ME: Ancient Near East

Timeline of Middle Eastern history.


4th millennium BCE
4000 3000 Domestication of the African wild ass in Egypt or Mesopotamia, producing the donkey
4000   City of Ur in Mesopotamia
4000 3100 Uruk period
4000 3000 Naqada culture on the Nile
3760   Flag_of_Israel.svg DATE OF CREATION according to some interpretations of Jewish chronology
3600   First civilization in the world: Sumer (city-states) in modern-day southern Iraq
3500 3000 One of the first appearances of wheeled vehicles in Mesopotamia
3500   Beginning of desertification of Sahara: the shift from a habitable region to a barren desert
3500   First cities in Egypt
3300   Earliest hieroglyphs
3200   Iry-Hor reigns as pharaoh of Upper Egypt, the earliest historical person known by name
3100   King Narmer unifies the Upper and Lower Egyptian Kingdoms, and gives birth to the world’s first nation
3100 2686 Early Dynastic Period (Egypt)
3000   First examples of Sumerian writing in Mesopotamia, in the cities of Uruk and Susa (cuneiform writings)
3rd millennium BCE
3000 2000 First domestication of the dromedaries in Somalia and southern Arabia
2900 2350 First ziggurats in Sumer
2800   Beginning of Uruk’s decline
2600 2350 Early Dynastic III period in Mesopotamia
2560   Completion of the Great Pyramid of Giza
2500   First domestication of the camel in central Asia
2500   Ur-Nina first king of Lagash
2340 2280 Reign of Sargon of Akkad, founder of the dynasty of Akkad
2334 2154 Akkadian Empire
2254 2218 Naram-Sin of Akkad, under who the empire reached its maximum strength and the first taking the title “god of Akkad”
2200   Akkad taken by the Guti
2112 2094 Ur-Nammu, founder of the Third Dynasty of Ur
2111 2004 Third Dynasty of Ur
2052 1570 Middle Kingdom in Egypt
2004   Elamites destroy Ur
2004 1763 Rise of the Amorites who established several city-states in Mesopotamia
2000   First use of the spoke-wheel by the Andronovo culture and soon after used by horse cultures of the Caucasus region in war chariots
2nd millennium BCE
1900   Hittites Old Kingdom in Anatolia
1800   Civilization in Canaan
1800 1200 Emergence of the city of Ugarit when it ruled a coastal kingdom, trading with Egypt, Cyprus, the Aegean, Syria, the Hittites and others
1792 1750 Reign of Hammurabi of the First Babylonian Dynasty, extended control throughout Mesopotamia, known for the Code of Hammurabi, one of the earliest codes of law
1763 1595 Paleo-Babylonian Empire
1600 1360 Egyptian domination over Canaan and Syria
1594   Cassites take Babylon
1595 1155 Cassite Dynasty
1550 1077 New Kingdom of Egypt
1500 1300 Kingdom Mitanni, a Hurrian-speaking state in northern Syria and southeast Anatolia
1500 539 Phoenicia and the spread of their alphabet from which almost all modern phonetic alphabets derived
1457   Battle of Megiddo
1380 1336 Shuppiluliuma, king of the Hittites who challenged Egypt for control of the lands between the Mediterranean and the Euphrates
1370 1200 Hittite Empire
1350 1050 Middle Assyrian Empire
1300   Discovery of iron smelting and smithing techniques in Anatolia or the Caucasus: start of the Iron Age
1274   Battle of Kadesh between the Egyptian Empire under Ramesses II and the Hittite Empire under Muwatalli II, largest chariot battle ever fought
1245 1208 Tukulti-Ninurta I, king of Assyria, first native Mesopotamian ruler in Babylon, took on the ancient title “King of Sumer and Akkad”
1237   Battle of Nihriya, resulting in Assyrian victory over the Hittites for control over remnants of the former empire of Mitanni in Asia Minor and the Levant
1234   Babylon taken by Assyrians
1200 1050 Bronze Age collapse
1200   Oldest Phoenician alphabet inscription engraved on the sarcophagus of King Ahiram
1200 884 Sea Peoples, conjectured groups of seafaring raiders, invaded Anatolia, Syria, Canaan, Cyprus, and Egypt
1200 546 Lydian Empire
1190   Hattusha, capital of the Hittites, taken by the Sea Peoples
1184   Fall of Troy
1180 700 Neo-Hittite kingdoms
1155   Babylon taken by Elamites
1100 539 Neo-Elamite period
1087   Babylon destroyed by Assyrians
1070 350 Cushites, an ancient African Nubian kingdom in Sudan
1102 850 Estimated period in which Homer lived
1069 664 Third Intermediate Period of Egypt
1050 930 Flag_of_Israel.svg Kingdom of Israel
1041   Flag_of_Israel.svg King David captures Jerusalem, designates it the capital of the united Kingdom of Israel
1004   Flag_of_Israel.svg King Solomon lays the foundation for the First Temple
1st millennium BCE
927   Flag_of_Israel.svg Jerusalem becomes the capital of the (southern) Kingdom of Judah after the split of the United Monarchy
884 858 Ashurnasirpal II, king of Assyria, embarked on a vast program of expansion, known for his harshness, moved his capital to the city of Kalhu (Nimrod)
884 612 Neo-Assyrian Empire
800 480 Archaic period in Greece with the rice of the city-states, Greek colonies and Epic Greek poetry: onset of Classical Antiquity
776   First Olympic Games
745 727 Tiglath-Pileser III, king of Assyria who introduced advanced civil, military, and political systems into the empire
689   Babylon destroyed by Sennacherib, king of the Assyrians
678 549 Median Empire
672 525 Twenty-sixth dynasty of Egypt
626 539 Chaldean Empire (Neo-Babylonian Empire)
612   Fall of Niniveh by a coalition Babylonians, Medes, Persians, Chaldeans, Scythians and Cimmerians, leading to the destruction of the Neo-Assyrian Empire
597   Flag_of_Israel.svg King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon capturing Jerusalem
587   Flag_of_Israel.svg King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon destroys Jerusalem and the Solomon’s Temple
600/576 530 Cyrus the Great conquered Babylon and created the Persian Achaemenid Empire
 550 330 Achaemenid Empire
539   Fall of Babylon
537   Flag_of_Israel.svg Cyrus allows the Israelites to return from the Babylonian captivity and rebuild the Temple
522 486 Reign of Darius the Great, third king of the Persian Achaemenid Empire
516   Flag_of_Israel.svg Completion of the Second Temple
510 323 Classical Greek period with large annexations by the Persian Empire and a powerful influence on the Roman Empire and western civilization
500   Ionian Revolt
499 449 Greco-Persian Wars, finally won by the Greek city-states
480 479 Xerxes invades Greece, start of Second Persian invasion of Greece
477   Founding of the Delian League, an association of Greek city-states under Athenian hegemony
431 404 Peloponnesian War between Sparta and Athens leading to the end of Athene’s hegemony and weakening of Greece
353 350 Mausoleum at Halicarnassus built in Persia
330   Alexander the Great conquered Persia
323 31 Hellenistic period with Greek influence in Europe, Africa and Asia, in the arts, exploration, literature, theatre, architecture, music, mathematics, philosophy, and science
CE CE Parthian Empire
100 44 Julius Caesar
31   Emergence of the Roman Empire as signified by the Battle of Actium
48 642 Destruction of the Library of Alexandria, one of the largest and most significant libraries of the ancient world
92 629 Roman–Persian Wars
1st millennium CE
30 100 Apostolic Age, onset of Christianity
66 136 Flag_of_Israel.svg Jewish-Roman Wars and Jewish diaspora
135   Roman Emperor Hadrian renamed Iudaea Province into Syria Palaestina
285 628 Byzantine–Sasanian wars
376   Large-scale irruption of Goths and others, and the subsequent onset of the Fall of the Western Roman Empire
394   Theodosius I suppressed the Olympic Games as part of the campaign to impose Christianity as the state religion
330 1453 Byzantine Empire, continuation of the Roman Empire in the east, until it fell to the Ottoman Empire


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