First civilizations The first civilizations appeared in major river valleys, where floodplains contained rich soil and the rivers provided irrigation for crops and a means of transportation The first civilizations appeared in locations where the geography was favorable to intensive agriculture A civilization is a complex society that creates agricultural surpluses, allowing for specialized labor, social hierarchy, and the establishment of cities. Developments such as writing, complex religious systems, monumental architecture, and centralized political power have been suggested as identifying markers of civilization BIG + CENTER By roughly 6000 to 8000 years ago, agriculture was well under way in several regions including Ancient Egypt, around the Nile River; the Indus Valley civilization; Mesopotamia, between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers; and Ancient China, along the Yellow and Yangtze rivers. This is because the regular river floods made for fertile soil around the banks and the rivers could also supply fresh water to irrigate crops. It’s no coincidence that as agriculture allowed for denser and denser populations along with more specialized societies, some of the world’s first civilizations developed in these areas as well. One Response Robin October 11, 2013 Sed laoreet, diam malesuada molestie volutpat, sapien enim ornare dolor, eu sollicitudin urna odio vitae eros. Ut posuere, leo vitae egestas laoreet, urna tortor rutrum quam, vitae gravida lorem dui rutrum tellus.