• Rosetta Stone stone monument that includes the same passage carved in hieroglyphics, demotic script, and Greek and that was used to decipher the meanings of many hieroglyphs

  • Rosie the Riveter popular name for women who worked in war industries during WWII

  • rotten borough rural town in England that sent members to Parliament despite having few or no voters

  • Ruhr Valley coal-rich industrial region of Germany

  • russification making a nationality's culture more ethnically Russian

  • Russo-Japanese War conflict between Russia and Japan in 1904–1905 over control of Korea and Manchuria


  • Sabbath a holy day for rest and worship

  • sacrament sacred ritual of the Roman Catholic Church

  • Safavid Shiite Muslim empire that ruled much of present-day Iran from the 1500s into the 1700s

  • Sahara largest desert in the world, covering almost all of North Africa

  • salon informal social gathering at which writers, artists, philosophes, and others exchanged ideas

  • samurai member of the warrior class in Japanese feudal society

  • Sandinistas a socialist political movement and party that held power in Nicaragua during the 1980s

  • sans-culotte working-class man or woman who made the French Revolution more radical; called such because he or she wore long trousers instead of the fancy knee breeches that the upper class wore

  • Sapa Inca the title of the Inca emperor

  • sati Hindu custom that called for a widow to join her husband in death by throwing herself on his funeral pyre

  • satirize make fun of

  • savanna grassy plain with irregular patterns of rainfall

  • schism permanent division in a church

  • scholasticism in medieval Europe, the school of thought that used logic and reason to support Christian belief

  • scientific method careful, step-by-step process used to confirm findings and to prove or disprove a hypothesis

  • scorched-earth policy military tactic in which soldiers destroy everything in their path to hurt the enemy

  • scribe in ancient civilizations, a person specially trained to read, write, and keep records

  • secede withdraw

  • secret ballot votes cast without announcing them publicly

  • sect a subgroup of a major religious group

  • secular having to do with worldly, rather than religious, matters; nonreligious

  • segregation forced separation by race, sex, religion, or ethnicity

  • selective borrowing adopting or adapting some cultural traits but discarding others

  • self-determination right of people to choose their own form of government

  • sepoy Indian soldier who served in an army set up by the French or English trading companies

  • serf in medieval Europe, a peasant bound to the lord's land

  • shah king

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Table of Contents

World History Topic 1 Origins of Civilization (Prehistory–300 B.C.) Topic 2 The Ancient Middle East and Egypt (3200 B.C.–500 B.C.) Topic 3 Ancient India and China (2600 B.C.–A.D. 550) Topic 4 The Americas (Prehistory–A.D. 1570) Topic 5 Ancient Greece (1750 B.C.–133 B.C.) Topic 6 Ancient Rome and the Origins of Christianity (509 B.C.-A.D. 476) Topic 7 Medieval Christian Europe (330–1450) Topic 8 The Muslim World and Africa (730 B.C.-A.D. 1500) Topic 9 Civilizations of Asia (500–1650) Topic 10 The Renaissance and Reformation (1300–1650) Topic 11 New Global Connections (1415–1796) Topic 12 Absolutism and Revolution Topic 13 The Industrial Revolution Topic 14 Nationalism and the Spread of Democracy (1790–1914) Topic 15 The Age of Imperialism (1800–1914) Topic 16 World War I and the Russian Revolution (1914–1924) Topic 17 The World Between the Wars (1910–1939) Topic 18 World War II (1930–1945) Topic 19 The Cold War Era (1945–1991) Topic 20 New Nations Emerge (1945–Present) Topic 21 The World Today (1980-Present) United States Constitution Primary Sources 21st Century Skills Atlas Glossary Index Acknowledgments