AP World History Timeline (Term 1)

  • 200,000 BCE

    Evolution of Homo sapiens

    Evolution of Homo sapiens
    Homo sapiens ("consciously thinking human") has evolved over the course of two hundred thousand years from other species like the Australopithecus and Homo erectus. They skillfully adapted to their surroundings and natural environments thanks to the possession of a larger brain.
  • 35,000 BCE

    Venus Figurines

    Venus Figurines
    Venus figurines were early creations of the Homo sapiens found in numerous sites of early human habitation. Most scholars believe the figures represent a ritual tradition intended to increase fertility in women.
  • 12,000 BCE

    End Of The Paleolithic Age

    End Of The Paleolithic Age
    The longest period of human existence in earth, also known as the "old stone age". Bipedal beings living during this era survived by hunting and gathering wild and animals and plants.
  • 12,000 BCE

    The Neolithic Revolution

    The Neolithic Revolution
    The "new stone age" was an event in history when the refinement in tool-making techniques allowed early humans to farm and settle down. Polished stone tools found in sites show that the people then relied on cultivation, rather than foraging.
  • 7250 BCE

    Catal Huyuk

    Catal Huyuk
    Originally a small neolithic village, Catal Huyuk grew into a very prominent town with about five thousand residents. Thanks to the advancement of agriculture, job specialization was huge in Catal Huyuk. Some early craft industries include pottery, metallurgy, and textile production.
  • 6000 BCE

    Mesopotamia

    Mesopotamia
    Meaning "the land between the rivers", Mesopotamia is located in modern-day Iraq. Thanks to the fertile valleys of the Tigris and Euphrates River, early civilizations were easily able to settle in that land. The Sumerians and Babylonians were some civilizations that arose in the part of the world.
  • 5000 BCE

    The Nile River Valley

    The Nile River Valley
    The Nile River Valley was the fertile land thanks to the Nile River in Northeast Africa. Early civilizations, for example the Egyptians and Nubians, were able to successfully develop in this part of the world thanks to agriculture supported by the Nile.
  • 5000 BCE

    The Yellow and Yangzi River Valleys

    The Yellow and Yangzi River Valleys
    The Yellow and Yangzi River Valleys were home to three important ancient Chinese dynasties of the of the 2nd millennium B.C.E. The Yellow River was unfortunately unpredictable, which led to lots of floods in the farms of agricultural societies. Loess, an extremely fine, powder like soil was thankfully able to spread across the river valleys because of the constant floods.
  • 4000 BCE

    Migration of the Bantu

    Migration of the Bantu
    The Bantu were sub-Saharan Africans that always had an early readiness to migrate to new territories. It is speculated that they constantly migrated due to population pressures. Agriculture was fortunately able to spread across sub-Saharan Africa thanks to their constant moving.
  • 3200 BCE

    Hieroglyphic Writing

    Hieroglyphic Writing
    Hieroglyphs were early Egyptian writing that used symbols to represent sounds and ideas. Writing of it was found on sheets of papyrus containing records administrative and commercial information written down by scribes.
  • 3100 BCE

    Menes of Egypt

    Menes of Egypt
    Menes was an ambitious minor official from souther Egypt that later unified Egypt. He built a centralized state ruled by the pharaoh in order to bring control over the new kingdom.
  • 3000 BCE

    The Phoenicians

    The Phoenicians
    The Phoenicians were a group of city-states ruled by local kings that thrived under trade with other civilizations in the Mediterranean region. Not only that, they were excellent sailors, as they traveled far to trade with other kingdoms.
  • 3000 BCE

    Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro

    Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro
    Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro were two of the most important cities that arose in the Indus River Valley. Both cities depended heavily on agriculture, but also trade as well. Social distinctions were also evident in both cities.
  • 3000 BCE

    Indus River Valley

    Indus River Valley
    The Indus River Valley was the reason early civilizations were able to arise in India. Like the Nile, the Indus River draws its waters from water and melting snow on mountains. The Indus made agricultural society possible in northern India.
  • 2900 BCE

    Creation of Cuneiform

    Creation of Cuneiform
    Cuneiform was a flexible system of writing created by the Sumerians that used symbols to represent sounds, syllables, and ideas. It was mainly used by scribes to keep records of specific things.
  • 2500 BCE

    The Kingdom of Kush

    The Kingdom of Kush
    The kingdom of Kush was a strong and wealthy state that ruled over the upper reaches of the Nile. They constantly had conflicts with southern Egypt, which led to them being conquered later. Around 760 B.C.E., however, the kingdom was revived and ruled Egypt for almost a century.
  • 2000 BCE

    Oracle Bones

    Oracle Bones
    Oracle bones were principal instruments used by fortune-tellers in ancient China. They were used by first writing a question on the bone, burning it on a fire, and then interpreting the cracks and splits on the bone.
  • 1792 BCE

    Reign of Hammurabi

    Reign of Hammurabi
    Hammurabi was a Babylonian king in land of Mesopotamia that was specifically famous for his code of laws. His laws were based on the principle of lex talionis, meaning "law of retaliation". Under Hammurabi's rule, his empire was able to stretch from modern-day Syria to the Persian Gulf.
  • 1766 BCE

    The Shang Dynasty

    The Shang Dynasty
    The Shang dynasty was the successor of the Xia Dynasty that fell around 1800 B.C.E. The Shang had technology like bronze metallurgy and horse-drawn chariots that helped them spread their rule across China. Shang kings during that time ruled one thousand or more towns, as the government was not highly centralized.
  • 1500 BCE

    The Aryans

    The Aryans
    The Aryans were nomadic and pastoral people speaking Indo-European languages that settled in the Indus River Valley. They introduced their sacred language, Sanskrit, and their collection of works called the Vedas to the early civilizations already living in India at that time (the Dravidians).
  • 1500 BCE

    The Lapita People

    The Lapita People
    The Lapita people were the earliest inhabitants of Oceania, as they were excellent sailors who possessed remarkable seafaring skills. Lapita people maintained extensive networks of trade and communication across the Pacific Ocean. They spread to islands across the Pacific Ocean because of population pressures and conflicts, at the same time spreading agriculture to new, developing civilizations.
  • 1300 BCE

    Moses and Monotheism

    Moses and Monotheism
    Moses was a Hebrew leader who led his tribe out of Egypt. During his journeys, he introduced monotheism, the belief in one God, to his people. The Ten Commandments was a set religious and ethical principles Moses instructed to the Israelites, concerning Yahweh, the creator of the world.
  • 1200 BCE

    The Olmecs

    The Olmecs
    The Olmecs were one of the first civilizations for flourish in Mesoamerica. Maize was on of their stable foods, along with other foods like squashes, beans, and peppers. They also constructed elaborate drainage systems to get ride of floodwaters that would have destroyed their crops.
  • 1122 BCE

    The Zhou Dynasty

    The Zhou Dynasty
    The Zhou Dynasty arose from conflicts between the corrupted Shang kings and the people living in China. Zhou theory of politics rested on the 'mandate of heaven". Kings had absolute power over the kingdom and everyone had to listen to their laws and policies. As the Zhou dynasty was very large, kings created city-states ruled by officials. Later, these states became increasingly independent, which led to the Period of the Warring States (403 - 221 B.C.E).
  • 1046 BCE

    The Mandate of Heaven

    The Mandate of Heaven
    The Mandate of Heaven was a belief system that stated that heavenly powers granted the right to govern to a specific deserving individual known as the "son of heaven". The Zhou dynasty of China heavily relied on this belief to assign and remove kings from power.
  • 1000 BCE

    Indian Caste System

    Indian Caste System
    The Indian caste system had four main social classes:
    1. Brahmins - priests
    2. Kshatriyas - warriors and aristocrats
    3. Vaishyas - cultivators, artisans, and merchants
    4. Shudras - landless peasants and serfs
    Later on, another class was created, called the Untouchables. The Untouchables were people who performed dirty or unpleasant jobs like killing animals and handling dead bodies.
  • 800 BCE

    Teachings of the Upanishads

    Teachings of the Upanishads
    The Upanishads was a body of works that appeared in the Vedic age that explained religious practices and beliefs. Samsara and karma are all parts of the Upanishads that were taught to all religious men and even women.
  • 500 BCE

    The Mayas

    The Mayas
    The Mayas were the earliest heirs of the Olmecs, who organized themselves into small city-kingdoms. The Mayas also created one of the most advanced calendars of their time, along with their flexible and sophisticated systems of writing. Conflicts between small kingdoms later led to the decline of the Maya civilization.
  • 500 BCE

    The City of Teotihuacan

    The City of Teotihuacan
    The Teotihuacan's were also heirs of the Olmecs. A huge agricultural city, job specialization was very significant in Teotihuacan. Cultivators, artisans, and merchants were present in Teotihuacan society. Like the Mayas, they built on the cultural foundations established by the Olmecs. They even created a ball game that was part of their religious ritual sacrifices.
  • 300 BCE

    The Mochica State

    The Mochica State
    The Mochica state was one of the earliest Andean states that arose in the many valleys on the western side of the Andes Mountains. Mochican paintings on pottery reflect and show how life was like in early Andean societies. Climate fluctuations and droughts brought an end to the Mochica state in the Andean region around the first millennium C.E.