About This Chapter
AP World History: Ancient Times - Chapter Summary and Learning Objectives
The people of ancient times invented many aspects of society that we take for granted today. In this chapter, you'll learn about the societies of old and the things they discovered: agriculture, the wheel, bronze, domesticated horses, and writing. Our lessons each focus on one aspect of ancient times, from religion to the Great Flood. You'll learn about how nomadic tribes transformed into complex societies and the advantages and disadvantages of each. After completing this chapter, you should be able to:
- Explain the causes of the rise of cities
- Relate population migrations due to flooding
- Understand how writing and money changed society
- Talk about ancient religions and their worshipers
- List important tools of the era
|The Last Ice Age: Thawing Ice and New Human Opportunities||Learn about the last ice age and what humans were able to do after the thaw.|
|Nomadic Societies: Foraging and Pastoral||Explore how foraging, or gathering, and pastoral, or shepherding, societies functioned.|
|Neolithic Agricultural Revolution: Causes and Implications||Examine the effects that the adoption of farming techniques had on early societies.|
|Technologies of the Neolithic Era||Take a look at the stone, pottery, weaving, and wheels used by early people to perform daily tasks.|
|Development of Hierarchical Structures: Chiefs to Emperors in History||Discover how leaders of small tribes transformed into emperors of large societies in this era.|
|Mystery Cults and the Early Mother Goddess||Learn about the mother goddess and her followers and view some artifacts created by the worshipers.|
|The Great Flood and Population Migrations||Explore the earliest historical disaster, what may have caused it, and what happened to people afterward.|
|Rivers and Early Civilization||Understand how rivers were a vital part of life in early civilizations.|
|Villages to Cities: How Cities Were Invented||Examine how agriculture, hierarchy, and the end of the ice age contributed to the rise of cities.|
|Walls, Roads, and Bronze: Tools of Empire Creation||Take a look at how these technologies changed civilization and made empires possible.|
|The Horse and Chariot: Tools of Empire Creation||Discover the importance of domesticating the horse and how this new transport transformed civilization.|
|Horse People and Nomadic Pastoralism: What is Civilization?||Learn about the horse peoples who would terrorize civilizations for thousands of years.|
|The Invention of Writing||Explore how writing changed society, giving literate people a leg up on the pre-literate.|
|The History of Money and Rise of Complex Economies||Understand how the increasing complexity of civilization forced the need for a system of payment.|
|How Religion Developed in the Stone Age and Bronze Age||Examine the ways in which religions of the time reacted to the new developments of these eras.|
1. The Last Ice Age: Thawing Ice and New Human Opportunities
What is an ice age? How did the latest period of glaciation form our species? How has the abundance of this latest period of interglaciation changed our behavior? Watch this lesson to find out.
2. Foraging & Pastoral Nomadic Societies: Definition & Characteristics
This lesson will discuss those who practice foraging and pastoralism for survival. We will also define the term 'nomadic' and focus on what it means to be egalitarian.
3. The Paleolithic Age: Tools & Characteristics
In this lesson, you will explore the history of the Paleolithic Era and discover how early humans lived and developed stone tools. Then, test your understanding with a brief quiz.
4. The Mesolithic Age: Tools, Inventions & Archaeology
In this lesson, you will explore the history of the Mesolithic era, one of the greatest transitional periods in human history. Then, test your understanding with a brief quiz.
5. Neolithic Agricultural Revolution: Causes and Implications
A long, long time ago, human beings roamed the earth looking for food. Then the agricultural revolution struck! What are the benefits of an agrarian society, and how have they shaped the way we live today?
6. Technologies of the Neolithic Era
In this lesson, we explore some of the technologies invented, innovated, and changed by Neolithic people as well as the way it improved their lives and lessened their workload.
7. Development of Hierarchical Structures: Chiefs to Emperors in History
This lesson will explore society's need for hierarchies, as well as kinship as a basis of hierarchical structures. Various forms of hierarchy will be briefly explored and...spoiler alert...they all come back to kinship.
8. The Great Flood and Population Migrations
The Great Flood myth has been around for over eight millennia. Could it be more than a myth? What could have caused such a flood, and what effects has it had on humans?
9. Rivers' Impact on Early Civilizations
This lesson explains why ancient civilizations developed along rivers. In doing this, it highlights the importance of food supplies, flooding, and the process of irrigation.
10. A Comparison of Early River Valley Civilizations
Where did civilizations first arise? In this lesson, we'll be exploring the early river valley civilizations, some of the oldest settled societies in the world, to see what they have in common and what makes them unique.
11. Villages to Cities: How Cities Were Invented
In this video lesson, you'll meet Uruk, a lone farmer living in ancient Mesopotamia. As Uruk tries to become a successful farmer, he realizes the difficulties in sustaining a fruitful farm without the help of a community. Watch to understand how these difficulties contributed to the creation of villages and cities throughout history.
12. Walls, Roads & Bronze: Tools of Empire Creation
Learn some of the tools of the empire creation trade. In this video lesson, we'll explore the wall as a tough nut to be cracked, the strategic importance of roads and the advances made possible by bronze.
13. The Horse and Chariot: Tools of Empire Creation
Horses were first used in warfare to pull chariots. Though horses were eventually ridden by cavalry, it was the chariot that first moved soldiers faster than man. In this lesson, you'll learn about the creation of the chariot, and its benefits during wartime.
14. The Invention of Writing
Writing, the original IT: This lecture covers the limitations and obstacles of aural transmission. It describes the invention of Cuneiform in the fertile crescent. Finally, it explains how writing enabled literate societies to dominate their pre-literate neighbors.
15. The History of Money and Rise of Complex Economies
This lecture covers the development of money in response to the needs of complex economies. It begins with a discussion of gift economies. It then examines the factors that led to the growth of commodity economies. Find out how we came to use money, rather than goods, for commerce.
Earning College Credit
Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.
To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page
Transferring credit to the school of your choice
Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.
Other chapters within the AP World History: Exam Prep course
- AP World History: Foundational Concepts
- AP World History: Major Belief Systems
- AP World History: Ancient Middle East
- AP World History: Ancient China, Africa, India & America
- AP World History: Ancient Greece
- AP World History: Hellenism and Athenian Philosophy
- AP World History: The Rise of the Roman Republic
- AP World History: The Fall of the Roman Empire
- AP World History: The Dark Ages
- AP World History: Early Middle Ages
- AP World History: The Medieval Warm Period
- AP World History: The High Middle Ages
- AP World History: Asia, Africa & America (1000-1300 CE)
- AP World History: The Late Middle Ages
- AP World History: The Renaissance
- AP World History: The Age of Exploration
- AP World History: The Reformation Across Europe
- AP World History: The Elizabethan Era
- AP World History: The Enlightenment
- AP World History: Political, Technological, and Intellectual Developments (1750-1914)
- AP World History: Colonialism
- AP World History: Imperialism
- AP World History: World War I
- AP World History: World War II
- AP World History: The Cold War and Other 20th Century World History
- AP World History: A Globalized World - 1980 & Beyond
- Portions of the AP World History Exam
- How to Write a Good Essay on Your AP Exam
- Developing and Writing Your AP Exam Essay
- AP World History Flashcards
- Additional AP World History Flashcards