Egypt is located in the northern part of Africa. From this area one of the world's oldest civilizations grew. To the north of Egypt is the Mediterranean Sea. To the east of Egypt is the Red Sea. Farmers first settled in Egypt along the Nile River around 5000 B.C. The Nile River flows into the Mediterranean Sea from the south. Egypt receives little rainfall. Without the Nile River, the area would be entirely desert. Before modern dams were built the Nile River would flood each year.
The floods usually began in June and ended in October. These floods would bring thick, rich mud from the mountains of central Africa. The mud would spread over the river banks creating a fertile ground for the early Egyptians to grow their crops.
Two kingdoms developed along the Nile River. The kingdom in Lower Egypt was called the red crown and the one in Upper Egypt was known as the white crown. In about 3200 B. C. the pharaoh of the north conquered the south and Egypt became united. The pharaoh's name was King Narmer or Menes. Menes didn't try to change the people in Upper and Lower Egypt. He allowed the two separate tribes to keep their own special gods and traditions. He founded the first capital of Egypt where the two lands met. It was called Memphis. No more wars were fought for hundreds of years.
This pharaoh is wearing the combined crowns or double crown of Upper and Lower Egypt. The front is the rounded crown of Upper Egypt and the flat high backed portion is the crown of Lower Egypt.
One of the reasons that Egyptians were able to develop an advanced civilization is because they were surrounded by deserts. This kept invaders out. With the rich deposits of the Nile River, the sunny weather, and the well organized government, the Egyptian people were able to make a good living with only a small portion of their day. This gave the people time to invent writing, build irrigation systems, and build magnificent pyramids within 2000 years.