Ancient Mesopotamia

Social Studies Web Quest

Geography of Mesopotamia

Mesopotamia was located in Southwest Asia. There were two main rivers in Mesopotamia, the Euphrates and the Tigris rivers. In Greek Mesopotamia means " between the rivers " because it located between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. In Mesopotamia the climate is normally warm and cool depending on the season, rainfall in Mesopotamia was moderate. Today Mesopotamia is know as Iraq, if you were to travel from Elm City NC to Iraq would be about 6400 miles.

History of Mesopotamia

Over thousands of years ago, early civilizations were formed in Mesopotamia. Some of these civilizations were, Ur, Sumer, Babylon, Chaldeans, etc. To have a civilization you have to have these 5 requirements: 1) breeding animals and growing crops 2) language 3) division of labor 4) religion and leader 5) laws. There was a king named Hammurabi who was the first to create laws that were written and displayed for everyone to see. Hammurabi wrote very many laws such as, " if a physician heal the broken bone or diseased soft part of a man, the patient shall pay the physician 5 shekels in money." " if he were a freed man he shall pay 3 shekels." and " if a man put out the eye of another man, his eye shall be put out." " if he brake another man's bone, his bone shall be broken." and "if a man has borne false witness in a civil law case, he shall pay the damages in that suit." Hammurabi's Code was important because it told people how to live their daily lives and if they stepped out of line what would happen.

Agricultural of Mesopotamia

The early Mesopotamians did not start off growing crops and domesticating animals. At first they were hunters and gathers. Hunters would follow animals and hunt them down. They hunted deer, large birds, pigs. Gathers would look for foods like wild fruits, grains, nuts, berries, etc. They also gathered rooted vegetables like carrots and potatoes. The hunters and Gathers normally stayed in groups. When they started farming and domesticating the farmers were very dependent on weather. If a storm came and ripped all the crops out of the ground, what would the farmer eat? He would have to eat all his animals for food. Early civilizations in Mesopotamia lived by some body of water, Why? Water was scarce and there were many droughts so they needed some water to live off of. Some scientist believe crops were poisoned which led to the fall of Mesopotamia, but how? To have crops you must have water, irrigation water flowed onto fields because of gravity. That meant once it was on the field it couldn't be drained away right then because fields were lower than the river. As the water evaporated it left salts and minerals, over time the soil became toxic. There were 6 important steps to farming, 1) you have to flood your field with irrigation ditch water. 2) break up the soil with a plow. 3) you must use a borrow to make the soil level and soft. 4) put seeds in ground with a seeder-plow. 5) water the field 3 times. 6) cut crop and take to thrashing house.

Archaeology of Mesopotamia