Ancient Africa and America Prehistory-c.e. 1600

Flashcard maker : John Smith
What is the second largest continent in the world?
Africa 11.3 million square miles
From north to south Africa there are what two things?
-a succession of climatic zones
-desert, savannah, rain forest, mountain ranges
What continent is suggested to be where human life began?
Where is it that has the oldest fossils of the early ancestors of humankind have been found?
What continent is the only continent that shows evidence of humans through the key stages of evolution?
Scientific techniques support the notion that Africa, and in particular the ___ and ___ regions, is the cradle of humankind.
The earliest ancestors of humankind are known as ______ -commonly known as ape men.
The first example of Australopithecus was found when and where?
1925 in a limestone cave near Taung, in South Africa
What is the best know specimen of afarensis?
How old is lucy?
3.2 million years old
Where and when did they find lucy?
november 1974 at Hadar, Ethiopia
By around 2.5 million years ago a more recent ancestor ____ ___ or ‘man the toolmaker’ appears to have evolved.
homo habilis
What was homo habilis?
was an individual whose larger brain size enabled it to manufacture simple stone tools
_____ ____, which evolved around 1.5 million years ago, is the ancestor who looked a good deal like a modern human.
homo erectus
____ ___ was taller than ___ ___, more robust and had a larger brain.
homo erectus
homo habilis
Fossils of the \”ape man\” and Homo habilis have been found only where?
Examples of homo erectus haven been found where?
in the far east and china
The belief is that these other parts of the world were populated by the homo erectus because?
they left Africa
By the time modern man appeared there is evidence of what?
rapid population growth around the globe
What are the two theories of how the homo sapiens were able to spread?
1. eve hypothesis
2. out of africa model
What is the eve hypothesis?
it states that homo sapiens developed first in Africa descending from a single woman and then spread around the world between 100 and 200,000 years ago
What does the eve hypothesis imply?
that all modern people are ultimately of African descent
What is the out of africa model?
that modern humans evolved in africa between 200,000 to 100,000 years ago, with members of one branch leaving africa about 80,000 years ago. These emigrants spread to the rest of the world, replacing other Homo species already there such as neanderthals and homo erectus.
What was a possible migration route for homo sapiens?
beringia land bridge
How did native americans record their history?
How did native americans trade?
barter economy
How did the native americans use land?
it was for all to use and not to be owned
What are four sophisticated civilizations in north, central, and south america?
1. Olmecs
2. Mayas
3. Incas
4. Aztecs
Where did the Mayas exist?
Central america
Where did the Incas exist?
Where did the aztecs exist?
Why were the olmecs, mayas, incas, and aztecs considered a sophisticated civilization?
1. elaborate cities w/out use of simple technology
2. Astronomical observations
3. Iron tools and weapons
4. Viable political systems
When did humans begin to farm?
10,000-6,000 BC
sophisticated civilizations used advance agricultural practices like _____ to feed large populations.
In the early north americans, maize, squash, bean cultivation reached southeast around when?
A.D. 100
In early north americans, what was the 3 sister farming?
bean, squash, maize
the in early north americans, the 3 sister farming produced food for what three native american clans?
1. Creek
2. Choctaw
3. Cherokee
In the early north americans, what area had a less dense population allowing european colonizers to subdue North Americans with ease?
North and East of Pueblos
How did most north american people live?
most people lived in small, scattered, and semi permanent settelements
The north american people, who did the crop work?
In the north american people, who did the hunting, fishing, and cleared land?
The men
In the north american people, they formed what kind of cultures?
matrilineal cultures
(power and possessions passed down through female lines)
North american people had no desire to do what?
manipulate nature aggressively
How many north americans where there upon european arrival?
about 4 million
What are some sophisticated civilizations in north america?
Why was cahokia a sophisticated civilization?
They were around the mississippi river valley and had a population over 40,000. They emerged as a trading and political center
Why was hopewell a sophisticated civilization?
because they flourished by rivers
Why was anasazi a sophisticated civilization?
because they were cliff dwellers and they used 3 sister farming
Farming in africa, the first farming villages appeared along the nile river around when ?
5,000 BC
Farming in Africa, what civilization arose along the nile river about 3.500 BC?
What was so great about the nile river?
it brought in water all year round and annual flooding irrigates the shores leaving rich, fertile silt ideal for crop growing
In egyptain, civilization, by about 3,000 years bce the fertile sediments left by the annual flooding of the nile left a long strip of arable land supporting how many people?
an estimated 1.8 million
In egyptian civilization, the formation of Egypt as a unified state came when the regions known as upper and lower egypt were united by ___ who established the ____ ____.
first dynasty
Egyptian civilzation, the rulers of ancient egypt, know as _____, where regarded as gods on earth.
in egyptian civilization, there were 3 major periods called kingdoms. What were the 3?
1. Old kingdom
2. middle kingdom
3. New kingdom
in egyptian civilization, what is the old kingdom?
these years see the building of the first pyramids
in egyptian civilization, what is the middle kingdom?
the country’s administration reorganized under menthuhotep, who based his capital at Thebes
in egyptian civilization, what is the new kingdom?
-amenhotep 1 began a new period of expansion into Nubia and Palestine
-Queen hathsepsut ruled for two prosperous decades
In egyptain society, was in patrilineal or matrilineal?
What was the heiarchy in egyptain society?
kings, vizer (executive head of bureaucracy), warriors, priests, merchants, artisans, peasants
in egyptian society, women were able to do what?
1. own property
2. Managed household slaves
3. educated their children
4. Held public office
5. Serves as priests
6. operated businesses
in egyptian society, they had what kind of religion?
in egyptian society, what are some gods they believed in?
Re- the sun god
Osiris- god of the nile
In egyptian society, they believed in what?
immortality (this is why they had elaborate funerals)
What are three other african civilizations?
1. kush (nubia)
2. Meroe
3. Axum
The _____ were first based in karma, and then at napata- both towns in what is now northern Sudan.
in nubian civilization, ____ was an advanced society and archeological evidence shows that ceramics were being produced by 8,000BC-earlier than Egypt.
In Nubian civilization, ____ was rich with minerals such as stones needed for the building of temples and tombs, and gold needed for jewelry
In Nubian civilization, they had what resources?
1. the resources for the smelting of iron and ore
2. water from the nile and wood from acacia trees to make charcoal
in the Nubian Civilization, in about 600 BCE the capitol of the Kushite kingdom was moved from Napata to ____.
The kingdom of Axum was located where?
Northern Ethiopia
The people of Axum were accomplished what?
Who was the queen of Axum?
Queen Sheba
The aksumite religion came from the Arabic religion which believed what?
that the gods controlled the natural forces of the universe
What religion did the axum people eventually convert to?
Over three thousand years ago, there was two important developments in west africa. What were they?
1. long distance trade
2. ability to manipulate stone, clay, and metals
What is the theory of how Ancient Ghana came to be?
number of clans of the soninke people came together under a leader with semi divine status, caked Dinga cisse.
How did ancient ghana derive its power and wealth>
from gold
In ancient ghana, what animal help boost transportation of goods?
Why did ancient Ghana decline?
1. Because the king lost his trading monopoly
2. A drought
When did Mali come into existence?
mali emerged against the back drop of a declining of Ghana under the dynamic leadership of Sundiata of Keita clan
In mali, how did sundiata rise to power?
by defeating the king of the sosso-soumaoro (the sorcerer king)
In mali, sundiata brought all the ____ clan rulers under his leadership, declaring himself over all of Mansa.
In mali, sundiata also took what?
Timbuktu from Tuareg and transformed it into a substantial city, a focus for trade and scholarship
When did mali reach its peak?
In the 14th century
In mali, _____ ____ was immortalized in the descriptions of Arab writers, when he made his magnificent pilgrimage to Mecca in 1324
Mansa Musa
What is the downfall of mali?
a combination of weak and ineffective rulers and increasingly aggressive raids by Mossi neighbors and Tuareg Berbers gradually reduced the power of mali
The empire of songhai, the wealth and power of songhay came be traced back to what?
sorko fishermen who were skilled canoeists, living along the Niger, south east of Gao
The empire of Songhai, in the fifteenth century songhay rose to pre-eminence under who?
Sonni Ali the Great
Sonni Ali the great’s military forces consisted of what?
Calvary of expert horsemen and fleets of canoes
After Sonni Ali’s death one of his generals, ____ ___, seized power in 1493.
Mohammed Ture
Mohammed Ture was a devout what?
Muslim of Soninke origin
who brought Songhay to its height of its power?
Mohammed Ture
(trade improved)
In the late 16th century, Songhay slid into what?
civil war
Songhay’s demise was caused by what?
environmental changes that lead to droughts and diseases
In west African society and culture, most were what?
In west African society and culture, they lived in extended families called what?
In west African society and culture, generally there was 1 lineage per village. Was it the women or mens lineage?
In west African society and culture, they believed that lineages came from what?
mythical persoange
In west African society and culture, in all societies, what was passed from one person to the other?
rank and property
In west African society and culture, depending on the ethnic group, they were either ___ or ____.
In west African society and culture, What happened when it was matrilineal?
property was passed through female but controlled by the men
In west African society and culture, was there private ownership of land?
yes, but it generally worked communally
Women, in general, who dominated who in Africa?
men dominated women
Women, it was common for men to have how many wives?
two or more wives
Women, west african women also enjoyed more freedom than who?
european or arab women
What is Sande?
A secret society for women
What did women do in Sande?
it taught sex education to girls and initiate them into adulthood
What is poro?
male secret society
Who were considered royals in africa?
nobles, warriors, and bureaucrats
Who were considered lower classes in africa?
blacksmiths, butchers, tanners, and oral historians called griots
Where was slavery most common in africa?
in the savannah region
West Africans held war captives including whom?
Men, women, and children
in Islamic regions, masters were obligated to their slaves like what?
In non islamic regions, the children of slaves gained what kind of legal protection?
the right not be sold away from their native lands
Slaves who served in royal courts or the armies often had power over what?
Free people and could acquire property
Slaves and peasant farmers shared the same living conditions as their what?
Slavery is west africa societies served as a means of what?
What was the main cause of slavery in west african society?
African art and music was related to what?
religious practices
Africans excelled in what?
wood carving and sculpture
What musical interments were africans good at playing?
drums, xylophones, bells, flutes, and mbanzas
What were prose tales?
aimed to entertain and teach a lesson
The africans literature was focused on what?
small characters \”tricksters\” who were pitted against two larger beasts
When the tales from africa reached america they becomes tales of what?
for the struggle between slaves and powerful white masters

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