Key Topics–World History Before 600 C.E.
- Paleolithic: Literally, “old stone.” The period from the appearance of the first hominids (human-like creatures) to approximately 8000 B.C.E.
- Animism: Often found in primitive tribes, the belief that spirits can possess and control natural things and forces.
Development of Agriculture
- Neolithic Revolution: Starting around 7000 B.C.E., this period marked the beginnings of permanent settlements and sedentary farming, leading to longer lives and higher populations.
- Pastoralism: The agricultural practice of domesticating animals for food or other uses, beginning around 4000 B.C.E.
- Job specialization: As civilizations progressed and not everyone needed to farm to live, skilled laborers like artisans were allowed to craft things that had value. The trade that followed led to the growth of cities.
- Patriarchy: A society in which men hold power within the family, in governance, and/or in economics.
- Metallurgy: The crafting of metallic ores into functional and/or valuable items, beginning around 4500 B.C.E.
- Mesopotamia: Literally, “The Land Between the Rivers.” Geographic region centered on the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, located in modern-day Iraq. Considered one of the four major “cradles of civilization.