The Kingdom Of Kush

World History 10B
1/23/04
South of Egypt, going more south of the Nile River, lay an area that
is known as Nubia. Nubia was the home and birthplace of the kingdom of
Kush. Nubia was “an important corridor of trade for gold, ivory, ebony, and
ostrich feathers” (World History: People and Nations, 299). Kush was a
small kingdom compared to all the others in the world. Also like other
kingdoms, it had its golden age and its time of decline. The history of the
kingdom is “divided up into two main periods” (Ancient Nubia – Kingdom of
Kush). Each of the periods had it’s own capitol. Its first was the Napatan
period for the time Napata was the capitol, and the second was the Meroitic
Period for when Meroe was capitol (Ancient Nubia – Kingdom of Kush). Very
little is known about the decline of the kingdom, but the rival of the
kingdom is turned out to be blamed. Other sources bring out more ideas to
blame.

The kingdom of Kush first started at the city of Kerma, “a trading
center of southern Nubia that emerged about 1800 B.C.” (World History:
People and Nations) It has been found that the reason Kush arose was
because of the rich trade they had with the nearby kingdom of Egypt.

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Richard Hooker explains that the Egyptians conquered Northern Nubia, and
when Kush conquered those lands they gained many goldmines, which helped
Kush become more powerful. He also explains that the kingdom of Kush first
arose when the Hyksos took over Egypt and were freed, but when Egypt
regained its kingdom, Kush was conquered, and finally the collapse of Egypt
in 1000 BC, Kush regained its independence. After this the kingdom of Kush
moved their capitol form Kerma to the city of Napata. When the capitol was
moved, the Napatan period began.

ThinkQuest explains that the first known ruler of the Kingdom of Kush
during the Napatan period was Kashta. World History: People and Nations
says that the kingdom of Kush kept a “close cultural and economic ties with
Egypt”. Then slowly the Kingdom of Kush conquered Upper Egypt and ruled a
united Egypt until the Assyrians attacked. Richard Hooker says that this
invasion made the Kushites retreat south and therefore cut off ties with
Egypt and the Europeans. When the Kingdom slowly regrouped itself, it made
a new capitol in the city of Meroe, which is where the Meroitic period of
Kush, begins.

World History: People and Nations explains that the Kush capitol of
Meroe was one of the “earliest centers of ironworking in … the ancient
world” (300). It could be said that the Meroitic period was the golden age
of Kush. During the Meriotic period, Kushites built pyramids, temples, and
had impressive craftsmanship. (World History: People ad Nations, 300) After
Kush’ “golden age” the kingdom declined. Very little is known about the
decline of the kingdom of Kush, but the rival state of Kush, Aksum, is the
most blamed one.

The Kingdom of Kush was the kingdom known for its riches and the
amount of economy it had. It had many rulers from different cultures from
time to time including the Egyptians and the Assyrians. The Kingdom
controlled many trade routes and glorified because of it. Kush adopted many
of the Egyptian cultures and architectures like building pyramids and
having a language that had some Egyptian included. The pyramids were
similar to those of the Egyptians but much smaller. Unfortunately, trough
time, just like any other kingdom in the ancient world, Kush declined and
was finally lost. Very little information of its decline is known but many
believe the kingdom of Aksum became Kush’ successor, and by that, the
economic trading center moved to the kingdom of Aksum.