History, Grades 6-8 – 262 Words

adaptation

the process of adjusting or conforming to new conditions

agribusiness

a large-scale farming enterprise

Albert Einstein

physicist born in Germany who formulated the special theory of relativity and the general theory of relativity; Einstein also proposed that light consists of discrete quantized bundles of energy (later called photons) (1879-1955)

alchemy

a pseudoscientific forerunner of chemistry in medieval times

Alfred Krupp

German arms manufacturer and son of Friedrich Krupp

Algeria

a republic in northwestern Africa on the Mediterranean Sea with a population that is predominantly Sunni Muslim; colonized by France in the 19th century but gained autonomy in the early 1960s

Alps

a large mountain system in south-central Europe

Anasazi

a Native American who lived in what is now southern Colorado and Utah and northern Arizona and New Mexico and who built cliff dwellings

Anatolia

a peninsula in southwestern Asia that forms the Asian part of Turkey

Anne Hutchinson

American colonist (born in England) who was banished from Boston for her religious views (1591-1643)

anthropologist

a social scientist specializing in the study of humanity

apartheid

a social policy of racial segregation

Assyria

an ancient kingdom in northern Mesopotamia which is in present-day Iraq

astronomy

the branch of physics that studies celestial bodies

atomic bomb

a nuclear weapon in which enormous energy is released by nuclear fission (splitting the nuclei of a heavy element like uranium 235 or plutonium 239)

Bantu

of or relating to the African people who speak one of the Bantoid languages or to their culture

Barbados

easternmost of the West Indies about 300 miles to the north of Venezuela

Benin

a country on western coast of Africa

Berlin

capital of Germany located in eastern Germany

Bill Clinton

42nd President of the United States (1946-)

birth rate

the ratio of live births in an area to the population of that area; expressed per 1000 population per year

bourgeoisie

the social class between the lower and upper classes

Calvin Coolidge

elected vice president and succeeded as 30th President of the United States when Harding died in 1923 (1872-1933)

capitalism

an economic system based on private ownership of assets

capitalist economy

an economic system based on private ownership of capital

Catherine the Great

empress of Russia who greatly increased the territory of the empire (1729-1796)

Catholic Church

any of several churches claiming to have maintained historical continuity with the original Christian Church

Cecil Rhodes

British colonial financier and statesman in South Africa

Ceylon

an island in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of India

chance event

anything that happens suddenly or by chance without an apparent cause

Charles Darwin

English natural scientist who formulated a theory of evolution by natural selection (1809-1882)

Charles Evans Hughes

United States jurist who served as chief justice of the United States Supreme Court (1862-1948)

Chinese Revolution

the republican revolution against the Manchu dynasty in China; 1911-1912

civil disobedience

refusal to obey a law because it is believed to be immoral

civilian

a nonmilitary citizen

civilization

a society in an advanced state of social development

clergy

the entire class of religious officials in Christianity

closed shop

a company that hires only union members

Clovis

king of the Franks who unified Gaul and established his capital at Paris and founded the Frankish monarchy; his name was rendered as Gallic `Louis’ (466-511)

cohesion

the state of sticking together

collectivization

the organization of a nation or economy on the basis of collectivism

colonization

the act of settling a group of people in a new place

commercialization

the act of commercializing something

Communist Party

a political party that actively advocates a communist form of government; in Communist countries it is the sole political party of the state

Congress

the legislature of the United States government

conservatism

belief in preserving tradition and opposing radical change

Continental Congress

the legislative assembly composed of delegates from the rebel colonies who met during and after the American Revolution; they issued the Declaration of Independence and framed Articles of Confederation

courtly love

a highly conventionalized code of conduct for lovers

Creole

a person descended from French ancestors in southern United States (especially Louisiana)

Crete

the largest Greek island in the Mediterranean

Crimean War

a war in Crimea between Russia and a group of nations including England and France and Turkey and Sardinia; 1853-1856

Cultural Revolution

a radical reform in China initiated by Mao Zedong in 1965 and carried out largely by the Red Guard; intended to eliminate counterrevolutionary elements in the government it resulted in purges of the intellectuals and socioeconomic chaos

Dahomey

a country on western coast of Africa

Darius I

king of Persia who expanded the Persian Empire and invaded Greece but was defeated at the battle of Marathon (550-486 BC)

Darius the Great

king of Persia who expanded the Persian Empire and invaded Greece but was defeated at the battle of Marathon (550-486 BC)

death rate

the ratio of deaths in an area to the population of that area; expressed per 1000 per year

Democrat

a member of the older of two major U.S. political parties

Democratic-Republican Party

a former major political party in the United States in the early 19th century; opposed the old Federalist party; favored a strict interpretation of the constitution in order to limit the powers of the federal government

depression

a sunken or lowered geological formation

desegregation

incorporation of a formerly excluded group into a community

discrimination

unfair treatment of a person or group based on prejudice

disenfranchisement

the act of withdrawing certification or terminating a franchise

dissent

a difference of opinion

dollar diplomacy

diplomacy influenced by economic considerations

Dorothea Lange

United States photographer remembered for her portraits of rural workers during the Depression (1895-1965)

Dwight D. Eisenhower

United States general who supervised the invasion of Normandy and the defeat of Nazi Germany; 34th President of the United States (1890-1961)

East India Company

an English company formed in 1600 to develop trade with the new British colonies in India and southeastern Asia; in the 18th century it assumed administrative control of Bengal and held it until the British army took over in 1858 after the Indian Mutiny

East Indies

a group of islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans between Asia and Australia

economy

the system of production and distribution and consumption

Elizabeth I

Queen of England from 1558 to 1603

emigration

moving from one place in order to settle in another

epic

a long narrative poem telling of a hero’s deeds

epidemic disease

any infectious disease that develops and spreads rapidly to many people

equal opportunity

the right to equivalent opportunities for employment regardless of race or color or sex or national origin

equal protection of the laws

a right guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment to the US Constitution and by the due-process clause of the Fifth Amendment

Ethiopia

Ethiopia is a republic in northeastern Africa on the Red Sea

ethnic group

people of the same race or nationality who share a distinctive culture

ethnic minority

a group that has different national or cultural traditions from the majority of the population

evolution

sequence of events involved in the development of a species

exodus

a journey by a group to escape from a hostile environment

fair deal

fair treatment

fascism

a political theory advocating an authoritarian government

featherbedding

the practice (usually by a labor union) of requiring an employer to hire more workers than are required

federalism

government divided between central and regional powers

Federalist Party

a major political party in the United States in the early 19th century; founded by Alexander Hamilton; favored a strong centralized government

feminism

a doctrine that advocates equal rights for women

feminist movement

the movement aimed at equal rights for women

feudal lord

a man of rank in the ancient regime

feudalism

the social system in which vassals were protected by lords

final solution

the mass murder of Jews under the German Nazi regime from 1941 until 1945

financing

the act of funding

First Amendment

an amendment to the U.S. Constitution guaranteeing freedoms

first lady

the wife of a chief executive

flora

all the plant life in a particular region or period

fortification

a defensive structure

Francis Bacon

English statesman and philosopher

French and Indian War

a war in North America between France and Britain

gender role

the overt expression of attitudes that indicate to others the degree of your maleness or femaleness

Ghana

a republic in West Africa on the Gulf of Guinea

Glorious Revolution

the revolution against James II

Greece

ancient Greece

Greenland

the largest island in the world

Haiti

an island in the West Indies

hierarchy

a series of ordered groupings within a system

High Renaissance

the artistic style of early 16th century painting in Florence and Rome; characterized by technical mastery and heroic composition and humanistic content

hoarding

large outdoor signboard

Holland

a constitutional monarchy in western Europe on the North Sea

Holocaust

the mass murder of Jews under the German Nazi regime from 1941 until 1945

Homo erectus

extinct species of primitive hominid with upright stature but small brain

Homo sapiens

the only surviving hominid

hostility

a state of deep-seated ill-will

human nature

the shared psychological attributes of humankind that are assumed to be shared by all human beings

Iberia

an ancient geographical region to the south of the Caucasus Mountains that corresponded approximately to the present-day Georgia

ice age

any period of time during which glaciers covered a large part of the earth’s surface

impeachment

a formal document charging a public official with misconduct

imperialism

a policy of extending your rule over foreign countries

import

bring in from abroad

Indo-European language

the family of languages that by 1000 BC were spoken throughout Europe and in parts of southwestern and southern Asia

industrialization

the development of commercial enterprise

infant mortality rate

the death rate during the first year of life

interpretation

the act of expressing something in an artistic performance

intervention

the act of interposing one thing between or among others

Iraq

a republic in the Middle East in western Asia

Isfahan

city in central Iran; former capital of Persia

isolationism

a policy of nonparticipation in international relations

Italian Renaissance

the early period when Italy was the center of the Renaissance

James Buchanan

15th President of the United States (1791-1868)

James Madison

4th President of the United States

jazz

genre of American music that developed in the 20th century

Jesus Christ

a teacher and prophet born in Bethlehem and active in Nazareth; his life and sermons form the basis for Christianity (circa 4 BC – AD 29)

John Marshall

United States jurist

Jose Clemente Orozco

Mexican painter noted for his monumental murals (1883-1949)

Joseph McCarthy

United States politician who unscrupulously accused many citizens of being Communists (1908-1957)

Karl Marx

founder of modern communism

karma

the effects of a person’s actions that determine his destiny

kinship group

group of people related by blood or marriage

Kongo

the Bantu language spoken by the Kongo living in the tropical forests of Zaire and Congo and Angola

Korean War

a war between North and South Korea

Ku Klux Klan

a secret society of white Southerners in the United States

Kuomintang

the political party founded in 1911 by Sun Yat-sen

labor force

the source of trained people from which workers can be hired

labor union

an organization of employees formed to bargain with the employer

loyalist

a person who is loyal to their allegiance

Lunda

puffins

lynching

putting a person to death by mob action without due process

Macedonia

landlocked republic on the Balkan Peninsula

Machu Picchu

Inca fortress city in the Andes in Peru discovered in 1911

Magna Carta

the royal charter of political rights given to rebellious English barons by King John in 1215

Malcolm X

militant civil rights leader (1925-1965)

Manchu

a member of the Manchu speaking people of Mongolian race of Manchuria; related to the Tungus; conquered China in the 17th century

mandate

a document giving an official instruction or command

Mao Zedong

Chinese communist leader (1893-1976)

marital status

the condition of being married or unmarried

Marshall Plan

a United States program of economic aid for the reconstruction of Europe (1948-1952); named after George Marshall

Massachusetts

a state in New England; one of the original 13 colonies

McCarthyism

unscrupulously accusing people of disloyalty

megalopolis

a very large urban complex

Middle Ages

the period of history between classical antiquity and the Italian Renaissance

military unit

a unit that is part of some military service

monarchy

autocracy governed by a ruler who usually inherits authority

monastery

the residence of a religious community

monasticism

asceticism as a form of religious life

mortality rate

the ratio of deaths in an area to the population of that area; expressed per 1000 per year

mosque

a Muslim place of worship that usually has a minaret

mound builder

large-footed short-winged birds of Australasia

mural

a painting that is applied to a wall surface

national bank

a commercial bank chartered by the federal government

nativism

the policy of perpetuating native cultures

Nazi

a German member of Adolf Hitler’s political party

neutrality

nonparticipation in a dispute or war

Newfoundland

an island in the north Atlantic

Niger River

an African river; flows into the South Atlantic

nirvana

the beatitude that transcends the cycle of reincarnation

nobility

a privileged class holding hereditary titles

North Atlantic Treaty Organization

an international organization created in 1949 by the North Atlantic Treaty for purposes of collective security

Oaxaca

a city of southeastern Mexico

obsidian

glass formed by the cooling of lava without crystallization

open shop

a company whose workers are hired without regard to their membership in a labor union

organized labor

employees who are represented by a labor union

papacy

the government of the Roman Catholic Church

pathogen

any disease-producing agent

peasantry

the class of peasants

Persia

a theocratic Islamic republic in the Middle East in western Asia; Iran was the core of the ancient empire that was known as Persia until 1935; rich in oil

Persian Empire

an empire in southern Asia created by Cyrus the Great in the 6th century BC and destroyed by Alexander the Great in the 4th century BC

Persian Gulf

a shallow arm of the Arabian Sea between Iran and the Arabian peninsula; the Persian Gulf oil fields are among the most productive in the world

perspective

a way of regarding situations or topics

Peter the Great

czar of Russia who introduced ideas from western Europe to reform the government; he extended his territories in the Baltic and founded St. Petersburg (1682-1725)

philanthropist

someone who makes charitable donations

philosophy

the rational investigation of existence and knowledge

Pizarro

Spanish conquistador who conquered the Incas in what is now Peru and founded the city of Lima (1475-1541)

Poland

a republic in central Europe

Polynesia

the islands in the eastern part of Oceania

populism

political doctrine that supports the rights of common people

Populist Party

a former political party in the United States

port of entry

a port in the United States where customs officials are stationed to oversee the entry and exit of people and merchandise

Portugal

a republic in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula

price war

intense competition in which competitors cut retail prices to gain business

private property

movable property (as distinguished from real estate)

protective tariff

a tariff imposed to protect domestic firms from import competition

Protestant Reformation

a religious movement of the 16th century that began as an attempt to reform the Roman Catholic Church and resulted in the creation of Protestant churches

public opinion

a belief or sentiment shared by most people

Puritanism

the beliefs and practices characteristic of Puritans

Ramses II

king of Egypt between 1304 and 1237 BC who built many monuments

rationing

restricting the consumption of a relatively scarce commodity

reincarnation

a second or new birth

Rene Descartes

French philosopher and mathematician

Republican

a member of the younger of two major U.S. political parties

Republican Party

the younger of two major political parties in the United States; GOP is an acronym for grand old party

Roman Catholic Church

the Christian Church based in the Vatican and presided over by a pope and an episcopal hierarchy

Romanticism

a movement in literature and art during the late 18th and early 19th centuries that celebrated nature rather than civilization

royal court

the family and retinue of a sovereign or prince

saint

a person who has died and has been canonized

Samarkand

city in southern Uzbekistan

Saudi Arabia

an absolute monarchy occupying most of the Arabian Peninsula in southwest Asia; vast oil reserves dominate the economy

scientific method

method of observation to test scientific hypotheses

Scopes trial

a highly publicized trial in 1925 when John Thomas Scopes violated a Tennessee state law by teaching evolution in high school; Scopes was prosecuted by William Jennings Bryan and defended by Clarence Darrow; Scopes was convicted but the verdict was later reversed

secession

formal separation from an alliance or federation

segregation

the act of keeping apart

service industry

an industry that provides services rather than tangible objects

Shinto

the ancient indigenous religion of Japan lacking formal dogma; characterized by a veneration of nature spirits and of ancestors

Siam

a country of southeastern Asia that extends southward along the Isthmus of Kra to the Malay Peninsula

Sicily

the Italian region on the island of Sicily

Sigmund Freud

Austrian neurologist who originated psychoanalysis

social status

position in a social hierarchy

Socialist Party

a political party in the United States formed in 1900 to advocate socialism

solon

a man who is a respected leader in national or international affairs

spoils system

the system of employing and promoting civil servants who are friends and supporters of the group in power

squire

a man who attends or escorts a woman

St. Petersburg

a city in the European part of Russia

standard of living

a level of material comfort in terms of goods and services available to someone or some group

Stanley Baldwin

English statesman; member of the Conservative Party

states’ rights

the rights conceded to the states by the United States constitution

status

the condition or someone or something at a particular time

stereotype

a conventional or formulaic conception or image

stratification

forming or depositing in layers

strip mining

the mining of ore or coal from an open mine

subculture

a distinctive social group within a national society

Sudan

a republic in northeastern Africa on the Red Sea

Tamerlane

Mongolian ruler of Samarkand who led his nomadic hordes to conquer an area from Turkey to Mongolia (1336-1405)

telecommunication

(often plural) the branch of electrical engineering concerned with the technology of electronic communication at a distance

temperance

the trait of avoiding excesses

terrorism

the use of violence against civilians for ideological goals

third party

someone other than the principals who are involved in a transaction

Torah

the first of three divisions of the Hebrew Scriptures comprising the first five books of the Hebrew Bible considered as a unit

trade balance

the difference in value over a period of time of a country’s imports and exports of merchandise

trade union

an organization of employees formed to bargain with the employer

transcendentalism

a philosophy emphasizing the intuitive and spiritual

transformation

the act of changing in form or shape or appearance

trench warfare

a type of armed combat in which the opposing troops fight from trenches that face each other

Turkestan

a historical region of central Asia that was a center for trade between the East and the West

Upanishad

a later sacred text of Hinduism of a mystical nature dealing with metaphysical questions

urbanization

the social process whereby cities grow

Virginia

one of the British colonies that formed the United States

war crime

a crime committed in wartime; violation of rules of war

weaponry

weapons considered collectively

welfare

something that aids or promotes well-being

Western culture

the modern culture of western Europe and North America

Whig Party

a former political party in the United States

White Sea

a large inlet of the Barents Sea in the northwestern part of European Russia

world power

a state powerful enough to influence events throughout the world

world war

a war in which the major nations of the world are involved

Zanzibar

an island in the Indian Ocean off the east coast of Africa
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