Human Civilization

13000 to 8000 BC

The Last Neolithic Societies

The Last Neolithic Societies

The Natufians were the first sedentary people despite the lack of developed agriculture (Image: Mortar and pestle from Nahal Oren, Natufian, 12,500–9500 BC).

12000 to 11000 BC

Göbekli Tepe

Göbekli Tepe

Göbekli Tepe (Turkey) is the oldest megalithic construction identified yet. At a time where most human groups had around 25 members, this structure contains over 200 pillars measuring..Read More

11000 to 9500 BC

Agriculture and Farming

Agriculture and Farming

In the final part of the Stone Age, farming is adopted around the world. Pigs, goats and sheep are domesticated around 11 000 BC, and founder crops (emmer..Read More

6000 to 5000 BC

Birth of Metallurgy

Birth of Metallurgy

The first traces of extractive metallurgy (copper smelting) were found between 6000 and 5000 BC in Serbia. These practices would usher in the Bronze Age a few millenia..Read More

4000 BC

Sumer, Writing and the Wheel

Sumer, Writing and the Wheel

By 4000 BC, Sumer has a dozen city-states in what is now southern Iraq. Along with complex society comes administration and, concurrently, the first form of writing (Cuneiform)...Read More

3300 BC

The Bronze Age

The Bronze Age

The combination of copper and tin (or other metals like arsenic) creates bronze – a stronger metal than those previously available. Technological and cultural progress rode upon this,..Read More

800 to 300 BC

the Axial Age

the Axial Age

After the Bronze Age, many empires collapsed and started the rebuilding process. The Axial Age saw the birth of Confucianism in Asia, Buddhism and Jainism in India, Jewish..Read More

First Century AD

Spread of Christianity

Spread of Christianity

After Jesus is crucified, his apostles and followers spread the word across Europe, the Middle East and Eurasia. They are persecuted until the Roman emperor Constantine the Great..Read More

9th to 13th Century

The Islamic Golden Age

The Islamic Golden Age

After its foundation in the 7th century, Islam’s Golden Age began around the year 800. This ushered in an era of scientific advancement, including progress in astronomy and..Read More

13th Century

The Mongol Invasion

The Mongol Invasion

The Mongol Empire spread by conquest during the 13th century, culminating in around 1300. It was one of the deadliest episodes in history, and helped the bubonic plague..Read More

14th Century

The Black Plague

The Black Plague

The Black Death (bubonic plague) reached Europe in the early 1300s due to the Mongol Invasion. It killed 75 to 200 million people between 1347 and 1350 alone.

1436-1450

The Invention of the Printing Press

The Invention of the Printing Press

Johannes Gutenberg was a German blacksmith, goldsmith and inventor who created the first printing press that applied pressure to an inked surface on text that rested upon a..Read More

15th to 17th Century

The Age of Discovery

The Age of Discovery

The Age of Discovery, as seen from a Europe-centrist view, refers to the period in which maritime exploration went further than ever before. This led to the birth..Read More

1500 - 1776

The Renaissance

The Renaissance

The Renaissance saw the birth of humanism and diplomacy, eventually leading to the Enlightenment philosophies. Men like Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Galileo give birth to the term..Read More

17th to 19th Century

Age of Enlightenment

Age of Enlightenment

Renaissance Humanism brings about an intellectual movement based on the sovereignty of reason and the separation of Church from State. Monarchy and the clergy are undermined, ultimately paving..Read More

1796

First Vaccination

First Vaccination

Edward Jenner develops the vaccine against smallpox.

Late 18th to Early 19th Century

The Industrial Revolution

The Industrial Revolution

The Industrial Revolution began in Great Britain. Factories, mechanisation, mass production and the steam engine would change the world, but lead to an acceleration in environmental damage.

Late 19th to Early 20th Century

Post-Industrial Revolution Progress

Post-Industrial Revolution Progress

After the Industrial Revolution, scientific and technological progress saw rapid advancements. Electricity was integrated into infrastructure in the late 19th century. Shortly after came the telephone and the..Read More

1914-1918

World War I

World War I

The first World War saw the collapse of the European Empires of Austria-Hungary, Germany, Russia and the Ottoman. The British and French kingdoms were severely weakened. This splintering..Read More

1928

Discovery of Penicillin

Discovery of Penicillin

Sir Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin, the first mould-derived antibiotic molecule. This was the silver bullet to many previously incurable bacterial infections.

1940 - 1945

World War II and the Atomic Bomb

World War II and the Atomic Bomb

The second World War prompted the first and hopefully last use of two atomic bombs over Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan.

1950 - 1960

The Green Revolution

The Green Revolution

The Green Revolution saw the introduction of mechanisation and chemical fertilisers in agriculture, greatly increasing yields but creating unsustainable practices and damaging the environment.

1955 - 1975

The Space Race

The Space Race

The post World War II order gave way to the Cold War, a contest for global influence between Russia and the US. A hallmark of this rivalry was..Read More

1960

The Contraceptive Pill

The Contraceptive Pill

One of the most overlooked yet important breakthroughs in human history is the contraceptive pill, allowing woman to take a more active role in their reproductive health.

1980

The GPS

The GPS

The Global Positioning System, provided by US-developed and owned satellites, helps the world to navigate on a daily basis.

1982 - 1995

The Internet

The Internet

Early internet technology was developed in the 1960s, and rudimentary versions were expanding in the early 1980s. The development of semi-conductors allowed for further enhancement. The internet as..Read More