Urbanization is the process by which rural communities grow to form cities, or urban centers, and, by extension, the growth and expansion of those cities. Urbanization began in ancient Mesopotamia in the Uruk Period (4300-3100 BCE) for reasons scholars have not yet agreed on. It is speculated, however, that a particularly prosperous and efficient village attracted the attention of other, less prosperous, tribes who then attached themselves to the successful settlement.

More about: Urbanization


  • 6500 BCE
    Jericho is the first major walled city, with a population of about 2,500.
  • 4500 BCE
    First walled cities. Uruk in Mesopotamia first city.
  • 4100 BCE - 2900 BCE
    Uruk Period in Mesopotamia. First cities.
  • c. 4000 BCE
    First settlement of Ur.
  • 3400 BCE
    Priests become the rulers of Mesopotamian cities.
  • c. 2800 BCE - c. 1900 BCE
    The rise of the great Indian cities of Mohenjo Daro and Harappa.
  • c. 1900 BCE - c. 1500 BCE
    Decline of the Harappan Culture in India.