanced, they both built religious structures. Mesopotamia built ziggurats, and the Egyptians built pyramids. The priests went to the Ziggurats and Pyramids to pray, and to make offerings to the gods.

Mesopotamia and Egypt both had major achievements. Mesopotamia was more agriculturally advanced and built irrigation systems. They invented plowing and wheels, to help them with farming. The Egyptian and Mesopotamian political, social, and cultural parts of their lives developed differently, but there is a similar basis between the two. Although they had similar political systems in that they both were ruled by kings, the way they viewed their kings and the way that they both constructed their power differed. Both civilizations constructed their social classes similarly in that they had kings at the top, followed by other officials and merchants, and at the bottom the slaves and peasants.

Ancient Egypt vs. Mesopotamia

They both had their own form of writing; Mesopotamia had cuneiform, and Egypt had hieroglyphics and cursive script, respectively. While they are similar in many different political, social, and cultural activities and ideas, they have enough contrast to be viewed as different societies. Politically, because they were geographically open to envision, Mesopotamia culture created compact self-governing political units- the city-states.

By the third millennium B. The power of religious leaders decreased as the power of kings increased.


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And although the kings took over control of temples, Mesopotamian kings did not claim divine power. Political changes occurred in Mesopotania because of the succession of people that followed the initial Sumerian people, like the Akkadians, the Kassites Medes and Persians who established their temporary political dominance. By B. In sharp contrast is the continuity of political history in ancient Egypt. Legendary King Menes united Upper and Lower Egypt into one nation that lasted with continuity of culture from 3, B.

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Unlike Mesopotamian kings, the Egyptian king was represented as Horus and as the son of Re, and fit into the pattern of the dead returning to life and the climatic renewing life of the sun-god. No written law code was developed in Egypt.

The pharaoh governed the country through a large efficient bureaucracy. In highly urbanized Mesopotamia, specialization of function, centralization of power, and use of written records enabled certain groups to amass unprecedented wealth. Women could own property, maintain control of their dowry, and even engage in trade but men monopolized political life.

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Some women worked outside the home in textile factories, breweries or as prostitutes, tavern keepers, bakers, or fortune tellers. Inside the home women grew wove baskets, had vegetable gardens, cooked, cleaned, and fetched water. Temple leaders and the kings controlled large agricultural estates, and the palace administration collected taxes from subjects. The lowest class of people tended the fields and used their strength in the off-season to build large public works like ziggarets.


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Women were subordination to men and had no property rights. In Mesopotamia by the second millennium B. In the Old Babylonian period, the class of people who were not dependent on the temple or palace grew, the amount of land and other property in private hands increased, and free laborers became more common. The Mesopotamian civilization had 3 social classes: 1. Egyptian class structure was less defined and more pyramid in shape. When not need for agriculture the peasants labored to build the tombs of the pharaoh.

Slavery existed on a limited scale and was of limited economic significance.

In contrast to Mesopotamia, Egyptian merchants had a low social status.