World History Timeline


Xia Dynasty

2100 BCE - 1600 BCE

Shang Dynasty

1600 BC - 1050 BC

-led by warrior aristocracy
-traded extensively
-ancestor veneration

Zhou Dynasty

1046 BC - 256 BC

-herding society that rebelled against Shang
-crumbled from within

Qin Dynasty

221 BC - 206 BC

-Shi Huangdi united China
-favored legalism
-centralized dictatorship
-heavy taxes led to rebellion

Han Dynasty

206 BC - 220 AD

-expanded hundreds of miles
-tributary system w/ neighboring territories
-bureaucracy based on exam system
-Mandate of Heaven
-improved trade (Silk Road) & agriculture
-agricultural downturn, economic slump, govt. corruption, & ineffectual leadership

Warring Period

220 - 589

-Buddhism introduced to China

Sui Dynasty

589 - 618

-first stable dynasty after fall of Han
-reunified country

Tang Dynasty

618 - 906

-became larger than ever before
-tributary system for neighbors
-expanded Grand Canal
-silk trade monopoly
-love of luxury led to peasant rebellions

Warring Period

907 - 960

Song Empire

960 - 1279

-most durable/advanced fragmented part
-steady population increase
-thriving trade
-cultural and tech advancement (gunpowder)
-mandate of heaven

Yuan Dynasty

1271 - 1368

-Kublai Khan (Genghis Khan's grandson)
-Silk Road became vital trade route again
-fell bc black death, economic decline, rebellions

Ming Dynasty

1368 - 1644

-Hongwu ruled
-large and effective army
-Zheng He explored SE Asia, India, Middle East, E Africa

Qing Dynasty

1644 - 1912

-artistic and intellectual grandeur
-tributary system
-Confucian-based social stratification
-popular discontent and uprisings
-Opium war w British
-Taiping Rebellion (opposed high taxes, oppression)
-Boxer Rebellion (anti-foreign influence)

Chinese Republic

1912 - 1949

-Nationalist party
-civil war, anarchy
-May Fourth Movement- students protesting

People's Republic of China

1949 - Present

-Communist victory brought Mao to power
-drove Nationalist party to Taiwan
-persecution of dissent
-famine bc Great Leap Forward unrealistic

Western Europe

Neolithic-Stone Age

3000 BC - 1800 BC

Bronze & Iron Age

1800 BC - 600 BC

Ancient Greece

800 BC - 146 BC

-Sparta & Athens
-Persian Wars (492-479 BCE)
-Peloponnesian War (431-404 BCE)
-conquered by Macedonia after Pelo. War
-Alexander the Great
-declined sense of unity/nationalism led to fall


600 BC - 476

Pre-Roman Republic
-800-500 BCE
-dominated Mediterranean

Roman Republic
-500-30 BCE
-most adults play a role in govt.
-tensions b/n plebian (lower) & patrician (upper) classes
-oligarchic senate
-Punic Wars w/ Carthage (264-146 BCE)
-rapid expansion led to downfall
-slave revolts
-Julius Ceasar

Roman Empire
-30 BCE-476 CE
-Julius’ adopted son, Caesar Augustus
-1st century = pax Romana
-epidemics after early 200’s
-300’s = Split b/n Byzantine & Western Roman Empire
-nomadic attack led to fall

Byzantine Empire

330 - 1430

-Justinian/ Theodora
-fell to the Ottomans

Early Middle Ages

500 - 1000

-aka Dark Ages
-intellectually dark age

High Middle Ages

1000 - 1300

-Knights (code of chivalry)

Late Middle Ages

1300 - 1450

-renaissance in Italy
-moving towards greater centralized
-constant warfare
-social unrest
-black death

Early Modern Period

1450 - 1750

-Reformation & religious conflicts
-rise of capitalism & nation states
-European colonization
-beginning of industrialization
-age of enlightenment during 1700's

Long 19th Century

1750 - 1914

-colonialism & imperialism
-industrial revolution
-romantic era
-Victorian era
-British hegemony
-Age of Revolution

Age of Revolution

1775 - 1848

-American Revolution (1775-1783)
-French Revolution (1789-1799)
-Revolutions of 1848 (Italy, Germany, Hungary, etc.)


1914 - Present


The Americas


1400 BCE - 1492

-includes Mayan, Inca, Toltecs, Olmecs, Aztecs

The Olmecs

1400 BC - 400 BC

-mother civilization


250 - 900

-human sacrifice
-mita labor system
-unknown reason for collapse


1200 - 1500

-at height, half a million population
-human sacrifice
-forced neighbors into tributary system
-brought down by Spanish


1300 - 1500

-built massive empire in less than a century
-road network
-social stratification
-brought down by Spanish

European Colonization

1500 - 1750

-religious syncretism
-plantation & cash-crop agriculture
-increasing reliance of slavery & forced labor
-new social hierarchy (mulattos, mestizos, creole, etc.)
-growth of Atlantic slave trade (triangular trade)
-exchange of animals/crops/diseases

Industrialization & Globalization

1750 - 1900

-Age of Revolution
-US expansion
-suppression of Native Americans
-slavery (US civil war)
-Latin American wars of independence
-economic imperialism
-Industrial Revolution
-rise of middle/working class (diversification)
-racial inequality

Age of Revolution

1750 - 1850

-American Revolution
-Haitian Rebellion
-Wars of Independence (Mexican, Venezuela)
-conservatism vs. liberalism
-impact = rise of middle class
-anti-immigration feelings

Authoritarianism in LA

1900 - 1945

-US sphere of influence
-Great Depression (1930) wiped out demand for products
-US support of Authoritarianism
-dictatorship (Brazil, Mexico, Argentina)

Cold War

1945 - 1991

-US vs. Russian spheres of influence
-nuclear arms race
-globalized from 1949-1968

Korean War (1950-1953)
Cuban Revolution (1959)
Berlin Wall
-nationalism (anti-Russian or US)
-collapse of Eastern European communism in 1989-1991


Old Kingdom

2575 BC - 2134 BC

-beginning of Egyptian civilization


2133 BC - 2040 BC

Intermediate Period
-civil war

Middle Kingdom

2040 BC - 1640 BC

-culturally dynamic


1640 BC - 1532 BC

Intermediate Period
-after outside invasion

New Kingdom

1532 BC - 1070 BC

-conquered territory
-collapsed due to internal disorder & foreign invasion

Bantu Migrations

1500 BC - 1000


30 BC - 390

-Egypt became Roman province
-wealthy, successful


800 - 1200

Great Zimbabwe

1000 - 1400


1250 - 1600


1450 - 1575

European Colonization

1870 - 1914

-comp. b/n Britain, France, Germany, Belgium, Italy, Portugal, and Spain spurred scramble for colonies
-colonies in Algeria, Tunisia, South Africa, Namibia, Angola, Mozambique, and central African areas like Zimbabwe and Zambia
-slave trade (worked w/ existing leaders)

Decolonization of Africa

1945 - 1975

-rush of independence movements
-many occurred in 1960
-majority occurred in this period
-Algeria = very bloody struggle against French
-most other places relatively calm

Violent Ethnic Conflicts

1994 - 2003

-Rwanda in 1994
-Darfur in 2003

Middle East


8000 BC - 500 BC

-became other things throughout its time
-Assyrians, Hittites, etc.


500 BC - 600

-created biggest empire to date (2 mil. sq miles)
-provincial administration
-silk road trade
-rivals of Roman Empire
-caste system
-Jewish diaspora community

Judaism formed

400 BC


1 AD

-founded by Jesus of Nazareth in first century CE

Spread of Islam

600 - 800

Sunni-Shiite Split


Umayyad Caliphate

661 - 750

-military expansion
-started practice of taxing non-Muslims (jizya on dhimmi)

Abbasid Caliphate

750 - 1258

-capital at Baghdad
-golden age of classical Islamic culture
-applied military force when necessary, but mostly provided peace and stability across Islamic empire
-trade w/ China
-unity began to disintegrate (Sunni-Shiite split)
-Persia, Syria, Egypt, & Spain slipped from grip
-final blow from Mongols swag

Ottoman Empire

1299 - 1922

-gunpowder empire
-gained hegemony over Middle East
-sultans ruled w/ elaborate bureaucracy
-Sunni Islam
-Armenian genocide 1915-1918

Safavid Persia

1501 - 1700

-gunpowder empire
-rivalry w/ Ottoman
-Shiite Islam
-fell due to plagues, left vulnerable to Russian invaders

Modern Era

1900 - Present

-decolonized during 1950s
-Arab/Israeli conflict divided region
-authoritarian rule prevalent

Est. of Israel


-led to Arab-Israeli conflict
-Palestinians turned to terrorism

Iran-Iraq War

1980 - 1988


Indus River Valley

2600 BC - 1900 BC

-size of modern day France & highly urbanized
-Mohenjo-Daro and Harappa
-trade w/ Mesopotamia

Mauryan Empire

300 BC - 184 BC

-Ashoka supported Buddhism

created harmony b/n Buddhists, Hindu, & others
-elaborate bureaucracy
-extensive trade network
-collapsed bc attack from outside enemies

Gupta Empire

320 - 550

-consciously imitated Mauryan
-smaller and less centralized, depended on diplomacy
-strengthened caste system
-Hindu, but tolerant
-traded by boat w/ Malaysia, Indonesia, & China
-fell bc outside military power

Delhi Sultanate

1206 - 1526

-controlled by Muslim generals
-introduced Islam to India
-diffusion of Buddhism & Hindu culture
-Chinese merchant diaspora

Mughal Empire

1526 - 1850

-gunpowder empire
-centralized India
-Akbar abolished jizya and encouraged friendly relations b/n Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, and Sikhs
-Aurangzeb (1658-1707) abandoned tolerance and forced Islam on his subjects
-increasing European involvement led to empire becoming another weak colony of English

British Raj

1850 - 1947

-left native practices largely intact
-racial superiority, but not violent
-reduced religious strife b/n Hindu & Muslim
-gained independence in 1947

Indian Independence


-non-violent due mainly to Mohandas Gandhi


1947 - Present

-conflict b/n Hindu and Muslim after British pulled out
-modernization, growing secularism


Technological & Environmental Transformations

8000 BC - 600 BC

-hunting and foraging

Technological & Environmental Transformations

600 BC - 600 AD

Regional & Transregional Interactions

600 - 1450

-Islamic expansion, cultural influence
-Crusades led to European-Islamic cultural transfer
-Mongols facilitate cultural transfer b/n empires
-improved technology
-interregional travel
-rise in agriculture
-slavery and serfdom rising in popularity
-urbanization led to rise in artisan class

Global Interactions

1450 - 1750

-greater political centralization
-increased availability of culture to lower classes
-gunpowder revolution
-global spread of Christianity
-global circulation of trade goods
-triangular trade
-influx of New World silver into economy
-class diversification
-slavery becoming increasingly common

Industrialization & Global Integration

1750 - 1900

-increased prominence of the nation-state
-rising literacy
-westernization (western global hegemony)
-population growth
-cash crops
-anti immigration

Accelerating Global Change & Realignments

1900 - Present

-international organizations
-total wars
-ethnic violence
-Cold War
-decolonization & national liberation
-rise of terrorism
-nuclear warfare
-multiculturalism (manga, Bollywood)
-Western culture (coca-colonization, jeans, etc)
-medical advances
-partial or widespread industrialization of developing world
-importance of multinational companies
-rapid population growth
-social equality vs. hierarchy
-social activism