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History of Western Civilization


Title: The Art of Ancient Egypt Author: teacher Last modified by: Mulligan, Dan Created Date: 9/28/2006 7:15:12 PM Document presentation format: On-screen Show (4:3) – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: History of Western Civilization

History of Western Civilization
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Prehistoric Art
  • Lascaux Cave Paintings- 15,000-11,000 B.C.
  • Chauvet Cave Drawings- 28,000 B.C
  • Venus of Willendorf - 25,000 B.C.
  • Stonehenge - 3,000-2,000 B.C.

The Fertile Crescent- Mesopotamia The Earliest
Sumeria - early as 4500 B.C
  • Ziggurat- a stepped mountain made of
    brick-covered earth
  • Ziggurat at Ur- 2100 B.C. (reproduction shown
  • Tower of Babel- c. 3500 B.C.

  • Bull-headed lyre soundbox.
  • Ur, Iraq c. 2685 B.C.
  • Sumerian Votive figures

The Akkadian Period (ca. 23502150 B.C.)
  • Sargon of Akkad-
  • c. 2300 B.C. 
  • King Naram-Sim- c. 2230 B.C.
  • Celebrates military victory

The Akkadian Period (ca. 23502150 B.C.)
  • Cuneiform Writing with wedge-shaped characters.
  • The earliest known written language

Babylonian Period
  • Code of Hammurabi- 1772 BC
  • a list of common sense laws etched in stone
  • Ex. Law 196. "If a man destroy the eye of
    another man, they shall destroy his eye. If one
    break a man's bone, they shall break his bone. If
    one destroy the eye of a freeman or break the
    bone of a freeman he shall pay one mana of
    silver. If one destroy the eye of a man's slave
    or break a bone of a man's slave he shall pay one
    half his price.

The Age of Empires
Assyrian Empire- 2500 BC to 605 BC
  • Human-headed winged bull
  • and winged lion.
  • ca. 883859 B.C

Neo-Babylonian Empire 626 BC - 539 BC
  • King Nebuchadnezzar-
  • 605 BC 562 BC

Persian Empire 626 BC - 539 BC
  • Audience Hall
  • of Darius and Xerxes
  • 500 B.C.

The Art of Ancient Egypt
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Table of Contents
  • The Growth of Egyptian Civilization
  • Three major Periods of Egyptian History
  • The Pyramids
  • Temple of Amun
  • Sculpture and Painting
  • The Great Sphinx
  • Hieroglyphics
  • False Door Stela

The Growth of Egyptian Civilization
  • 7,000 years ago people first settled in the Nile
    River Valley.
  • They are the direct ancestors of most Egyptian
  • Because of the Nile River soil deposits they
    became a society of producers instead of hunters
    and gatherers.
  • They started to build more permanent homes of
    mud, wood and reeds.

The Formation of Kingdoms
  • The settled existence brought increased
    population in villages and towns.
  • Towns took over villages and formed kingdoms.
  • End of the prehistoric period there were only two
    kingdoms in Egypt
  • Lower Egypt delta region on the Mediterranean
  • Upper Egypt Valley in the desert

The Formation of Kingdoms
  • The Egyptian civilization emerged more than 3,000
    years before the birth of Christ.
  • Pharaoh or ruler, governed with complete
  • Commerce grew, art flourished and majestic
    monuments were constructed.

Three major Periods of Egyptian History
  • Each kingdom is divided into dynasties.
  • Dynasty -was a period during which a single
    family provided a succession of rulers.
  • One reign ended with the death of a Pharaoh and
    another began with the crowning of a successor
    from the same royal family.
  • Important to keep the family blood pure.

The Old Kingdom
  • Started around 3100 B.C.
  • Ruled by a powerful pharaoh named Menes.
  • Capitol established at Memphis and founded the
    first 31 Egyptian dynasties
  • Lasted 500 years when a strong centralized
    government was established.
  • Civil war caused the power of the pharaoh to

The Middle Kingdom
  • Lasted about 250 years
  • Order and prosperity
  • Followed by foreign invasion and turmoil
  • Hyksos invasion and take over
  • Restored independence
  • Pharaoh still present but power was diminished.

The New Kingdom
  • Began in 1570 B.C.
  • Aka Empire
  • Amenhotep III reached the peak of power and
  • Thebes became on of the most magnificent royal
    cities in the world.
  • Went from a multiple god society to that of one
  • Egypt began to be whittled away by enemies.

The decline of Ancient Egypt
  • The new religion died with its founding pharaoh
  • The old religion was restored although Egypts
    power was dwindling.
  • Finally in 30 B.C. Egypt was made a province of

The Pyramids
Influence of Religion
  • Resurrection of the soul of ka
  • The ka (spirit or soul) was born with the body
    and remained there until death.
  • Upon the death the ka would leave temporarily but
    late return to the body and travel to the next
  • The body would be embalmed, wrapped and stored in
    the pyramids until the ka returned.
  • Assurance against final death

Influence of Religion
  • Ra- the sun god, represented by the falcon,
  • Osiris- the god of the Nile and ruler of the
  • Isis- The great mother god

The Pyramids as Tombs
  • Most impressive were built for Pharaohs
  • The people saw them as gods and expected to be
    united with other gods
  • His body was sealed in a sarcophagus or stone
  • Placed with treasures
  • in the center of the pyramid.
  • To an Egyptian the
  • destruction of the body was
  • the most horrible for of
  • vengeance

  • In the Prehistoric Egypt, bodies were buried in
    deserts because they would naturally be preserved
    by dehydration.
  • this old man from 5000 years ago was not
    mummified, and yet he is perfectly preserved
    because he was buried in dry sand
  • The main process of mummification was preserving
    the body by dehydrating it using natron, a
    natural material found in Wadi Natrun which is
    like a combination of baking soda and salt
  • This process took 40 days

  • The body is drained of any liquids and left with
    the skin, hair and muscles preserved.12
  • This process was available for anyone who could
    afford it. It was believed that even those who
    could not afford this process could still enjoy
    the afterlife with the right reciting of spells.
    The most classic and common method of
    mummification dates back to the 18th Dynasty. The
    first step was to remove the internal organs and
    liquid so that the body would not decay. The
    embalmers took out the brain by inserting a sharp
    object in the nostril, breaking through it into
    the brain and then liquefying it. They threw out
    the brain because they thought that the heart did
    all the thinking. The next step was to remove the
    internal organs, the lungs, liver, stomach, and
    intestines, and place them in canopic jars with
    lids shaped like the heads of the protective
    deities, the four sons of Horus. The heart stayed
    in the body, because in the hall of judgment it
    would be weighed against the feather of Maat.
    After the body was washed with wine, it was
    stuffed with bags of natron. The dehydration
    process took 40 days.
  • The second part of the process took 30 days. This
    was the time where the deceased turned into a
    semi divine being, and all that was left in the
    body from the first part was removed, followed by
    applying first wine and then oils. The oils were
    for ritual purposes, as well as preventing the
    limbs and bones from breaking while being
    wrapped. The body was sometimes colored with a
    golden resin. This protected the body from
    bacteria and insects. This was also based on the
    belief that divine beings had flesh of gold. The
    body was wrapped in bandages with amulets while a
    priest recited prayers and burned incense. The
    dressing provided physical protection and the
    wealthier even had a burial mask of their head.
    The 70 days are connected to Osiris and the
    length the star Sothis was absent from the sky.
  • http//en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_Egyptian_buri

Evolution of the Pyramid Shape
  • Mastaba a low flat tomb made of sun-dried
  • Step pyramid- Several mastaba stacked on top of
  • each other.
  • Step Pyramid of
  • King Zoser 2680 b.c.
  • Pyramids, built without steps from limestone
    blocks weighing over a ton each.

The Pyramid of Khufu, Giza c. 2545-2520
  • The largest Pyramid in the World. Covers almost
    13 acres
  • 5 of the worlds largest cathedrals could be
    placed inside its base with room to spare.
  • 2.3 million blocks of stone
  • 480 feet high
  • Equal to a 48 story building
  • Almost perfectly square
  • http//www.nationalgeographic.com/pyramids/khufu.h

Temple of Amon
  • Temple of the all powerful chief god of Thebes.
  • Entranceway flanked by obelisks, four sided
    pointed stone shafts.
  • Statues of the pharaohs and huge banners opened
    onto an uncovered courtyard.
  • Great halls lie behind the courtyard
  • Sanctuary was a small, dark, mysterious chamber
    where only the pharaoh and certain priests were
    allowed to enter
  • Built in new kingdom as proof of the genius of
    the architects
  • http//www.eyelid.co.uk/karnakb.htm

Temple of Amon
  • The Great Hypostyle Hall of Karnak was begun
    during the reign of King Seti I (c.1290-1279
    B.C.E.) and was completed by his son, Ramesses II
    (c.1279-1213 B.C.E.). The central row of 12
    columns on the east-west axis are 69 feet/21
    meters in height, about 33 feet/10 meters in
    circumference, and have open papyrus capitals.

Sculpture and Painting
  • Egypts most impressive achievements in the field
    of art were the publicly visible pyramids and
  • Within the pyramids were sculptures and
    paintings. Most have survived over the centuries.

Sculpture and the ka
  • Pyramids were robbed despite all the precautions
  • Pharaohs bodies were sometimes mutilated.
  • Carved likenesses were placed within the tomb to
    insure that the ka would still have a body to
    reunite with.

The Great Sphinx
  • 4th Dynasty pharaoh
  • Khafres head placed
  • on the body of a
  • reclining lion.
  • Massive size was
  • intended to demonstrate the power of the
  • Carved from rock at the site.
  • Why do you think the pharaohs head was placed on
    the body of a lion.
  • http//www.ancient-egypt-online.com/the-great-sphi

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Portrait of Khafre
  • Seated portrait carved in hard diorite stone
  • Body rigid and attentive but the head is more
  • Throne is inscribed with symbols proclaiming him
    the king of Upper Lower Egypt
  • Right hand forms a fist which must have held a
    symbol of his high office.
  • A falcon (Horus
  • god of the sky) is
  • placed behind
  • Khafres head to
  • prove his divinity. Descendent of
  • Re, the sun god.

Middle Kingdom
  • Most of the sculpture of this period was
    destroyed by invading Hyksos and by the New
    Kingdom rules who followed.
  • But what remains shows the pharaohs as softer
    more gentler rulers.
  • Features became softer and more realistic.
  • This style carried into the New Kingdom.

Akhenaton and Nefertiti 18th dynasty
  • Sculptures depicted more
  • realistic features
  • Elongated head, pointed chin,
  • Heavy lips, Long slender neck
  • Shown in everyday scenes like
  • playing with his daughters.

Akhenaton and Nefertiti 18th dynasty
Rules of Egyptian Art
  • Every part of the body be shown from the most
    familiar side
  • For this reason, the head, arms, legs and feet
    were shown in profile
  • Eyes and shoulders were shown from the front
  • Substitutes for actual bodies (ka)
  • Strict set of rules developed to show all parts
    of the body

Middle Kingdom Painting
  • During the Middle Kingdom painting became it own
    separate art form.
  • Too expensive to carve stone.
  • Tombs were covered with plaster
  • Lines were drawn and characters were placed
    within the lines to tell a story.
  • Bright colors were used to keep the walls
  • This method resulted in a style similar to that
    of contemporary comic strips.

  • Nakht and his Wife
  • The priest and his wife are much larger figures
    to show that Nakht and his wife are more important

  • Hieroglyphics an early form of picture writing.
  • Symbols that communicated information and were
    included in wall paintings and other art forms to
    help tell the story.
  • Created attractive patterns.
  • Write you name or message in hieroglyphics using
    the provided sheet.
  • http//www.eyelid.co.uk/hiromenu.htm

Rosetta Stone
  • The Rosetta Stone is a Ptolemaic
  • age granodiorite stele inscribed
  • with a decree issued at Memphis
  • in 196 BC on behalf of King
  • Ptolemy V. The decree appears in
  • three scripts the upper text is
  • Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs,
  • the middle portion Demotic script, and the
  • Ancient Greek. Because it presents essentially
    the same
  • text in all three scripts (with some minor
  • among them), it provided the key to the modern
  • understanding of Egyptian hieroglyphs.

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False Door Stela
  • Painted on the walls of the tombs was a false
    door which the ka would pass through in search of
  • Servants were painted
  • along the side offering
  • food and drink for
  • the ka.
  • Outside influences
  • started to encroach
  • on Egypts art and near
  • the end it lost its
  • uniqueness.

  • Getlin, M. (2010). Living with art. Opening up to
    the world, pages 524 thru 531. McGraw Hill.
  • Miller, G. (2000). Art in focus. The Art of
    Ancient Egypt, pages 146 thru 164. Glencoe.
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