Old Testament 10,000 BCE - 800 BCE
10,000 - 8000 =09The Natufian culture appeared in modern-day Israel -
some of the first known human settlements in the world.
8000 =09Agriculture began in Near East as people started using "digging
sticks" to plant the seeds of wild grasses which would eventually
become the domesticated wheat we know today.
c. 6750 =09Pigs are domesticated in modern Iraq.
6500 - 6300 =09Wheel was invented by Sumerians who lived in the
Tigris-Euphrates river basin.
c. 6000 =09Chickens were domesticated in southern Asia.
5508 =09Year of Creation, as calculated in seventh-century CE
Constantinople and used by Eastern Orthodox Church until 18th century
5490 =09Year of Creation, as calculated by Syrian Christians.
c. 5000 =09The earliest known cities were founded as increasing numbers
of people began to gather in villages scattered around the Fertile
4004 (October 23) =09Date of Creation, as calculated by Irish theologian
James Ussher in 1650 CE.
c. 4000 =09Horses were domesticated.
c. 4000 =09Sumerians in southern Mesopotamia developed the boat for
3760 =09Year of Creation, as calculated by the Hebrews and used since
the 15th century CE.
3641 (February 10) =09Date of Creation, as calculated by the Mayans.
3500 =09Sumerian society developed in the Tigris-Euphrates river basin.
The Sumerians made use of many agricultural advances, such as domestic
animals to pull plows, irrigated desert, drained marshlands and more
in order to create a large, cosmopolitan civilization. The increased
output of food allowed for the further development of a "leisure
class" that did not have to work for food, allowing them to become
priests, artists, merchants, scholars, etc. The Sumerians also
developed oar-powered ships, animal-drawn wheeled chariots and other,
similar vehicles, bronze objects, and the written cuneiform alphabet.
c. 3400 =09Early form of hieroglyphic writing started being used in Egypt.
3100 =09The first Egyptian Dynasty united the southern and northern
kingdoms under the rule of Menes, founder of the city of Memphis which
would become the center of his authority.
c. 3000 =09First human settlements were established on the site of
c. 3000 =09Stonehenge was built in England.
c. 2980- 2950 =09Life of Imhotep, famed Egyptian physician. He was
worshiped as a medical demigod in ancient Egypt because of his work on
medical methods for treating diseases rather than simply religious
methods. Imhotep was also responsible for the construction of the
pyramid of Zoser (the Step Pyramid at Sakkara), the first large stone
structure in the entire world.
c. 2800 =09Egyptians began wearing wedding rings, believing that the
circular bands symbolized eternity.
2613 =09The Great Pyramid of Cheops at Giza was constructed by Cheops,
son of the founder of Egypt's 4th Dynasty, Snefru.
c. 2600 =09The first recorded seagoing voyage carried Egyptian sailors
to Phoenicia in search of cedarwood.
c. 2600 =09Chinese began cultivation of silkworms.
2560 =09Great Sphinx at Giza, a 189-foot long monument to King Khafra
(Khafre), the third king of the 4th Dynasty, was carved.
2500 =09Sumerian cuneiform script was simplified from an earlier version
consisting of thousands of ideograms.
2350 =09Sargon I founded the Akkadian empire, which ruled Mesopotamia
for the next couple of centuries.
2349 =09The Great Flood occurred (according to fundamentalist sources).
2247 =09The Tower of Babel was constructed (according to fundamentalist sou=
2200 =09Indo-European invaders, speaking the earliest forms of Greek,
entered the mainland of Greece, and the Mycenaean Civilization (named
after the leading Greek city on the peninsula from 1600-1200 BCE)
2100 =09Ziggurat of Ur was built by Sumerian king Ur-Nammu. Sumerians
called it temen, from which the later word temple was derived.
2000 - 1500 =09Minoan Civilization (named after the Cretan ruler Minos)
reached its height with its central power in Knossos on the island of
Crete. This culture may have been more female-oriented and peaceful
than others at the time.
c. 2000-1700 =09Abraham left Ur in Chaldea (according to traditional
sources). This is often called the age of the "patriarchs" (Abraham,
Isaac and Jacob).
c. 2000 =09Domestic bathroom plumbing appeared in Crete.
c. 2000 =09Babylonians replaced Sumerians as the dominant power in the
Middle East, creating a decimal system notation.
c. 1800 =09Babylonians are believed to have initiated the custom of the
handshake. It began with grasping the hand of a statue of the god
Marduk in order to receive his power symbolically and it later came to
symbolize good will.
c. 1792-1750 =09Hammurabi ruled Babylon and created his famous legal code.
1750 =09The Babylonians began using windmills to pump water for irrigation.
1700 - 1500 =09Possible dates for when Joseph could have been in Egypt.
1660 - 1550 =09The Hyksos, a Semitic tribe, invaded Egypt and dominated
the Nile Delta for about a century. The Hyksos were successful because
they were superior archers and rode horses and chariots at the same
c. 1650 =09Cult of Yahweh, earliest form of Judaism, may have been
created by Abraham and carried on by his sons.
1568 =09The Hyksos, a semitic tribe which had dominated the Nile Delta,
was finally driven out by Egyptian leader Ahmose I, who then founded
the 16th Dynasty.
1523 - 1027 =09Shang Dynasty in China.
1491 =09Date of the Exodus of the Hebrews out of Egypt. (according to
1491 =09Ten Commandments were received. (according to fundamentalist source=
c. 1479 =09Egyptian armies under Pharaoh Tuthmosis III defeated a
confederation of Palestinian states and captured a fortress on the
hill of Meggido. Christian theology predicts a final battle between
good and evil on this spot (Armageddon =3D Hill of Megiddo). The first
use of the title "Pharaoh," which means "Great House," is found here
applied to Tuthmosis.
1470 =09A massive volcanic eruption at Thera destroyed the Minoan
civilization on Crete. Because of huge waves rising up to 160 feet,
the water levels along the eastern shores of the Mediterranean at
first dropped, but then the Egyptian cost was flooded by large amounts
of seawater, resulting in famine due to the loss of arable farmland.
1451 =09Hebrews arrive in Canaan (according to traditional sources)
1400 =09Iron Age began in Asia Minor when methods for smelting iron ore
1400 =09Mycenaean Civilization replaced Minoan Civilization after the
destruction of Knossos. Bronze weapons, war-scenes on art, Cyclopean
defense walls, and the fact that male warriors were buried with their
weapons provide evidence for the claim that the Mycenaeans were
militaristic. The horse-drawn chariot emerged around this time and the
Mycenaeans would dominate the Aegean world for about 200 years.
1349-1334 =09Amenhotep IV, aka Akhenaten, ruled Egypt and developed the
first recorded strict monotheism. He was succeeded by his
nine-year-old son Tutankhamen, who eliminated his religious reforms
1300 =09In Babylon they developed a new alphabetic script which was a
further simplification of the cuneiform writing.
1305 =09Accession of Ramses II, the Great, of Egypt to pharaoh.
c. 1250 =09Possible date of the Exodus of the Hebrews out of Egypt.
(according to modern scholars)
1232 =09Israelites of some sort were definitely in Canaan - Ramses II's
son Merneptah defeated them in battle. They were not necessarily the
same Israelites as those who left in the Exodus - they might have been
from earlier emigrations.
1200-1020 =09Period of the Judges in Israel.
1200 =09Gilgamesh epic, recorded in cuneiform script, is the first known
such written legend.
1193 =09Traditional date set for the city of Troy being destroyed by
besieging Greek armies.
1146 =09Nebuchadrezzar I reigned as King of Babylon for 23 years.
1141 =09According to biblical accounts in Samuel, Israelite armies
suffered massive losses to the Philistines.
1050 =09Philistines conquered Israel.
1027 - 771 =09Zhou Dynasty in China.
1020 - 922 =09Period of the United Kingdom of Jews.
1020 =09Samuel, last of the Israelite Judges, anointed Saul as the first
King of Israel. Saul led a successful rebellion against Philistines.
c. 1000 =09Earliest Old Testament documents were created from older and
highly developed oral tradition.
1000 =09Saul was killed at the Battle of Gilboa and was succeeded by
David, first as King of Judah and then later as King of Israel. David
later captured Jerusalem and made it his capital.
c. 1000-950 =09Biography of David may have been composed, eventually
becoming a written narrative of David's life later included in I and
II Samuel and IKings.
c. 1000 =09Iberians invaded the region of modern Spain, giving the
Iberian Peninsula its name.
961 =09David died and was succeeded by his son, Solomon.
953 =09Dedication of the Temple of Jerusalem, built by Solomon.
c. 950 - 900 =09Composition of the "Yahwistic" (J) document, one of the
four major sources believed to have been the basis of the Pentateuch
(Books of Moses): Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy.
922 =09Death of Solomon, who was succeeded by his son, Rehoboam.
Rebellion against Rehoboam was led by Jeroboam, leading to a split of
the kingdom into two halves: Judah in the south under Rehoboam and
Israel in the north under Jeroboam.
c. 900 =09Assyrian war chariots were equipped with metal tires (copper
or bronze) for greater durability.
884 =09Ashurnasirpal II, Assyrian king, began a 24-year reign during
which he defeated Babylon and ensured Assyrian dominance throughout
the Near East.
854 =09Ahab of Israel joined with Ben Hadad of Damascus and Irkhuleni of
Hamath in an allied army to halt Shalmaneser III. Egypt and
Jehoshaphat of Judah lent support, but the alliance failed to stop the
c. 850 =09Traditional date for the probable composition of Homer's epic
poems The Illiad and The Odyssey.
c. 850 =09Traditional date for when Elijah lived and prophecized.
c. 850 - 800 =09Composition of the "Elohistic" (E) document, another
major source of the Pentateuch.
842 =09Jehu, an Israelite soldier, led a rebellion against Jehoram,
Ahab's son, and founded a new dynasty in Israel. By the next year,
however, he was paying tribute to the Assyrian leaders.
814 =09Phoenicians founded Carthage (literally: "New Town") near their
North African colony of Utica.
801 =09Indians began to venerate cows and dairy products.
800 =09Increase in trade and the establishment of governmental defense
fortifications allowed for the emergence of Greek city-states from
tribal communities. These grew up around marketplaces and included
Athens, Thebes and Megara on the Greek mainland. The Greek city-states
were considered the most famous units of Greek political life to
develop in this society.
800 - 500 =09This period, often referred to as the Archaic period,
marked the developments of literature and the arts, politics,
philosophy and science. The Peloponnesian city of Corinth, Sparta and
cities along the coast of the Aegean Sea flourished. For the most
part, the Greek city-states were similar in their political evolution,
with the exception of Sparta's elite dictatorship.
Most began their political histories as monarchies, evolved to
oligarchies, were overthrown during the age of the tyrants (650-500
BCE) and eventually established democracies in the sixth and fifth
centuries. Of the Greek city-states, Athens and Sparta were the two