Egypt was an agricultural country in which the bulk of the population were peasant farmers involved in work on the land. The fertility of the land caused by the Nile floods ensured that crops were generally abundant and famines, while they did occur, were rare. The main crops were wheat and barley used to make bread and beer, the staple diet of the people. Vegetables were also produced, and vineyards are attested. Flax was planted to produce linen for clothing, and fodder was grown for livestock. The life of the countryside was dominated by the agricultural schedule. Planting followed the Nile flood in the early summer, and the peasantry was available for government-forced labor toward the end of the growing season. Government inspectors determined the amount of tax due from the individual plots, and the collected grain was stored and used to feed government employees, as at Deir elMedina. In Egypt’s barter economy, a measure of wheat was used to value less expensive goods.
   Most of the land was owned by the royal court, the temples, and the bureaucracy, but along with the large estates, small private plots are also attested. Most of the people were presumably landless peasants who worked on the large estates as sharecroppers or laborers, but some peasants owned their own land by inheritance or gift of the crown. Enterprising farmers owned some land, rented out more from the estates, and hired laborers, so the status of the agricultural population may be varied.
   See also Diet; Trade.
Historical Dictionary Of Ancient Egypt by Morris L. Bierbrier

Ancient Egypt. A Reference Guide. . 2011.

Игры ⚽ Поможем решить контрольную работу

Look at other dictionaries:

  • AGRICULTURE — Étymologiquement, agriculture signifie «culture des champs», le mot culture devant être pris dans le sens de «mise en condition». Il désigne, par extension, la production des biens et les conditions de vie en milieu rural: la culture du blé, de… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • agriculture — ag‧ri‧cul‧ture [ˈægrɪˌkʌltʆə ǁ ər] noun [uncountable] FARMING the practice or science of farming: • Agriculture accounts for over 25% of net domestic production. agricultural adjective : • sales of agricultural machinery exˌtensive ˈagriculture …   Financial and business terms

  • Agriculture —    Agriculture has been one of the most important means of subsistence since prehistoric times. During the Middle Ages, agriculture was mainly organized by large landowners, including monasteries, or by colonists who turned wastelands into… …   Historical Dictionary of the Netherlands

  • agriculture — AGRICULTURE. s. fém. L art de cultiver la terre. Cet homme aime l agriculture, entend bien l agriculture. Traité d agriculture …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie Française 1798

  • Agriculture —    Agriculture (most often associated with the kibbutz) has occupied a position of prominence in Israel and in Zionist ideology greater than its economic contribution has warranted. Its central place in Zionist ideology, dominant role in the… …   Historical Dictionary of Israel

  • Agriculture — Ag ri*cul ture (?; 135), n. [L. agricultura; ager field + cultura cultivation: cf. F. agriculture. See {Acre} and {Culture}.] The art or science of cultivating the ground, including the harvesting of crops, and the rearing and management of live… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • AGRICULTURE —    Agriculture formed the basis of the Mesopotamian economy. The first steps toward a managed production of cereals were taken as early as the 10th millennium B.C. in Syria, in the area known as the Fertile Crescent, which receives sufficient… …   Historical Dictionary of Mesopotamia

  • agriculture — AGRICULTURE: Une des mamelles de l État (l État est du genre masculin, mais ça ne fait rien). On devrait l encourager. Manque de bras …   Dictionnaire des idées reçues

  • agriculture — agriculture, sociology of See rural sociology …   Dictionary of sociology

  • agriculture — (n.) mid 15c., from L.L. agricultura cultivation of the land, compound of agri cultura cultivation of land, from agri, gen. of ager a field (see ACRE (Cf. acre)) + cultura cultivation (see CULTURE (Cf. culture)). In Old English, the idea was… …   Etymology dictionary

  • agriculture — *agrarian …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”