The Ancient World (to the Common Era)

Ages of Man

Bronze Age (Near East/Mediterranean)

Approx. 3200 B.C.E. - Approx. 1200 B.C.E.

Iron Age

1200 B.C.E. - 73 C.E.


Neolithic Revolution begins

Approx. 11,000 B.C.E.

Earliest Settlement at Jericho

Approx. 10,000 B.C.E.

Çatalhöyük flourishes

Approx. 7,500 B.C.E. - Approx. 5,700 B.C.E.

Beginning of Copper Usage

Approx. 6000 B.C.E.

Settlement at Ubaid

Approx. 5900 B.C.E.

associated with construction of first ziggurats

Invention of Potter's Wheel; Wooden Wheel

Approx. 4500 B.C.E. - Approx. 3300 B.C.E.

Rise of Uruk in Sumer (first Sumerian city-state)

Approx. 4300 B.C.E. - Approx. 2900 B.C.E.

White Temple at Uruk

Approx. 3400 B.C.E.

Sumerian invention of the chariot *

Approx. 3200 B.C.E.

Copper alloyed w/ arsenic to produce bronze

Approx. 3200 B.C.E.

Development of writing (Sumerians)

Approx. 3200 B.C.E.

King Narmer unites Upper and Lower Egypt

Approx. 3100 B.C.E.

Early Dynastic Period in Sumer

Approx. 2900 B.C.E. - Approx. 2500 B.C.E.

dominated by family dynasties, each headed by a war leader

Reign of Gilgamesh

Approx. 2700 B.C.E.

Old Kingdom of Egypt

Approx. 2686 B.C.E. - Approx. 2160 B.C.E.

Imhotep engineers Step Pyramid for King Djoser

Approx. 2650 B.C.E.

Earliest indisputable artistic representation of the wheel

Approx. 2600 B.C.E.

image of Sumerian war chariots

Minoan civilization flourishes

Approx. 2500 B.C.E. - Approx. 1400 B.C.E.

Sargon of Akkad consolidates power in Sumer and Akkad, creating first empire

Approx. 2350 B.C.E.

First Intermediate Period in Egypt

Approx. 2160 B.C.E. - Approx. 2055 B.C.E.

The central authority of the pharaoh at Memphis collapsed, and a more ancient distribution of power emerged: a northern center of influence based at Herakleopolis was opposed by a southern regime headquartered at Thebes, with families from each region claiming to be the legitimate pharaohs of all Egypt.

Great Ziggurat of Ur constructed by Ur-Nammu

Approx. 2100 B.C.E. - Approx. 2000 B.C.E.

Dynasty of Ur takes over Sargon's Empire under Ur-Nammu

Approx. 2100 B.C.E.

Middle Kingdom of Egypt

Approx. 2055 B.C.E. - Approx. 1650 B.C.E.

Established by the Theban king Mentuhotep I, who conquered the North and declared himself ruler of a united Egypt.

Indo-European speaking Hittites arrive in Asia Minor

Approx. 2000 B.C.E.

Horses introduced to Near East/Mediterranean

Approx. 2000 B.C.E. - Approx. 1700 B.C.E.

Mitannians almost bring down Hittite empire with cavalry

Indo-European linguistic forms begin to appear in Near East and Mediterranean

Approx. 2000 B.C.E.

Beni Hasan Wall Paintings

Approx. 1900 B.C.E.

Painted wall panel from Beni Hasan, Egypt, depicting bearded Semites and their animals arriving in Egypt c. 1900 BCE. This picture is too early to have any direct relevance to biblical history, but it allows us to see what the arrival of the Israelites in Egypt about six centuries later might have looked like.

Nubia comes under Egyptian control

Approx. 1850 B.C.E.

Oldest Surviving Tablets of Epic of Gilgamesh

Approx. 1800 B.C.E.

the so-called "Old Babylonian" tablets

Creation of the Hittite Empire

Approx. 1800 B.C.E. - Approx. 1400 B.C.E.

Reign of Hammurabi

Approx. 1792 B.C.E. - Approx. 1750 B.C.E.

Amorite chieftain who takes control of Babylon, establishes Old Babylonian stretching from Persian Gulf into Assyria

Hyksos invasion of Egypt (Second Intermediate Period)

Approx. 1650 B.C.E. - Approx. 1550 B.C.E.

Eruption of Thera (Santorini)

Approx. 1628 B.C.E.
  • this eruption is disastrous for the island of Thera (which was a Minoan outpost) as well as for Crete itself
  • this eruption used to be thought of as the cause of the Minoan downfall -we now know, however, that the Minoans rebounded from this and actually reached the high point of their civilization

Hittites capture Babylon

Approx. 1595 B.C.E.

New Kingdom of Egypt

Approx. 1550 B.C.E. - Approx. 1075 B.C.E.

Hyksos driven out by pharaoh Ahmose, who establishes 18th Dynasty. Under this dynasty, Egyptian civilization reaches the height of her magnificence and power. Although many Egyptian traditions were renewed and strengthened, the dynamism of the New Kingdom - particularly its new focus on imperial expansion -changed the very fabric of Egyptian life. Under Thutmose I (r. 1504 BCE - 1492 BCE), the Egyptians subdued the Nubians to the south, seizing control of their gold mines. They also penetrated beyond their northeastern frontier, driving deep into Palestine and Syria. By the time of his death, Thutmose could claim to rule the land from beyond the Nile's Fourth Cataract to the banks of the Euphrates. Nor was this success fleeting. The Egyptians would sustain a strong military presence in the Near East for the next 400 years.

Mycenaean Civilization flourishes

Approx. 1500 B.C.E. - Approx. 1200 B.C.E.

Reign of female pharaoh Hatshepsut

1479 B.C.E. - 1458 B.C.E.

Mycenaeans subjugate Crete

Approx. 1400 B.C.E.

Time of the Patriarchs (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1400 B.C.E. - Approx. 1300 B.C.E.

The Bible traces Israel's origins to a family headed by Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob over three successive generations.

Nuzi Tablets

Approx. 1399 B.C.E. - Approx. 1300 B.C.E.

-Book of Genesis presents several customs that are paralleled in legal texts from Nuzi in northern Mesopotamia, whose main archive comes from 14th c BCE, once more the century of the patriarchs. E.g. in Gen 15:2-3, childless men adopt younger men to be their sons, and these adopted sons would serve adopted father as long as the latter lived, at which point adopted son would inherit the estate. Gen 16:1-4: marriage contracts from Nuzi include a proviso that in case wife is unable to bear children, she has a responsibility to bring her maidservant to her husband for the purpose of bearing offspring
-Northern Mesopotamia is the very area we are told Abraham came from before entered the Land of Canaan

Epic of Aqhat

Approx. 1399 B.C.E. - Approx. 1300 B.C.E.

-Rendsburg would date the patriarchs to 14th c BCE. One of basic themes in these stories is that of the childless hero and heroine: Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebecah, Jacob and Rachel all undergo same drama of childlessness, followed by a happy ending w/ the birth of desired son; turns out this was a popular literary motif of the time: we possess Canaanite epics of heroes from Ugarit dated to the same century (14th BCE). One of these is the Epic of Aqhat, a story about a childless hero named Danel who after the intercession of god El is able to have a child named Aqhat.

Reign of Akhenaten

1352 B.C.E. - 1336 B.C.E.

Reign of Tutankhamun

1333 B.C.E. - 1324 B.C.E.

Life of Joseph (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1300 B.C.E. - Approx. 1275 B.C.E.

Famine in the land of Canaan causes the Israelites to migrate to the land of Egypt, where one of their group, Joseph, had risen to the position of viceroy over the land.

Letter of Ramesses II

Approx. 1291 B.C.E. - Approx. 1224 B.C.E.

letter from reign of Ramesses II, the great builder of Egypt, referring to foreigners building the great pylon in the city of Rameses, which Exodus 1:11 mentions as one of the two cities where the Israelites worked on construction projects

Battle of Kadesh

1275 B.C.E.

Israelite Slavery in Egypt (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1275 B.C.E. - Approx. 1175 B.C.E.

A new pharaoh, identified by most scholars as Rameses II (1291- 1224 B.C.E.), enslaves the Israelites in Egypt.

Wall Paintings of Temple of Karnak

Approx. 1220 B.C.E.

we also have pictures of these Israelites: on the walls of the Temple of Karnak in Luxor, Egypt, Merneptah’s artists depicted these events: three panels show cities in Canaan under attack, and in one of them the city named Ashkelon can be read clearly; fourth panel shows semi-nomadic people overpowered by the pharaohs horses; if interpretation is correct, this is earliest picture of the Israelites that we possess

Anastasi 6

Approx. 1220 B.C.E.

Papyrus Anastasi Six, also from the reign of Merneptah, refers to nomads from the territory of Edom arriving in Egypt w/ request to grave their animals. When when recognizes how close Edom and Israel are linked in the Bible, one sees this text a striking parallel to the movements of the Israelites to Egypt w/ their animals

Merneptah Stele

Approx. 1220 B.C.E.

-people of Israel as a collective unit mentioned in the Merneptah Stele, c. 1220 BCE, inscription of Pharaoh Merneptah (c. 1224-1214 B.C.E.)

-main topic of this text is Egypt’s defeat of Libya, but at end of the text he summarizes his other victories; here he mentions that he campaigned successfully in the land of Canaan – mentions four specific cities and the people of Israel; the hieroglyphic writing system includes special signs called “determinatives” that allows us to determine whether an entity named is a place or a people; the first three are indicated by the foreign land determinative, but when Israel is mentioned the people determinative is used. instructs us that in late 13th c BCE, Israel was a people w/ out a land, a national entity that could not be identified w/ a particular location. According to most scholars, this refers to the period of Israel’s wandering through the Sinai desert, and thus Exodus should be dated a bit earlier. According to another opinion (to which Rendsburg subscribes), it refers to the Israelites enslaved in the land of Egypt, and thus Exodus is to be dated a bit later

Invasions of the Sea Peoples begin

Approx. 1200 B.C.E.

Anastasi 5

Approx. 1200 B.C.E.

Anastasi Five, comes from reign of Seti II, at very end of 13th BCE; refers to two slaves who escaped from Egypt and how frontier officials protecting the border with the Sinai desert were responsible for tracking them down. Two places mentioned are Sukkot and Migdol, two places which Exodus tells us the Israelites passed when they left Egypt; this suggests that route used by Israelites was a type of “underground railway” for slaves fleeing Egypt.

Phoenicians (Canaanites) gain independence from Egypt in Levant

Approx. 1200 B.C.E.

Trojan War (traditional Greek date)

1193 B.C.E. - 1184 B.C.E.

many of the layers of Schliemann’s Troy show signs of natural destruction, but one layer in particular, assigned the name Troy 7A, shows clear signs of violent destruction, dated to around 1200 BC
- hence, it has been equated by scholars with the Troy of the Trojan War

Stele of Ramses III citing victory over Sea Peoples

1176 B.C.E.

Stele of Ramses III referring to a victory over the Sea Peoples: some of these were familiar to the Egyptians, and it seems that many were from the Aegean. Most notable were the Philistines who, after their defeat, withdrew to populate the coast of the region named after them: Palestine

Israelite Exodus (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1175 B.C.E.

The Israelites leave Egypt during the reign of Rameses III (1182-1150 B.C.E.), while Egypt is under attack by the Sea Peoples, a coalition of nations from across the Mediterranean.

Israelite Wandering Through Sinai Desert (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1175 B.C.E. - Approx. 1150 B.C.E.

The Israelites wander through the Sinai desert en route from Egypt to Canaan.

Lifetime of Joshua (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1150 B.C.E. - Approx. 1140 B.C.E.

The Israelites enter the land of Canaan under the leadership of Joshua, conquering some cities, but mostly settling peacefully in open terrain in the central hill country of Canaan/Israel.

Period of the Judges (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1140 B.C.E. - Approx. 1020 B.C.E.

The Israelite tribes settle throughout the land of Canaan, loosely confederated with a common religion, the worship of the one god Yahweh, led by a group of military leaders called judges (actually a misnomer since their main function was not adjudicating legal cases).

Philistine dominance in Palestine

Approx. 1100 B.C.E. - Approx. 1000 B.C.E.

Material culture, behavior, and organization exhibit close affinities w/ Mycenaean Greece. Their power based around five strongholds: Gaza, Ashkelon, Ashdod, Ekron, and Gath; these citadels strikingly similar to fortified palaces of Mycenaeans.

Phoenicians refine Ugaritic phonetic alphabet into 22 character system

Approx. 1100 B.C.E.

Greek trading partners will soon adopt phonetic script from Phoenicians

Reign of King Saul (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1020 B.C.E. - Approx. 1000 B.C.E.

Faced with the continuing threat of the Philistines, one of the Sea Peoples which had migrated to the coast of Canaan after being repelled by the Egyptians, the Israelites create a more unified system of government, a monarchy, with Saul as the first king.

Reign of King David (Rendsburg)

Approx. 1000 B.C.E. - Approx. 965 B.C.E.

After the death of Saul on the battlefield at the hands of the Philistines, the Israelites reorganize under a new king, David. This gifted leader takes Israel to the height of its power: he quashes the Philistine threat, conquers Jerusalem and establishes it as Israel's capital, and expands the boundaries of the realm by creating an international empire.

Eliat Mazar's Palace Discovery (2005)

Approx. 1000 B.C.E. - Approx. 965 B.C.E.

In 2005, Eilat Mazar discovered a monumental public building in Jerusalem, dated to 10th c BCE, most likely to be identified as the palace of King David.

Rendsburg's Dating of the Pentateuch

Approx. 1000 B.C.E. - Approx. 900 B.C.E.

-Rendsburg’s View: Torah is a text of the 10th century B.C.E. David and Solomon had created a new political entity – a united kingdom comprising all 12 tribes – and such an extraordinary development would have required a unifying national epic, and he believes that the Torah fills that role. Numerous passages in the Torah reveal that it was written at the time of David and Solomon, much of it attempting to justify the new political reality of kingship, with the royal family coming from the tribe of Judah. Key passages for example: Gen 17:6, Gen 49:10

Hebrew Kingdom consolidated

Approx. 1000 B.C.E. - Approx. 973 B.C.E.

Life of Zoroaster (spectrum of possibility)

Approx. 1000 B.C.E. - Approx. 600 B.C.E.

Dating is uncertain as there is no scholarship consensus, as on linguistic and socio-cultural evidence, he is dated around 1000 BCE and earlier, but others put him in the 7th and 6th century BCE as a contemporary or near-contemporary of Cyrus the Greatand Darius I. Zoroastrianism was already an old religion when first recorded, and it was the official religion of Ancient Persia and its distant subdivisions from the 6th century BCE to the 7th century CE. He is credited with the authorship of the Yasna Haptanghaiti as well as the Gathas, hymns which are at the liturgical core of Zoroastrian thinking. Most of his life is known from the Zoroastrian texts.

Reign of King Solomon (Rendsburg)

Approx. 965 B.C.E. - Approx. 928 B.C.E.

David is succeeded by his son Solomon, who continues to rule over the international empire. Solomon builds the Temple in Jerusalem as the sole center where sacrifices to Yahweh may be offered.

Kingdom of Israel (Rendsburg)

Approx. 928 B.C.E. - 721 B.C.E.

Kingdom of Israel was ruled by a succession of dynasties, with its capital at Samaria and with its temple sites at Dan and Bethel. Destroyed by Assyria in 721 B.C.E.; many Israelians then were deported to Mesopotamia.

Split of the Unified Kingdom of Israel

Approx. 928 B.C.E.

Upon the death of Solomon, the United Kingdom of Israel splits into two smaller kingdoms. The nine northern tribes reject the Davidic- Solomonic line, establish their own royal system, and retain the name Israel for their country. The three southern tribes continue to be ruled by the Davidic-Solomonic dynasty, and henceforth are known as the kingdom of Judah, after the largest of the three tribes.

Kingdom of Judah (Rendsburg)

Approx. 928 B.C.E. - 586 B.C.E.

Kingdom of Judah ruled by the descendents of David and Solomon until its end, a succession of 18 generations. Both the capital and the Temple remain in Jerusalem throughout this period. Destroyed by Babylonia in 586 B.C.E.; Jerusalem and the Temple likewise destroyed. This act brings an end to an independent nation of Israel/Judah for centuries to come; many Judeans exiled to Mesopotamia.

Israel and Judah divided

924 B.C.E.

Neo-Assyrian Empire founded by Assurnasirpal II

Approx. 883 B.C.E. - Approx. 859 B.C.E.

Kuntillet Ajrud vessel

Approx. 880 B.C.E.

Earliest mention of an Israelite king in external source

853 B.C.E.

-earliest Israelite king mention in the Bible and in a contemporary external source is King Ahab of Israel (873-852 B.C.E.), mentioned in an Assyrian inscription of King Shalmaneser III (959-824 B.C.E.), dated to 853 B.C.E.
-listed as one of a dozen allies who formed a coalition to stop the advance of the mighty Assyrians

Tel Dan Stele

842 B.C.E.

-most recent find relevant to the period of the Divided Kingdom: 1993/4, Aramaic inscription from Tel Dan mentioning Jehoram as “the king of Israel” and Ahaziah as “the king of the house of David,” that is, Judah. This was the first time that King David was mentioned in another historical source. The unnamed Aramean king who wrote this inscription appears to be claiming that he is responsible for the death and/or deposing of these two kings. Since Ahaziah ruled only one year (see 2 Kings 8:26), we can date this inscription to the year 842 BCE or very soon thereafter.

"Black Obelisk" from Assyria

841 B.C.E.

portrays King Jehu of Israel bowing before Shalmaneser III; inscription informs us Israel is paying tribute, and year is 841 B.C.E.

Mesha Stela

840 B.C.E.

-actually, Ahab’s father, King Omri of Israel, is also mentioned in extrabiblical sources: most important of these is the Mesha Stela, an inscribed slab of strone, from the reign of king Mesha of Moab (c 840 BCE), mentioning King Omri of Israel (883-871 BCE) in its historical prologue. King Mesha in turn is mentioned in 1 Kings 3.

Rise of the Polis

800 B.C.E. - 400 B.C.E.

Founding of Carthage

Approx. 800 B.C.E.

First recorded Olympic Games

776 B.C.E.

Traditional Founding Date of Rome

753 B.C.E.

Homeric epics transcribed

Approx. 750 B.C.E.

Hoplite tactics become standard (traditional)

Approx. 725 B.C.E. - Approx. 650 B.C.E.

Kingdom of Israel falls to Neo-Assyrians

721 B.C.E.

Spartans subjugate Messenia

Approx. 720 B.C.E.

Reign of King Sennacherib

704 B.C.E. - 681 B.C.E.

rebuilt the ancient Assyrian city of Ninevah, fortifying it with a double wall for a circuit of nine miles. Constructed an enormous palace there and ordered the construction of a massive irrigation system, including an aqueduct that carried fresh water to the city from thirty miles away.
669-627 – Reign of Assurbanipal: perhaps the greatest of all Assyrian kings. For a time, he ruled the entire delta region of northern Egypt. He also enacted a series of international reforms, seeking ways to govern his empire more peacefully. Ordered the construction of a magnificent library at Ninevah, where all the cultural monuments of Mesopotamian literature were to be copied and preserved. This library also served as an archive for the correspondence and official acts of the king. Fortunately, this trove of documentation has survived , and our knowledge of history – not to mention all modern editions of the Epic of Gilgamesh, derive from the library at Ninevah

Annals of King Sennacherib

Approx. 701 B.C.E.

Assyrian royal scribes describe the invasion of Judah

Hezekiah's Tunnel

701 B.C.E.

-bible refers to one of the great engineering feats of ancient Israel: Hezekiah’s Tunnel, constructed in anticipation of the Assyrian siege of Jerusalem in 701 BCE, referred to in 2 Kings 20:20, to bring water from spring outside the city walls to within city walls, protecting city under siege; Archaeologists in the 19th c found this tunnel, including an inscription carved on its wall describing how the tunnel was constructed

Wall panels in the palace of King Sannacherib of Assyria

701 B.C.E.

After conquering Kingdom of Israel, Assyria next sets her eye on Judah and tries to invade; Bible mentions this invasion, ransacks dozens of towns and villages throughout the kingdom. Wall panels in the palace of King Sannacherib of Assyria (704-681 B.C.E) at Ninevah, depicting the siege of Lachish, dated to 701 B.C.E.

Helot Revolt Prompts Militarization of Sparta

Approx. 650 B.C.E.

Draco's Law Code

Approx. 621 B.C.E.

Life of Sappho

Approx. 620 B.C.E. - Approx. 550 B.C.E.

Fall of the Neo-Assyrian Empire

Approx. 612 B.C.E. - Approx. 605 B.C.E.

Hanging Gardens of Babylon built (Josephus)

Approx. 605 B.C.E. - Approx. 562 B.C.E.

The Babylonian priest Berossus, writing in about 290 BC and quoted later by Josephus, attributed the gardens to the Neo-Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II, who ruled between 605 and 562 BC.

Chaldeans destroy Assyrian Empire and found Neo-Babylonian Empire

605 B.C.E.

An alliance had been formed between the Indo-European Medes of Iran and the Chaldeans, a Semitic people who controlled the southern half of Babylonia. By 605 BCE, the Chaldeans occupied Babylon itself and had become the predominant imperial power in Mesopotamia.

Emergence of Milesian School (pre-Socratic philosophy)

Approx. 600 B.C.E. - Approx. 500 B.C.E.

Solon's reforms in Athens

594 B.C.E.

Babylonian Captivity (Rendsburg)

586 B.C.E. - 538 B.C.E.

During this 48-year period, the land of Judah mainly lay in waste; most of the biblical texts from the period stem from Babylonia. King Nebuchadnezzer II’s Annals mention the capture of Jerusalem; arrowheads found in rubble created by the Babylonian destruction.

Kingdom of Judah destroyed by Neo-Babylonians under King Nebuchadnezzar II

586 B.C.E.

Construction of the Ishtar Gate

Approx. 575 B.C.E.

built by King Nebuchadnezzar II

Reign of Cyrus I the Great

559 B.C.E. - 530 B.C.E.

founder of Achaemenid Persian Empire

Cyrus I consolidates tries of Persia and overthrows ruling MEdes

549 B.C.E.

Cyrus I defeats Lydian Empire under King Croesus

546 B.C.E.

(also gains control of Greek cities of Ionia)

Peisistratus becomes tyrant of Athens

546 B.C.E.

Cyrus I takes Babylon and conquers Neo-Babylonian Empire

539 B.C.E.

Persian Rule (Jews)

538 B.C.E. - 333 B.C.E.

In 538 B.C.E., the Persians, led by their king Cyrus the Great (557- 529 B.C.E.), conquered Babylonia and created the largest empire known to that time. Cyrus permitted the Jews to return to Jerusalem and to rebuild the Temple there (known as the Second Temple); the Jews lived relatively peacefully under Persian rule for two centuries, though their dream of regaining independence under a Davidic dynast had ended.

King Cambyses conquers Egypt for Persians

525 B.C.E.

Life of Aeschylus

Approx. 525 B.C.E. - Approx. 456 B.C.E.

Reign of King Darius I

521 B.C.E. - 486 B.C.E.

Life of Cincinnatus (traditional)

Approx. 519 B.C.E. - Approx. 430 B.C.E.

Overthrow of Peisistratid Tyrants

510 B.C.E.

Rape of Lucretia (traditional)

510 B.C.E.

Roman Republic established

Approx. 509 B.C.E.

Cleisthenes voted archon in Athens

508 B.C.E.

Ionian Revolt

499 B.C.E. - 494 B.C.E.

Life of Sophocles

496 B.C.E. - 406 B.C.E.

Battle of Marathon

490 B.C.E.

Life of Euripedes

485 B.C.E. - 406 B.C.E.

Life of Herodotus

Approx. 484 B.C.E. - Approx. 425 B.C.E.

Battles of Thermopylae and Salamis

480 B.C.E.

Battle of Plataea

479 B.C.E.

Formation of the Delian League

478 B.C.E.

Life of Socrates

469 B.C.E. - 399 B.C.E.

Pericles elected strategos

462 B.C.E.

Life of Thucydides

Approx. 460 B.C.E. - Approx. 395 B.C.E.

Law of the Twelve Tables

Approx. 450 B.C.E.

Parthenon of Athens constructed

447 B.C.E. - 438 B.C.E.

Life of Aristophanes

Approx. 446 B.C.E. - Approx. 386 B.C.E.

Peloponnesian War

431 B.C.E. - 404 B.C.E.

Life of Xenophon

Approx. 430 B.C.E. - Approx. 354 B.C.E.

Life of Plato

Approx. 428 B.C.E. - Approx. 348 B.C.E.

Life of Epaminondas

Approx. 410 B.C.E. - Approx. 362 B.C.E.

Xenophon and the Ten Thousand begin their Persian expedition

401 B.C.E.

Struggle for Greek hegemony (Thebes, Athens, Sparta)

395 B.C.E. - 338 B.C.E.

Life of Aristotle

Approx. 384 B.C.E. - Approx. 322 B.C.E.

Life of Demosthenes

Approx. 384 B.C.E. - Approx. 322 B.C.E.

Battle of Leuctra

371 B.C.E.

Epaminondas of Thebes defeats the Spartans at Leuctra, ushering in the Theban hegemony

Reign of Philip II of Macedon

359 B.C.E. - 336 B.C.E.

Battle of Chaeronea

338 B.C.E.

Philip II defeats Thebes and Athens at Chaeronea, giving him mastery over the Greek world.

Reign of Alexander

336 B.CE. - 323 B.C.E.

Battle of Granicus River

334 B.C.E.

Hellenistic Rule (Jews)

333 B.C.E. - 164 B.C.E.

In 333 B.C.E., the Greeks, led by their king Alexander the Great (336- 323 B.C.E.), conquered the Persians and inherited their extensive empire; upon Alexander's death in 323 B.C.E., his empire was carved up by four of his generals. For several decades the land of Israel was fought over by two of his successors, until finally the Ptolemies headquartered in Alexandria, Egypt, established firm rule over the land (301-198 B.C.E.). Later, the land of Israel came under the control of the Seleucids headquartered in Antioch, Syria (198-164 B.C.E).

Battle of Issus

333 B.C.E.

Battle of Tyre

332 B.C.E.

Battle of Gaugamela

331 B.C.E.

Battle of Hydaspes River

326 B.C.E.

Formation of the Hellenistic Kingdoms

Approx. 323 B.C.E. - Approx. 275 B.C.E.

Hellenistic Scientific Revolution

Approx. 300 B.C.E. - Approx. 200 B.C.E.

Formation of Aetolian and Achaean Leagues

Approx. 300 B.C.E.

Rise of Stoicism and Epicureanism

Approx. 300 B.C.E. - Approx. 270 B.C.E.

Struggle of the Orders ends

Approx. 287 B.C.E.

Punic Wars

264 B.C.E. - 146 B.C.E.

Life of Hannibal

247 B.C.E. - 183 B.C.E.

Life of Scipio Africanus

Approx. 236 B.C.E. - Approx. 183 B.C.E.

Life of Cato the Elder

234 B.C.E. - 149 B.C.E.

Battle of Cannae

216 B.C.E.

Lifetime of Polybius

203 B.C.E. - 120 B.C.E.

Battle of Zama

201 B.C.E.

Battle of Cynoscephalae

197 B.C.E.

Battle of Magnesia

190 B.C.E.

Life of Scipio Aemilianus

185 B.C.E. - 129 B.C.E.

Rule of the Maccabees/Hasmoneans (Jews)

164 B.C.E. - 63 B.C.E.

When the Seleucid king Antiochus IV (175-163 B.C.E.) imposed anti- Jewish legislation, including the profanation of the Temple in Jerusalem, the Jews revolted. Led by the Maccabees (also called the Hasmoneans), they defeated the ruling Seleucids and established an independent Jewish state for the first time since 586 B.C.E.

Life of Posidonius

Approx. 135 B.C.E. - 51 B.C.E.

Slave revolts in Sicily

134 B.C.E. - 104 B.C.E.

Reforms of the Gracchi

133 B.C.E. - 122 B.C.E.

Life of Crassus

115 B.C.E. - 53 B.C.E.

Jugurthine War

112 B.C.E. - 105 B.C.E.

Consulship of Marius

107 B.C.E. - 86 B.C.E.

Life of Pompey

106 B.C.E. - 48 B.C.E.

Life of Cicero

106 B.C.E. - 43 B.C.E.

Life of Caesar

100 B.C.E. - 44 B.C.E.

Social War

91 B.C.E. - 88 B.C.E.

Life of Catullus

Approx. 84 B.C.E. - Approx. 54 B.C.E.

Life of Antony

83 B.C.E. - 30 B.C.E.

Dictatorship of Sulla

82 B.C.E. - 79 B.C.E.

Rebellion of Spartacus

73 B.C.E. - 71 B.C.E.

Life of Virgil

70 B.C.E. - 19 B.C.E.

Life of Cleopatra

69 B.C.E. - 30 B.C.E.

Life of Horace

65 B.C.E. - 8 B.C.E.

Roman Rule (Jews)

63 B.C.E. - 73 C.E.

The land of Israel became part of the Roman empire in 63 B.C.E.; for a time the Romans permitted the Jews to be ruled by members of the Maccabean dynasty, the most famous of whom was Herod (37-4 B.C.E.). Herod's most famous accomplishment was the great expansion of the Second Temple. Jesus lived during the 1st century C.E. The Jews revolted against Roman rule in 66 C.E., but this war ended in disaster; Jerusalem and the Temple were destroyed in 70 C.E., and the rebels were defeated at their last stand at Masada in 73 C.E. The territory encompassing Israel was taken briefly by the Sassanid Persians in 611 C.E., conquered back by the emperor Heraclius, and then by the Arabs in 637 C.E.

Life of Octavian

63 B.C.E. - 14 C.E.

Caesar crosses the Rubicon

49 B.C.E.

Battle of Pharsalus

48 B.C.E.

Dictatorship of Caesar

48 B.C.E. - 44 B.C.E.

Life of Ovid

43 B.C.E. - 17 C.E.

Battle of Philippi

42 B.C.E.

Reign of King Herod

37 B.C.E. - 4 B.C.E.

Battle of Actium

31 B.C.E.

Principate of Augustus founded

27 B.C.E.

Israelite History

Jewish Revolt

66 C.E. - 73 C.E.

Destruction of the Second Temple

70 C.E.

Last Stand at Masada

73 C.E.