When we study the history of Egypt, we will find that it is divided into two major parts: the Ancient Egyptian History with its flourishing developments and native civilisation, and the non-Egyptian ruling history with its influence on the mentality of the Egyptian people and their ability of creativity.
Periods of Ancient Egyptian History
It is very interesting to study closely the country’s history! Here, we will be giving you a summary of the major periods of ancient Egyptian history:
- Predynastic Period.
- Archaic Period.
- The Old Kingdom.
- First Intermediate Period.
- Middle kingdom.
- Second intermediate period.
- New kingdom.
- Third Intermediate Period.
- Also, Late Period.
1. The Predynastic Period
The early developments of Egyptian civilization characterize this period. It witnessed an exchange of hunting for agriculture and making early advances that paved the way for the later development of Egyptian arts and crafts, technology, politics and religion.
A major aspect of this period is the establishment of two separate kingdoms: the Northern Kingdom and the southern one. The northern kingdom, or what was called the Red Land, was located in the Nile Delta and extended south along the Nile to Atfih. While the Southern Kingdom, or what was called the White Land, was stretching from Atfih in the north to Gebel El-Silsila in the south.
There were some attempts to unify the two kingdoms by a southern king, Scorpion. He made the first attempts to conquer the northern kingdom around 3200 B.C. A century later, King Menes succeeded to subdue the north and unify the country.
2. The Archaic Period
The Archaic Period witnessed a major development of Egyptian society, including the all-important ideology of worship. During this period, King Menes founded the capital of ancient Egypt at Memphis, near the apex of the Nile River delta. By then, the Ancient Egyptians called this city “White Walls”.Later, this capital grew into a great metropolis and paved the way to build ancient Egyptian society.
3. The Old Kingdom of Ancient Egyptian History
This period is a very interesting one in ancient Egyptian history. We call it “the pyramid builder’s period”, as well. It witnessed a clear development in the religious construction of tombs to go with the beliefs of Egyptian society. Accordingly, the Ancient Egyptian builders did several attempts to shape the tomb of the pharaoh. Noteworthy that these attempts started with building the step-pyramid at Sakkara and arrived at the building of the amazing pyramids in Giza.
4. The First Intermediate Period
This period witnessed a collapse of the central government. In return, this collapse led to a civil war between cities governors. Consequently, the appearance of two separate kingdoms _Kingdom of North, and Kingdom of South. The Kingdom of North spanned the middle of Egypt in the area between Memphis and Thebes. While the Southern one was in Thebes.
The weak of the country and its division led to a partial invasion and famine disaster. By the end of this period, we can notice some attempt to reunify the country. These attempts have succeeded during the Theban prince Mentuhotep.
5. The Middle kingdom
During the Middle Kingdom, Egypt has witnessed a golden age as it was during the old kingdom. Once again, Ancient Egypt witnessed establishing a capital to the south of Memphis and starting military campaigns against the Bedouins. Besides, there was a political reform to ensure the smooth succession of their power by making each successor co-regent.
6. The Second intermediate period
This period of Ancient Egyptian history was marked by the beginning of another unsettled period in Egyptian history, during which a rapid succession of kings failed to consolidate power. Consequently, Egypt was divided into several spheres of influence.
7. The New Kingdom of Ancient History
The period was much flourished during Ancient Egyptian history. The country was once again reunited by a Theban pharaoh called Ahmose.
The most prominent aspect of this period is the formation of the world’s first great empire. During this period, we can find that Egypt has restored its control over Nubia, and began military campaigns to the north and east, stretching its empire from Nubia to the Euphrates River in Asia.
8. The Third Intermediate Period
The weakness of the central government characterizes this period. There are two main reasons for this weakness. The first reason was the increase in priests’ power. While the threat coming off the new powers _ the extended influence of the Nubian kingdom, and the appearance of the Assyrian empire _ was the second reason.
9. The Late Period
In this period, Egypt gets reunified; although the loyalty was to the Assyrian empire. Then, Egypt became part of the Persian Empire after the collapse of the Assyrian one. Although, the year 404 B.C. witnessed the last period of Egyptian independence under native rulers from the 28th dynasty to the 30th dynasty.