Generalization: According to Henry Parkes, a civilization needs
provide physical security, ethical guidance and emotional fulfillment
its members in order to survive. Ancient Egyptian
was able to survive for more than 2000 years because, for the most
it did an excellent job providing these three things.
I. Introduction to Egypt
Mark Millmore's Ancient
Egypt is a great place to start. You can even learn to
write your name in hieroglyphics.
Egypt Site is another good place to start.
The "tour Egypt" site has some excellent resources for Egyptian
history, divided by "dynasties" instead of "kingdoms.
this course, you can consider Dynasties I-VI as part of the the Old
Dynasties XI and XII as the Middle Kingdom, and XVIII, XIX, and XX as
of the New Kingdom.
You may find even more useful the Ancient
Egypt section of Providence College's CivWeb.
Note: Egyptian names are not transliterated consistently. The
Pharaoh who had the great pyramid built is sometimes called Khufu and
Cheops in English texts. The Pharaoh Unas is also called Wenis.
Several sites have excerpts including the Ancient
History Source Book and the Digital
Library have selections from the Maxims of Ptah Hotep.
II. Old Kingdom Egypt (3000-2200 B.C.)
A. Physical Security
1. Natural geographical advantages (ex.
2. Unity (NOMES/PER-O)
3. Achievements made possible by unity
B. Ethical Guidance
1. Literature (MAXIMS OF PTAH HOTEP)
C. Emotional Fulfillment
D. Potential weaknesses (UNAS)
E. End of Old Kingdom (NOMES)
III. Middle Kingdom Egypt (2000-1750 B.C.)
A. Improvements on Old Kingdom
1. Government (PLEA OF THE ELOQUENT PEASANT)
2. Religion (OSIRUS)
B. End of Middle Kingdom (HYKSOS)
IV. New Kingdom Egypt (1570-1000 B.C.)
A. Ahmose (1570-1545) and Thutmose (1525-1495)
B. Strengths of NK
C. Problems in NK
1. Impact of constant war
2. Ethical breakdown (BOOK OF THE DEAD)
You can find Budge's translation of the Book of
dead either here orhere.
D. End of New Kingdom/Lasting influence of