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Crafts, Trade

(7,461 words)

Author(s): van de Mieroop, Marc (New York) | Wiesehöfer, Josef (Kiel) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum) | Bieg, Gebhard (Tübingen) | Burford-Cooper, Alison (Ann Arbor) | Et al.
[German version] I. Ancient Orient and Egypt Crafts in Egypt, in Syria-Palestine and in Mesopotamia can be best categorized by the materials employed: stone, bone and other animal products, clay and glass, metals, wood, wool and flax and leather, as well as reed and plant fibres. These were used to make objects of the most varied kinds, from cooking-pots to finely worked pieces of jewellery. For the building trade, stone, clay, reed and wood were important. For the investigation of the various forms of…

Commerce

(8,308 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Briese, Christoph (Randers) | Bieg, Gebhard (Tübingen) | de Souza, Philip (Twickenham) | Drexhage, Hans-Joachim (Marburg) | Et al.
[German version] I. Ancient Orient (Egypt, South-West Asia, India) Archaeologically attested since the Neolithic and documented since the 3rd millennium BC, long-distance or overland commerce -- as opposed to exchange and allocation of goods on a local level according to daily needs -- was founded on the necessity for ensuring the supply of so-called strategic goods (metal, building timber) not available domestically, as well as on the demand for luxury and prestige goods, or the materials required for producing them. In historical times, the organization of commerce was a…

Agriculture

(7,403 words)

Author(s): Hruška, Blahoslav (Prague) | Pingel, Volker (Bochum) | Schneider, Helmuth (Kassel) | Osborne, Robin (Oxford) | Schreiner, Peter (Cologne) | Et al.
I. Near East and Egypt [German version] A. Introduction In the Near Orient (particularly the southern Levant and Syria) and Egypt, a fundamental change in the history of mankind occurred 12,000 years ago: the transition from the hunter-gatherer life of paleolithic times to neolithic agrarian society. In the so-called ‘fertile crescent’ and in Egypt, agriculture almost always included livestock farming. Agriculture also encompassed the planting of fruit trees, viticulture and horticulture. The methods of food production led to increasing freedom from dependency on e…