Although it lasted from 1046 BC to 256 BC, the emperor was nearly powerless, real power lying in the hands of local warlords and kings.
Period of the Warring States
475 bc - 221 bc
A struggle for dominance between numerous Chinese kingdoms to rule all of China.
221 bc - 206 bc
The first dynasty after the period of the warring states, lasted only the lifetime of its founder.
206 bc - 220 ad
Took power after the Qin dynasty fell, in its early years brought stability and economic growth to China. In its later years it was brought down by political and social instability, including murderous Eunuchs.
220 - 581
A period of political chaos after the collapse of the Han dynasty, China was divided among several kingdoms each claiming to be emperor.
581 - 600
Lasting from 581 CE to 618 CE, China was united under the Sui dynasty for the first time in more than 350 years.
600 bc - 550 bc
The Median Empire controlled much of modern Persia, and was the first place to be taken over by Cyrus.
550 bc - 330 bc
The empire of Cyrus the Great, was the largest and most populated empire in the world for many years, its politics and cultures shaped the region for centuries.
Parthian and Seleucid Empires
330 bc - 224
The two empires that vied for control of Persia, the Seleucid Empire was ruled by Greeks, founded by one of Alexanders Generals. The Parthian Empire was ruled by native Persians, and eventually destroyed the Seleucids.
224 - 600
The last non-Islamic empires to control Persia.
600 bc - 509 bc
A kingdom consisting of little more than the city of Rome, founded by the legendary Romulus and Remus. Was overthrown by nobles who created the Republic.
509 bc - 26 bc
A republic that put power in a senate full of aristocrats and nobles, with limited power going to plebeians. Saw the expansion of Rome from a city state to the dominant military and economic force in the Mediterranean.
25 bc - 476
Formed when Augustus overthrew the Republic, the Roman Empire brought centuries of peace and prosperity in Pax Romania. Eventually split into two parts, and overthrown by barbarians.
476 - 600
Also called the Eastern Roman Empire, proclaimed itself to be the true Roman Empire after the Western Roman Empire fell to barbarian invasion. It was ruled by Greeks and was the seat of the Orthodox church.
600 bc - 424 bc
A time period in early India which saw the creation of much of Indian culture and society. India was split between many small kingdoms and even some republics.
424 bc - 322 bc
An Empire which ruled all of North India until being overthrown by Chandragupta.
322 bc - 185 bc
Controlling all but the far south of India, the Mauryan Empire was the largest in Indian history. Ruled by Asoka, it saw centralization of trade and government.
185 bc - 320
A time in Indian history between Empires, when India was split between numerous small kingdoms.
320 - 600
An empire that all but the far south, it saw a golden age of Indian culture.
600 bc - 480 bc
A time period in which Greece saw the rise of the Polis, Athenian Democracy, and much of what we associate with Greek culture.
480 bc - 404 bc
An alliance led by Athens who fought against the Persians and later against Sparta. The were disbanded after they lost the Peloponniesian war.
404 bc - 345 bc
A time when alternately Sparta or Thebes exercised Hegemony over the other Greek cities,
345 bc - 306 bc
When Greece was ruled by Phillip and Alexander of Macedon.
306 bc - 146 bc
Was when Greece was ruled by the decedents of Antigonus, one of Alexander's generals.
146 bc - 330
In 146 BC the Roman Republic conquered Macedonia and all of Greece and made it into a Roman Provence.
330 - 600
After the Roman East-West split, Greece came under the rule of the Eastern Roman or Byzantine empire. After the fall of the western Roman Empire the Byzantine Emperors became ethnic Greeks.
First Gold and Silver Coins
The first silver and gold coins were minted in the kingdom of Lydia, and adopted by Persia after they conquered Lydia.
Zoroaster founded the Zoroastrian religion, which was dominant in Persia until the Muslim conquest around 650 AD
563 bc - 483 bc
Buddha was an Indian prince that founded Buddhism, a religion that spread throughout India and southeast Asia. It is focused on eliminating suffering by eliminating desire.
558 bc - 530 bc
Cyrus the Great was the founder of the Achaemenid Empire of
Persia, one of the largest and most influential empires in the world for many years.
551 bc - 479 bc
Confucius spread his Philosophy of ethics and morality throughout China.
Around 550 BC, Athens and several surrounding cities adopted a system of representative democracy that would be the foundation of western democracy for thousands of years..
Rome adopts a system of democracy and forms the senate.
The Royal Road
The Persian royal road connected the large empire, and allowed for Persian couriers to quickly deliver messages to even the most remote parts of the Empire.
Persian tax system
The tax system created by Darius I in 500 BC was one of the worlds most efficient, collecting taxes for a few Satrapys rather than individually. This tax system spread into India and Rome.
World population 100,000,000
The world population is estimated to have exceeded one hundred million around 500 BC.
500 bc - 479 bc
A series of conflicts between the Persian Empire and Greek City states ending in Greek victory.
499 bc - 493 bc
The Ionian revolt was an uprising by Ionian Greeks against the Persian Empire. This would eventually lead to a cultural struggle between Greeks and Persians.
The secessio plebis was a conflict between the Plebeians and the Patritions in Rome leading to the creation of the tribune of the plebs.
The oppressed Helots, a lower class than the Spartans that ruled over them, revolted.
Around the 5th century BC, the Chinese developed a new system of producing Iron, making warfare agriculture and construction more efficient.
The Twelve Tables
The twelve tables were Rome's first code of law, and enforced social order by doing things such as banning marriage between patricians and plebeians, allowing for slavery, and implying men are better than woman.
431 bc - 404 bc
A war for control of Greece between Sparta and Athens. Sparta Won.
The Plague of Athens
An unknown and deadly plague the devastated Athens during the height of the Peloponnesian war.
428 bc - 348 bc
Plato was a Greek philosopher who wrote about Politics and Ethics among other things, who greatly affected Philosophical thought in classical Greece.
384 bc - 322 bc
Aristotle was a Greek philosopher, who was much more of a realist that Plato and believed in relying on your senses and exploring the nature of reality.
356 bc - 323 bc
Alexander the Great conquered everything from Macedonia to the Indus river, and paved the way for hundreds of years of Hellenic rule and spread Greek language and culture far and wide.
In 330 BC, Alexander the great burned Persepolis, the cultural and architectural capital of the Persian Empire, and one of the greatest cities in the world at the time.
In 312 BC, the Appian Way, the first major road in Rome was completed. A massive network of paved and well maintained roads connected all sides of the Roman Empire, allowing for easy trade.
The Arthashastra was a economic paper written in Mauryan dynasty India, that had a major role in shaping Indian economics.
Unification of India
During the reign of Asoka, all of India was either part of the Maurya Empire, or its vassal.
The Punic Wars
264 bc - 146 bc
A series of wars between Rome and Carthage ending with Roman conquest of Carthage.
Abolition of Feudalism In China
China's feudal system was abolished almost as soon as the Zhou dynasty fell, leading so somewhat more freedom and equality for the peasant classes.
Unification of China
In 221 BC, Qin declared himself Emporium of China, uniting the country for the first time since the period of the warring states began.
With China unified, Qin took the opportunity to standardize weights, measurement, and currencies throughout the empire, allowing for more efficient trade and production.
Around 200 BC, the Chinese invented paper, allowing for significantly more efficient writing and cartography.
135 bc - 71 bc
The servile wars were a series of major slave revolts in Rome, showing the social instability between ruling classes and slaves in Rome.
106 bc - 43 bc
Cicero was a Roman politician and philosopher who had great effect on the Latin language and humanist philosophy.
The Silk Road
Starting around 100 BC, the silk road was a vast trade network spanning across the most of the classical world, from China to Rome, and from India to Persia. Also Greece, although it was mostly a Roman province.
Around 100 BC, Greeks invented the watermill, utilizing their environment to help them produce grain more efficiently.
45 bc - 23 ad
Wang Mang was an emperor of China who implemented economic reforms to land distribution by taking all private land, and sweeping tax reforms.
Assassination of Julius Caesar
Caesar's assassination, despite the fact that is was an attempt to save the republic, set off a coarse of events leading to the end of the Republic.
7 bc - 30 ad
Jesus of Nazareth spreads his teaching throughout Judea, which will eventually lead to the creation of the Christian religion.
The Indian Jāti system was a subdivision of the caste system, that divided castes into guilds, groups who had the same profession. They protected members of their own Jāti, making trade more easy.
A holy Hindu text that dictates specific laws for the Indian caste system, furthering the social divide in India.
Around 75 AD the Chinese invented the compass, allowing for far safer and more efficient trade by sea.
Hippalus was a Greek merchant who discovered a route to India, increasing trade between the Hellenic world and the east.
A plague that killed millions across the Roman empire, brought from Persia by returning Roman troops.
Yellow Turban Rebellion
184 - 205
A bunch of peasants in Yellow Turbans rebelled against the Han Dynasty because the rich got all the land. Although they lost, it showed the instability of the later Han Dynasty.
Armenia converts to Christianity
In 301 AD, the king of Armenia became the first ruler to become Christian.
Constantine Converts to Christianity
Constantine the Great became the first Roman Emperor to be Christian, leading to the spread of the religion throughout the empire.
World Population 250,000,000
Around 350 AD the world population is estimated to be a quarter billion.
Sack of Rome
The sack of Rome by Vandals in 455 AD marked the beginning of the end for the Western Roman Empire.
Around 500 AD, Indians invented an early version of the cotton gin, greatly increasing productivity.
Plague of Justinian
A plague that started in the Byzantine empires, and killed tens of millions across Europe.