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Egyptian Trade Influence in the Mediterranean Region (Term Paper Sample)


Topic: To what extent did the Egyptian trade influence the Mediterranean region? Structure (Follow it strictly; Also follow all the details and brief given below necessarily) Introduction: Brief explanation about the agriculture and inventions of the Egyptian; introduction of the Pharaohs who spread Egyptian trade to the Mediterranean Body 1st heading: The products/ Food/ .. Egyptians spread to different parts of the Mediterranean region (talk in detail about the products they exported and which exact countries of the Mediterranean region did they trade with) Body 2nd heading: How did this Egyptian trade influence the Mediterranean region (how did those countries change with the Egyptian trade, how did those products they got from Egypt change their lives) Conclusion (only 100-120 words)

Egyptian Trade Influence in the Mediterranean Region
Agriculture in Egypt began around 5000BC.It began on the small-scale, but with time, agriculture was a widely practised activity. The farming practices of the community flourished because they had sufficient water flowing from the Nile River, which allowed them to irrigate the farming land sufficiently. They used dikes and canals that diverted and blocked water for use on the farmland. In addition, the soils were fertile gaining nutrients washed down from the slopes. Egypt’s agricultural area lies along the banks of the Nile and this helped the community turn to farming faster than it would take countries that did not have enough water source. In the beginning, they practiced single crop farming but as the population grew, there was the need to increase and cultivate more crops. This called for sophisticated methods of irrigation because the community was ferrying water from the Nile using buckets. One of the first inventions to deal with the cumbersome task of ferrying water was the shadoof, which had two arms levelled on a pole. The short arm held a weight for balancing a bucket of water on the longer arm (Hillel, 1991, p.91-93). This reduced the human effort they needed to water the expansive irrigation lands.
The start of artificial irrigation in Egypt does not have a definite date, but a picture known as the Scorpion Macehead of around 3200BC depicts use of an irrigation canal (Shaw & Nicholson, 2000, p.515). Another machine developed in this age was the balance. It was necessary for trade purposes (Rezende, 2006, p.7). It was important because measures were required for different commodities from the field as well as the manufactured products. Evidently, one of the popular crops in ancient Egypt was barley.
Archaeological findings show various barley species that date back to the period around 5000BC. The findings were also conclusive that Egyptians exchange barley as presents and they also used this product as an offering to their deities. In the homes, barley was essential in baking of bread and as feed for livestock (Mehdawy & Hussein, 2010, p.25). Peas were also cultivated (Bard, 1999, p.137).
Hatshepsut, the first female Pharaoh in Egypt encouraged trade with the neighbouring regions. She set up trade with Phoenicia so that Egypt would get supplies and skilled labour to build ships. Her expedition presents one of the most significant trading adventures in the history of ancient Egypt. The walls of this Temple explain the products she took as well as what she received. The description of the houses and the people in the paintings explains that she indeed traded with Punt (Dell, Cooney & Palmer, 2008, p. 73). There is no documented evidence that shows how or why the Pharaoh decided to trade with Punt.
The Products and Food Exports from Egypt
Egypt’s agricultural activities provided sufficient food for the nation as well as surplus for sale to other countries. The inventions of better irrigation systems had improved Egypt’s dependence on the land, and the fact that most of Egypt’s agricultural land lies on the banks of River Nile. In addition, the political stability of this nation enhanced international relations since the country depended on the Pharaoh’s rule. People feared and respected the Pharaohs, which aided them in creating a dynasty that would traverse the sea to trade and conquer. Further, River Nile created a platform for trade between Egypt and her trade partners because traders would sail to destinations they could not access by land even though road transport was popular especially between Egypt and Sudan (Silverman, 1997).
According to Ruiz (2001), Egypt had a lot to offer her trading partners who included the Greek, the Syrians, the Sudanese (Nubians), and the people of Punt, Crete, and Cyprus, Lebanon (Phoenicia). This mutual relationship allowed each country to bring what the other did not have. Some of the popular products in the Mediterranean trade between Egypt and her partners’ were gold, papyrus, and grains, jewellery, and linen. They also had leather from the domestic herds in the region. This provided stable raw material for the leather tanning industry, and thereby, sufficient good quality leather for the international trade market. They also offered ivory because Egypt had many hippos. The papyrus plant was available in plenty in the wild, but later they started growing it on the farm. This plant was essential in the production of clothes, mats and in the production of furniture (David, 1998). Silverman (1997), says Egypt also traded in soda and copper. Egypt’s Mediterranean trade activities were profitable because it had skilled labour. Even though agricultural activities depended on machines such as shadoof, human labour was essential from the planting to the harvesting period.
In addition, there was the obligatory corvee duty that required people to work for pay by the Pharaohs, and the prisoners provided labour too. Egypt also had an advantage in Mediterranean trade because it had efficient industries that produced merchandise in large quantities such as cosmetics, pottery, bricks, glass, papyrus, and leather among others. The agricultural acti...
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