CHRONOLOGY

 

All dates are BC / BCE, before the Common Era. Due to the uncertainty of many dates in prehistory, dates are fixed at the midpoint between a range usually derived from radiocarbon dating results. Dates in brackets refer to the end of the given period. Natural events are italicised.

18 000      Mezin ivories, Ukraine (-15 000)

 

14 000      Gobustan rock art, Azerbaijan (-7000)

 

12 500      Late Glacial Maximum. Increasing rainfall in southern Levant (-9500)

 

11 000      Natufian culture horizon (-8500), cultivation techniques, southern Levant.

 

10 700      Hallan Çemi culture, pig domestication, southeast Turkey (-9210)

 

10 400      Hilazon Tachtit cave shaman burial, Israel (-10 000). Natufian culture

 

10 078      Wadi Faynan, Jordan (-8220)

 

10 000      Younger Dryas event (Clovis Comet hypothesis). Colder, drier climate worldwide (-9600)

                  Increased rainfall in North Africa, 'Green Sahara' (-5500)

 

                   Tell Qaramel (stone towers -9650) and Mureybet, Syria (-8000). Jericho communal buildings,                      Jordan. Late Natufian culture

 

9800          Nemrik 9, northern Iraq (-8270)

 

9700          Göbekli Tepe layer III, southeast Turkey (-9400)

 

9650          Jerf al-Ahmar, Syria (-8610), Mureybet culture horizon

 

9600          Netiv Hagdad, Levant-Jordan. Abu Hureyra, Syria. Year round farming in the Levant, long                           distance trade. Natufian culture (-8500)

 

9400          Rapid growth of cereal use in the Middle East

 

9300          Mureybet, token system, Mureybet culture, Syria (-8600)

 

9100          Göbekli Tepe Enclosures D and C, layer II (-8600), Taşlı Tepe, Körtik Tepe, Sefer Tepe,

                   Cafer Höyük, southeast Turkey. Şanlıurfa culture horizon (-7000)

 

9000           Karahan Tepe and Djade al-Mughara, Syria

 

                   Shigir Idol, Middle Urals, Russia

 

                   Nabta Playa settled, southwestern Egypt

 

                   Roundhead culture Phase 1, Djado plateau, northeastern Niger (-6000)

 

8870          Zawi Chemi Shanidar, northern Iraq

 

8820          Amesbury settled, England

 

8800          Çayönü culture horizon, Syria (-8500)

 

8500          Nevalı Çori (-7000) and Hamzan Tepe, Turkey. (Şanlıurfa culture)

 

                   Çayönü 'skull building' and channelled building phase, Syria

 

                   Boncuklu Höyük, central Turkey (-7500)

 

8200          Aşıklı Höyük, Turkey (-7400) (Şanlıurfa culture)

 

                   Obsidian trade across the Middle East

 

                   Çayönü II, mixed animal domestication, Syria (-7150)

 

8000          Göbekli Tepe layer I (-7000), Karahan Tepe, Cafer Höyük, Yeni Mahalle, Adiyaman-Kilisik

                   and Aşikli Höyük, Turkey. Çayönü trade, farming. (Şanlıurfa-Çayönü culture horizon)

 

7550          Kiffian culture, Gobero, Niger (-6200)

 

7500          Çatalhöyük East, central Turkey (-6800)

 

                   Pastoral rock art, Sahara (-3000)

 

7400          Göbekli Tepe eradication begins. Şanlıurfa-Çayönü culture collapse horizon (-6900)

 

7300          Çayönü III-V, animal domestication (-7150)

 

                   Dotted Wavy Line pottery horizon, Niger

 

7200          Çayönü revolts and collapse, Nevalı Çori dismantled, Göbekli Tepe final dissolution (-6900)

 

7100          Jarmo, Iraq

 

7000          Maglemosian culture, Zealand (-6000)

 

                   Tazina rock art horizon, North Africa (-3500/2000)

 

                   Migrations between Scandinavia (Saami) and northern Africa (Amizagh) populations

 

6900          Tell Seker al-Aheimar, northeast Syria. Earliest ceramics in the Middle East (-6700)

 

                   Ship navigation in Sudan, North Africa

 

6800          Çatalhöyük East abandoned

 

6700          Cardial impressed pottery, North Africa and western Mediterranean

 

6600          Çatalhöyük West, central Turkey (-5500)

 

6500          Kösk Höyük, Tepecik-Çiftlik, central Turkey

 

                   Ubaid culture, Syria/Iraq (-4000)

 

                   Hassuna culture, Iraq (-3800)

 

                   Samarra culture, Syria/Iraq (-5500)

 

                   Hacilar, western Turkey (-4800)

 

                   Increased rainfall in Morocco (-5000)

 

6250         Climatic crisis ('8.2 kiloyear event', meltwater pulse reaches Northern hemisphere,

                  'Black Sea Flood event'). Aridification and cooling (-6000/5800). Mesolithic sites in

                  Spain abandoned (-5400). Sahara aridity and migrations to southern Spain and Portugal

 

6250          Tenerian culture, Gobero, Niger (-2550)

 

6200          Karanovo culture, Bulgaria (-5500)

 

6100         Nabta Playa ceremonial centre, cattle burials, southwestern Egypt (-5600)

 

6000         Starčevo-Criş-Körös culture (Eastern Linear Pottery culture) horizon,

                  eastern Hungary/Romania/Serbia/Montenegro/Bosnia/Croatia (-5250)

                  Old Europe civilization and Danube Script horizon

 

                  Roundhead culture Phase 2, Tassili n'Ajer, southeast Algeria (-3500)

 

                  Kongemose culture, southern Scandinavia (-5200)

 

5900         Ulucakhöyük, western Turkey

 

                  Cucuteni-Trypillian culture horizon; Romania, Moldova and Ukraine,

                  Old Europe civilization (-3400)

 

5800         Halaf culture, Syria and Iraq (-4500)

 

                  Uğurlu, northern Aegean, Greece. Danube Script horizon

 

                   Sesklo culture (middle period), Greece (-5300)

 

                   Ceramics and domestic animals in Algeria and northern Morocco (-4900)

 

5700         Hacilar, central Turkey (-5000)

 

5500         Çatalhöyük West decline

 

                  Hacilar destroyed and rebuilt

 

                  Merhgarh culture, Pakistan (-3500), Indus Valley civilization horizon

 

                  Linear Pottery culture (LBK) (-4500)

                  

                  Pronounced climate transition, increased dryness (-3100)

 

                  Bovidian style (naturalistic cattle) rock art, Sahara (-3900)

 

5450         Neolithic in western Algarve, Portugal

 

5400         Cattle in Algeria

 

                  Neolithic in Maghreb, western Sahara

 

                  Old Europe civilization mature stage:

                  Early Vinča-Turdaș culture, southeastern Europe copper and gold metallurgy (-4800)

                  Starčevo-Körös-Criş culture, central-southeastern Europe (-4500)

                  Karanovo-Gumelnita culture, Bulgaria and Romania (-4200)

                  Tiszapolgár culture, central Balkans (-4300)

                  Danube Script maturity (-4500)

 

5370         Tărtăria tablets, central Romania, Old Europe civilization (-5140)

 

5300         Ertebølle culture, southern Scandinavia and northern Germany (-3950)

 

                  Early Ubaid culture, Iraq (-4500)

 

                  Herxheim, Germany (LBK culture) (-4950

 

                  Cattle sacrifices, Messak Settafet plateau, Libya (-4100)

 

5200         Hamangia culture, Romania and Bulgaria (-4500), Old Europe civilization

 

                  Adrar Bous, Niger cattle burials (-4100)

 

                   Middle Pastoral culture, stone monuments, north Africa (-3700)

 

5000         'Neolithic Humid'. Wet, warm. Middle Holocene climatic optimum.

 

                   Domesticated cattle across the Sahara (-2500)

 

5000          Hacilar decline

 

                   Lengyel culture, Hungary, Old Europe civilization (-3400)

 

                   Tazina style rock art, Morocco (-2000)

 

4900          Ring enclosures in central Europe (eg. Goseck, Herxheim)

                   Stroke-Ornamented Ware (STK) (-4600)

 

4800          Megalithic building, Brittany and Portugal

 

                   Late Vinča-Turdaș culture, southeastern Europe (-4200). Old Europe civilization

 

4730          Uan Telocat rock shelter, Acacus Mountains, Libya

 

4700          Gumelniţa-Karanovo-Varna culture, eastern Bulgaria/Romania, Old Europe civilization (-4350)

 

4650          Vinča-Turdaș culture, southeast Europe, Old Europe civilization.

                   Tin-bronzes at Pločnik, Serbia

 

4625          Rossen culture, Germany (-4250

 

4600          Nabta Playa megalithic phase, Bunat El Ansalm people, southwestern Egypt (-3600)

 

4500          Amber bear from Jutland (Ertebølle), contact with LBK settlements in Limburg,

                   similar amulets from the Baltic

 

                   Plough introduced in Europe

 

                   Sumer, Iraq (-4001), proto-writing, Ubaid culture

 

                   Khvalynsk culture, middle Volga, Ukraine (-3500)

                  

                   Cucuteni-Trypillian culture migrations to Caucasus, Sredni Stog culture,

                   Kemi Oba culture, Ukraine (-3500 Yamnaya culture)

 

                   Karanova VI culture, Bulgaria

 

                   Bodrogkeresztúr culture, Romania

 

4400          Sredni Stog culture intrusion into eastern Europe (Early Proto-Indo European Wave 1)

                   (-4200/3900)

 

                   Old Europe civilization:

                   Varna culture, Bulgaria. Gold and copper metallurgy (-4100)

                   Boian culture, Romania / Bulgaria (-3500)

                   Classical Cucuteni-Trypillian culture; Romania / Moldova/Ukraine (-4000)

 

                   Badarian culture apex, cattle burials, Upper Egypt (-4000)

 

4200          Piora Oscillation / Early Subboreal climate event, cold period (-3800)

 

                   Gumelniţa, Karanovo VI, Varna Cultures abandoned,

                   decline of Old Europe civilization in the region (-3900)

                  

                   Susa founded, Ubaid culture, western Iran

 

                   Nabatya Playa, Egypt

 

4250          Carnac megaliths, Brittany

 

                   Alta petroglyphs, Norway

 

4000          Maikop culture, Western Caucasus (-3000)

                  

                   Funnelbeaker (TRB) culture horizon (-2800)

                  

                   Susa, Uruk, Sumerian civilization, Iraq/Iran (-3100)

 

3900          5.9 kiloyear event, worldwide migrations to river valleys, Sahara begins aridification

 

                   Late Pastoral culture, north Africa (-1700)

 

3800          Tell Brak massacres, advanced warfare in Syria (-3600)

 

                   Mild climate restored in Europe

 

                    Late Cucuteni-Trypillian culture; Romania, Moldova and Ukraine;

                    Old Europe civilization (-3500)

 

3700           Kemi Oba culture (Maikop culture), Western Caucasus and Ukraine (-2200)

                  

3600           Yamnaya culture, middle Volga, Ukraine (-2300)

 

3525           Mankhor, Algeria, cattle burials (-2865)

 

3500           Cucuteni-Tripolye culture peak population

 

                   Tell Hamoukar destroyed, Syria

 

                   Funnelbeaker/TRB culture, north Germany. 5000 megalithic tombs (-3200)

 

                   Sahara and Arabia desertification (-2500/1600, depending on location)

 

                   Naqada II, Egypt (Gerzeh culture) (-3200)

 

                   Yamnaya culture kurgan expansions into Europe (Indo-European Wave 2 hypothesis) (-3000),                    Maikop culture resulting in advances of "kurganized" hybrid cultures into northern Europe

                   around 3000 BC (Globular Amphora culture, Baden culture, and ultimately Corded Ware

                  culture)

                  

                   Wheeled vehicles north of Caucasus, Mesopotamia, Northern Europe (-3100)

 

                   Pit Grave culture peaks, Proto-Indo European society, Ukraine (-3000)

 

                   Proto-cuneiform writing, Iraq / Iran (-3100)

 

3300          Fertile Crescent Bronze Age

                  

3250          Potter's wheel in the Near East

 

                   Novosvobodnaya culture (Maikop), North Caucasus (-2900)

 

3200          Uruk IV, stone-cone temple, Iraq

 

                   Piora Oscillation (-2900), abrupt cold and wet period.

 

                   Proto-Elamite, Iran (-2700)

 

3114          Start of Mayan calendar

 

3102          Kali Yuga, India

 

3100          Sumer, Jemdet Nasr period (-2900), emerging bureaucracy, more inequality, Syria / Iraq

 

                   Cucuteni-Trypillian culture population at 15 000

 

3000          Burckle-Madagascar Impact hypothesis (-2800)

 

                   Cucuteni-Tripolye culture in decline, Old Europe civilization

 

2900          Sumer dynastic period, Iraq.

                   Gilgamesh

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