AP World Timeline

Asian Empires

Ming Dynasty

1368 - 1644

Last empire ruled by ethnic Han Chinese. Tried to recuperate a traditional Chinese nation after the rule of the Mongols.

Voyages of Zheng He

1405 - 1433

Funded by Chinese Emperor Yongle, he went out in search of new tributary states and wealth for the Chinese Government.

Reign of Tokugawa Shogunate

1600 - 1868

Japan was unified under Tokugawa Ieyasu. This began with the battle of Sekigahara.

Qing Dynasty

1644 - 1912

Reinstated civil service exams. Corruption and interactions with the Europeans weakened them.

Reign of Kangxi

1661 - 1722

Forced out the Europeans and all missionaries.

Russian Empire

1721 - 1917

Part of the Modernization and Westernization of Russia.

African Empires

Ghana Empire

750 - 1235

Mali Empire

1235 - 1600

Songhai Empire

1340 - 1591

Reign of Sunni Ali (Songhai)

1464 - 1492

First king of the Songhai Empire. Captured major cities such as Timbuktu.

Gunpowder Empires

Ottoman Empire

1299 - 1922

Longest lasting gunpowder empire. Also the most successful. Established by Osman Bey

Reign of Mehmet II (Ottoman Empire)

1451 - 1481

Very powerful sultan. Conquered Constantinople with the use of large canons and other gunpowder weapons.

Ottomans capture Constantinople


Constantinople capture by Mehmet II, using large canons and gunpowder weapons. This marks a huge success of the Ottomans and gives them a new foothold closer to mainland Europe.

Safavid Empire

1501 - 1722

Started by Shah Ismail. The most significant ruling empire of Iran and one of the Gun Powder Empires.

The Battle of Chaldiran


Fought between the Ottomans and Safavids. The superior and much larger Ottoman empire pushes back the Safavid armies.

Reign of Sulleyman the Magnificent

1520 - 1566

He is the man. He creates a code of law and annexes most of the Middle East with a powerful fleet. Oversaw the Golden Age of the Ottomans.

Mughal Empire

1526 - 1757

Another powerful Muslim Gunpowder Empire. Centered in India, it struggled for control over its primarily Hindu population.

Reign of Akbar

1556 - 1605

Golden Age of the Mughal Empire. Interests in the arts were raised and acceptance was encouraged.

Battle of Lepanto


Defeat of the Ottoman Navy by Catholic Europeans. Decisive victory for the Europeans.

The European Expansion

Dias navigates around Cape of Good Hope


Was sent on expedition to find quicker trade route to India. Also, as with many European explorers at this time, searched to find the mythical Prestor John's kingdom.

Treaty of Tordesillas


An arbitrary line drawn by the Pope separating what was "rightfully" the Portuguese and was "rightfully" the Spanish in the New World.

Portuguese control trade in Indian Ocean

1497 - 1542

Portuguese enter the Indian Ocean first with the intent to create trade monopolies and a trading empire. They are not as successful as the future Europeans that arrive.

Vasco de Gama Lands in India


Was very profitable. De Gama brought back much wealth and products, making up for the cost of the cost of the expedition and then some.

First slaves arrive in America


First to travel through the middle passage. Beginning of the Atlantic Slave trade.

Vasco de Balboa crosses the Isthmus of Panama


First European to cross the Americas and view the Pacific.

Magellan's Expedition

1519 - 1522

Ferdinand Magellan sails around the tip of South America. He dies before the ship finishes its circumnavigation.

Fall of the Aztec


Death of Montezuma begins the submission of the Aztecs to their Spanish conquerors.

Pizarro Defeats the Inca


Pizarro defeats the already weakened Inca empire. The population was already weakened by disease.

Foundation of Quebec


The French stake a hold in the New World, creating a colony in Canada.

Loyola's Expeditions

1582 - 1589

First man to circumnavigate the world... twice.

Jamestown Foundation


The English establish Jamestown. This is the beginning of English Colonization of the Americas.

Reign of Louis XIV

1661 - 1715

The prime example of a supreme monarch. His rule is the longest in French history.

Seven Years War

1754 - 1763

Fought everywhere but Europe. Fought over colonial overlaps and complications.

Enlightenment, Religious Reformation, and Scientific Revolution

Gutenberg invents movable printing press


This forever changes the world of information as we know it. It is start of mass literacy and will aid in the spread of religions in later history.

Spanish Inquisition

1481 - 1834

Started by Ferdinand as a way to reestablish Catholic Orthodoxy. Though it lost much of its power and influence by the 17th century, it was not officially abolished until 1834

Creation of the 95 Theses


Martin Luther writes the 95 Theses that disregards the power of the Pope. This begins the Protestant Reformation.

Copernicus' Discovery.


Creates the Heliocentric model and offers that the Sun is the center of the solar system.

Catholic Counter-reformation

1545 - 1563

Began at the Council of Trent. Basically reaffirmed Catholic Faith and all of its practices.

Galileo's Telescope


Galileo fundamentally improves the telescope. This makes his astronomical discoveries, along with many others, possible.

Thirty Years War

1618 - 1648

Basically a European war involving all countries. It was highly destructive, wiping out 15-30% of the German population.

Age of Enlightenment

1650 - 1700

Enlightenment "officially" begins. All inventions and breakthroughs have led to this.

Glorious Revolution


Includes the writing of the English Bill of Rights.

Voltaire's Letters


Voltaire disguised his criticisms of Europe as satire. His political and social ideas were revolutionary.