Timeline of ancient Greece

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This is a timeline of ancient Greece.

All dates are BC.

Contents

Greek Bronze Age / Aegean civilization (3300 BC - 1100 BC)

Mainland Greece (Helladic period)

Early Helladic EH 2800-2100 BC
Middle Helladic EH 2100-1500 BC
Late Helladic LH 1500-1100 BC / (Mycenaean Greece (1600 BC - 1100 BC))

Crete (Minoan civilization)

Early Minoan EM 3650-2160 BC
Middle Minoan MM 2160-1600 BC
Late Minoan LM 1600-1170 BC

Cyclades (Cycladic civilization)

Early Cycladic 3300-2000 BC
Kastri = EH II-EH III (ca. 2500-2100) BC
Convergence with MM from ca. 2000 BC

Ancient Greece (1100 BC - 146 BC)

Dark Age (ca.1100 BC - 800 BC)

Archaic Period (750 BC - 480 BC)

  • 776 Traditional date for the first historic Olympic games.
  • 757 The first Messenian war starts. (date disputed by Jerome, Pausanias and Diodorus; this estimate is based on a reading of Diodorus' Spartan king lists and Pausanias' description of the war)
  • 757 Office of Archon reduced to 10 years. Members of the ruling family to hold the office starting with Charops. (dating based on Pausanias)
  • 754 Polydorus becomes king of Sparta.
  • 738 Alternate date for the end of the first Messenian war.
  • 735 Perdiccas I of Macedon flees from Argos to Macedonia and conquers the land.
  • 734 Polydorus sends colonists to Italy.
  • 727-717 Hippomenes, archon of Athens, who killed his daughter's adulterer by yoking him up to his chariot and then locks his daughter up with a horse until she dies. (Pausanias and Aristotle)
  • c. 725 Lelantine War between Chalcis and Eretria. Many Greek cities are allied with one or the other. Dates before this point uncertain.
  • 719 Polydorus The king of Sparta is murdered by Polymarchus.
  • 716 The reign of the Heraklids over Lydia is ended when Candaules, known as Myrsilus to the Greeks, is murdered by Gyges because of his wife’s anger.
  • 690 Pheidon becomes tyrant of Argos
  • 687 Annual office of Archon established. Any Athenian citizen can be elected to office if they meet the requirements. Creon elected first annual archon. (dating based on Pausanias)
  • 685 The second Messenian war begins
  • 665 The second Messenian war ends
  • 656 Cypselus subjects Corinth to tyranny
  • 645-560 Spartan wars with Tegea all unsuccessful
  • 642 or 634 Battus establishes a Greek colony in Cyrene in Libya
  • 632 Cylon, Athenian noble, seizes Acropolis and tries to make himself king, fails
  • 630 Formal pederasty is introduced, first in Crete, as a means of population control and an educational modality
  • 621 Draco, Athenian lawgiver, issues code of laws where everything is punishable by death – Draconian
  • 594 Solon, Athenian statesman, becomes Archon pre-582BC (cf. ML6 (death of Kypselos 585BC) and Plutarch Sol. 14), captures Salamis from Megarians- later, when member of the Areopagus is appointed to effect social reforms in order to preserve order in Athens, which include the abolishment of the security of debts on the debtor's person (Aristotle Ath. Pol. 6), returning exiled Athenian slaves (Solon fr. 4 in Ath. Pol. 12), changing the value of weights and measures to the Korinthian standard, prohibiting the export of grain from Attica and encouraging the planting of olives (Plut. Sol. 22-4), established the property classes (Ar. Ath. Pol. 7) and the council of 400 (Ar. Ath. Pol. 8).
  • 590 Sappho, Greek poet and priestess, flourishes on island of Lesbos.
  • 569 Pythagoras was born.
  • 565 Peisistratos, Athenian general, organizes Diakrioi, party of poor people.
  • 546 Pythagoras founded science and philosophy.
  • 510 Pythagoras founded his own school.
  • 500 Pythagoras died in Crotona, Italy, when he was in Metapontum.

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