Timeline of post-classical history

The following is a timeline of major events in post-classical history from the 5th to 15th centuries, loosely corresponding to the Old World Middle Ages, intermediate between Late antiquity and the early modern period.


This timetable gives a basic overview of states, cultures and events which transpired roughly between the years 200 and 1500. Sections are broken by political and geographic location.

Inca EmpireLate Intermediate PeriodWari EmpireEarly IntermediateAndean civilizationAztec EmpireToltecsTeotihuacanClassic stageMesoamericaMississippian culturePrecolombianHopewell traditionEthiopian EmpireZagwe dynastyKingdom of AksumSonghai EmpireMali EmpireGhana EmpireMamluk SultanateAyyubid dynastyFatimid CaliphateAbbasid CaliphateMuslim conquestsByzantine EmpireRoman EmpireJoseonGoryeoNorth South States PeriodSillaThree Kingdoms of KoreaSamhanMuromachi periodKenmu restorationKamakura periodHeian periodNara periodAsuka periodYamato periodKofun periodYamato periodYayoi periodMing DynastyYuan DynastySong DynastyFive Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms PeriodTang DynastySui DynastySix DynastiesJin dynasty (266–420)Three KingdomsHan DynastyGolden HordeChagatai KhanateMongol EmpireKhwārazm-Shāh dynastySamanidsMuslim conquestsHephthalitesScythiansVijaynagara EmpireDelhi SultanateChola EmpireMiddle kingdoms of IndiaGupta EmpireMiddle kingdoms of IndiaAg QoyunluTimurid dynastyIlkhanateSeljuk EmpireIranian IntermezzoCaliphateSasanian EmpireParthian EmpireClassical Age of the Ottoman EmpireRise of the Ottoman EmpireSultanate of RumByzantine EmpireRoman EmpireClassical Age of the Ottoman EmpireRise of the Ottoman EmpireSecond Bulgarian EmpireByzantine EmpireFirst Bulgarian EmpireByzantine EmpireRoman EmpireDiscovery of AmericaPortuguese discoveriesReconquistaCaliphate of CórdobaMuslim conquestsAl-AndalusVisigothic KingdomRoman EmpireEarly modern BritainEngland in the Middle AgesHeptarchyAnglo-Saxon EnglandSub-Roman BritainRoman BritainItalian WarsItaly in the Middle AgesFranciaLombard kingdomByzantine EmpireOstrogothic KingdomKingdom of Italy (476-496)Roman EmpireEarly modern FranceHundred Years' WarMedieval FranceWest FranciaCarolingian EmpireFranciaGermanic WarsRoman GaulImperial ReformHoly Roman EmpireEast FranciaCarolingian EmpireFranciaGermanic WarsGrand Duchy of MoscowGrand Duchy of LithuaniaGolden HordeMongol invasion of Rus'Kievan Rus'Rus' KhaganateMigration PeriodSarmatiansHunnic EmpireKalmar UnionNorthern CrusadesChristianization of ScandinaviaNorsemenViking AgeGermanic Iron AgeRoman Iron AgeCrisis of the Late Middle AgesMongol invasion of EuropeCrusadesUrbanizationManorialismFeudalismMigration PeriodRenaissanceLate AntiquityEarly modernModern ageAncient historyIron AgeLate Middle AgesHigh Middle AgesEarly Middle Ages
Dates are approximate range (based upon influence), consult particular article for details
Middle Ages Divisions, Middle Ages Themes Other themes

Early post-classical history

5th and 6th centuries some of the 7th centuries

Year Date Event Significance
c. 400 Highland Maya fall to the lowland city of Teotihuacan Begins the decline of Maya culture and language in some parts of the highlands.
405 St. Jerome finished the Vulgate. The Christian Gospel is translated into Latin.
410 August 24 Rome is sacked by Alaric, King of the Visigoths Decisive event in the decline of the Western Roman Empire.
431 June 22 – July 31 Council of Ephesus Confirmed the original Nicene Creed, and condemned the teachings of Nestorius, Patriarch of Constantinople, that led to his exile and separation with the Church of the East.
455 June 2 Rome is sacked by Genseric, King of the Vandals. Another decisive event in the Fall of Rome and held by some historians to mark the "end of the Roman Empire".
476 September 4 Odoacer deposes the Roman Emperor Romulus Augustulus Considered by some historians to be the starting point of the Middle Ages.
480 April 25 Death of Julius Nepos, last Roman Emperor to be recognized as such by the Roman Senate and the Byzantine Empire Considered by some historians to be the starting point of the Middle Ages.
493 March 15 Theodoric the Great killed Odoacer at a banquet after the Siege of Ravenna (490–493). The Ostrogothic Kingdom ruled Italy from 493 to 553.
c. 500 Tikal becomes the first great Maya city Significant cultural exchange between the Maya of Tikal and the citizens of Teotihuacan.
c. 500 Battle of Mons Badonicus. The West Saxon advance is halted by Britons in England. Chiefly known today for the supposed involvement of King Arthur but because of the limited number of sources, there is no certainty about the date, location, or details of the fighting.
507 Spring The Franks under Clovis defeat the Visigoths in the Battle of Vouillé. The Visigoths retreated into Spain.
c. 524 Boethius writes his Consolation of Philosophy It has been described as the single most important and influential work in the West on Medieval and early Renaissance Christianity.
525 Dionysius Exiguus publishes the Dionysius Exiguus' Easter table. This initiated the Anno Domini era, used for the Gregorian and Julian calendars.
527 August 1 Justinian I becomes Eastern Roman Emperor. Justinian is best remembered for his Code of Civil Law (529), and expansion of imperial territory retaking Rome from the Ostrogoths.
529–534 Justinian I publishes the Code of Civil Law. This compiled centuries of legal writings and imperial pronouncements into three parts of one body of law.
529 Benedict of Nursia founds monastery at Monte Cassino. The first of twelve monasteries founded by Saint Benedict, beginning the Order of Saint Benedict.
532 January 1 Nika riots in Constantinople. Nearly half the city being burned or destroyed and tens of thousands of people killed.
533 December 15 Byzantines, under Belisarius, retake North Africa from the Vandals. Vandal kingdom ends and the Reconquest of North Africa is completed.
535–554 Gothic War in Italy as a part of Justinian's Reconquest. Byzantines retook Italy but crippled the Byzantine economy and left Italy unable to cope against the oncoming Lombards.
563 Saint Columba founds mission in Iona. Constructed an abbey which helped convert the Picts to Christianity until it was destroyed and raided by the Vikings in 794.
568 The Kingdom of the Lombards is founded in Italy. Survived in Italy until the invasion of the Franks in 774 under Charlemagne.
c. 570 Muhammad is born. Professed receiving revelations from God, which were recorded in the Quran, the basis of Islamic theology, in which he is regarded as the last of the sent prophets.
577 The West Saxons continue their advance at the Battle of Deorham. Led to the permanent separation of Cornwall, England from Wales.
581–618 March 4 – May 23 Sui dynasty in China. China unified once again during this period for the first time in almost 400 years.
590 September 3 Gregory the Great becomes Pope. The missionary work reached new levels during his pontificate, revolutionized the way of worship for the Catholic Church (Gregorian chant), liturgy, etc., and was soon canonized after his death.
597 Augustine arrives in Kent. Christianization of England (Anglo-Saxons) begins.
598–668 Massive Chinese (Sui and Tang) invasions against Korean Goguryeo. Contributed to the fall of the Sui dynasty, and Goguryeo fell under the forces of the Tang and Silla.
c. 600 Deliberate fires set for unknown reasons destroy major buildings in Teotihuacan. Destroys the Teotihuacan civilization and empire. Tikal is now the largest city-state in Mesoamerica.

7th century

Year Date Event Significance
602–629 Last great Roman–Persian War. Long conflict leaves both empires exhausted and unable to cope with the newly united Arab armies under Islam in the 630s
604–609 Grand Canal in China is fully completed Its main role throughout its history was the transport of grain to the capital.
618–907 June 18 – June 1 Tang dynasty in China. The essential administrative system of this dynasty lasts for 286 years.
622 9 September – 23 September Muhammad migrates from Mecca to Medina. Event will have designated first year of the Islamic calendar, as Anno Hegirae.
626 Joint Persian–Avar–Slav Siege of Constantinople Constantinople saved, Avar power broken, and Persians henceforth on the defensive
627 December 12 Battle of Nineveh. The Byzantines, under Heraclius, crush the Persians.
632 June 8 Death of Muhammad By this point, all of Arabia is under the religion of Islam.
632–668 Establishment and expansion of Old Great Bulgaria. The demise of Old Great Bulgaria lead to the founding of the First Bulgarian Empire and Volga Bulgaria by the sons of Kubrat.
632 June 8 Accession of Abu Bakr as first Caliph. Though the period of his caliphate was not long, it included successful invasions of the two most powerful empires of the time.
633–634 Battle of Heavenfield. Northumbrian army under Oswald defeat Welsh army.
638 Jerusalem captured by the Arab army, mostly Muslims, but with contingents of Syrian Christians.
642 Battle of Nahavand. Muslims conquer Persia.
643 Arab Army led by Amr ibn al-As takes Alexandria.
645 In Japan, the Soga clan falls. This initiates a period of imitation of Chinese culture, The Nara period begins a year later.
650 Slav occupation of Balkans complete.
c. 650 The city-state Xochicalco is founded by the Olmeca–Xicallanca. Becomes an important cultural and commercial center.
663 Synod of Whitby. Roman Christianity triumphs over Celtic Christianity in England.
668 End of the Three Kingdoms period in Korea. Established a Unified Silla which led to the North–South States Period 30 years later.
674–678 First Arab siege of Constantinople. First-time Islamic armies defeated, forestalling Islamic conquest of Europe.
680 October 10 Slaughter of Hussain Ibn Ali, grandson of Muhammad by Umayyad Dynasty in Battle of Karbala. Thus Yazid I secured Umayyad rule form line of Muhammad for more than 60 years.
681 Establishment of the Bulgarian Empire. A country with great influence in European history in the Middle Ages.
685 Battle of Dun Nechtain. Picts defeat Northumbrians, whose dominance ends.
687 Battle of Tertry. Established Pepin of Herstal as mayor over the entire realms of Neustria and Austrasia, which further dwindled Merovingian power.
698 Arab army takes Carthage. End of Byzantine rule in North Africa
698 North–South States Period begins in Korea. Silla and Balhae coexisted in the south and north of the peninsula, respectively, until 926

8th century

Year Date Event Significance
711 Umayyad conquest of Hispania under Tarik. Will begin a period of Muslim rule in the Al-Andalus (with various portions of the Iberian peninsula) until nearly the end of the Fifteenth Century.
718 Second Arab attack on Constantinople, ending in failure. The combined ByzantineBulgarian forces stop the Arab threat in Southeastern Europe.
726 Iconoclast movement begun in the Byzantine Empire under Leo III. This was opposed by Pope Gregory II, and an important difference between the Roman and Byzantine churches.
732 October Battle of Tours. Charles Martel halts Muslim advance. Significant moment that led to the forming of the Carolingian Empire for the Franks, and halted the advancement of the Moors in southwestern Europe.
735 26 May Death of Bede. Bede was later regarded as "the father of English history".
750 25 January Beginning of Abbasid Caliphate. Would become the longest-lasting caliphate, until 1519 when conquered and annexed into the Ottoman Empire.
751 Pepin the Short founds the Carolingian dynasty.
754 Pepin promises the Pope central Italy. This is arguably the beginning of the temporal power of the Papacy.
768 Beginning of Charlemagne's reign.
778 15 August Battle of Roncevaux Pass. Caused the death of Roland, and elevated him into legend, becoming the role model for knights and influencing the code of chivalry in the Middle Ages.
786 14 September Accession of Harun al-Rashid to the Caliphate in Baghdad.
793 Sack of Lindisfarne. Viking attacks on Britain begin. Generally considered the beginning of the Viking Age that would span over two centuries, and reach as far south as Hispania and as far east as the Byzantine Empire, and present-day Russia.
794 Heian period in Japan. Considered to be the last classical period of History of Japan. Chinese influence was at its strongest during this era in Japan.
795 29 July Death of Offa. Marks the end of Mercian dominance in England.
800 25 December Charlemagne is crowned Holy Roman Emperor. With his crowning, Charlemagne's kingdom is officially recognized by the Papacy as the largest in Europe since the fall of the Roman Empire.
800 Gunpowder is invented in China (somewhere around 9th century)

9th century

Year Date Event Significance
814 28 January Death of Charlemagne. Would be a factor towards the splitting of his empire almost 30 years later.
820 Birth of Legendary Viking Ragnar Lodbrok
820 Algebrae et Alumcabola Algorithm Muhammad ibn Musa- al-Khwarizmi
825 Battle of Ellandun. Egbert defeats Mercians. Wessex becomes the leading kingdom of England.
827 Muslims invade Sicily. First encounter of attempts to conquer Byzantine Sicily, until the last Byzantine outpost was conquered in 965.
840 Muslims capture Bari and much of southern Italy.
843 Division of Charlemagne's Empire between his grandsons with the Treaty of Verdun. Sets the stage for the founding of the Holy Roman Empire and France as separate states.
843 Kenneth McAlpin becomes king of the Picts and Scots, creating the Kingdom of Alba.
862 Viking state in Russia founded under Rurik, first at Novgorod, then Kiev.
864 Christianization of Bulgaria. The emperor of Bulgaria Boris I was baptized in 864 and was named Michael. Bulgaria fall under the influence of Byzantine Empire.
866 Fujiwara period in Japan. Would become the most powerful clan during the Heian period in Japan for around three centuries.
865 Death of Ragnar Lodbrok Viking Great Army rises.
866 Viking Great Army arrives in England. Northumbria, East Anglia, and Mercia were overwhelmed.
868 Earliest known printed book Diamond Sutra in China with a date.
871 Alfred the Great assumes the throne, the first king of a united England. He defended England from Viking invaders, formed new laws and fostered a rebirth of religious and scholarly activities.
c. 872 Harold Fairhair becomes King of Norway.
874 Iceland is settled by Norsemen.
882 Kievan Rus' is established. Would be sustained until the Mongol invasion of Rus' over four and a half centuries, despite peaking during the middle 11th century during the reign of Yaroslav the Wise.
885 Arrival of the disciples of Saints Cyril and Methodius in Bulgaria Creation of the Cyrillic script; in the following decades the country became the cultural and spiritual centre of the whole Eastern Orthodox part of the Slavic World.
885–886 Vikings attack Paris.
893 Emperor Simeon I becomes ruler of the First Bulgarian Empire in the Balkans. Golden age of the First Bulgarian Empire (896–927). The Cyrillic alphabet was developed in the Preslav Literary School and Ohrid Literary School.
896 Arpad and the Magyars are present in Pannonia.
899 27 October Death of Alfred the Great.
c. 900 Lowland Maya cities in the south collapse. Signifies the end of the Classic Period of Maya history. The Maya in northern Yucatán continue to thrive.

10th century

Year Date Event Significance
907 Tang Dynasty ends with Emperor Ai deposed. The Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period in China commences.
910 King Edward the Elder of England, son of King Alfred, defeats the Northumbrian Vikings at the Battle of Tettenhall. Vikings never raid south of the River Humber again.
910 Cluny Abbey is founded by William I, Count of Auvergne. Cluny goes on to become the acknowledged leader of Western Monasticism. Cluniac Reforms initiated with the abbey's founding.
911 The Viking Rollo and his tribe settle in what is now Normandy by the terms of the Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte, founding the Duchy of Normandy.
913 Sri Kesari Warmadewa reigned in Walidwipa (Bali)
917 Battle of Anchialus. Simeon I the Great defeats the Byzantines. Recognition of the Imperial Title of the Bulgarian rulers.
919 Henry the Fowler, Duke of Saxony elected German King. First king of the Ottonian Dynasty. Henry I considered the founder and first king of the medieval German state.
925 The first King of Croatia (rex Croatorum), Tomislav (910–928) of the Trpimirović dynasty was crowned. Tomislav united Croats of Dalmatia and Pannonia into a single Kingdom, and created a sizeable state.
927 King Aethelstan the Glorious unites the heptarchy of The Anglo-Saxon nations of Wessex, Sussex, Essex, Kent, East Anglia, Mercia and Northumbria founding the Kingdom of England.
927 According to Theophanes Continuatus (The Continuer of Theophanes's Chronicle)Tomislav of Croatia defeated Bulgarian army of Tsar Simeon I under Duke Alogobotur, in battle of the Bosnian Highlands. Bulgarian expansion to the west was stopped.
927 Death of Simeon I the Great. Recognition of the Bulgarian Patriarchate, the first independent National Church in Europe.
929 Abd-ar-Rahman III of the Umayyad dynasty in al-Andalus (part of the Iberian peninsula) takes the title of Caliph or ruler of the Islamic world. Beginning of the Caliphate of Córdoba (929–1031).
936 Wang Geon unified Later Three Kingdoms of Korea.
938 Ngo Quyen won the battle of Bach Dang against the Chinese Southern Han army. This event marked the independence of Vietnam after 1000 years under the Chinese colony.
955 Battle of Lechfeld. Otto the Great, son of Henry the Fowler, defeats the Magyars. This is the defining event that prevents the Hungarians from entering Central Europe.
c. 960 Mieszko I becomes duke of Polans. First historical ruler of Poland and de facto founder of the Polish State.
960 Song Dynasty begins after Emperor of Taizu usurps the throne from the Later Zhou, last of the Five Dynasties. A 319-year period of Song rule (Northern & Southern combined) goes underway.
962 Otto the Great crowned the Holy Roman Emperor. First to be crowned Holy Roman Emperor in nearly 40 years.
963–964 Otto deposes Pope John XII who is replaced with Pope Leo VIII. Citizens of Rome promise not to elect another Pope without Imperial approval.
965–967 Mieszko I of Poland and his court embrace Christianity, which becomes the national religion.
969 John I Tzimiskes and Nikephoros II are executed. Sultane of Rums are proclaimed.
976 Death of John I Tzimiskes; Basil II (his co-emperor) takes sole power. Under Basil II zenith of the power of Eastern Empire after Justinian I.
978 Al-Mansur Ibn Abi Aamir becomes de facto ruler of Muslim Al-Andalus. Peak of power of Moorish Iberia under "Almanzor".
981 Basil II (called "Bulgar Slayer") begins final conquest of Bulgaria. Complete subjugation of the First Bulgarian Empire.
985 Eric the Red, exiled from Iceland, begins Scandinavian colonization of Greenland.
987 Succession of Hugh Capet to the French Throne. Beginning of Capetian Dynasty.
988 Volodymyr I of Kiev embraces Christianity, which becomes national religion.
989 Peace and Truce of God formed. The first movement of the Catholic Church using spiritual means to limit private war, and the first movement in medieval Europe to control society through non-violent means.

Middle post-classical history

11th century

Year Date Event Significance
c. 1001 Leif Erikson is to settle during the winter in present-day Canada at L'Anse aux Meadows. Ericson is to be the first European to settle in the Americas during the Norse exploration of the Americas.
1016 Canute the Great becomes King of England after the death of Edmund Ironside, with whom he shared the English throne. Danes become kings of England for the next 26 years before the last rise of the Anglo-Saxons before the Norman Conquest.
1018 The Byzantines under Basil II conquer Bulgaria after a bitter 50-years struggle. Concludes the Byzantine conquest of Bulgaria.
1021 The Tale of Genji, written by Murasaki Shikibu, is completed sometime before this date. It is sometimes called the world's first novel, the first modern novel, the first psychological novel or the first novel still to be considered a classic.
1025 The Canon of Medicine is written. Persian polymath Avicenna set the standard for medical textbooks through 18th century Europe.
1037 The Great Seljuk Empire is founded by Tughril Beg. Would be a major force during the first two Crusades, and an antagonist to the Byzantine Empire over the next century.
1049 Pope Leo IX ascends to the papal throne. Leo IX was the pope that excommunicated Patriarch of Constantinople, Michael Cerularius (who also excommunicated Leo), which caused the Great Schism.
1050 The astrolabe, an ancient tool of navigation, is first used in Europe. Early tool of marine navigators, astrologers, astronomers.
1050 Westminster Abbey is built. Notable religious building in England and a burial site for English monarchs.
1054 The East-West Schism which divided the church into Western Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. Tensions will vary between the Catholic and Orthodox churches throughout the Middle Ages.
1066 William the Conqueror, Duke of Normandy, invades England and becomes King after the Battle of Hastings. End of Anglo-Saxon rule in England and start of Norman lineage.
1067 Pope Gregory VII elevated to the papal throne. This begins a period of church reform.
1071 The Seljuks under Alp Arslan defeat the Byzantine army at Manzikert. The Normans capture Bari, the last Byzantine possession in southern Italy. Beginning of the end of Byzantine rule in Asia Minor.
1075 Dictatus Papae in which Pope Gregory VII defines the powers of the pope. Peak of the Gregorian Reform, and an immense factor in the Investiture Controversy.
1077 Holy Roman Emperor Henry IV walks to Canossa where he stands barefoot in the snow to beg forgiveness of the Pope for his offences, and admitting defeat in the Investiture Controversy. This helps establish Papal rule over European heads of state for another 450 years.
1077 The Construction of the Tower of London begins. The tower of London was the ultimate keep of the British Empire.
1086 The compilation of the Domesday Book, a great land and property survey commissioned by William the Conqueror to assess his new possessions. This is the first such undertaking since Roman times.
1088 University of Bologna is formed. Currently the oldest university in Europe.
1095 Pope Urban issues the Crusades to capture the Holy Land, and to repel the Seljuk Turks from the Byzantine Empire from Alexios I Komnenos. This would be the first of 9 Major Crusades, and a number of other crusades that would spread into the late 13th century.
1098 The Cistercian Order is founded. Was a return to the original observance of the Rule of St. Benedict.
1099 First Crusade. Jerusalem is re-taken from the Muslims on the urging of Pope Urban II. This would lead to the beginning of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, which would last for nearly two centuries; within the era of the Crusades to the Holy Land.

12th century

Year Date Event Significance
1100 Latin-translation of the great masters of Arabic medicine: Rhazes, Ishaq Ibn Imran, Ibn Suleiman, and Ibn al-Jazzar. Translated by Constantine the African.
1102 Kingdom of Croatia and Kingdom of Hungary formed a personal union of two kingdoms united under the Hungarian king. The act of union was deal with Pacta conventa, by which institutions of separate Croatian statehood were maintained through the Sabor (an assembly of Croatian nobles) and the ban (viceroy). In addition, the Croatian nobles retained their lands and titles. Medieval Hungary and Croatia were (in terms of public international law) allied by means of personal union until 1526. Although, Hungarian-Croatian state existed until the beginning of the 20th century and the Treaty of Trianon.
1102 Synods of Westminster. End of simony, clerical marriages, slavery under Anselm of Canterbury
1106 28 September Henry I of England defeats his older brother Robert Curthose, duke of Normandy, at the Battle of Tinchebrai, and imprisons him in Devizes castle; Edgar Atheling and William Clito are also taken prisoner. This victory made a later struggle between England and the rising Capetian power in France inevitable.
1107 Through the Compromise of 1107, suggested by Adela, the sister of King Henry, the Investiture Struggle in England is ended. This compromise removed one of the points of friction between the English monarchy and the Catholic Church.
1109 In the Battle of Naklo, Boleslaus III Wrymouth defeats the Pomeranians. Polish access to the sea is re-established.
1109 24 August In the Battle of Hundsfeld, Boleslaus III Wrymouth defeats Emperor Henry V. German expansion to the centre of Europe is stopped.
1116 The Byzantine army defeats the Turks at Philomelion. The Turks abandon the entire coastal area of Anatolia and all of western Anatolia
1117 The University of Oxford is founded. It is the oldest university in the United Kingdom.
1118 The Knights Templar are founded to protect Jerusalem and European pilgrims on their journey to the city. Becomes the most recognizable, and impactful military orders during the Crusades.
1121 25 December St. Norbert and 29 companions make their solemn vows marking the beginning of the Premonstratensian Order. This order played a significant role in evangelizing the Slavs, the Wends, to the east of the Holy Roman Empire.
1122 23 September The Concordat of Worms was drawn up between Emperor Henry V and Pope Calixtus II. This concordat ended the investiture struggle, but bitter rivalry between emperor and pope remained.
1123 18 March - 27 March The First Lateran Council followed and confirmed the Concordat of Worms.
1125 Lothair of Supplinburg, duke of Saxony, is elected Holy Roman Emperor instead of the nearest heir, Frederick of Swabia. This election marks the beginning of the great struggle between the Guelfs and the Ghibellines.
1125–1127 Jingkang Incident. The Jurchen soldiers sack Kaifeng, bringing an end to the Northern Song Dynasty in China; the Song moves further south and makes Lin'an their new capital.
1130 25 December Roger II is crowned King of Sicily, a Royal title given him by the Antipope Anacletus II. This coronation marks the beginning of the Kingdom of Sicily and its Mediterranean empire under the Norman kings, which was able to take on the Holy Roman Empire, the Papacy, and the Byzantine Empire.
1135 The Anarchy begins in England. This will mark a 19-year period of Government strife and Civil War between the supporters of Stephen and Matilda, and end with the crowning of Matilda's son, Henry II, and beginning the Plantagenet dynasty.
1139 April The Second Lateran Council declared clerical marriages invalid, regulated clerical dress, and punished attacks on clerics by excommunication. Enforces the major reforms that Gregory VII began to heavily campaign for several decades earlier.
1140 Decretum Gratian
1144 Rebuild of Basilica of Saint Denis Suger
1147–1149 The Second Crusade was in retaliation for the fall of Edessa, one of the first Crusader States founded in the First Crusade. It was an overall failure. This was the first Crusade to have been led by European kings.
1150 Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Barcelona, married Queen Petronilla of Aragon. They had been betrothed in 1137. This marriage gave the Kingdom of Aragon access to the Mediterranean Sea, creating a powerful kingdom which expanded to control many of the Mediterranean lands.
1150 Founding of the University of Paris
1152 The Synod of Kells-Mellifont established the present diocesan system of Ireland (with later modifications) and recognized the primacy of Armagh. This synod marks the inclusion of the Irish Church into mainstream European Catholicism.
1154 Common Law Henry II
1158 The Hanseatic League is founded. This marks a new period of trade and economic development for northern and central Europe.
1163 The first cornerstone is laid for the construction of Notre Dame de Paris. One of the most famous Gothic cathedrals of the Middle Ages
1166 Stefan Nemanja united Serbian territories, establishing the Medieval Serbian state. This marks the rise of Serbia which will dominate the Balkans for the next three hundred years. Allies of Serbia at this moment become the Hungarian Kingdom and the Republic of Venice.
1171 King Henry II of England lands in Ireland to assert his supremacy and the Synod of Cashel acknowledges his sovereignty. With his landing, Henry begins the English claim to and occupation of Ireland which would last some seven and a half centuries.
1174 7/12 King William I of Scotland, captured in the Battle of Alnwick by the English, accepts the feudal lordship of the English crown and does ceremonial allegiance at York. This is the beginning of the gradual acquisition of Scotland by the English.
1175 Hōnen Shōnin (Genkū) founds the Jōdo shū (Pure Land) sect of Buddhism. This event marks the beginning of the Buddhist sectarian movement in Japan.
1176 5/29 At the Battle of Legnano, the cavalry of Frederick Barbarossa is defeated by the infantry of the Lombard League. This is the first major defeat of cavalry by infantry, signaling the new role of the bourgeoisie.
1175 Latin-translation Gerard of Cremona
1179 church schools Third Council of the Lateran
1179 March The Third Lateran Council limits papal electees to the cardinals alone, condemns simony, and forbids the promotion of anyone to the episcopate before the age of thirty.
1183 The final Peace of Constance between Frederick Barbarossa, the pope, and the Lombard towns is signed. The various articles of the treaty destroyed the unity of the Empire and Germany and Italy underwent separate developments.
1183 The Taira clan are driven out of Kyōto by Minamoto Yoshinaka. The two-year conflict which follows ends at the Battle of Dan no Ura (1185).
1184 November Pope Lucius III issues the papal bull Ad Abolendam. This bull set up the organization of the medieval inquisitions.
1185 Windmills are first recorded.
1185 Uprising of Asen and Peter. The reestablishment of the Bulgarian Empire.
1185 At the Battle of Dan no Ura, Minamoto Yoshitsune annihilates the Taira clan. The elimination of the Taira leaves the Minamoto the virtual rulers of Japan and marks the beginning of the first period of feudal rule known as the Kamakura Period.
1186 1/27 The future emperor Henry VI marries Constance of Sicily, heiress to the Sicilian throne. This marriage shifts the focus of the Guelphs/Ghibelline struggle to Sicily and marks the ruin of the House of Hohenstaufen.
1187 Saladin recaptures Jerusalem. Would lead to the Third Crusade.
1188 Tractatus of Glanvil Oxford University
1189 July 6 Richard I ascends the throne of England. His heavy taxation to finance his European ventures created an antipathy of barons and people toward the crown, but his being absent enabled the English to advance in their political development.
1189 November 11 William II of Sicily died and was succeeded by Tancred of Sicily instead of Constance. A result to the displeasure of Constance and her husband Henry that would lead to expeditions in 1191 and 1194.
1189–1192 The Third Crusade follows upon Saladin's uniting the Muslim world and recapturing Jerusalem. Despite managing to win several major battles, the Crusaders did not recapture Jerusalem.
1191 May to August New Emperor Henry VI sets an expedition to conquer Kingdom of Sicily however fails and Empress Constance is captured. In 1192 Margaritus of Brindisi was created the first Count of Malta for capturing the empress; in the same year Pope Celestine III forced Tancred to release the empress.
1192 Minamoto no Yoritomo is appointed Sei-i Taishōgun, or shōgun for short. He is the first of a long line of military dictators to bear this title. The institution would last until 1913.
1193 Muhammad bin Bakhtiyar Khilji sack and burn the university at Nalanda. This is the beginning of the decline of Buddhism in India.
1193 The first known merchant guild.
1195 Battle of Alarcos The Almohad Caliphate decisively defeat the Kingdom of Castile. The Almohads pushed Christians to the north and established themselves as the supreme power in Al-Andalus
1199 Europeans first use compasses.

13th century

Year Date Event Significance
1202 The Fourth Crusade sacked Croatian town of Zadar (Italian: Zara), a rival of Venice. Unable to raise enough funds to pay to their Venetian contractors, the crusaders agreed to sack the city despite letters from Pope Innocent III forbidding such an action and threatening excommunication. Siege of Zara was the first major Crusade's action and the first attack against a Catholic city by Catholic crusaders.
1202 1 August Battle of Mirebeau. John of England captures Arthur I of Brittany and Eleanor, Fair Maid of Brittany sister of Arthur. John secured his English throne with Arthur disappeared in 1203 and Eleanor imprisoned till her death in 1241.
1204 Sack of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade. Considered to be the beginning of the decline of the Byzantine Empire.
1205 Battle of Adrianople. The Bulgarians under Emperor Kaloyan defeat Baldwin I. Beginning of the decline of the Latin Empire.
1206 Genghis Khan was elected as Khagan of the Mongols and the Mongol Empire was established. The Mongols would conquer much of Eurasia, changing former political borders.
1208 Pope Innocent III calls for the Albigensian Crusade which seeks to destroy a rival form of Christianity practiced by the Cathars.
1209 The University of Cambridge is founded.
1209 Founding of the Franciscan Order. One of the more significant orders in the Roman Catholic church, founded by Saint Francis of Assisi.
1212 Spanish Christians succeed in defeating the Moors in the long Reconquista campaigns, after the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa. By 1238, only the small southern Emirate of Granada remained under Muslim control.
1214 27 June Battle of Bouvines. King John of England gave up his ambition to recover his continental lands.
1215 15 June The Magna Carta is sealed by John of England. This marks one of the first times a medieval ruler is forced to accept limits on his power.
1215 Fourth Lateran Council. Dealt with transubstantiation, papal primacy and conduct of clergy. Proclaimed that Jews and Muslims should wear identification marks to distinguish them from Christians.
1216 Papal recognition of the Dominican Order.
1219 Serbian Orthodox Church becomes autocephalous under St. Sava, its first Archbishop.
1227 18 August Genghis Khan dies. His kingdom is divided among his children and grandchildren: Empire of the Great Khan, Chagatai Khanate, Mongolian Homeland, and the Blue Horde and White Horde (which would later become the Golden Horde).
1237–1240 Mongol invasion of Rus' resumes. Causes the split of Kievan Rus' into three components (present day Russia, Ukraine, Belarus), greatly affects various regions of raided lands in other parts of Europe; Golden Horde formed.
1246 Election of Güyük Khan. Güyük ruled the Mongol Empire from 1246 to 1248.
1250 Louis IX is captured at the last major battle of the Seventh Crusade.
1257 Opening of the College of Sorbonne.
1257 Provisions of Oxford forced upon Henry III of England. This establishes a new form of government-limited regal authority.
1258 29 January– 10 February Siege of Baghdad Mongols (the Ilkhanate) ensure control of the region; Generally considered the end of the Islamic Golden Age.
1258 The first Mongol invasion of Vietnam The Mongol army was defeated by emperor Tran Thai Tong of Đại Việt.
1272–73 The Ninth Crusade occurs. Considered to be the Last Major Crusade to take place in the Holy Land.
1273 29 September Rudolph I of Germany is elected Holy Roman Emperor. This begins the Habsburg de facto domination of the crown that lasted until is dissolution in 1806.
1274 Thomas Aquinas' work, Summa Theologica is published, after his death. Is the main staple of theology during the Middle Ages.
1279 19 March Battle of Yamen. Marks the end of the Song Dynasty in China, and all of China is under the rule of Kublai Khan as the emperor.
1282 Sicilian Vespers. Sicilians massacre Angevins over a six-week period, after a Frenchman, harassed a woman. Would mark a two-decade period of war, and peace treaties mainly between Aragon, Sicily, and the Angevins.
1283 First regulated Catalan Courts. Presided by king Peter III of Aragon for the whole Principality of Catalonia, it became in one of the first parliamentary bodies that banned the royal power to create legislation unilaterally.
1285 The second Mongol invasion of Vietnam. The Mongol army was defeated by emperor Tran Nhan Tong and general Tran Hung Dao.
1287 The third Mongol invasion of Vietnam. Decisive Vietnam victory. To avoid further conflict, Đại Việt agreed to a tributary relationship with the Yuan dynasty.
1293 Mongol invasion of Java. Failed invasion of the Javanese Majapahit Kingdom. Which led Majapahit to rise as a significant regional power.
1296 Edward I of England invades Scotland, starting the First War of Scottish Independence.
1297 11 September The Battle of Stirling Bridge. William Wallace emerges as the leader of the Scottish resistance to England.
1298 Marco Polo publishes his tales of China, along with Rustichello da Pisa. A key step to the bridging of Asia and Europe in trade.
1299 27 July The Ottoman Empire is founded by Osman I. Becomes longest lasting Islamic Empire, lasting over 600 years into the 20th century.

Late post-classical history

14th century

Year Date Event Significance
1305 Wednesday August 23 William Wallace is executed for treason.
1307 Friday, October 13th The Knights Templar are rounded up and murdered by Philip the Fair of France, with the backing of the Pope. Hastens the demise of the order within a decade.
1307 Beginning of the Babylonian Captivity of the Papacy during which the Popes moved to Avignon. Begins a period of over seven decades of the Papacy outside of Rome that would be one of the major factors of the Western Schism.
1310 Dante publishes his Divine Comedy. Is one of the most defining works of literature during the Late Middle Ages, and among the most recognizable in all of literature.
1314 23–24 June Battle of Bannockburn. Robert the Bruce restores Scotland's de facto independence.
1325 The Mexica found the city of Tenochtitlan. This would later be the epicenter and capital of the Aztec Empire until the Siege of Tenochtitlan 200 years later.
1328 The First War of Scottish Independence ends in Scottish victory with the Treaty of Edinburgh–Northampton and de jure independence.
1330 28 July Battle of Velbazhd.
1333 Emperor Go-Daigo returns to the throne from exile, and begins the Kenmu Restoration. The Kamakura shogunate comes to an end, and the Kenmu Restoration only lasts a few years before the Ashikaga shogunate begins.
1337 The Hundred Years' War begins. England and France struggle for a dominating position in Europe and their region. The war will span through three/four different war periods within a 116-year period.
1346 August 26 Battle of Crécy. English forces led by Edward III and Edward, the Black Prince defeat the French forces of Philip VI despite being outnumbered at least 4 to 1, with the longbow being a major factor in favor of England. Also considered to be the beginning of the end of classic chivalry.
1347 The Black Death ravages Europe for the first of many times. An estimated 20% – 40% of the population is thought to have perished within the first year. The first of many concurrences of this plague, This was believed to have wiped out as many as 50% of Europe's population by its end.
1347 The University of Prague is founded. It is the oldest Czech and German-Speaking University in the world
1364 Astrarium Giovanni de Dondi
1368 The fall of the Yuan dynasty. Its remnants, known as Northern Yuan, continued to rule Mongolia. The breakup of the Mongol Empire, which marked the end of Pax Mongolica.
1370 Tamerlane establishes the Timurid dynasty. During this 35-year period, Tamerlane would ravage his fellow Islamic states such as the Golden Horde and the Delhi Sultanate in order to accomplish his goal of a restored Mongol Empire.
1371 King Marko's realm is established, the capital is located in Prilep.
1378 The Western Schism during which three claimant popes were elected simultaneously. The Avignon Papacy ends.
1380 Prince Dmitry Donskoy of Moscow led a united Russian army to a victory over the Mongols in the Battle of Kulikovo. The first successful (temporary) attempt to overthrow the Tatar-Mongol yoke over the Russian principalities. Moscow becomes the center of unification of the northeastern Russian lands.
1380 Chaucer begins to write The Canterbury Tales. Chaucer's greatest work, and one of the foundations towards the formation of the Modern English language
1381 Peasants' Revolt in England. Quickest-spread revolt in English history, and the most popular revolt of the Late Middle Ages.
1381 The Bible is translated into English by John Wycliffe. First print published in English (Vulgate)
1386 October 18–19th The University of Heidelberg is founded. It is the oldest university in Germany.
1389 June 15 Battle of Kosovo in Serbia. This was in many respects the decisive battle between the Turks, led by Sultan Murat, and Christian army, led by the Serbs and their duke Lazar. The battle took place in Kosovo, the southern province of the Medieval Serbian Empire. After this battle Turkish empire continued to spread over the Balkans, to finally reach Vienna.
1392 Joseon dynasty founded in Korea. Becomes longest reigning Korean dynasty.
1396 The Battle of Nicopolis. The last great Crusade fails. Bulgaria was conquered by the Ottomans
1397 The Kalmar Union is formed. Queen Margaret I of Denmark unites the Denmark, Sweden, and Norway, and lasts until 1523.
1399 Richard II abdicates the throne to Henry of Bolingbroke, who becomes Henry IV of England. End of Plantagenet dynasty, beginning of the Lancaster lineage of kings.

15th century

Year Date Event Significance
c. 1400 Establishment of the Malaccan Sultanate. The earliest state that was unified on what is now modern Malaysia (except Sabah and Sarawak state).
1402 July 20 Battle of Ankara Bayezid I is captured by Tamerlane's forces, causing the interregnum of the Ottoman Empire.
1405 Chinese naval expeditions of Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean (to Eastern Africa) begin, under the leadership of Zheng He. This will be the first of seven of the Ming Dynasty-sponsored expeditions, lasting until 1433.
1409 Ladislaus of Naples sells his "rights" on Dalmatia to the Venetian Republic for 100,000 ducats. Dalmatia would with some interruptions remain under Venetian rule for nearly four centuries, until 1797.
1410 Battle of Grunwald Major turning point in history of Lithuania, Poland and the Teutonic Order.
1415 Kingdom of Portugal conquers Ceuta. Beginning of the Portuguese Empire. Beginning of the Age of Discovery.
1415 October 25 Battle of Agincourt. Henry V and his army defeat a numerically superior French army, partially because of the newly introduced English longbow. The turning point in the Hundred Years' War for 15th-century England that leads to the signing of the Treaty of Troyes five years later, making Henry V heir to the throne of France.
1417 The Council of Constance ends. The Western Schism comes to a close, and elects Pope Martin V as the sole pope.
1419 Hussite Wars begin after four years after the death of Jan Hus in central Europe, dealing with the followers of Jan Hus and those against them. Although the war was a stalemate (ended around 1434), it was another factor that[clarification needed] between the Catholics and Protestants before the Protestant Reformation.
1428 Itzcoatl, the fourth Mexica king in Tenochtitlán, allied with Texcoco and Tlacopan, defeats Azcapotzalco. Signifies the birth of the Aztec Empire and the start of an aggressive expansion lasting 90 years. Itzcoatl and his men began burning historic hieroglyphic books of conquered states, rewriting history with the Mexica at its center.
1429 Joan of Arc lifts the siege of Orléans for the Dauphin of France, enabling him to eventually be crowned at Reims. The battle at Orléans is the first of many which ultimately drive the English from continental Europe.
1431 30 May Trial and execution of Joan of Arc. Death of the woman who helped turn the Hundred Years' War in favor of the French over the past two years.
1434 The Medici family rises to prominence in Florence. This ushers in a period of significance of the Medicis, such as bankers, popes, queens (regents) and dukes, throughout Europe (mainly Italy, especially the Florentine Republic), over the next three centuries.
1434 Aronolfini Portrait Jan van Eyck evidence on usage of convex mirror
1438 Prince Cusi Yupanqui becomes the first Inca emperor. Inca civilization begins expanding and the Inca Empire is born.
1439 Johannes Gutenberg invents the printing press. Literature, news, etc. becomes more accessible throughout Europe.
1442 Battle of Szeben Third significant victory for the Hungarian forces led by Janos Hunyadi over the Ottoman forces.
1443 Sejong the Great creates Hangul Koreans gain an alphabet suited to their language
1444 November 10 Battle of Varna Final battle of the Crusade of Varna; Ottomans are victorious over the Hungarian-Polish armies, and Władysław III of Poland dies.
1450 Jack Cade's Rebellion Unsuccessful popular rebellion in South East England
1452 Coronation of Frederick III
1453 Constantinople falls to the Ottoman Turks. End of the Byzantine Empire (or Eastern Roman Empire to some); Constantinople becomes capital of Ottoman Empire.
1453 The Hundred Years' War ends. England's once vast territory in France is now reduced to only Calais, which they eventually lose control of as well.
1455 May 22 Battle of St. Albans Traditionally marks the beginning of the War of the Roses.
1456 Siege of Belgrade Major Ottoman advances are halted for seven decades; last major victory for Hunyadi.
1459 Smederevo falls under the Turks Marks the end of the Medieval Serbian state.
1461 The Empire of Trebizond falls to the Ottoman Turks. Last Roman outpost to be conquered by the Ottomans.
1464 Dardanelles gun constructed. A siege cannon made by the Turkish Munir Ali, modelled after a cannon used in the Fall of Constantinople
1467–1477 Ōnin War takes place in Japan. First of many significant civil wars between shogunates that would continue for another century during the Muromachi period.
1469 April 15 Guru Nanak is born. Found Sikhism and becomes the first of the ten Sikh Gurus.
1475 The Khanate of Crimea is conquered and made a vassal state by the Ottoman Empire. Venice is defeated and the Ottoman Empire becomes master of the Aegean Sea.
1480 Great Stand on the Ugra River. The end of the Tatar-Mongol yoke over the Russian principalities.
1485 Thomas Malory composes Le Morte d'Arthur Perhaps the best-known work of Arthurian literature in English.
1485 August 22 Battle of Bosworth Field. Richard III dies in battle, and Henry Tudor becomes king of England; last shift of Houses/kingship during the War of the Roses.
1487 June 16 Battle of Stoke. Marks end of the War of the Roses.
1492 Reconquista ends. Marks end of Moorish-Muslim rule within Iberian Peninsula; Unification of Spain.
1492 Christopher Columbus reaches the New World. Age of Discovery into the New World begins.
1494 June 10 Spain and Portugal sign the Treaty of Tordesillas and agree to divide the World outside of Europe between themselves. Pope's ruling will lead to the division of Brazil and Spanish America, as well as the formation of the Spanish Philippines and Portuguese colonies in India and Africa.
1494–1559 The Italian Wars. Italian Wars will eventually lead to the downfall of the Italian city-states.
1497 Vasco da Gama begins his first voyage from Europe to India and back. Vasco da Gama sailed round the Cape of Good Hope, established the first direct sea route from Europe to India.
1499 Ottoman fleet defeats Venetians at the Battle of Zonchio. The first naval battle that used cannons in ships.

See also

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