Warfare Timeline

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  • 2400 BCE
    First use of war chariots in Mesopotamia.
  • c. 2240 BCE
    Naram-Sin of Akkad campaigns against the Amorites in northern Syria.
  • 2200 BCE - 1500 BCE
    The Minoan Civilization flourishes on Crete, Greece. King Minos establishes the first navy in the region.
  • 2193 BCE
    Gutian invasion destroys Akkadian empire.
  • c. 1750 BCE
    Elam conquers Ur.
  • 1595 BCE
    Hittites under Mursilli I sack Babylon, ending Amorite rule.
  • c. 1458 BCE
    Kadesh and Megiddo lead a Canaanite alliance against the Egyptian invasion by Thutmose III.
  • c. 1457 BCE
    Battle of Megiddo: Thutmose III of Egypt defeats a coalition of Canaan, Kadesh, Mitanni, and Megiddo led by Durusha, king of Kadesh.
  • 1307 BCE - 1275 BCE
    Reign of Assyrian King Adad Nirari I, Mitanni becomes vassal state.
  • 1258 BCE
    The Treaty of Kadesh between Egyptians and Hittites. The world's first peace treaty.
  • c. 1250 BCE
    Trojan War, according to Herodotus.
  • c. 1200 BCE
    Sea Peoples invade the Levant.
  • c. 1187 BCE
    Kadesh is destroyed by the Sea Peoples and subsequently vanishes from history.
  • 1178 BCE
    Ramesses III defends Egypt from the Sea Peoples on the shores at Xois, defeating them completely.
  • 1115 BCE - 1076 BCE
    Reign of Tiglath-Pileser I of Assyria who conquers Phoenicia and revitalizes the empire.
  • 722 BCE
    Israel is conquered by Assyria.
  • c. 700 BCE
    Iron Age begins in Scotland.
  • 671 BCE
    Second Egyptian Campaign, Assyrian army successfully captures Memphis and conquers Egypt.
  • 671 BCE
    Egypt is conquered by Assyria.
  • 667 BCE - 665 BCE
    Ashurbanipal wages war in Egypt to put down rebellions.
  • 653 BCE
    Egypt expels Assyrians.
  • c. 650 BCE - c. 350 BCE
    Hoplites are the major protagonists in Greek land warfare.
  • 648 BCE
    War between Assyria and the Elamites.
  • 586 BCE - 572 BCE
    Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon besieges Tyre, unsuccessfully.
  • 28 May 585 BCE
    A battle between Media and Lydia broke off immediately as a result of a total eclipse of the sun and the two armies made peace. The eclipse was successfully predicted by Thales of Miletus.
  • 580 BCE - 376 BCE
    Carthage and Greece fight for dominance in Sicily.
  • 535 BCE
    Battle of Alalia. Carthaginian navy, in alliance with Etruscans, defeated Greek ships off the island of Corsica.
  • 525 BCE - 404 BCE
    Persia conquers Egypt.
  • 525 BCE
    Cambyses II of Persia takes the city of Pelusium, conquers Egypt.
  • 512 BCE - 506 BCE
    The Wu Chu wars in China between the States of Wu and Chu.
  • 506 BCE
    The Battle of Boju at which the Wu forces under Sun-Tzu defeated the Chu.
  • 498 BCE - 493 BCE
    Rome defeats the Latins.
  • 11 Sep 490 BCE
    A combined force of Greek hoplites defeat the Persians at Marathon.
  • 485 BCE
    Babylon is destroyed by Xerxes, King of Persia.
  • c. 481 BCE - 221 BCE
    The Warring States Period in China, suggested time-period for composition of The Art of War.
  • Aug 480 BCE
    The indecisive battle of Artemision between the Greek and Persian fleets of Xerxes I. The Greeks withdraw to Salamis.
  • Aug 480 BCE
    Battle of Thermopylae. 300 Spartans under King Leonidas and other Greek allies hold back the Persians led by Xerxes I for three days but are defeated.
  • Sep 480 BCE
    Battle of Salamis where the Greek naval fleet led by Themistocles defeats the invading armada of Xerxes I of Persia.
  • 479 BCE
    Xerxes' Persian forces are defeated by Greek forces at Plataea effectively ending Persia's imperial ambitions in Greece.
  • c. 475 BCE
    Celts defeat the Etruscans at the Ticino River.
  • 460 BCE - 445 BCE
    First Peloponnesian War.
  • 448 BCE
    Pericles leads the Athenian forces in the Battle of Delphi.
  • 431 BCE - 404 BCE
    The 2nd Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta (the Delian League and the Peloponnesian League) which involved all of Greece.
  • c. 430 BCE - 415 BCE
    The Histories of Herodotus is published. The work is divided into nine chapters, each dedicated to one of the Muses.
  • 425 BCE
    Pylos campaign, under Cleon and Demosthenes' command Athens defeats Sparta at Pylos.
  • 413 BCE
    The Athenian expedition in Sicily ends in disastrous defeat and the Athenian generals Nicias and Demosthenes are executed.
  • 410 BCE
    Alcibiades leads the Athenian fleet to victory over Sparta at Cyzicus.
  • c. 407 BCE
    The Athenian fleet is defeated by Lysander of Sparta at Notium.
  • 404 BCE
    End of the Peloponnesian war, Athens defeated By Sparta at Aigospotamoi, Rule of the Thirty Tyrants in Athens.
  • 396 BCE
    Celts defeat an Etruscan army at the battle of Melpum. Afterwards the Celts heavily settle all over the Po Valley.
  • 396 BCE
    Roman expansion begins with the capture of Veii from the Etruscans.
  • 395 BCE - 386 BCE
    The Corinthian Wars between Sparta and an alliance of Athens, Corinth, Argos, Boeotia and Thebes.
  • c. 390 BCE
    "Gallic Catastrophe:" Brennus of the Senones defeats the Romans at Allia, and subsequently sacks Rome.
  • 343 BCE - 341 BCE
    First Samnite War (Rome vs. Samnites).
  • 342 BCE
    Philip II leads a military expedition against the Scythians.
  • 338 BCE
    The first battle of Chaeronea. Philip II of Macedon defeats the Greek alliance directed against him, led by Athens and Thebes.
  • 334 BCE - 323 BCE
    Period of the conquests of Alexander the Great.
  • 5 Nov 333 BCE
    Battle of Issus. Alexander is victorious against Darius III of Persia.
  • May 330 BCE
    Persepolis is burned and looted by Alexander the Great.
  • 326 BCE - 304 BCE
    Second Samnite War.
  • 323 BCE
    Death of Alexander the Great.
  • 300 BCE
    Sarmatians conquer the Scythians.
  • 298 BCE - 290 BCE
    Third Samnite War. Victory for Rome, peace with the Etruscans.
  • 297 BCE
    Celts and Samnites join forces and defeat the Romans at Camertium.
  • c. 295 BCE
    In a battle lasting all day, Romans narrowly defeat a force of Celts and Samnites at Sentinum.
  • 285 BCE - 282 BCE
    Rome defeats the Celts in Italy. Rome's dominance in central Italy is secured.
  • 284 BCE
    Gauls of the Insubres and Boii tribes defeat the Romans at Arretium.
  • 283 BCE
    Rome decisively defeats the Senones at Picenum.
  • 280 BCE - 272 BCE
    Roman war against Tarentum. Rome conquers Tarentum. Rome's dominance in lower Italy is secured.
  • 264 BCE - 241 BCE
    First Punic War. Carthage cedes Sicily to Rome.
  • c. 250 BCE - c. 200 CE
    Originally a Celtiberian weapon, the Gladius Hispaniensis was commonly used by Roman soldiers for more than four centuries.
  • 229 BCE - 228 BCE
    Rome fights Illyrian pirates. Queen Teuta pays tribute to Rome.
  • 222 BCE
    Rome conquers Cisalpine Gaul (modern-day Provence, France).
  • c. 220 BCE
    Gortyn allies with Knossos to defeat Lyttos on Crete.
  • Aug 216 BCE
    Hannibal wins the battle of Cannae, the worst defeat in Roman history.
  • 214 BCE - 205 BCE
    First Macedonian War: Rome defeats Philip V of Macedon.
  • 206 BCE
    Chinese Qin empire collapses following the death of emperor Shi Huangti. Civil War begins.
  • 204 BCE
    Scipio Africanus sails to North Africa in the Second Punic War.
  • 202 BCE
    The Battle of Gaixia in which the Han forces defeat the Chu.
  • 200 BCE - 196 BCE
    Second Macedonian War: Roman victory.
  • c. 200 BCE
    Beginning of the Greco-Bactrian conquests in India.
  • 193 BCE
    The Boii are defeated by the Romans, suffering, according to Livy, 14,000 dead.
  • 190 BCE
    Battle of Magnesia ad Sipylum, disastrous defeat for Antiochos III against Romans.
  • 172 BCE - 168 BCE
    Third Macedonian War: Perseus of Macedon challenges Rome and is defeated.
  • 168 BCE
    Rome defeats Macedon at Battle of Pydna.
  • 149 BCE - 146 BCE
    Third Punic War.
  • 146 BCE
    End of the Third Punic War. Carthage is destroyed and its lands become the Roman province Africa.
  • 133 BCE
    Rome captures Numantia. End of Iberian resistance.
  • 129 BCE
    Parthians conquer Mesopotamia. The Silk Road to China is now controlled by the Parthians.
  • 113 BCE
    Romans defeated at Noreia by the Cimbri.
  • 88 BCE - 63 BCE
    Mithridates of Pontus fights three wars to free Greece from Rome.
  • 86 BCE
    The Roman general Sulla sacks Athens and the port of Piraeus.
  • 63 BCE
    The Roman general Pompey defeats the Seleucid Antiochus XIII and incorporates Syria as a province of the Roman empire.
  • 58 BCE - 51 BCE
    Julius Caesar's conquest of Gaul.
  • 58 BCE
    Caesar attacks the Helvetii while on migration and defeats them.
  • 57 BCE
    A Roman army under Caesar narrowly defeats an army of Nervii, Atrebates, and Viromandui.
  • 56 BCE
    The navies of Rome and the Veneti Gauls clash resulting in a Roman victory. This is the first recorded naval battle in the Atlantic Ocean.
  • 55 BCE - 54 BCE
    Julius Caesar's expeditions in Britain.
  • 52 BCE
    Julius Caesar is defeated at Gergovia by Vercingetorix.
  • 52 BCE
    After becoming trapped and besieged at Alesia, Vercingetorix surrenders to Caesar.
  • 27 BCE - 19 BCE
    Cantabrian Wars: Roman conquest of the Iberian Penninsula.
  • 9 CE
    The Rhine River is established as the boundary between the Latin and German speaking worlds, following the defeat of the Roman army, under the command of Varus, at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest.
  • 43 CE - 47 CE
    Romans conquer South Britain and claim the territory as part of Roman Empire.
  • 43 CE
    Claudius commences the Roman conquest of Britain.
  • 60 CE - 61 CE
    Boudicca's Revolt in Britain.
  • 75 CE - 77 CE
    Romans defeat the last of the Northern tribes; Roman conquest of Britain complete.
  • 83 CE
    The Battle of Mons Graupius in which Agricola defeats Calgacus of the Picts.
  • 101 CE - 106 CE
    Trajan conquers Dacia.
  • 167 CE - 180 CE
    Marcomannic Wars.
  • 192 CE
    Emperor Commodus is murdered, civil war ensues (until 197 CE).
  • 195 CE
    First Parthian war.
  • 197 CE - 198 CE
    Second Parthian war.
  • 367 CE
    Picts, Scots, Saxons, and Franks attack the Roman Empire.
  • 408 CE
    Alaric I the Visigoth besieges Rome. As ransom, Rome pays 5,000 pounds of gold, 30,000 pounds of silver, 4,000 silken tunics, 3,000 hides dyed scarlet, and 3,000 pounds of pepper.
  • 455 CE
    Vandals sack Rome.
  • 486 CE
    Clovis I of the Franks defeats the Romans in Gaul. Founding of the Frankish kingdom.
  • 488 CE - 493 CE
    Theodoric the Great of the Ostrogoths conquers Italy.
  • 507 CE
    Clovis defeats the Visigoths and drives them into the Iberian peninsula.
  • 534 CE
    Justinian of the Byzantine Empire conquers the Vandal kingdom in Africa.
  • 536 CE - 562 CE
    The Byzantine Empire conquers Italy.
  • 554 CE
    Byzantine Empire conquers southern Iberia.
  • 607 CE - 627 CE
    East Rome defeats Sasanian Persia.
  • 646 CE
    The Arab Muslims conquer Egypt under Caliph Umar.
  • 712 CE
    Muslim general Muhammed bin Quasim conquers northern India.
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