dates in pink are approximate; dates in blue are exact


historical events



    6500-3000 BC



permanent settlements
domested plants and animals

Early Bronze Age



2800- 1900 Early Helladic Period in archaeology

2500 use of bronze widespread in Aegean basin

Middle Bronze Age

2100-1900 Indo-european speakers arrive in mainland Greece

2000 earliest palaces in Crete
(Minoan civilization)

1900 mainland contacts with Crete

1700-1500height of Minoan civilization


1800 in Crete, development of Linear A script


1900-1580 Middle Helladic period in archaeology

Late Bronze Age

1600 rise of Mycenaean civilization on the mainland

1500-1450 Mycenaeans from mainland gain control of palaces in Crete

1400-1200 height of Mycenaean civilization

1250 Troy VIIA destroyed
(1194-84 traditional date for Trojan War)

1200-1100 destruction of palaces -collapse of Mycenaean civilization

1500 development of Linear B script


1580-1100 Late Helladic period in archaeology


Early Dark Age


1050 new centers emerge

1050 Ionian-Aeolic migrations to islands and Asia Minor


1100-1050 Submycenaean period in archaeology

1050-900 Protogeometric period in art

1050 iron tools appear

Late Dark Age

900 slow increase in population and area of settlement

800 process accelerates


900-850Early Geometric period in art

850-750 Middle Geometric period in art

800 Greek alphabet developed from Phoenician alphabet

800 earliest Greek temples

776 traditional date of first Olympics

Archaic Period

750-700 emergence of city-states

730 earliest Greek colonies in Sicily and Italy

730-700 first Spartan- Messenian war

683 traditional date of end of monarchy in Athens; henceforth annul arkhons

650 earliest Greek colonies in Black Sea region

650 second Spartan-
Messian war; reforms of "Lykourgos" in Sparta

632 Kylon's failed coup d' ťtat in Athens

621 Drakon's law code in Athens

594/3 probable date of Solon's legislation

560-510 Peisistratos and sons tyrants in Athens

560 Kroisos (Lydia) gains control of Ionian cities

550 Sparta consolidate position as major power in Peloponnese

546 Kyros (Persian king) conquers Kroisos and gains control of Greek cities in Asia Minor

510 end of tyranny in Athens

508/7 reforms of Kleisthenes

499 Ionians revolt from Persian empire

498 Athenians send ships and troops to help Ionian revolt, participate in burning of Sardis (Lydian capital)

494 Battle of Lade: end of Ionian revolt

494 Batle of Sepea: Peloponnesian League led by Sparta defeats Argos, last major rival in Peloponnese

490 Battle of Marathon: Athenians repulse Persian punitive expedition

750-700Iliad and Odyssey most likely composed


 700 Hesiod
675? Homeric Hymn to Demeter

650 Tyrtaios
600 Sappho and Alkaios
 550 Theognis

535 first performance of tragedy at festival of Dionysos in Athens

750-700Late Geometric period in art



720"orientalizing" period in art begins

650 earliest stone temples

650 Corinthian black-
figure pottery
600-550 earliest coinage in Asia Minor

582 Pythian games established

581 Isthmian games established

573 Nemean games established

530s earliest Athenian red-figure pottery

Classical Period I 489-403


487 arkhons chosen by lot
487 first ostracism

483/82 rich silver vein discovered at Laureion (Athens)

482/1 Athenians use Laureion silver to build 100-trireme fleet

481 congress of Corinth: most Greeks agree to common defense against Persians
481 Xerxes (Persian king) begins invasion of Greece

480 battles of Thermopylai, Artemesion and Salamis




479 battle of Plataia; Persians abandon invasion
479 battle of Mykalai; Persian fleet defeated in Ionia

478/7 Athens and other Aegean state form Delian League to continue war aganst Persia; start of period of Kimon's prominence in Athens and as general of League

476 Persians expulsed from Eion (last major outpost in Europe)


478 Aischylos' Prometheus
472 Aiskhylos' Persai

 470-456 construction of temple of Zeus at Olympia


467 battle of Eurymedon; Persians cleared from western coast of Asia Minor

462/1 in Athens, democratic reforms associated with Ephialtes (additional measures in following years)

462/1 Kimon ostracized; start of Perikles' rise to prominence


460s "Why Are They Fighting".
460-410 white lÍkythoi popular

460-430 Achilles-painter active


459-445 intermittent warfare between Athens and various allies against Spartan-led Pelolponnesians; Athens gains and loses a land empire in central Greece

454 Delian League treasury transferred to Athens - gradual transformation of Delian League into Athenian empire

453 defeat of Athenians sent to aid Egyptian revolt against Persia

451 Perikles' law restricting citizenship at Athens

450 Athens stops fighting Persia

458 Aiskhylos' Oresteia

456 completion of temple of Zeus at Olympia



445 (see above 459-45); "Thirty Years' Peace" between Athens and Sparta

443-429 Perikles dominant political leader in Athens

440Samos revolts from Athenian empire; revolt suppressed

445 Sophokles' Aias

441Sophokles' Antigone

440s "What Is She Thinking"

447-432 construction of Parthenon (Athens)


435 warfare between Kekyra and Korinth; Athenian alliance with Kekyra (prelude to Peloponnesian War)

431 formal outbreak of Peloponnesian War (Athens and her allies against Sparta and her allies)

430 plague breaks out in Athens


431 Euripides' Medeia

438 dedicaton of statue of Athene in Parthenon

432 completion of Parthenon (Athens)


429 death of Perikles
428-427 Mytilene revolts from Athenian empire; revolt suppressed

421 Peace of Nikias ends first part of Peloponnesian War
420 Athens forms alliance, techinically putting her t war again with Sparta

428 Sophokles' Oidipous Tyrannos
428 Euripides' Hyppolytos

429-408/7 construction of Erekhteion (Athens)

421 construction of temple of Athene Nike (Athens)


418 Sparta defeats Argos and allies (including Athens) at Mantineia
416 Athenians capture Melos; kill all the men and enslave women and childen
415-413 Athenian invasion of Sicily
414/13 Persians begin support of Spartans against Athenians
413 Spartans install permanent fort at Dekeleia in Athenian territory
412-404 naval warfare between Athens and Sparta in Aegean
411-410 oligarchic regimes of 400 and 5000 at Athens
410 restoration of democracy at Athens


415 Euripides' Trojan Women

411 Aristophanes' Lysistrata



406 Athenian naval victory at Arginousai
405 Spartan naval victory at Aigospotamoi: end of Athenian naval power
404 Athens surrenders to Sparta
404-403 oligarchic regime of the Thirty at Athens
403 restoration of democracy at Athens
401-399 10,000 march against Persian king

406 Euripides' Bakkhai

405 Aristophanes' Frogs

408/7 completion of work on Erekhtheion (Athens).


399 death of Socrates
396-394 Spartan Aegesilaos campaigns in Asia Minor
395-387 Korinthian War (Athens/Korinth/Argos vs. Sparta)
394 Persians defeat Spartan fleet off Knidos
393 Athens rebuilds Long Walls, refortifies Peiraieus




386 King's Peace between Persia and mainland Greek states
385 Jason becomes tyrant of Pherai
382 Spartans sieze citadel of Thebes




379 Spartans expelled from Thebes
378-371 Thebes and Athens war vs. Sparta
377 second Athenian confederacy founded - Athens now most powerful Greek state
373 Thebans destroy Plataia
371 Thebans defeat Spartans at Leuktra - Thebes now powerful Greek state
370-369 liberation of Messene



373 Apollo's temple destroyed (Delphi)