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Great civilizations of the old world: From Egypt to the Maya

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Velike civilizacije starega sveta: Od Egipta do Majev

The history of mankind is rich with great civilizations that contributed to the development of culture, science, art and technology. These civilizations left a lasting mark on our world and we still feel their influence today.

Ancient Egypt

Ancient Egypt is one of the most fascinating and enduring civilizations in history. Their culture, architecture and scientific achievements are still a source of inspiration today.

Egyptian civilization developed along the Nile River around 3100 BC. n. no. and lasted more than three millennia. The ancient Egyptians were known for their monumental constructions such as pyramids, temples and sphinxes. The most famous is the Great Pyramid of Giza, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

In addition to architecture, the Egyptians contributed to the development of writing, science and medicine. They developed hieroglyphs, a writing system that was used to record religious texts, historical events, and everyday life. Egyptian doctors performed surgeries and used herbs to treat illnesses.

Mesopotamia

Known as the “Cradle of Civilization”, Mesopotamia was home to many early cultures such as the Sumerians, Akkadians, Babylonians and Assyrians. This region developed between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in present-day Iraq and was a center of innovation and progress.

The Sumerians were the first to develop a writing system known as cuneiform. This script was carved into clay tablets and was used to record legal documents, literary works and commercial records. The Sumerians were also pioneers in mathematics and astronomy.

The Babylonians were famous for their law collections, especially the Code of Hammurabi, which is one of the oldest known codes. The Babylonians also contributed to the development of astronomy and a calendar based on lunar cycles.

Ancient China

Ancient China was one of the most advanced civilizations of its time, known for its innovation, culture and philosophy. Chinese civilization developed along the Yellow River (Huang He) and has more than five thousand years of history.

The Shang Dynasty (1600–1046 BC) is the first known Chinese dynasty to introduce writing, bronze technology, and religious rituals. The later Zhou dynasty (1046–256 BCE) was known for its philosophical schools, such as Confucianism and Daoism, which shaped Chinese society and culture.

Among the important achievements of ancient China are the inventions of paper, printing, gunpowder and the compass, which revolutionized the world. The Great Wall of China, built to protect against the incursions of nomadic tribes, is still one of the most impressive architectural structures in the world today.

Ancient Greece

Ancient Greece was the cradle of Western civilization, known for its philosophy, art, science and democracy. Greek civilization consisted of many city-states, the most important of which were Athens, Sparta, Corinth and Thebes.

Athens was the center of art, philosophy and science. Great philosophers such as Socrates, Plato and Aristotle worked here, whose ideas shaped Western thought. Athens was also the birthplace of democracy, where citizens had the right to participate in the decision-making of public affairs.

Greek artists and architects created extraordinary works such as the Parthenon and the sculptures of Phidias. Greek literature, including the works of Homer, Sophocles, and Euripides, continues to influence literature and theater today.

Mayan Civilization

The Mayan civilization was one of the most important pre-Columbian civilizations in Central America. It developed in what is now Mexico, Guatemala, Belize and Honduras and was known for its advanced architecture, mathematics and astronomy.

The Maya built great cities such as Tikal, Palenque and Chichen Itza, which were centers of political, religious and economic life. Their pyramids, temples and palaces are among the most impressive ancient structures in the world.

The Maya developed a complex calendar and a script known as hieroglyphs. Their knowledge of mathematics and astronomy was extremely advanced, allowing them to accurately predict solar and lunar eclipses and develop complex calendar systems.

The great civilizations of the ancient world, such as Egypt, Mesopotamia, China, Greece and the Maya, left a lasting mark on human history. Their achievements in the fields of architecture, science, art and philosophy still influence our world today. Understanding these civilizations helps us better appreciate the rich history and cultural heritage we share.

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