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Middle Kingdom

The Middle Kingdom, a period of order and stability started in 2050 to 1750
BCE. A powerful pharaoh, named Mentuhotep, defeated all of his rivals and
reunited Egypt around 2050 BCE. In the mid-1700s BCE, a group from Southwest
Asia called the Hyksos invaded, with horses, chariots, and advanced weapons to
conquer Lower Egypt, which they ruled for 200 years! The Egyptians didnt like
being occupied by the Hyksos, so they fought back, in the mid-1500s BCE; Ahmose
of Thebes drove the Hyksos out of Egypt. Toward the end of the Middle Kingdom,
Egypt again experienced internal problems. Its pharaohs could not hold the
kingdom together, so in 1750 BCE, the Middle Kingdom fell apart.

New Kingdom
The New Kingdom, the period during Egypt reached the height of its power
and glory. It lasted from about 1550 to 1050 BCE, conquest and trade brought
tremendous wealth to the pharaohs. But after battling the Hyksos, Egyptian
leaders feared future invasions. To prevent such, they decided to take control of
all possible trade routes into the kingdom. By the 1400s BCE, Egypt was the leading
military power in the region. Its empire extended from the Euphrates River to
southern Nubia. Military conquests made Egypt rich and brought Egyptian traders
into contact with more distant lands. Profitable trade routes, or paths followed by
traders developed. But in the 1200s BCE the pharaoh Ramses II came to power, his
reign was on the longest in Egyptian history, he fought the Hittites, a group from
Asia Minor. After 50 years of fighting, the New Kingdom came to an end and fell
into a period of violence and disorder. Egypt would never regain its power. Even
with Egypts dynasties kept rising and falling, the daily Egyptian life didn't change
very much. Scribes worked for the government and the temples, while Artisans,
Artists, and Architects have jobs which require a lot of skill. Soldiers rose after
the Middle Kingdom, and they were given land and treasure in war, and those who
excelled in the army rose to higher positions. Farmers and peasants were below
those other people, and had to pay taxes using crops, or special duties, and they
were demanded to work at any time. Slaves were the people who worked on farms,

or on building projects, and they had some legal rights, and in some cases could
earn their freedom.

Farming, is the period that started everything else in Egypt, and farming
took place in a river valley and its banks, where people lived, and that river was
called the Nile. Farming in ancient Egypt lasted from about 5000 to 2700 BCE.
Geography is the key to the development in Egypt, and the Nile river is part of the
geography, so thats why some people called Egypt the gift of the Nile. Since Egypt
does not receive a lot of rain, most of Egypt was a desert, but each year the people
of Egypt got floods from the Nile, and without these floods, the people of Egypt
could have never settled in Egypt. As the farmers started to settle in Egypt, they
grew cereal crops like wheat and barley, and they also hunted ducks and geese, and
they caught fish from the Nile, which gave them an abundance of food. They also
harvested papyrus which was used to make rope, and paper. By 3200 BCE, Egypt
had developed into two kingdoms, and one was called Upper Egypt, and the other
was called Lower Egypt. Around 3100 BCE, a leader called Menes rose to power in
Upper Egypt, and his armies invaded, and took over Lower Egypt, and Menes united
the two kingdoms. Historians considered Menes to be the very first pharaoh in
Egypt, and Menes also founded Egypts First Dynasty. Eventually, rivals challenged
the First Dynasty for power, and soon enough they took over Egypt and started
the Second Dynasty.

Old Kingdom
The first and second dynasties ruled Egypt for about 4 centuries, but
around 2700 BCE a Third Dynasty came to power, and their rule began the Old
Kingdom. The Old Kingdom lasted from about 2700 to 2200 BCE, and this was the
time in which Egypt developed in religion, and its political system. The Egyptians
believed that the pharaoh was both king and god, but being a pharaoh came with
many responsibilities. The most famous pharaoh was Khufu, who ruled in the 2,500s
BCE. In the Egyptian society, the pharaoh was at the top, then came the Nobles,
who were the officials, and the priests, and below them were scribes and
craftspeople, and below them were farmers, slaves and servants. During the Old
Kingdom, Egypt began trading with its neighbors, and traders returned with many
valuable resources. Like the people of Mesopotamia, Egyptians practiced
polytheism, and everyone was expected to worship the same gods, but how they
worshipped the gods may differ from one region of Egypt to another. Much of
Egypts religion focused on afterlife, and the Egyptians believed that the afterlife
was a happy place. They believed that in the afterlife, a person's heart is weighed
against the feather of truth, and the god Anubis did this. The Egyptians developed
a method called embalming to preserve bodies for many, many years as mummies.
The Egyptians built pyramids, and they are amazing feats of engineering, and the
pyramids were used for burial, and they symbolized the pharaohs greatness.
Around 2200 BCE the Old Kingdom had fallen due to the lack of wealth and power.