II. Ancient and Classical Periods, 3500 B.C.E.–500 C.E. > B. Kingdoms of Western Asia and Africa, to 323 B.C.E. > 3. Egypt, c. 3500–332 B.C.E.
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3. Egypt, c. 3500–332 B.C.E.
a. Geography
 
EGYPT consisted of two parts: Upper (southern) and Lower (northern) Egypt. Upper Egypt was made up of a long and narrow strip of land, no more than 13 miles wide, on both banks of the Nile River. It stretched for 750 miles from Lake Moeris and the Fayum Depression upriver to the First Cataract (waterfall), the border with Nubia. The major cities of Upper Egypt were Nennusu (Heracleopolis), Khmun (Hermopolis), Abydos, and Thebes. A dry riverbed, the Wadi Hammamat, extended overland from Upper Egypt to the Red Sea. Lower Egypt was the Nile Delta formed by the seven branches of the river which flowed into the Mediterranean. The Delta contained two-thirds of Egypt's arable land and was where most of the principal cities of Lower Egypt lay: Avaris, Tanis (later Pi-Ramses), Sais, and Bubastis. Lower Egypt did contain a small portion of the Nile itself, including the cities of On (Heliopolis) and Memphis.  1
 
 
 
The Encyclopedia of World History, Sixth edition. Peter N. Stearns, general editor. Copyright © 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Maps by Mary Reilly, copyright 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

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