History of the Ancient and Medieval World - Vol. 1

History of the Ancient and Medieval World - Vol. 1

History of the Ancient and Medieval World - Vol. 1

History of the Ancient and Medieval World - Vol. 1


Beginning with prehistory and continuing to the brink of the European Renaissance, this reference set offers readers comprehensive coverage of a diversity of ancient and medieval civilizations and cultures. In addition to the Greeks and Romans, it introduces readers to the Egyptians, Mesopotamians, Phoenicians, Jews, Hittites, among many others.


Volume 1 of The History of the Ancient and Medieval World has before it an ambitious task. That is the introduction of the concepts surrounding the creation of Earth and the development of human life and culture up to the historic age. the text begins with an introduction into the theories of the development of the universe. Earth, and earliest life-forms. This sets the geological and biological context for discussion of the evolution of human life and culture.

Sections devoted to the explanation of the basic tenets of evolutionary theory and the archaeological evidence that accounts for the evolution of Homo sapiens sapiens are necessary components in this volume. They are an essential background for the presentation of the complex chronicle of human cultural evolution. a practical setting is formed through discussions of the eras of the earliest Australopithecine and Homo species. the hallmarks of human innovation and culture known from the archaeological record associated with Homo erectus. Archaic Homo sapiens (Neandertals). and Anatomically Modern Humans (AMH). including the first toolmaking, cave painting, and symbolic representation, are all vital and fascinating elements of this narrative.

The text highlights the inventions of cultures across the globe from the Neolithic period to the end of the Iron Age. the domestication of plants and animals, the invention of writing and metallurgy, and the formation of cities are milestones in the course of increasing human modernization.

Finally, this volume includes detailed sections explaining the expansion of cultures through Europe and the occupation of that land which begins to take the shape of a territory rich in ethnic and cultural diversity. All of the components of this first volume are vital elements to the narrative of worldwide human cultural development that continues today.

Laura Tedesco, M.A., Department of Anthropology, New York University, New York . . .

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