How Did The Nile River Influence Ancient Egypt

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The Role of the Nile River in Ancient Egypt Home to the longest river in the world, Ancient Egypt was one of four major early river civilizations. From about 2920 to 30 BCE, Egypt flourished as one of the most advanced societies during the time period. What made Ancient Egypt so successful? The answer lies in the Nile, the source of all life in the desert climate. The Nile River shaped Ancient Egypt’s society by creating a suitable environment for farming, providing a mode of transportation, and playing a key role in religion. First of all, the Nile River was invaluable for growing crops. In the middle of the desert, the Nile River flowed directly through Egypt, making the land fertile for farming. Every year, the river would flood the plains and fill irrigation ditches with water for crops. In fact, the Egyptian calendar was based off of the river’s flood cycle. According to Document B, floods washed the fields during the season of akhet, fertilizing the soil with a “new batch of rich silt” (Document B). Then, farmers would plant crops during peret, the growing season, in…show more content…
Evidence for this can be found in a tomb painting by an Egyptian artist known as Sennedjem who lived from 1307 to 1196 BCE. In the painting, which depicts the afterlife, a man and his wife can be seen harvesting wheat next to the banks of the Nile while the sun god, Ra, watches from overhead (Document D). This source appears to be reliable due to the artist being Egyptian and having lived during that time period. Also, the fact that we know the name and relative age of the artist lends the painting some credibility as a source on the Egyptian afterlife. Further evidence can be found in Document E, a hymn to the Nile written circa 1200 BCE. In this piece, the writer praises the Nile because it “floods all the fields that Ra has created” and “produces barley and makes wheat grow” (Document
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