The story of ancient Egypt has survived for thousands of years. Egypt was one of the greatest civilizations of the past. The monuments and tombs of their Pharaohs continue to stand intact today, some 4,000 years later!
A good portion of the Old testament takes place in or around Egypt. Egypt also plays a major role in the life of many Bible people from Moses and Joseph to Jesus.
Egypt is situated in the northeast corner of the Africa.
A large river called the River Nile flows through the country into the Mediterranean Sea. The Nile enters Egypt from the Sudan and flows north for about 1545 km (about 960 m) to the sea.
The Ancient Egyptians lived along the banks of the river Nile in Egypt. Farmers first settled in Egypt along the River Nile around 5000 B.C.
About 95 % of Egypt's population still live in the Nile valley (the area next to the river).
Egypt is mainly made up of hot deserts and receives little rainfall. Without the River Nile, the area would be entirely desert.
All of Egypt depended on the Nile for water, food and transportation. The Nile also provided the ancient Egyptians with fertile land which helped them to grow their crops and raise their animals.
Before modern dams were built the river Nile would flood each year coating the land on either side of the river with thick back mud. This mud was ideal for growing crops on.
Click here to find out more about the river Nile
The people in Ancient Egypt divided Egypt into two areas.
- The 'red land' was the deserts protecting Egypt on two sides. These deserts separated ancient Egypt from neighbouring countries and invading armies.
- The black land was the fertile land (near the Nile River) where the ancient Egyptians grew their crops.
Two separate kingdoms (ruled by different kings) developed along the Nile River. The kingdom in Upper Egypt was known as the white crown and the kingdom in Lower Egypt was called the red crown. In about 3200 B. C. the pharaoh of the north conquered the south and Egypt became united. The pharaoh's name was King Narmer or Menes.
Menes built a new capital city called Memphis. In the Greek language the word Memphis meant "Balance of the Two Lands."
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