We like to think of people like the ancient Egyptians as fairly primitive folks
This reminds me of the philosophy class I took last year. In the start of the year we discussed Socrates, and some were incredibly impressed with how far he seemed to have gotten in cultural development. I didn’t say it out loud, but I thought to myself that, if they wanted to view it that way, they should instead be talking about why we haven’t gotten further. You can’t look back admiring how far ahead they were (unless, of course, you’re comparing them to people of their time, but this wasn’t the point of my classmates’ argument); you can merely observe the fact that we haven’t developed more.