AP World History Timeline



9000 BCE

First humans- part of the Paleolithic Period, which began 2.5 million years ago

Land bridge called Beringia existed

9000 BC

A bridge between Asia and the Americas, now submerged under the Bering Strait, that people wandered across.

Agricultural Revolution

8,000 B.C.

Also known as the Neolithic Revolution - changed how people lived based on the development of agriculture


8000 BCE

People who domesticated animals and moved from place to place with the animals on a regular basis

Catal-Hyuk -

7500 BCE

ancient city founded in what is present day Turkey

Bronze Age

3300 BCE - 2300 BCE

People learned to melt tin and copper together to make bronze for weapons and tools


3100 BCE

Menes united the two kingdoms - Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt

Epic of Gilgamesh

2750 BCE - 2500 BCE

story about the adventures of a Sumerian king named Gilgamesh who ruled the city state of Uruk between 2750 and 2500 BCE

Old Kingdom

2660 BCE - 2160 BCE

Egypt developed a strong central government ruled by a king or queen. Large pyramids were built during this time period.

Harappa Mohenjo-Daro

2500 B.C.E - 2000 BCE

Two sophisticated urban centers in the Indus River Valley


2334 BCE - 2279 BCE

Ruler of Mesopotamia during this time period

Xia Dynasty

2100 BCE - 1750 BCE

A ruler named Qi ruled the Xia Dynasty. LIttle is known about this dynasty due to not having a writing system.

Middle Kingdom

2040 BCE - 1786 BCE

Mentuhotep II took power and moved the capital to Thebes


2000 BCE - 1800 BCE

Founder of Canaan - He left Mesopotamia to settle there.


1790 BCE - 1750 BCE

Babylonian's most powerful king that ruled until 1750 B.C.E. He is famous for creating a set of laws - Code of Hammurabi

Shang Dynasty

1750 BCE - 1045 BCE

Tang overthrew the Xia king and took power. This marked the beginning of the Shang Dynasty for the next 600 years

New Kingdom

1570 BCE - 1070 BCE

Pharaohs used powerful armies to expand southward into Nubia and north into Mesopotamia.

Oracle bones

1500 BCE

Used in ancient China for religious purposes such as fortune telling. Used during the Shang Dynasty

Solidification of Caste system

1500 BCE

System of social hierarchy in India to keep people on the path to obtaining moksha and started with the highest caste, known as the Brahmins, which were priests, then came the warriors, the merchants, and finally the lowest class with the peasants.


1500 BCE - 400 BCE

A MesoAmerica group - played a major role in future Aztec and Mayan beliefs. They were known for their giant basalt heads and built an arena for religious sports to use. They built pyramids, developed a calendar, and had the first writing system in America with glyphs.


1500 BC - 900 CE

Mayans developed small civilizations that stretched over the southern part of Mexico in what is now Belize, Honduras, and Guatemala. Chief crops were corn, beans, and squash. Temples were on top of pyramids and the main form of government was a city state

The Vedas

1500 BCE - 1200 BCE

The origin of the Vedas can be traced back as far as 1500 BCE, when a large group of nomads called the Aryans, coming from central Asia, crossed the Hindu Kush Mountains, migrating into the Indian subcontinent.

Zhou Dynasty

1045 BCE - 145 BCE

King Wu defeated the ruler of the Shang Dynasty and established the Zhou Dynasty. This dynasty ruled for about 900 years, making it the longest dynasty in Chinese history


1000 BCE - 200 BCE

Human settlement In MesoAmerica near Andes Mountains in present day Peru. Religion united these people but their political structure was weak. They developed techniques in soldering pieces together by melting metal.


800 BCE - 400 BCE

A collection of religious thoughts or beliefs that later became known as HInduism. Several new religious concepts were highlighted: Brahma, dharma, karma, and moksha


600 BCE - 500 BCE

Called the Old Master - Founder of Daoism where followers seek happiness and wisdom by way of the path, or "dao"

Siddhartha Gautama

563 BCE - 483 BCE

also known as the Buddha (“the awakened one”) was the leader and founder of a sect of wanderer ascetics (Sramanas), one of many sects which existed at that time all over India. This sect came to be known as Sangha, to distinguish it from other similar communities. The teachings of Siddhartha Gautama are considered the core of Buddhism


559 BC - 530 BC

Ruled the Persians and conquered land from the Aegean Sea to the borders of India

Achaemenid Empire

558 BCE - 330 BCE

Called the First Persian Empire, led by Cambyses, which was the son of Cyrus the Great. This empire united 3 civilizations, Mesopotamia, Egypt, and India, making it the largest empire. It covered territory that was almost the size of the United States with more than 70 distinct ethnic groups


551 BCE - 479 BCE

Created a philosophy based on respecting your elders called Confucianism. He was a philosopher


551 BCE - 479 BCE

Led by Confucius- His beliefs consisted of respecting hierarchies and traditions, focusing on behavior in everyday life, and the Golden Rule. "Do unto others as you would have them to unto you" Because of Confucianism, the family became the most important unit in China with the father being head of household and women were still subservient to men and boys.


530 BCE

Siddhartha Gautama set out on a mission to discover why the human race suffered. He would meditate for days and came to realizations that he called "enlightenment". He became known as the "Buddha"

This spread in India due to contacts with China but China missionaries visited Buddhist sites, thus paving the way for Buddhism to spread in China


521 BCE - 486 BCE

KIng of Persia who created a new position called a "satrap" to be his eyes and ears

Roman Republic

509 BCE - 27 BCE

After overthrowing the tyrant, Tarquin the Proud, the patricians decided to form a republic instead of a monarchy. The wealthiest and most prestigious Romans made up the Senate. Plebians became full citizens and magistrates were elected, consuls were elected to be commanders of the army. The "Laws of Twelve Tables" was used to govern the republic.


500 BCE

During the Zhou Dynasty in China - followers seek happiness and wisdom by way of the path or dao. The founder is Laozi, also called the Old Master. The Yin and Yang is a key symbol of Daoist philosophy, keeping two sides in balance.

Era of Warring States

475 BCE - 221 BCE

Era of division in Ancient China


470 BCE - 399 BCE

a Greek philosopher who developed the Socratic Method as a way of asking questions to clarify another person's ideas.


461 BCE - 429 BCE

Ruler of Athens during the Golden Age. The Parthenon was rebuilt during his reign. Credited with reforms to government such as transfer of power to an assembly


428 BCE - 348 BCE

A student of Socrates who opened a school known as "The Academy". Wrote "The Republic" about an ideal society ruled by a government that rests upon the concept of justice and ethical values


400 BCE - 225 BCE

The 3rd philosophical tradition of China's classical period. Legalism was concerned about how people behaved and felt that society needed strict laws and punishments to control people. Han Hei Zu and Li Si were the two leading philosophers. This faded and did not have a long term impact like Confucianism and Daoism.


384 BCE - 322 BCE

One of Plato's students that became a famous Athenian philosopher. He emphasized gaining knowledge through a concept known as Empiricism


372 BCE - 289 BCE

Chinese philosopher who was the most famous in Confucianism after Confucious

Alexander The Great

356 BCE - 323 BCE

He was a Macedonian who was taught by Aristotle. His father, Philip II, was ruler of Macedonia and passed it on to him.

Popul Vuh

300 BCE

Mayan story of creation


268 BCE - 232 BCE

Mauryan ruler who was a ferocious warrior and became a strong advocate for Buddhism, building monasteries and sending missionaries to neighboring kingdoms

Qin Shihuangdi

221 BCE - 210 BCE

Qin Shi Huang was the founder of the Qin dynasty and was the first emperor of a unified China. He was born Ying Zheng or Zhao Zheng, a prince of the state of Qin. Believed in immortality and enforced legalism

Qin Dynasty

221 BCE - 207 BCE

Began when Qin Shihuangdi raised his own army and defeated what remained of the Zhou leaders. He conquered nearby regional authorities, taking control of all of China and established his own dynasty. It was brief, lasting only until 207 BCE.
He gave peasants the right to own land, standardized the Chinese script, standardized coinage as well as weights and measures, and ordered the building of canals and roads to improve trade.


200 BCE - 700 CE

of or relating to a culture period in the valleys of the northern Peruvian coast a.d. 600–700 characterized by fine red and white modeled pottery for grave offerings and ceremonial use predominantly in the form of a container with a stirrup spout

Julius Caesar

100 BCE - 44 BCE

A general who became a dictator of Rome. He revised the calendar, increased the size of the Senate, extended citizenship

Augustus Caesar

63 BCE - 14 AD

First ruler of the Roman Empire. Created a time of peace known as the Pax Romana. Built roads and increased trade

Pax Romana

27 BCE - 180 AD

Roman Empire's time of peace led by Augustus Caesar for 200 years

Roman Empire

27 BCE - 476 CE

With the help of the Senate, Octavian began to mold Rome by strengthening family values, keeping peace, and promoting prosperity. He was later named "Augustus Caesar" and led Rome during a time known as the "Pax Romana"
Road systems were created, women were given more rights, philosophy and literature grew. However, Romans were required to practice the state religion but additional religions were accepted.

Jesus of Nazareth

4 BCE - 30 CE

He was regarded as a troublemaker by Roman officials but his followers spread his word throughout the Roman empire.


33 CE

This religion emerged as a distinct form of Judaism and developed into its own religion. It was popular among the urban poor, slaves, and women throughout the Roman empire. People were looking for answers about the harshness of life and the hope of an afterlife. Peter was one of the main people to spread the ideas of Jesus and Christianity.

Ban Zhao

45 CE - 120 CE

was the first woman historian of China. She is known for her contributions to a masterpiece of Chinese historical writing,


98 CE - 117 CE

Marcus Ulpius Traianus, was Roman Emperor from 98 to 117 CE. Known as a benevolent ruler, his reign was noted for public projects which benefited the populace such as improving the dilapidated road system, constructing aqueducts, building public baths and extending the port of Ostia. Trajan was also a highly successful general and won three major conflicts against the Dacians and in the East.

Yellow Turban Rebellion

184 CE

An uprising by the peasants during the Han Dynasty in China. The peasants wore scarves and millions were killed in one of the bloodiest conflicts in the world before the 1900s. The uprising was brought on by Han emperors failing to address land distribution problems and famines


284 CE - 305 CE

He divided the Roman Empire into two parts with Rome being the capital of the west and Byzantium being the capital of the east

"Split" of Roman Empire

284 CE

divided into two parts under Diocletian. Rome and Byzantium were the two capitals. The Eastern part flourished while the western part declined.


307 AD - 337 AD

First Roman ruler to accept Christianity and helped spread the religion through Rome. He moved the seat of the government to Constantinople.

Chandra Gupta

320 A.D.

King of India and founder of the Gupta Empire

Gupta Dynasty

320 CE - 550 CE

The second and last major Indian dynasty of the Classical Era and was a Golden Age for India. The Guptas divided their empire into provinces with the capital city being Pataliputra. They helped improve health care by building hospitals and performing medical surgeries. They performed the first inoculations. In mathematics, they developed the Arabic numerals, which is the numbers 0 through 9 that we use today. Religious freedom was given with Hinduism being the main religion. However, Buddhism started spreading due to contacts in with China. The Guptas took a hands-off approach to governing and disunity grew among the regions of the empire. So nomads from the Northwest, the White Huns, brought the downfall of the Gupta Dynasty

"Fall of Rome"

410 CE

Population declined due to devastating epidemics such as smallpox and measles, so trade declined and less taxes were paid to support the empire. There were environmental problems such as deforestation, and the overuse of land which caused soil erosion. Food became an issue and eventually Non-Romans challenged the empire.

Germanic Invasions

410 CE - 596 CE

Germanic Visigoths moved into the empire and adopted an agricultural lifestyle. This caused turmoil and eventually the Roman emperor was replaced by a Germanic ruler, Odovacer.


433 AD - 453 AD

He led the Huns, a group of non-Romans, into Gaul. This caused great turmoil for the Roman soldiers and the empire.

Settlement of Islands throughout Oceania

1000 CE

By 1000 CE, seafarers had colonized the islands of Melanesia, Micronesia, and Polynesia. In the process, they established a unique, ocean-oriented culture that persists today.