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600 C.E. Late Preclassic Period in Maya Zones been extended to Hangzhou, providing an efficient
Beginning of the Late Preclassic period in the Maya water transport system.
zones of Mesoamerica.
622 C.E. New Muslim Community Flees to Medina
604 C.E. Shotoku’s Reforms The fledgling Muslim community led by the prophet
Between 593 and 628 Empress Suiko rules Japan. Dur- Muhammad makes the Hijrah (flight) from Mecca to
ing her reign regent Prince Shotoku undertakes major Medina to escape persecution.
reforms with China as a model culminating in a 17-
article constitution based on Confucian principles. 627 C.E. Battle of Nineveh
At the Battle of Nineveh, the forces of the Byzantine
606–648 C.E. Harsha Reunifies India Emperor Heraclius defeat the Sassanids.
His work is undone at his assassination. India is
divided after its short unity. 629–645 C.E. Xuanzang Travels to India
Chinese Buddhist monk Xuanzang’s journey and
610 C.E. Prophet Muhammad Receives Revelations translation of Buddhist canons mark the height of
The prophet Muhammad in Mecca receives revela- Buddhism in China.
tions that are set down in the Qur’an, the Muslim
holy book. 632 C.E. Muslim Rule over Mecca and Medina and the
Prophet Muhammad Dies
618 C.E. Tang Dynasty Founded Following several battles, the Muslims retake Mecca
The Tang dynasty is founded by Li Yuan and his son and establish a Muslim community; following the
Li Shimin at the fall of the Sui dynasty. It inaugurated prophet Muhammad’s death Abu Bakr is chosen as
China’s second imperial age. the first caliph or leader.

618 C.E. Grand Canal 634 C.E. Omar Chosen as Second Caliph
By the fall of the Sui dynasty the Grand Canal has Omar, known as the “second founder of Islam,”

xviii Chronology

establishes a single authoritative version of the Qur’an Ali is assassinated by opponents, thereby ending the
and presides over the rapid expansion of the Muslim age of the “rightly guided” caliphs.
state. Within 100 years the Arab/Muslim state would
stretch from the Indus River in the east to Morocco in 660 C.E. Kingdom of Silla (Korea)
North Africa and Spain in the west. The kingdom of Silla, on the Korean Peninsula, con-
quers the Paekche and Koguryo Kingdoms. They
636 C.E. Battle of Yarmuk bring about the first unification of the Korean Pen-
The Arab/Muslim forces decisively defeat the Byz- insula.
antine Empire at the Battle of Yarmuk and rapidly
expand their new empire. 661 C.E. Umayyad Caliphate Established
Muaw’iya establishes the Umayyad Caliphate with
638 C.E. Arab Forces Take Jerusalem its capital at Damascus. He establishes a centralized
Having taken Damascus, Arab/Muslim forces take empire that incorporates many institutions and artis-
Jerusalem, the third most holy city in Islam, but grant tic forms from the older Byzantine Empire.
religious freedom to “people of the book,” Jews and
Christians. 673–678 C.E. Arab Forces Fail to Capture
642 C.E. Arab Conquest of Egypt Arab forces besiege Constantinople. The siege fails
Arab forces under the command of Amir ibn al-As due to both the strength of the city walls and a new
attack Egypt and in 642 Egypt surrenders. invention: “the Greek Fire” that caused havoc among
the Arab fleet. In 678, a 30-year peace treaty is nego-
644 C.E. Omar I Assassinated tiated.
While at prayers in the mosque at Medina, Omar is
assassinated by a Persian slave; Uthman, from the 680 C.E. Battle of Kerbala
powerful Umayyad family, is chosen as the third At Kerbala, in present-day Iraq, supporters of the
caliph. Umayyad Caliphate kill Ali’s son Husayn and his
supporters. This marks the split between the Sunni
645 C.E. Fujiwara Clan Muslims and Shi’i Muslims who believe that the line
This clan receives its name and rises to dominate of leadership for the Muslim community should fol-
Japan under the emperor as a result of a coup d’état. low through Ali and the Prophet’s family; Husayn
becomes a martyr to the Shi’i community.
645 C.E. Taika Reform
Great political and economic changes that are made 680–1018 C.E. First Bulgarian Empire
in Japan according to the Chinese model. The first Bulgarian Empire is created when the Bul-
gars defeat the Byzantines.
650 C.E. Fall of Teotihuacán
Partial destruction and abandonment of Classic-era 685 C.E. Caliph Abd al-Malik
city-state of Teotihuacán in the Basin of Mexico. Under Abd al-Malik I, reigned 685–705, Arabic
becomes the major language of the Umayyad Empire
656 C.E. Ali Selected as the Fourth Caliph and the and the first Arab/Muslim coins are minted at Damas-
Battle of the Camel cus; his further centralization of the empire causes
Following Uthman’s assassination by rebels, Ali, the internal disputes.
prophet Muhammad’s son-in-law, is selected caliph.
However, the succession is opposed by the Umayyads 690–705 C.E. Empress Wu of China
and A’isha, the Prophet’s favorite wife, who astride a Wu Hou becomes the first female ruler of China after
camel leads forces against Ali at what becomes known serving as regent upon her husband’s death.
as the Battle of the Camel, but Ali’s supporters win.
700 C.E. Chinese Invent Gunpowder
657 C.E. Battle of Siffin The Chinese combine saltpeter, sulfur, and carbon
At the Battle of Siffin, Muaw’iya of the Umayyad to create gunpowder. It is initially used for fire-
family challenges Ali’s supremacy and wins. In 661, works.
Chronology xix

700 C.E. Srivijaya Empire (Indonesia) dynasty with its initial capital at Kufa in present-day
The Srivijaya Empire becomes the leading power Iraq.
in Indonesia. The Srivijayas originated in south-
ern Sumatra. They control commercial trade routes 751 C.E. Battle of Talas River
through the islands. The Chinese army is defeated by forces of the caliph
near Samarkand. China withdraws from Central Asia
701 C.E. Taiho Code as a result.
Elaborate Chinese-style law code is adopted by Japan
as it developed a system of government based on the 754 C.E. Pepin the Short Founds the Carolingian
Chinese model. Dynasty
Pope Stephen II sanctifies Pepin as both king of the
707 C.E. Muslim Army Conquers Tangiers Franks and king of the Frankish Church.
Tangiers is captured by Muslim armies, and the ter-
ritory is placed under a governor appointed by the 755–763 C.E. An Lushan Rebellion
Umayyad Caliphate in Damascus. Though put down, the Tang dynasty never recovers
from the rebellion’s effects.
710 C.E. Nara
Nara becomes Japan’s first permanent capital, modeled 756 C.E. Abd al Rahman III Rules Andalusia
on the Chinese capital Chang’an. The court moves to Under Abd al Rahman III, reigned 756–788, of the
Heian in 794. Umayyad Caliphate, Córdoba, in present-day Spain,
becomes one of the richest cities in the world and a
711 C.E. Islamic Conquest of Spain center for scholarship and the arts.
The Islamic conquest of Spain begins when Tariq,
a Muslim general, crosses the Straits of Gibraltar 762 C.E. Abbasid Caliphate under al-Mansur and the
(Jabal Tariq). His army of 7,000 men defeats Rod- Construction of Baghdad
erick, the last king of the Visigoths, and Spain (or The Abbasid Caliph Abu Jafar, or al-Mansur, reigned
Andalusia) becomes a Muslim territory for almost 754–775, builds a new capital, Baghdad, on the west
800 years. bank of the Tigris River. A circular fortress, the city
becomes one of the largest and richest in the world.
712–756 C.E. Tang Xuanzong
Xuanzong’s reign marks the zenith of Tang culture. 771 C.E. Charlemagne
It is the golden age of Chinese poetry. It ends in the Charlemagne becomes the Frankish ruler in the
disasterous An Lushan Rebellion. east after the death of his brother Caroman I. Until
his brother’s death, Charlemagne had ruled the
730 C.E. Khazars Defeat Arab/Muslim Forces Neustri and Aquitaine. In a series of campaigns,
The Khazar commander Barjik leads Khazar troops Charlemagne expands his empire to include all of
through the Darial Pass to invade Azerbaijan. At the Germany.
Battle of Ardabil, the Khazars defeat an entire Arab
army. The Khazars then conquer Azerbaijan and 774–842 C.E. Uighur Empire
Armenia and, for a brief time, northern Iraq. Seminomadic state on the western border of the Tang
Empire in China. Uighurs were vassals and trouble-
732 C.E. Battle of Tours some allies of the Tang.
At the Battle of Tours, the Franks, under Charles
Martel, defeat a Muslim expedition led by Abd al- 780–809 C.E. Golden Age of Islam and Harun al-
Rahman; this marks the furthest incursion of Muslim Rashid
forces into western Europe. Under Harun al-Rashid, reigned from 786–809, and his
son Mamun, reigned 813–833, the Abbasid Caliphate
750 C.E. Abu al-Abbas Founds the Abbasid Dynasty reaches the zenith of its power and glory and is memo-
Having taken most of Iran and Iraq, Abu al-Abbas rialized in the Arabian Nights. An academy for study of
and his followers overthrow the Umayyad dynasty sciences and other disciplines, Bayt al Hikmah, becomes
centered in Damascus and establish a new Abbasid the center for scholars from around the world.
xx Chronology

794 c.e. Heian Founded becomes the sole ruler of the Byzantine Empire. Basil
The Heian period in Japanese history begins when the creates what became known as the Macedonian
emperor moves the capital from Nara to a site near dynasty that lasts until 1076.
that of present-day Kyoto. The Heian period was
noted for its high culture. 872 c.e. Harold I King of Norway
Harold I creates modern Norway by deposing many
800 c.e. Charlemagne, Roman Emperor of the West of the petty chieftains to unify the country.
Charlemagne is crowned emperor of the West by
Pope Leo III on December 25th—Christmas Day—in 878 c.e. Alfred the Great
St. Peter’s Church. Alfred the Great wins a major victory over the Danes
in the Battle of Edington in southern England.
800–900 c.e. Terminal Classic Period in Maya Zones
Transition from the Late Classic to the Terminal 900 c.e. Ghanaian Kingdom in West Africa
Classic period in the Maya lowlands of Meso­ The Kingdom of Ghana, made rich on the trade of
america. salt and gold, dominates West Africa.

802 c.e. Angkor Period 900 c.e. Mesoamerican Civilizations

The Angkor period begins in 802, when Jayavarman Fall of the Zapotec city-state of Monte Albán in Oax-
II establishes his capital at Angkor. Jayavarman unites aca Valley in Mexico, and the height of Classic Vera-
all of Cambodia and achieves independence from cruz states along Mexican gulf coast.
907 c.e. Five Dynasties in China
843 c.e. Treaty of Verdun At the fall of the Tang dynasty, China is divided
Under the Treaty of Verdun, the Carolingian Kingdom between 907 and 959, known as the period of Five
is divided into three parts. Louis II rules the Frankish Dynasties. Five short-lived dynasties successively rule
Kingdom east of the Rhine; Lothair I rules northern parts of North China while 10 kingdoms rule parts of
Italy, part of France, and Belgium; and Charles II (the southern China.
Bald) rules the western Frankish Empire, consisting of
most of present-day France. 911 c.e. Treaty of St-Clair-sur-Epte
The Treaty of St-Clair-sur-Epte is signed. Under the
851 c.e. Danish Vikings Sack London terms of the treaty, the kingdom of Normandy is
Danish Vikings sailed up the Thames in 851. They established; Rollo the Viking becomes the first ruler,
sack London and Canterbury but are defeated at and he converts to Christianity.
Ockley by the king of the West Saxons.
916–1125 c.e. Liao Dynasty in Northeastern China
860 c.e. Khazar Kings Convert to Judaism A nomadic people called Khitan establish a state in
The Khazar kings convert to Judaism. A Jewish northeastern China and force the Song to pay annual
dynasty of kings presides over the Khazar Kingdom tribute.
until the 960s.
918 c.e. Koryo Dynasty Founded
862 c.e. Rurik Leads Viking Raids, Founded Russia The Koryo dynasty is founded by Wang Kon, who
The Viking chieftain Rurik leads raids on northern unites Korea. This dynasty remains in power until
Russia, marking the beginning of the imperial Rus- 1392.
sian period.
945 c.e. Collapse of the Abbasid Caliphate and
866–1160 c.e. Fujiwara Period Establishment of Buyid Dynasty
The Fujiwara period begins in Japan in 866. Fujiwara Ahmad Ibn Buwa, a Shi’i from Iran, takes Baghdad
Mototsune becomes the first civilian dictator. and is made caliph.

867 c.e. Basil Founded Macedonian Dynasty 955 c.e. Otto the Great Defeats Magyars
Basil has his co-emperor Michael III murdered and Otto the Great defeats the Magyars in 955 c.e. at the
Chronology xxi

Battle of Lechfeld. This ends 50 years of Magyar raids 1014 C.E. Basil II Defeats the Bulgarians
on western Europe. The Byzantine Emperor Basil II routs the Bulgarians
at the Battle of Cimbalugu.
960 C.E. Song Dynasty Founded
The Song dynasty is founded by Zhao Kuangyin, who 1016 C.E. Canute II Rules All of England
reigns as Emperor Taizu. Even at its height, the Song On the death of Ethelred II, the king of England,
dynasty (960–1126) does not rule the entire Chinese Edmund II succeeds to the throne. Following his
world. Kaifeng becomes the capital. death, Canute II, a Dane, is chosen by the Witan, the
advisory council to the king.
962–1886 C.E. The Ghaznavids
The Ghaznavid dynasty is founded by Subaktagin, 1025 C.E. Boleslas, First King of Poland
a Turkish slave who converts to Islam. The dynasty Poland gains independence from the Holy Roman
establishes itself in present-day Afghanistan. Empire when Boleslas I is crowned the first Polish
king at Gniezno.
962 C.E. Otto I Emperor of Rome
Otto the Great is crowned Holy Roman Emperor by 1031 C.E. The Umayyad Caliphate of Spain Dissolves
Pope John XII and revives the power of the Western After 30 years of anarchy, the Umayyad Caliphate
Roman Empire. of Spain dissolves after the death of Hisham III and
Andalusia (Spain) is divided into a number of small
968 C.E. The Fatimid Dynasty in Egypt Muslim states.
The Fatimids establish a Shi’i Muslim dynasty in
Egypt. 1038–1227 C.E. Xixia a State in Western China
Proto-Tibetan Xixia—a Buddhist state—was Genghis
970 C.E. Al-Azhar, Islamic University, Founded by Khan’s first victim, destroyed by the Mongols.
Fatimid Dynasty
The Fatimid dynasty in Egypt founds the al-Azhar Uni- 1050 C.E. Kingdom of Ghana at Its Most Powerful
versity in Cairo that becomes the premier educational The kingdom of Ghana at its most powerful but it
center in the Islamic world. begins to decline in the 1070s.

980–1037 C.E. Ibn Sina (Avicenna), Foremost 1055 C.E. Seljuk Turks Take Baghdad
Philosopher and Medical Scholar The Seljuk Turks, under the command of Tughril,
Ibn Sina, born in Iran, spent most of his academic reigned 1038–63, capture Baghdad from the Buyids
career in Baghdad, where he wrote extensively on in 1055.
medicine, religion, and philosophy.
1057 C.E. Anawratha Unites Burma
989 C.E. The Peace of God Anawratha, the Burmese king of Pagan, conquers the
The Peace of God is passed at the Council of Char- Mon kingdom of Thaton. For the first time, all of
roux. It is supported by Hugh Capet, king of France. Burma is under unified rule.
The Peace of God attempts to reduce feudal warfare
by limiting private wars to certain parts of the year, 1066 C.E. Normans Win at the Battle of Hastings
and by providing protection for noncombatants. At the Battle of Hastings, William the Conqueror
defeats Harold II, king of England. The victory leads
1000 C.E. Tale of Genji to the complete domination of England by the Nor-
Murasaki Shikibu, author of what some claim is the mans.
world’s first novel, used the Japanese written form—
called kana—to describe Japanese court life. 1071 C.E. Battle of Manzikert
At the Battle of Manzikert, in present-day Turkey, the
1000 C.E. Zimbabwean Complex in Southern Africa Seljuk Turks led by Alp Arslan defeat the Byzantine
The massive stone complex at Zimbabwe is one of the forces and capture the Byzantine emperor, Romanus
largest Bantu cites and serves as a capital for several IV. The Seljuks subsequently take most of Asia Minor
Bantu rulers. and gain control over trade routes used by Christian
xxii Chronology

pilgrims to reach Jerusalem. The persecution and the seminomadic Jin dynasty and ending the North-
harassment of Christians is a contributing cause to ern Song.
the Crusades.
1127–1129 c.e. Tului Khan Regent of Mongol Empire
1076 c.e. Kingdom of Ghana Defeated by Amoravids Tului is the youngest son of Genghis Khan. His two
The Berber Almoravids who control most of Morocco sons, Mongke and Kubilai, later become grand khans.
conquer the Kingdom of Ghana; its capital Koumbi
Saleh is sacked but the Almoravids are soon forced 1141 c.e. Yue Fei Murdered
to withdraw. General Yue led a successful campaign to recover
North China from the invading Jin dynasty. His mur-
1085 c.e. Alfonso VI Conquers Toledo der in jail by leaders of the Southern Song govern-
Alfonso VI, the Christian king of León and Castile, ment led to peace between the Song and Jin, with the
captures Toledo from the Almoravids and makes it Jin controlling northern China.
his capital.
1143 c.e. Afonso I King of Portugal
1094 c.e. El Cid Takes Valencia Under the terms of the Treaty of Zamora in 1143,
Rodrigo Díaz de Vivar, known as El Cid, captures the independence of Portugal is recognized. Afonso I
the Moorish kingdom of Valencia after a nine-month becomes the first king.
1147 c.e. Second Crusade
1095–1099 c.e. Christian Crusades against the Seljuk The Second Crusade is organized by Louis VII, king
Turks and Muslims of Spain and Conrad III, king of Germany. The cru-
The First Crusade begins with a call by Pope Urban sade comes to a disastrous end due to a lack of lead-
II for Christian states to free the Holy Land from the ership.
Muslim Seljuk Turks.
1147 c.e. Almohads Conquer Morocco
1099 c.e. Crusaders Arrive in Jerusalem Morocco is conquered by Abd al-Mumin, the leader
The crusaders capture Jerusalem and kill thousands of the Berber Muslim Almohad dynasty. This con-
of Muslims, Jews, and eastern Orthodox Chris- quest ends the Almoravid dynasty.
tians indiscriminately. The Crusades establish feu-
dal states in the territories they hold in the eastern 1157 c.e. Eric IX Defeats the Finns
Mediterranean. Eric IX, Christian king of Sweden, defeats the Finns
and forces them to convert to Christianity.
1100 c.e. Fall of Chichén Itzá
Approximate date of the fall of the Maya Postclassic 1163 c.e. Gothic Architecture and the Building of
state of Chichén Itzá in the northern lowlands. Notre-Dame
Construction of one of the most notable Gothic
1113 c.e. Khmer Empire Reaches Peak churches, Notre-Dame in Paris, begins.
The Khmer Empire in present-day Cambodia is estab-
lished in 600 and reaches its peak under Suryavarman 1168 c.e. Oxford Founded
II. The school of Oxford is founded in 1168 in England,
the oldest university in the English-speaking world.
1115–1234 c.e. Jin Dynasty in North China
The seminomadic Jurchen in northeastern China 1171 c.e. Saladin (Salah ad-Din) Founds the Ayyubid
destroy the Liao dynasty and establish the Jin dynas- Dynasty
ty. Then the Jin drive the Song out of North China. Saladin, reigned 1174–93, abolishes the Shi’i Fatimid
Thus the Song is divided into the Northern Song Caliphate in Egypt and establishes the Sunni Muslim
(960–1127) and Southern Song (1127–1279). Ayyubid dynasty.

1125 c.e. Song Huizong is Captured by Jin 1171 c.e. Henry II Invades Ireland
Huizong’s disastrous reign results in his capture by Henry II, king of England, responds to a request for
Chronology xxiii

help from Ireland’s deposed king Dermot MacMur- 1200 c.e. Rise of Mayapán
rough by sending forces to Ireland. Approximate date of the rise of the city-state of May-
apán in the Maya northern lowlands.
1174 c.e. William the Lion Defeated
Henry II defeats William the Lion, king of Scotland, at 1200 c.e. University of Paris Founded
the siege of Alnwick Castle. Philip II, king of France, issues a charter to establish
the University of Paris.
1176 c.e. Frederick I Barbarossa Defeated
The Holy Roman Emperor Frederick I (Barbossa) is 1202 c.e. Fourth Crusade
decisively defeated by the Lombard League at Legna­ The Fourth Crusade begins at the behest of Emperor
no and therefore fails to take northern Italy. Henry, king of Sicily. Pope Innocent III issues a call to
European monarchs to participate in the crusade. The
1180–1185 c.e. Gempei Wars call is answered primarily by French nobles.
Wars in Japan between two prominent clans. The
Taira clan won the first round and became shogun. 1202 c.e. Danish Empire
The Minamoto clan won the second round and gained Valdemar II succeeds to the Danish throne and
control of the country; established the Kamakura expands the Danish empire to include northern Ger-
Shogunate. many.

1181 King Lalibela Rules Ethiopia 1204 c.e. Crusaders Capture Constantinople
Under King Lalibela massive stone churches are con- Crusaders capture Constantinople in 1204; they
structed in Ethiopia. kill many Eastern Orthodox Christians and pillage
the city; this is a devastating blow to the Byzantine
1187 c.e. Saladin (Salah ad Din) wins the Battle of Empire, and the city never regains its former power.
Hittin against the Crusaders
At the Battle of Hittin, Saladin decisively defeats the 1206 c.e. Genghis Khan
crusaders and retakes Jerusalem and most of the main Temujin is proclaimed Genghis Khan, or universal ruler,
cities in the eastern Mediterranean. after he unifies various Mongol tribes. His empire at
his death includes northern China, Korea and Central
1186 c.e. Second Bulgarian Empire Asia to the Caspian Sea and Don River in Russia.
A successful revolt takes place against the Byzantine
rule of Bulgaria. This establishes the second Bulgarian 1215 c.e. Magna Carta
empire that lasts until 1396. In 1215, a group of determined barons force King
John of England to sign the Magna Carta, under which
1192 c.e. The Third Crusade the British aristocracy is granted the rights of trial by
Spurred by Saladin’s triumph, the Christians launch jury and protection from arbitrary acts by the king.
the Third Crusade, led by Richard the Lionhearted.
Following a two-year siege, the crusaders capture 1217 c.e. French-English Battles
Acre; Richard then negotiates a truce with Saladin With the death of King John, civil war divides
that ensures Christian access to holy sites in Jerusa- En­gland. The French intervene and occupy parts of
lem, but the crusaders retain only a small area along England, but the French are defeated by the English
the coast and the island of Cyprus. at the Battle of Lincoln and then lose their fleet at the
naval Battle of Sandwich.
1199 c.e. Richard the Lionhearted Dies
Richard the Lionhearted dies of an arrow wound 1222–1282 c.e. Nichiren
while besieging Chalus in western France. Nichiren, a Japanese monk, founds a sect based on a
militant and nationalist interpretation of Buddhism.
1199 c.e. Rise of the Hojo
The Hojo clan controls Japan through marriage into 1227 c.e. Chagatai Khanate Established
the Minamoto clan, gaining control of the Kamakura Central Asia became domain of Genghis Khan’s second
Shogunate. son Chagatai and his descendants down to Timurlane.
xxiv Chronology

1227 C.E. The Golden Horde 1250 C.E. Seventh Crusade and the Founding of the
This Mongol Khanate ruled Russia through Genghis Mamluk Dynasties
Khan’s eldest son, Juji. In 1250, the Seventh Crusade is defeated by Egyp-
tian forces led by Turanshah who captures Louis IX
1229 C.E. Crusaders Retake Jerusalem whom he releases after the payment of a ransom. The
The Sixth Crusade, led by Frederick II, gains con- Mamluks, former slaves and professional soldiers,
trol of Jerusalem through a diplomatic settlement subsequently overthrow Turanshah and continue to
with Malik al-Kamil, a nephew of Saladin. Under rule Egypt until 1517.
the agreement, the crusaders control Jerusalem but
the Ayyubids rule Damascus and control the valu- 1250 C.E. Mali King Sundiata Conquers Ghana
able trade routes to India and further east. Internal Sundiata, king of Mali (r. 1234–1255), conquers
disputes further weaken the crusader-state. the older Ghanaian kingdom in West Africa and
establishes a huge empire with its capital at Niani
1229–1241 C.E. Ogotai Becomes Khan on the Upper Niger. The empire becomes wealthy
Ogotai, Genghis Khan’s third son, is confirmed as the from its control of the trade of salt and gold.
second Mongol grand khan. He continues conquests
in China and eastern Europe. 1250 C.E. Migration of Aztecs
First wave of migration of the Mexica (Aztecs) from
1232 C.E. First Known Use of Rockets the northern deserts into the Basin of Mexico.
The Chinese use rockets in battle for the first time.
This demonstrated the military use of gunpowder. 1250–1280 Chinese Invent the First Gun
From this moment the use of gunpowder spreads rap- The technology for the manufacture of this weapon
idly around the world. reached Europe in the 1320s.

1235 C.E. Sundiata Defeats King Sumanguru at the 1251–1259 C.E. Mongke Made Fourth Grand Khan
Battle of Kirina Mongke is the grandson of Genghis Khan. He contin-
King Sundiata of Mali defeats the Ghanaian ruler ues Mongol expansion against Southern Song China
King Sumanguru at the Battle of Kirina, making Mali and in the Middle East. His death results in a civil war
a major power in West Africa. between his remaining brothers.

1236 C.E. Córdoba Taken from Muslim Rulers 1260 C.E. Battle of Ain Jalut
Ferdinand III captures Córdoba; after 1248 with the The Mamluks defeat the Mongols at the Battle of
capture of Seville, only Granada remains under Mus- Ain Jalut in Palestine, ending the Mongol threat to
lim rule in Andalusia, present-day Spain. Egypt.

1240 C.E. Nevsky Defeats the Swedes 1260 C.E. The Mamluk Sultan Baybars Defeats the
In 1240, Alexander Nevsky, a Russian prince, Crusaders
defeats the Swedes, near St. Petersburg. The Swedes The Mamluk sultan Baybars (r. 1260–1277), drives
invade at the request of Pope Gregory IX, who the crusaders out of most of their holdings.
wanted to punish the Orthodox Russians for help-
ing the Finns avoid conversion to Latin Catholi- 1260 –1294 C.E. Kubilai Khan Made Fifth Grand Kahn
cism. Kubilai’s election split the Mongol Empire. He
destroys the Southern Song and establishes the Yuan
1243 C.E. Seljuk Turks Crushed at Battle of Kosedagh dynasty centered in China.
The Seljuks are crushed by the Mongols at the Battle
of Kosedagh in present-day Turkey. 1271 C.E. Marco Polo
Marco Polo, accompanied by his father and uncle,
1244 C.E. Jerusalem Recaptured by Muslims sets off for China. They arrive at the court of the
Mamluks from Egypt take Jerusalem from the cru- Kubilai Khan, where Marco Polo serves Kubilai Khan.
saders. He later dictates The Travels about his adventures.
Chronology xxv

1273 C.E. Founding of the Habsburg Dynasty IV, moves the papacy to Avignon, France. Clement
The Great Interregnum from 1254 to 1273 ends, and rescinds Boniface’s pronouncements against Philip.
Rudolf I of Habsburg is elected Holy Roman Emper-
or. In 1278, the Habsburgs gain control over Austria 1314 C.E. Battle of Bannockburn, Scotland
and rule a dynasty that lasts until 1918. The Scots, led by Robert the Bruce, rout a larger force
led by Edward II, king of England.
1274 and 1281 C.E. Mongols Fail to Conquer Japan
Kubilai Khan’s naval expeditions fail to subjugate 1314–1317 C.E. Great European Famine
Japan. The second one involves an armada of 4,500 The worst famine to strike Europe occurs. It is wide-
ships and 150,000 men. It is destroyed by Japanese spread and affects all of northern Europe.
resistance and a typhoon.
1315 C.E. Swiss Victory
1282 C.E. King of Denmark Accepts Limitation of Power Swiss forces gain a victory over Leopold I (Habsburg),
Danish nobility forces Eric V to sign a Danish “Magna duke of Austria, at the Battle of Morgarten. The vic-
Carta.” This document establishes a Danish parlia- tory leads to an expanded Swiss alliance.
ment that meets once each year and the king is made
subordinate to the parliament. 1324–1325 The Mali King Mansa Kankan Musa
Makes Famous Pilgrimage to Mecca
1284 C.E. Genoa Defeats Pisa At the height of his powers as king of Mali, Mansa
The Republic of Genoa fights the rival Italian city- Kankan Musa and an enormous entourage laden with
state of Pisa. gold travel from West Africa to Arabia.

1291 C.E. Founding of the Swiss Confederation 1325 C.E. Foundation of Tenochtitlán
Three Swiss cantons form the League of the Three According to Aztec legend, the fulfillment of an
Forest Cantons in 1291; the league is established for ancient prophecy and year of the foundation of their
mutual defense. capital island-city of Tenochtitlán in the Basin of
1291 C.E. Fall of the Last Crusader Territory
In 1291 Acre, the last crusader territory, falls to Mus- 1337 C.E. Hundred Years’ War
lim forces. The Hundred Years’ War begins when Philip VI con-
tests the English claim to Normandy and other north-
1298 C.E. Scottish Rebellion against the English ern provinces in France.
The English under Edward I win a decisive victory
over the Scots at the Battle of Falkirk. The Scots 1338 C.E. Ashikaga Shogunate
rebelled under the leadership of William Wallace. Established by Ashikaga Takauji, the Ashikaga replaces
the Kamakura Shogunate in Japan. It lasts until 1573,
1300–1326 C.E. Osman Lays the Foundations of the though exercising effective power only during its first
Ottoman Empire century.
Osman (r. 1299–1326) leads his Ghazi warriors into
battle and extends his rule in the Anatolian Peninsula; 1340 C.E. Battle of Crécy
his son Orhan then takes Bursa that becomes the cap- A smaller British force under the command of Edward
ital of the new Ottoman Empire. III defeats a French army under the command of
Philip VI.
1302 C.E. Philip IV Calls Meeting of the Estates General
King Philip IV of France calls together representatives of 1347–1353 C.E. Black Death
the nobility, townspeople, and clergy for the first time; The Black Death (bubonic plague) that spread through-
the gathering becomes known as the Estates General. out Europe between 1347 and 1353 is the worst natu-
ral disaster in European history. It is estimated that of
1309 C.E. Avignonese Papacy a population of 75 million people, between 19 million
Pope Clement V, heavily influenced by King Philip and 35 million die.
xxvi Chronology

1356 Nanjing Capital of Ming Dynasty At Kosovo the Ottoman forces defeat the Serbs in a
After consolidating southern China, the founder of battle that becomes an important milestone in Balkan
the Ming dynasty establishes his capital in Nanjing history.
(Nanking). It remains capital until 1421 when it is
moved to Beijing (Peking). 1392 Yi Dynasty in Korea
Founded by General Yi Songgye, this dynasty (also
1356 C.E. Battle of Poitiers known as the Li dynasty), with the capital located at
At the Battle of Poitiers, Edward, the “Black Prince” modern-day Seoul, lasts until 1910.
of Wales, defeats the French. In the course of the bat-
tle, the French king, John II, is taken prisoner and 1397 C.E. Union of Kalamar
brought to England. Magaret, queen of Sweden, completes the conquest of
Denmark and Norway. She then forms the Kalamar
1362 C.E. Murad I Takes Title as Sultan of the Ottoman League, a union of all three countries.
Murad I takes the title of sultan of the Ottoman 1400 C.E. Kingdom of Malacca Founded
Empire and leads his forces into Thrace, taking Adri- The Kingdom of Malacca is founded on the Malay
anople, which then becomes the new Ottoman capital Peninsula in current-day Indonesia. Malacca, which
of Edirne. is founded by Paramesva, soon becomes the leading
maritime power in Southeast Asia.
1368 C.E. Ming Dynasty Established
Zhu Yuanzhang leads a successful revolt that expells 1400 C.E. Rise of Inca Empire
the Mongols from China. Zhu rules as Ming emperor The beginning of the rise of the Inca Empire in the
Taizu and begins the rebuilding of China. Peruvian highlands.

1369 C.E. Timurlane Conquers Empire 1402 C.E. Timurlane Defeats the Ottoman Sultan
A descendant of Genghis Khan, Timurlane sets out Bayezid at the Battle of Ankara
from Samarkand and conquers and despoils Russia, At the Battle of Ankara, Timurlane defeats Sultan
Afghanistan, the Middle East, and northern India. Bayezid; he dies in captivity and Timurlane turns over
the Anatolia territories to Bayezid’s sons.
1377 C.E. Ibn Khaldun as Pioneer in the Study of the
Philosophy of History 1403 C.E. Mehmed (Mehmet) I Reunites and Expands
Ibn Khaldun, born in present-day Tunisia, begins his the Ottoman Empire
pioneering study in the philosophy of history. Mehmed I (r. 1403–21), begins to reunite and expand
the Ottoman Empire after the loss to Timurlane.
1381 C.E. War of Chioggia
The Venetians and the Genoese fight in the War of 1403 C.E. Moveable Type Invented in Korea
Chioggia. The Genoese blockade the Venetians after This was an important improvement on the block
seizing Chioggia, but the Venetian fleet defeats the printing first invented and used in China in the ninth
Genoese thereby beginning the golden age of Venice. century.

1381 C.E. Peasants’ Revolt in England 1403 C.E. Yongle Becomes Ruler of the Ming
Peasants, led by Wat Tyler, rebel against high poll taxes, Yongle (Yung-lo) defeats his nephew and becomes
leading to reforms of the old feudal system in England. emperor of the Ming dynasty. He crushes the Mon-
gols, moves the capital from Nanjing to Beijing, and
1385 C.E. Portugal Free from Spain sends naval expeditions across the Indian Ocean to
The Portuguese, under John the Great, fight Castile the east coast of Africa.
at the Battle of Ajubarrota; their victory ensures the
independence of Portugal. 1405 C.E. Mongol Empire Divided
Timurlane, the leader of the Mongols, dies suddenly
1389 C.E. Ottomans Defeat the Serbs at the Battle of while preparing to attack Ming China. With his death
Kosovo the Mongol Empire rapidly falls apart.
Chronology xxvii

1405–1433 C.E. Explorations of Zheng He War between France and England continues on and
Ming admiral Zheng He (Cheng Ho) sails in six mari- off, despite various agreements for peace. In 1428, the
time expeditions. The expeditions showed the flag, English lay siege to the city of Orléans. Joan of Arc, a
cleared pirates, and promoted trade across Southeast young girl from Lorraine, begins to have visions and
Asia and the Indian Ocean. claims to hear voices; she convinces the French dau-
phin to provide her with a small army that liberates
1410 C.E. Battle of Tannenberg Orléans. However she is ultimately captured by the
The Poles and the Lithuanians defeat German knights English and put to death.
at the Battle of Tannenberg. Despite the victory, at the
Peace of Thorn signed in 1411, the Poles fail to gain 1431 C.E. Angkor Sacked
access to the sea. Angkor, the capital of the Khmer, is captured and
sacked by the Thai. The Khmer Empire is forced to
1415 C.E. Battle of Agincourt move its capital to the present site of the Cambodian
The English decisively defeat the French at the Battle capital Phnom Penh.
of Agincourt. As a result, the French nobility is shat-
tered and the feudal system is destroyed. Normandy 1433 C.E. Tauregs Occupy Timbuktu
lays open to reconquest by the English. In 1433–34 the nomadic Tauregs occupy Timbuktu;
this weakens the kingdom of Mali that would fall in
1415 C.E. Henry the Navigator Takes Ceuta the mid-15th century.
The Portuguese explorer and prince, Henry the Navi-
gator, captures Ceuta on the northern coast of present- 1435 C.E. Peace Treaty of Arras
day Morocco. This begins the Portuguese conquest of Duke Philip of Burgundy signs a peace treaty with
coastal areas and cities around Africa. Charles VI that recognizes Charles as the one king of
1420 C.E. Chinese Capital Beijing (Peking)
The second Ming emperor moves the capital of China 1438 C.E. Inca Dynasty Founded
from Nanjing to Beijing. The Inca dynasty that rules Peru until 1553 is founded
in 1438. Its founder is said to have been Pachacutec.
1420 C.E. Treaty of Troyes He rapidly expands the empire.
The French under Philip and England under Henry V
sign the Treaty of Troyes. Under the terms of the treaty 1440 C.E. Ewuare the Great Rules Benin
Henry becomes the king of both France and England. Ewuare the Great (r. 1440–73) rules a rich West Afric-
nan kingdom stretching from Lagos to the Niger.
1421 C.E. Murad II Enlarges the Ottoman Empire
Murad II (r. 1421–44; 1446–51) brings all of western 1444 C.E. Ottomans Win the Battle of Varna
Anatolia under his control and takes Salonica. In 1444 the Hungarians, the Byzantine emperor,
and the pope join forces in a crusade to defeat the
1424 C.E. France Invades Italy Ottomans and push them out of Europe; however,
Charles VIII, king of France, begins the Italian Wars Murad II commands a victorious Ottoman army
by invading Italy; Naples surrenders to Charles and at the Battle of Varna, marking the end of Western
he temporarily becomes the king of Naples. attempts to regain the Balkans and assist Constan-
1428 C.E. Aztecs Gain Predominance in Basin of
Mexico 1450 C.E. Printing Press Invented in Europe
Aztecs become the “first among equals” in the Triple In 1450 Johann Gutenberg invents the printing press,
Alliance with city-states of Texcoco and Tlacopán which revolutionizes communication and education.
in the Basin of Mexico, the beginning of the Aztec
Empire’s domination of much of central and southern 1450 C.E. Decline of Mayapán
Mexico. The Maya city-state of Mayapán splinters into numer-
ous petty kingdoms the in northern lowlands of Cen-
1429 C.E. Joan of Arc Frees Orléans tral America.