AP World History Unit 1 Vocabulary

hunting and gathering
means of obtaining subsistence by humans before the mastery of sedentary agriculture; normally typical of tribal social organization
civilization
societies with reliance on sedentary agriculture, ability to produce food surpluses, and existence of nonfarming elites, along with merchant and manufacturing groups
Paleolithic
the Old Stone Age ending in 12,000 B.C.E.; typified by use of evolving stone tools and hunting and gathering for subsistence
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Neolithic
the New Stone Age between 8000 and 5000 B.C.E.; period in which adaptation of sedentary agriculture occurred; domestication of plants and animals accomplished
nomads
cattle- and sheep-herding societies normally found on the fringes of civilized societies; commonly referred to as “barbarian” by civilized societies
culture
combinations of ideas, objects, and patterns of behavior that result from human social interaction
Homo sapiens
the species of humanity that emerged as most successful at the end of the Paleolithic
Agrarian revolution
occurred between 8000 and 5000 B.C.E.; transition from hunting and gathering to sedentary agriculture
pastoralism
a nomadic agricultural lifestyle based on herding domesticated animals; tended to produce independent people capable of challenging sedentary agricultural societies
Çatal Hüyük
early urban culture based on sedentary agriculture; located in modern southern Turkey; larger in population than Jericho, had greater degree of social stratification
Bronze Age
from 4000 to 3000 B.C.E.; increased use of plow, metalworking; development of wheeled vehicles, writing
Mesopotamia
literally “between the rivers”; the civilizations that arose in the alluvial plain of the Tigris Euphrates river valleys
potter’s wheel
a technological advance in pottery making; invented circa 6000 B.C.E.; encouraged faster and higher quality ceramic pottery products
Sumerians
people who migrated into Mesopotamia circa 4000 B.C.E.; created the first civilization within the region; organized area into city states
cuneiform
a form of writing developed by the Sumerians using a wedge shaped stylus and clay tablets
city-state
a form of political organization typical of Mesopotamian civilization; consisted of agricultural hinterlands ruled by an urban based king
ziggurats
massive towers usually associated with Mesopotamian temple connections
Babylonian Empire
unified all of Mesopotamia circa 1800 B.C.E.; collapsed due to foreign invasion circa 1600 B.C.E
Hammurabi
the most important Babylonian ruler; responsible for codification of the law
pharaoh
the term used to denote the kings of ancient Egypt; the term, “great house” refers to the palace of the pharaohs
pyramids
monumental architecture typical of Old Kingdom Egypt; used as burial sites for pharaohs
hieroglyphs
form of writing developed in ancient Egypt; more pictorial than Mesopotamian cuneiform
Kush
African state that developed along the upper reaches of the Nile circa 1000 B.C.E.; conquered Egypt and ruled it for several centuries
monotheism
the exclusive worship of one god; introduced by Jews into Middle Eastern civilization
Phoenicians
seafaring civilization located on the shores of the eastern Mediterranean; established colonies throughout the Mediterranean
Harappa and Mohenjo Daro
major urban complexes of Harappan civilization; laid out on planned grid pattern
Aryans
Indo-European nomadic, warlike, pastoralists who replaced Harappan civilization
Huanghe (Yellow) River Basin
site of the development of sedentary agriculture in China
Shang
1st Chinese dynasty
oracles
shamans or priests in Chinese society who foretold the future through interpreting animal bones cracked by heat; inscriptions on bones led to Chinese writing
Ideographic writing
pictograph characters grouped together to create new concepts; typical of Chinese writing
Zhou
originally a vassal family of the Shang; possibly Turkic-speaking in origin; overthrew Shang and established 2nd Chinese dynasty (1122-256 B.C.E.)
Xianyang
capital of the Zhou dynasty
Feudalism
social organization created by exchanging grants of land (fiefs) in return for formal oaths of allegiance and promises of loyal service; typical of Zhou dynasty
Mandate of Heaven
the divine source of political legitimacy in China; established under Zhou to justify overthrow of Shang
Qin
dynasty (221-207 B.C.E.) founded at the end of the Warring States period
Shi Huangdi
first emperor of China; founder of Qin dynasty
Warring States period
time of warfare between regional lords following the decline of the Zhou dynasty in the 8th century B.C.E.
Confucius
major Chinese philosopher born in 6th century B.C.E.; sayings collected in Analects; philosophy based on the need for restoration of social order through the role of superior men
Laozi
Chinese Daoist philosopher; taught that governments were of secondary importance and recommended retreat from society into nature
Daoism
philosophy associated with Laozi; individual should seek alignment with Dao or cosmic force
Legalists
Chinese school of political philosophy; stressed the need for the absolute power of the emperor enforced through strict application of laws
Great Wall
Chinese defensive fortification built to keep out northern nomadic invaders; began during the reign of Shi Huangdi
Han
dynasty succeeding the Qin ruled from 202 B.C.E. to 220 C.E.
Himalayan Mountains
region marking the northern border of the Indian subcontinent
Varnas
the categories organizing Indian society into a functional hierarchy; categories of castes
Untouchables
lowest caste in Indian society; performed tasks that were considered polluting (street sweeping, removal of human waste, tanning); people without a caste (outcast); in Hindi, called pariahs
karma
the sum of merits (good things you do) accumulated by an individual; determined the caste one would be born into in the next life; basic belief in Hinduism, and even Buddhism
reincarnation
the successive rebirth of the soul according to merits earned in previous lives; “carn” means meat or flesh, “incarnate” means to become flesh
Mahabharata, Ramayana
Indian epics, deeply imbued with Hindu teachings; Mahabharata about war; Ramayana about a man and a princess going on an adventure
Buddha
creator of a major Indian and Asian religion; born in the 6th century B.C.E.; taught that enlightenment could be achieved only by abandoning desires for earthly things; name was Siddhartha, was a prince; reacted against the teachings of Hinduism
nirvana
the Buddhist state of enlightenment; a state of tranquility; Buddhist heaven
Maurya dynasty
established in Indian subcontinent in 4th century B.C.E. following the invasion of Alexander the Great; great Buddhist dynasty (Ashoka)
Chandragupta Maurya
founder of the Mauryan dynasty, the first empire in the Indian subcontinent; first centralized government since Harappan civilization; may have met Alexander the Great; creates the first central government (tightly organized)
Ashoka
grandson of Chandragupta Maurya; extended conquests of the dynasty (slaughtered thousands); converted to Buddhism (realized the horror of his actions) and sponsored its spread throughout his empire
stupas
stone shrines built to house relics of the Buddha; preserved Buddhist architectural forms; spherical
Upanishads
later books of the Vedas (like the Bible); combined sophisticated and sublime philosophical ideas
Shiva, Vishnu
the most important Hindu deities; destroyer | preserver
Gupta dynasty
built an empire in the 3rd century C.E. that included all but southern Indian regions; less centralized than Mauryan Empire; India does not have another unified empire until the British empire; Hinduism takes over from Buddhism
Sanskrit
the classical and sacred Indian language
Leonard Woolley
archeologist who excavated a Sumerian city, Ur, in 1922 and found statues, musical instruments, and the Royal Graves; also found evidence of a great flood
Lord Elgin
a British lord who removed the marble from the Parthenon from Greece and sold them to the British museum
Heinrich Schliemann
excavated Troy and Mycenae; found the mask of Agamemnon and a shafte grave
Howard Carter
discovered Tutankhamen’s (King Tut) tomb
Hiram Bingham III
discovered Inca outposts called Machu Picchu; inspiration for Indiana Jones
band
a level of social organization normally consisting of 20 to 30 people; nomadic hunters and gatherers; labor divided on a gender basis
vassal retainer (vassals)
subordinate leaders serving the king and great lords and usually bound to them by personal ties
syncretism
the combination of cultural elements
Silk Road
network of roads through central Asia that allowed people to trade silk and luxury products
monsoons
seasonal winds crossing Indian subcontinent and southeast Asia; during summer bring rains
yoga
a form of meditation and self-disciple; means “union”

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