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1–999 AD World History

Birth of Jesus Christ (variously given from 4 B.C. to A.D. 7). After Augustus, Tiberius
becomes emperor (dies, A.D. 37), succeeded by Caligula (assassinated, A.D. 41), who is
followed by Claudius. Crucifixion of Jesus (probably A.D. 30). Han dynasty in China
founded by Emperor Kuang Wu Ti. Buddhism introduced to China.
Claudius poisoned (A.D. 54), succeeded by Nero (commits suicide, A.D. 68). Missionary
journeys of Paul the Apostle (A.D. 34–60). Jews revolt against Rome; Jerusalem
destroyed (A.D. 70). Roman persecutions of Christians begin (A.D. 64).Colosseum built in
Rome (A.D. 71–80). Trajan (rules A.D. 98–116); Roman empire extends to Mesopotamia,
Arabia, Balkans. First Gospels of St. Mark, St. John, St. Matthew.
Hadrian rules Rome (A.D. 117–138); codifies Roman law, rebuilds Pantheon, establishes
postal system, builds wall between England and Scotland. Jews revolt under Bar
Kokhba (A.D. 122–135); final Diaspora (dispersion) of Jews begins.
Marcus Aurelius rules Rome (A.D. 161–180). Oldest Mayan temples in Central
America (c. A.D. 200).
Goths invade Asia Minor (c. A.D. 220). Roman persecutions of Christians increase. Persian
(Sassanid) empire re-established. End of Chinese Han dynasty.
Increasing invasions of the Roman empire by Franks and Goths. Buddhism spreads in
China. Classic period of Mayan civilization (A.D. 250–900); develop hieroglyphic writing,
advances in art, architecture, science.
Constantine the Great (rules A.D. 312–337) reunites eastern and western Roman empires,
with new capital (Constantinople) on site of Byzantium (A.D. 330); issues Edict of Milan
legalizing Christianity (A.D. 313); becomes a Christian on his deathbed (A.D. 337). Council
of Nicaea (A.D. 325) defines orthodox Christian doctrine. First Gupta dynasty in
India (c. A.D. 320).
Huns (Mongols) invade Europe (c. A.D. 360). Theodosius the Great (rules A.D. 392–395)—
last emperor of a united Roman empire. Roman empire permanently divided
in A.D. 395: western empire ruled from Rome; eastern empire ruled from Constantinople.
Western Roman empire disintegrates under weak emperors. Alaric, king of the Visigoths,
sacks Rome (A.D. 410). Attila, Hun chieftain, attacks Roman provinces (A.D. 433). St.
Patrick returns to Ireland (A.D. 432) and brings Christianity to the island. St.
Augustine's City of God (A.D. 411).
Vandals destroy Rome (A.D. 455). Western Roman empire ends as Odoacer, German
chieftain, overthrows last Roman emperor, Romulus Augustulus, and becomes king of
Italy (A.D. 476). Ostrogothic kingdom of Italy established by Theodoric the
Great (A.D. 493). Clovis, ruler of the Franks, is converted to Christianity (A.D. 496). First
schism between western and eastern churches (A.D.484).
Eastern and western churches reconciled (519). Justinian I, the Great (483–565),becomes
Byzantine emperor (527), issues his first code of civil laws (529),conquers North Africa,
Italy, and part of Spain. Plague spreads through Europe (542 et seq.). Arthur, semi-
legendary king of the Britons (killed, c. 537). Boëthius, Roman scholar (executed, 524).
Beginnings of European silk industry after Justinian's missionaries smuggle silkworms
out of China (553). Mohammed, founder of Islam (570–632). Buddhism in Japan (c.
560). St. Augustine of Canterbury brings Christianity to Britain (597).After killing about
half the population, plague in Europe subsides (594).
Mohammed flees from Mecca to Medina (the Hegira); first year of the Muslim
calendar (622). Muslim empire grows (634). Arabs conquer Jerusalem (637),conquer
Persians (641).
Arabs attack North Africa (670), destroy Carthage (697). Venerable Bede, English
monk (672–735).
Arab empire extends from Lisbon to China (by 716). Charles Martel, Frankish leader,
defeats Arabs at Tours/Poitiers, halting Arab advance in
Europe (732).Charlemagne (742–814). Introduction of pagodas in Japan from China.
Charlemagne becomes king of the Franks (771). Caliph Harun al-Rashid rules Arab
empire (786–809): the “golden age” of Arab culture. Vikings begin attacks on
Britain (790), land in Ireland (795). City of Machu Picchu flourishes in Peru.
Charlemagne crowned first Holy Roman Emperor in Rome (800). Charlemagne
dies (814), succeeded by his son, Louis the Pious, who divides France among his
sons (817). Arabs conquer Crete, Sicily, and Sardinia (826–827).
Norsemen attack as far south as the Mediterranean but are thwarted (859), discover
Iceland (861). Alfred the Great becomes king of Britain (871), defeats Danish
invaders (878). Russian nation founded by Vikings under Prince Rurik, establishing
capital at Novgorod (855–879).
Beginning of Mayan Post-Classical period (900–1519). Vikings discover Greenland (c.
900). Arab Spain under Abd ar-Rahman III becomes center of learning (912–961). Otto I
becomes King of Germany (936).
Mieczyslaw I becomes first ruler of Poland (960). Eric the Red establishes first Viking
colony in Greenland (982). Hugh Capet elected King of France in 987; Capetian dynasty
to rule until 1328. Musical notation systematized (c. 990).Vikings and Danes attack
Britain (988–999). Otto I crowned Holy Roman Emperor by Pope John XII (962).
c. 1000–1300
Classic Pueblo period of Anasazi culture; cliff dwellings.
c. 1000
Hungary and Scandinavia converted to Christianity. Viking raider Leif Eriksson
discovers North America, calls it Vinland. Beowulf, Old English epic.
c. 1008
Murasaki Shikibu finishes The Tale of Genji, the world's first novel.
Muslims destroy Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.
Danes control England. Canute takes throne (1016), conquers
Norway (1028),dies (1035); kingdom divided among his sons: Harold Harefoot
(England), Sweyn (Norway), Hardecanute (Denmark).
Macbeth murders Duncan, king of Scotland.
Robert Guiscard, Norman invader, establishes kingdom in Italy, conquers Sicily (1072).
Final separation between Eastern (Orthodox) and Western (Roman) churches.
Seljuk Turks, Asian nomads, move west, capture Baghdad, Armenia (1064), Syria, and
Palestine (1075).
William of Normandy invades England, defeats last Saxon king, Harold II, at Battle of
Hastings, crowned William I of England (“the Conqueror”).
Construction on the cathedral in Pisa, Italy, begins.
Emergence of strong papacy when Gregory VII is elected. Conflict with English and
French kings and German emperors will continue throughout medieval period.
At Council of Clermont, Pope Urban II calls for a holy war to wrest control of Jerusalem
from Muslims, which launches the First Crusade (1096), one of at least 8 European
military campaigns between 1095 and 1291 to regain the Holy Land. (For detailed
chronology, see The Crusades.)
(A.D.) Events & People by specific year
Unfortunately, since the scholars designing the new calendar didn't have the
concept of zero, the new Gregorian calendar is calculated to start at year 1, so we
go directly from December 31, 1 BC to January 1, 1 AD thereby making all the
easy calculations of date intervals off by one.
Battle of Teutoberg Forest - 20,000 Roman soldiers under the command of Publius
Quinctilius Varus in Germany are killed while in a long convoy line through the
9 Teutoberg Forest. Many years later Emperor Augustus, desperately needing those
legions, went around the palace late at night muttering, "Varus, give me back my
12 The supremacy of Latin is complete, the last known Etruscan inscription is carved.
30 Christianity is established as Jesus is crucified.
In a terrifying week, two-thirds of Rome burns to the ground and Emperor Nero
takes the opportunity to rebuild Rome and claims a huge plot of land to build his
64, July
new palace complex. Nero blames the fire on the Christians although some claimed
the fire was started by Nero to clear the land. He orders the first Roman persecution
of the new faith.
After a six month siege the Romans under the direction of Titus destroy Jerusalem
70 killing one and a half million Jews. The gold taken from the the Temple finances
the Colosseum back in Rome.
Claudius Ptolemy devises a framework of Astronomy which will last for 1400
85-165 years. He calculates pi as 3+8/60+30/602 which in decimals is "3.1416666...", an
amazing feat for the time.
Rome has the five "Good Emperors": Nerva, Trajan, Hadrian, Antonius Pius and
Marcus Aurelius.
97 Chinese General Pan Chao sends an embassy to the Roman empire.
Roman Emperor Hadrian begins the impressive 73 mile defensive wall in the north
of England to keep out the Picts and tax the trade.
The Bar Kokhba revolt in Jerusalem against the Romans is finally crushed after two
and a half years during which the Jewish state had home rule and a resumption of
135 animal sacrifices. 580,000 Jews are killed in the restoration of Roman rule and the
city of Jerusalem is reduced to rubble. Emperor Hadrian did not allow Jews to
return to Jerusalem and renamed the city Aelia Capitolina.
Beginning of the Classic period for the Maya who will rise to amazing feats of
scientific knowledge and architecture.
Not content to be the ruler of the Palmyrene Empire in Syria, the beautiful Warrior
Queen Zenobia breaks with Rome and invades Egypt. Emperor Aurelian eventually
269 defeats her. Some records show she was killed after Aurelian's triumph, but others
say she was pardoned, due to her beauty and regal bearing, and married a Roman
senator and lived peacefully in luxury the rest of her days.
Roman Emperor Aurelian starts building the walls around Rome which would run
for 12 miles and were 11 feet thick and 26 feet tall. This is a concrete statement that
Rome could no longer hold its enemies back at the border. Other major towns
constructing their own walls against the raiding barbarians whose skills do not
typically include siege-craft.
313 Edict of Milan is issued. Christians are now tolerated in the Roman Empire.
Saint Basil of Caesarea, Greek bishop of Caesarea Mazaca (modern day Turkey), is
329 born. He will care for the poor and establish what we would consider the first
Emperor Julian, "The Apostate," tries to return the Empire back to the Pagan
religions, but utterly fails.
A devestating Tsunami overwhelms Alexandria Egypt killing five thousand people.
Right before the wave hits, the water recedes from the coast as it is being sucked
365, July
into the unseen approaching wave, beaching the trading ships in the harbor.
went out and looted the overturned ships, but were in for a surprise.
Mayan envoy "Fire Is Born" enters the city of Waka. He will consolidate the small
Mayan city states and launch the Mayan golden age that will endure for five
January 8
The Battle of Adrianople (Hadrianopolis) - the beginning of the end of Roman
military power. Not waiting for reinforcements, Emperor Valens gives the order to
his weary men to attack the circled wagons of the Goths. In a surprise to all, the
absent Gothic Cavalry returns just as the battle is about to begin. The heavy
Cavalry routes the light horsemen of the Romans and is victorious over the Roman
infantry. Some scholars think this was a historic turning point in the tactics of
warfare when the Cavalry gained supremacy over infantry. Others counter that the
August 9
Roman infantry could have withstood the Cavalry if they had been properly rested,
trained, and had a better commander. In either case the Battle of Adrianople shook
the confidence of the Roman Empire and the Romans dealt in a defensive manner
with the Goths. The Goths were originally glad to be allowed to enter the Empire,
but were treated very badly and abused by corrupt Roman administrators. This
treatment angered the Goths and they turned against the Romans.
Saint Augustine of Hippo completes the first autobiography in the Western world,
The Confessions. He dies on 28 August 430 during the Vandal siege of his
African home of Hippo, in modern day Algeria. He wrote clearly about the absolute
need of God's grace to a fallen humanity.
After being betrayed by Rome several times Alaric marches on Rome to demand
the money promised to his troops. Emperor Honorius refuses, and the Visigoths
sack Rome for three days. Aleric tells his troops to not kill unnecessarily and not to
harm churches or religious statuary.
496 King Clovis of the Franks converts to orthodox Christianity.
Justinian's Plague starts and kills 40% of Constantinople by 544 and 25% of Europe
541 south of the Alps. By the Eighth century this bubonic plague disappears
mysteriously not to return to Europe until the Fourteenth century.
550 Persians use windmills to power irrigation pumps.
Mohammad born. Syria, Jerusalem, Egypt, Persia, & N. Africa fall to Muslim
armies many decades later.
632 Muhammad dies.
A vastly superior army of Iranian Sassanians is defeated by determined Arab
Muslims in the battle of Qadisiyya.
650 The beginning of the Mississippian Cahokia culture in America, the most advanced
of the plains people. The Cahokia people will build the largest earthen mound
structure in North America, Monk's Mound and create an astronomic observatory
now known as Woodhenge, and trade from the Great Lakes to the Gulf coast. They
decline in 1400, a century before the Europeans arrive.
657-680 The earliest poem written in English, Caedmon's Hymn, is composed.
Battle of Tours, Charles Martel stops a Muslim army and the Muslim advance into
Western Europe.
793 Vikings start raiding Ireland.
Torrential rains causing crops to rot in the field followed by terrible winters that
freeze the rivers of northern Europe so solid horse carts use the Rhine for a road
and then three years of no summers and horrible winters that cause famine and
disease cause some Norse to believe that Fimbulwinter, the precursor to Ragnarok,
the dreadful apocalyptic end of time and death of the gods, has started. Scientists
now believe the climate catastrophe was caused by the eruption of the Icelandic
The "Medieval Warming Period" starts and lasts until 1315. The Vikings settle
850 Greenland. English farmers grow grapes for wine. Temperatures rise in Europe and
farming does well. The population in Europe swells.
900s Fall of the Mayan Classic period. Cities deserted all over Mesoamerica.
Gerbert (940-1003) becomes Pope Sylvester II and writes about "Arabic" numerals.
Unfortunately the new numbering system doesn't really take hold in Europe until
the 14th century. From Paul Gans "It should be noted that the Arabic numerals were
neither invented by nor used by the Arabs. They were developed in India by the
Hindus around 600 AD." "Counting boards" being used with roman numerals in US
Colonial times.
An army led by Caliph al-Hakim destroys the church of the Holy Sepulcher in
Jerusalem. This desecration will be a rallying point for the Crusades to come.
Pope Urban II calls for the First Crusade to protect the Christian pilgrims to the
Holy Land from attack.
1024 The Chinese issue the first paper money.
Harold Godwinson wins the Battle of Stamford Bridge and a second battle at
Fulford against the Viking invaders of England lead by Harold Hardraada. Harold
then marched his weary army to Hastings to meet yet another invader, Duke
William of Normandy. Harold Godwinson was defeated, and the period of Norman
domination began. William brought with him the French practice of building stone
castles. Few stone castles had been in England before, but by only 1100 Engla
Kingdoms and civilizations of the 1st millennium AD
Africa Americas Asia Europe Oceania
 Nok  Maya  Parthian  Roman  Tu’i
 Ghana Empire civilization Empire Empire Tonga
 Christian  Huastec  Han dynasty  Anglo- Empire
Nubia (Nobatia, Mak  Teotihuacan  Kushan Saxon
uria, Alodia)  Toltec Empire England
 Aksumite Empire  Totonac  Rashidun  Irish
 Abbasid Caliphate  Zapotec Caliphate Kingdoms
 Fatimid Caliphate  Mixtec  Xiongnu  Merovingia
 Kingdom of Kangaba  Teuchitlan  Three n dynasty
 Igbo-Ukwu  Kaan Kingdoms  Carolingian
 Kingdom of Nri Kingdom  Sassanid Empire
 Kanem Empire  Tikal Empire  West
 Jin dynasty Francia
 Ife  Palenque
 Gupta  Middle
 Awka  Tonina
Empire Francia
 Caracol
 Byzantine  East
 Copan
Empire Francia
 Kingdom of
 Rashtrakuta  Holy
dynasty Roman
 Muisca
 Pala Empire Empire
 Hephthalite  Kingdom
Empire of France
 Tairona
 Sui dynasty  Bulgarian
 Chimor
 Chola Empire
 Tiwanaku
dynasty  Viking
 Wari culture
 Tang dynasty  Kievan
 Moche Rus'
culture  Volga
 Lima
culture  Song dynasty
 Goguryeo
 Buyeo
 Baekje
 Silla
 Srivijaya