Religion Timeline

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  • c. 4000 BCE
    Earliest Egyptian Myths Recorded.
  • c. 3500 BCE
    First written evidence of religion in the world recorded on Sumerian tablets.
  • c. 3500 BCE
    First written evidence of religion in Sumerian cuneiform.
  • c. 3000 BCE
    Hathor, known as Mistress of Dendera, cult center flourishes in the city of Dendera.
  • c. 2500 BCE
    Osiris as Dying and Reviving God and God of the Dead appears in Pyramid Texts.
  • 2100 BCE
    First ziggurats in Ur, Eridu, Uruk, and Nippur.
  • c. 1500 BCE - c. 500 BCE
    Indian scholars of the so-called Vedic Period commit the Vedas to written form; basic tenets of Hinduism are established.
  • c. 1500 BCE - c. 500 BCE
    The Vedic Period in India after a greater migration of the Indo-Aryans from Central Asia
  • c. 1500 BCE - 1100 BCE
    The Rig Veda written, mentioning the god Rudra (Shiva) and goddess Tara (among others) for the first time.
  • c. 1120 BCE
    Extant copy of the Sumerian Enuma Elish (creation story) is made from much older text.
  • c. 1000 BCE
    Emergence of Yahwism.
  • c. 700 BCE
    Greek poet Hesiod writes his Theogony and Works and Days.
  • c. 600 BCE
    Development of the Charvaka school of philosophy in India.
  • c. 599 BCE - c. 527 BCE
    Traditional dating of the life of Vardhamana, according to Jain tradition.
  • 566 BCE - 486 BCE
    The life of Siddhartha Gautama according to the Corrected long chronology.
  • c. 563 BCE - c. 483 BCE
    The life of Siddhartha Gautama according to modern scholarly consensus.
  • 563 BCE
    Siddhartha Gautama is born in Lumbini (present day Nepal).
  • c. 515 BCE - 70 CE
    The Second Temple Period; Judaism is revised, scriptures canonized, Yahweh becomes sole deity, monotheism established.
  • c. 6 BCE - c. 30 CE
    Life of Jesus Christ.
  • 1 CE - 100 CE
    Mithraism spreads in the Roman empire.
  • c. 1 CE - c. 100 CE
    The Mahayana movement begins in India with its belief in bodhisattva - saintly souls who helped the living.
  • 42 CE - 62 CE
    Paul the Apostle goes on missionary journeys across Asia Minor, Greece, and Rome.
  • 64 CE
    Unofficial persecution of Christians in Rome.
  • c. 65 CE - c. 100 CE
    The tales of the life and work of Jesus (gospels) composed.
  • 132 CE
    Septuagint (Greek translation of the Bible) composed at Alexandria.
  • 224 CE
    Zoroastrianism becomes Persian state religion under the Sassanian Empire.
  • 312 CE
    Roman emperor Constantine I tolerates Christianity.
  • c. 314 CE
    Armenia adopts Christianity as the state religion.
  • c. 500 CE - c. 600 CE
    In India the Tantric expands the number of deities to include helpful demons, contactable through ritual.
  • 503 CE
    Clovis converts to Christianity.
  • 570 CE
    Muhammad is born in Mecca.
  • c. 600 CE
    Babylonian Talmud is compiled.
  • 610 CE
    Muhammad receives his first revelation on Mount Hira.
  • 622 CE
    Muhammad undertakes the Hegira (Hijra), the migration from Mecca to Medina, establishing the start of the Islamic calendar.
  • 624 CE
    Battle of Badr: Muhammad's forces win, resulting in a turning point for Islam against the ruling Quraysh tribe.
  • 625 CE
    Battle of Uhud: Quraysh tribe defeats the Muslims.
  • 627 CE
    Battle of the Trench: Quraysh troops attempt to siege Medina (then called Yathrib), but lose to the Muslim force.
  • 627 CE
    Siege of Bani Qurayzah: Muslims capture the Jewish stronghold.
  • 628 CE
    Treaty of Hudaybiyyah: A peace agreement is signed between Muhammad's Muslims and the people of Mecca.
  • 628 CE
    Conquest of Khaybar oasis: Jews barricade themselves in a fort at Khaybar oasis and are allowed to remain living there if they pay the Muslims one third of their produce.
  • 629 CE
    First Pilgrimage ("lesser" pilgrimage or "umrah") made by Muhammad and his Muslims to Mecca after migrating to Medina.
  • 629 CE
    Battle of Mu'tah: Muslims attempt to capture the village east of the Jordan River from the Byzantine Empire to show their expanding dominance, resulting in a Muslim defeat.
  • 630 CE
    Non-violent conquest of Mecca: The Quraysh realize that the Muslims now greatly outnumber them and allow the Muslims to capture their city, Mecca, and rule it as they please.
  • 630 CE
    Battle of Hunayn: Ending in a decisive victory for the Muslims over the Bedouin tribe of Hawazin.
  • 630 CE
    Attempted Siege of Ta'if: Muhammad's forces are initially unable to siege Ta'if and convert its people to Islam.
  • 632 CE
    "Farewell Hajj Pilgrimage": This is the only Hajj pilgrimage in which Muhammad participates.
  • 632 CE
    Muhammad dies in Medina, not clearly naming a successor to lead the Muslim people.
  • 632 CE - 634 CE
    Abu Bakr becomes the first caliph (successor to Muhammad) of the Rashidun Caliphate.
  • 634 CE - 644 CE
    Umar ibn al-Khattab succeeds Abu Bakr, becoming the second caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate.
  • 644 CE - 656 CE
    Uthman ibn 'Affan succeeds Umar to become the third caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate.
  • 656 CE - 661 CE
    Ali ibn Abi Talib succeeds Uthman to become the fourth and final caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate.
  • 712 CE
    The Kojiki is written, a collection of oral myths forming the basis of the Shinto religion.
  • 720 CE
    The Nihon Shoki is written, a collection of oral myths forming the basis of the Shinto religion.
  • c. 807 CE
    Imibe-no-Hironari writes the Kogoshui, a collection of oral myths forming the basis of the Shinto religion.
  • 1122 CE
    Construction begins of the Hindu temple at Angkor Wat.