Ethiopia:

8 00 N, 38 00 E

Geography:

The Nile River rises in the highlands of Ethiopia and the lakes of Central Africa.This helps keep the land fertile and good for farming. Since Ethiopia was a big East African civilization and had many trade routes it was ideal for the people living there. Ethiopia is located mostly in the Sahara but also some parts of it are in the savanna. The places where Ethiopia is in the savanna is also where the Nile runs through it. This society has a long, dynamic history, resulting in a scenic landscape of variety and is unique to the rest of Africa. The tropical monsoons in Ethiopia really help the ground too. It is on a hight plateau with a central mountain range divided by Great Rift Valley.

Trade Routes:

Ethiopia was the center of East African civilizations and was a major source or resources and trade as early as 2500 BCE. The Red Sea and the Indian Ocean  trade routes were very important. They were prosperous in gold and salt trade. Red Sea ports made it easier to trade with the Roman and Byzantine empires.

People and Culture:

Migrations contributed to the rich diversity of the people and cultures in Ethiopia. The Kingdom of Ethiopia as a whole may be divided into three distinct periods the Adamic, the Cushite Kingdom and the Solomonic Dynasty which began in 1000 B.C. The Solomonic Dynasty was when the decedents of King Solomon were in power in Ethiopia.

Religious values:

The first emperor of Ethiopia was the son of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba. This made it easy for Ethiopia to be proud of their Jewish roots and Christian traditions of Byzantine origin. Later, other areas in Africa joined Islam, Ethiopia however remained mainly Christian and established a Coptic church. "Coptic" means "Egyptian", and Christians living in Egypt identify themselves as Coptic Christians. Ethiopians saw their country as a Christian outpost. The Ethiopian Christians absorbed many local customs such as drum music and dances for church. One group of Ethiopians practiced Judaism rather than Christianity and they were called Falasha. Also, Christian monks built a number or remarkable churches, some even said that the monks had "divine help" to build them. (shown below)

Art:

First came distinctive Christian art such as painting, crosses, icons, illuminated manuscripts, and metallic goods such as crowns.This showed that they were very religious and they took into great consideration their religion while they wet making their art. This kind of art was meant to send a message that they were very religious and they took pride in their religious roots. Second popular arts and crafts included textiles, basketry, and jewelry. This showed the artisan side of Ethiopia and showed that they were skilled in making traceable goods and colorful items which was a skill. St.George is the patron saint of Ethiopia so he is a common regular figure among religious art.

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