Some of the earliest human civilizations arose in southern Mesopotamia, in what is now southern Iraq , in the fourth millennium B.C.E.
In 334 B.C. Alexander the Great took his Greek armies to the east and in only a few years completed his creation of an empire out of much of southwest Asia In the new empire, barriers to trade and the movement of peoples were removed; markets were put in touch with one another.
这个时候要学会判断句子的各项成分，比如本句中的in only a few years为状语成分，速读中可以去掉，发现and是并列took和completed的。
上文中的put in touch with这类词组可以当做一个及物动词处理
Towns and cities were established not only as garrisons (military posts)but as centers for the diffusion of Greek language, literature, and thought, particularly through libraries, as at Antioch (in modernTurkey) and the most famous of all, at Alexandria in Egypt, which would be the finest in the world for the next thousand years.
not only..., but可以当做and处理，and基本可以并列任何成分：从句到to do再到介宾成分再到词。本句话可以按照...were established as garrisons and as centers.
Second,this internationalism spelled the end of the classical Greekcity-state——the unit of government in ancient Greece——and everything it stood for.
比如 spell the end of - 可以忽略不认识的词，或把不认识的词替换成简单的词，如be，形成理解。
The philosopher Plato (428-348 B.C.) felt that the ideal city-state should have about 5,000 citizens, because to the Greeks it was important that everyone in the community should know each other.
In decision making, the whole body of citizens together would have the necessary knowledge in order generally to reach the right decision,even though the individual might not be particularly qualified todecide.
比如说in order generally to,可以先省略generally，发现实际的结构是inorder to。