Reign of Charlemagne

768 - 814

Through a series of military conquests, Charlemagne established the Carolingian Empire, which encompassed all of Gaul and parts of Germany and Italy. Though illiterate himself, he sponsored a brief intellectual revival.

Kingdom of Ghana

830 - 1235

The Empire grew rich from the trans-Saharan trade in gold and salt. The domestication of the camel brought about a gradual change in trade, and the extensive gold, ivory trade, and salt resources of the region could be sent north and east to North Africa, the Middle East and Europe in exchange for manufactured goods.

Norman Invasion of England


Invasion led by Duke William II of Normandy. There was little change in the form of government

First Crusade

1096 - 1099

The first of several military expeditions led by the Roman Catholic Church to take back the Holy Land. Contributing factors were power hungry elites looking for new lands, Church leaders who wanted to soften the warlike tone of society and Italian merchants who wanted to increase trade in the Eastern Mediterranean and acquire trading posts in Muslim territory. The first crusade ended with the recapture of Jerusalem.

Fourth Crusade

1202 - 1204

The crusaders sacked Constantinople, one of the final acts of the Great Schism, and a turning point in the decline of the Empire in the Near West.

Fall of Constantinople


In the fourth crusade, Venetians sacked the city to help pay the cost of transporting the army by ship.

Kingdom of Great Zimbabwe

1220 - 1450

Trade city in Africa famous for its stone masonry. They controlled the ivory and gold trade in Africa

Mali Empire

1230 - 1600

Muslim nation made famous for its trans-Saharan gold trade.

Hundred Year's War

1337 - 1453

Conflicts between the kingdoms of England of France for control of the French throne. The war led to French and English nationalism, as well as new weapons and tactics.

First Bubonic Plague Pandemic

1347 - 1352

One-third to one-half the population of Europe was wiped out. In its aftermath, the plague resulted in religious, social, and economic changes and had long lasting effects on European history.

Schism Between Eastern and Western Christian Church

1378 - 1417

Division in the Latin Christian Church into the Eastern Orthodox Church in the east and the Catholic Church in the west when rival claimants to the papacy existed in Rome and Avignon. The long crisis broke the pope's ability to challenge the rising power of the larger monarchies.

Inca Empire

1438 - 1533

The largest Pre-Colombian empire in the Americas. Spanish Conquistadors led by Francisco Pizzarro conquered much of the Inca territory.

Fall of Constantinople to Ottoman Turks


After the Ottoman Turks took over, Europe lost its overland trade routes to Asia which led to the maritime revolution.



570 - 632

The founder of Islam whose revelations created the Quran and his own words formed the Muslim law code, the hadith.

Sui Dynasty

589 - 618

Reunified China after centuries of small principalities and paved the way for the Tang dynasty.

Tang Dynasty

618 - 907

Took over after the Sui. Many new inventions came out of this dynasty, and Buddhism became a major influence.

Umayyad Caliphate

661 - 750

First hereditary dynasty of Muslim caliphs. Ruled an extensive empire and was overthrown by the Abbasid.

Silla Dynasty

668 - 935

One of the world's longest sustained dynasties and occupied most of the Korean Peninsula

Nara Period

710 - 794

Most of Japanese society during this period was agricultural and centered around villages. Most of the villagers were annimist. The capital at Nara was modeled after the capital city of Tang China.The Japanese upper classes patterned themselves after the Chinese, including adopting Chinese written characters, fashion, and the religion of Buddhism.

Abbasid Caliphate

762 - 1258

Descendants of the Prophet Muhammad's uncle, al-Abbas, the Abbasids other threw the Umayyad Caliphate and and ruled an Islamic empire from their capital in Baghdad. Theology and religious law became important, and there was a growing community of scholars.

Heian Period

794 - 1185

The period of Japanese history when Buddhism, Taoism, and of Chinese influences were at its height. Real power was in the hands of the Fugiwara. This period is noted for its art-especially literature and poetry-and the rise of the samurai class.

Kingdom of Angkor

802 - 1351

Home to Angkor Wat, the world largest religious monument. It was the world's largest pre industrial city

Song Dynasty

960 - 1126

Distinguished for its advances in technology, medicine, astronomy, and mathematics.

Seljuq Control Over the Abbasid Dynasty

1040 - 1157

Contributed to the Turko-Persian tradition in the medieval West and Central Asia. The Seljuqs established both the Great Seljuq Empire and Sultanate of Rum, which at their total height stretched from Anatolia through Persia, and were targets of the First Crusade.

Mongol Conquest of all of China

1205 - 1279

China is fully united for the first time in history as we recognize it today under the Mongols.

Delhi Sultanate

1206 - 1526

Muslim invaders centralized Indian empire of varying extent.

Reign of Genghis Khan

1206 - 1227

Most famous conqueror in history. Mongol expansion under Genghis Khan promoted the movement of people and ideas from one end of Eurasia to the other and revived trade on the Silk Road. Overwhelmed most of Iran. He forced submission of Tanggut rulers and capture Jin capital.

Reign of Kublai Khan

1265 - 1294

Transferred his court to Beijing and founded the Yuan Empire.

Yuan Dynasty

1271 - 1368

Created by Khubilai Khan, and was the first foreign dynasty to rule China.

Marco Polo's Trip to China

1275 - 1292

Visited during the Yuan Dynasty, and amazed with the luxurious empire, he wrote a book about his travels. His book was not widely believed in Europe.

Ibn Battuta

1304 - 1368

Muslim Moroccan explorer who recorded his extensive travels of over 75,000 miles and is considered one of the greatest travelers of all time.

Reign of Mansa Musa

1312 - 1337

Pilgrimage through Egypt to Mecca established the empire's reputation for wealth in the Mediterranean world.

Timur (Tamerlane)

1336 - 1405

Gained control over much of Central Asia and Iran through conquest, and consolidated the status of Sunni Islam as orthodox. His descendants, the Timurids maintained his empire and founded the Mughal Empire in India.

Ming Dynasty

1368 - 1644

Reestablished many practices that are seen as purely Chinese. Early emperors sent voyagers for sea exploration. Confucianism was used in the government and dislike of "barbarians" grew.

Zheng He's Expeditions

1371 - 1433

His trips took treasures to other countries which stimulated trade between China and its southern neighbors. He also added tributary states to the Ming Empire.