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Gke1 Task 1 Essay

1841 words - 8 pages

The Nile River is one of the greatest contributing factors to the development of the ancient civilization of Egypt (Smith, 2014). Civilization is defined as, “the society, culture, and way of life of a particular area” (The Free Dictionary,n.d.). At over 4,000 miles long, the Nile is the longest known river in the world, and runs through eleven countries, including Egypt. Villages were located near to its life giving waters, and along its banks, and they were able to thrive because of the Nile and the agricultural abilities that the Nile provided. During the rainy season the Nile River deposited its silt-enriched waters when its banks flooded. The ancient Egyptian farmers knew they needed ...view middle of the document...

Diffusion is “the dissemination of elements of culture to another region or people” (The Free Dictionary, n.d.) usually from an area of high concentration of civilized culture, to another region. It is believed that the humble potato originated from Southern Chile about 14,000 years ago and travelled a very wide course of diffusion. In about 10,000 BCE, Andean farmers domesticated the potato through a process of trial and error. They discovered that seeds or sprouts from tubers could accomplish propagation of potatoes. Being near to the equator, particular potato crops thrived, especially the Salanum Tuberosum – the common potato. It grew well on equal amounts of day and night. The green plant flourished in the warmth of the day, and the tubers thrived during the cold nights. Potatoes did not have a long shelf life so the early South Americans developed an effective method of freeze drying so that they would have nourishment during times of famine. The common potato was becoming a very important staple for survival. It is said that Sir Frances Drake bartered with Indians for goods for his voyage to Northern Europe, and among those goods were potatoes. In 1577, Drake took the potato to Northern Europe, and then the Spanish, while searching for gold found the potato and took it to Bolivia. In Bolivia it became the main food source for Bolivian mine workers (Smith, 2011). The potato had come a long way, from South America, and now to Northern Europe. That was not the end of the diffusion of this lowly tuber. It went from the court of Spain to the Pope in Rome, from Rome to the papal ambassador in Mons, from Mons to a botanist in Vienna. People in Europe even started to give potatoes as gifts. Potatoes reached London in 1597, and shortly after, France and the Netherlands. In the early 17th century, sailors took potatoes to eat during long ocean voyages, thereby making it possible for the potato to travel to India, China, and Japan. Ireland gave the potato a warm welcome, and in the early 1700’s took it, and the name, “Irish potato,” to North America. So from ordinary, humble beginnings 14,000 years ago in South America the potato has travelled the world (“International year of, “2008). The potato became a dietary staple to the people of many countries as it was diffused throughout the world, and it is still a cheap, and important part of the diet of many people today.
Two very significant environmental and physical geographic factors that contributed to the development and expansion of the United States were the California Gold Rush in the mid 1800’s, and the devastating Dust Bowl storms in the Great Plains in the mid to late 1930’s. One was a race to wealth, while the other was a battle for survival against the elements. The most famous of America’s geological events has to be the gold rush which hit its peak in 1849 following the discovery of gold at Sutter’s Mill. At first gold was “easy pickings,” and could just be picked-up off the ground...

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