Iron Age

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Bronze Age collapse

Ancient Near East (1300 – 600 BC)

India (1200 – 200 BC)

Europe (1200 BC – AD 400)

China (600 – 200 BC)

Japan (300 BC – AD 500)

Korea (400 – 60 BC)

Nigeria (400 BC – AD 200)

Axial Age
Classical antiquity
Zhou Dynasty
Vedic period
alphabetic writing, metallurgy

In archaeology, the Iron Age is the prehistoric period in any area during which cutting tools and weapons were mainly made of iron or steel. The adoption of this material coincided with other changes in society, including differing agricultural practices, religious beliefs and artistic styles.

The Iron Age is the last principal period in the three-age system for classifying ancient societies, preceded by the Bronze Age and the Stone Age. Its dates and context vary depending on the geographical region. The Iron Age in each area ends with the beginning of the historical period, i.e. the local production of ample written sources. Thus, for instance, the British Iron Age ends with the Roman Conquest.

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