Religion Timeline

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5000 BCE 4500 BCE 4000 BCE 3500 BCE 3000 BCE 2500 BCE 2000 BCE 1500 BCE 1000 BCE 500 BCE 0 CE 500 CE 1000 CE 1500 CE  
5000 BCE: Evidence of religious practices in the Indus Valley.
4000 BCE: Depictions of gods and afterlife on walls of Egyptian tombs.
4000 BCE: Earliest Egyptian Myths Recorded.
4000 BCE - 3000 BCE: Trade contact between Byblos and Egypt.
3500 BCE: First written evidence of religion in the world recorded on Sumerian tablets.
3500 BCE: First written evidence of religion in Sumerian cuneiform.
3000 BCE: Hathor, known as Mistress of Dendera, cult center flourishes in the city of Dendera.
3000 BCE: Persian religious belief is developed.
3000 BCE - 800 BCE: Possible development of the concept of Ahriman in Early Iranian Religion.
2900 BCE - 2700 BCE: Nergal first appears in Mesopotamian religion as a regional god of Kutha known as Meslamtaea.
2613 BCE - 2181 BCE: The goddess Ma'at first appears during the period of the Old Kingdom in Egypt.
2600 BCE: The Myth of Etana written.
2500 BCE: Osiris as Dying and Reviving God and God of the Dead appears in Pyramid Texts.
2400 BCE - 2300 BCE: The Pyramid Texts written, the oldest religious literature in Egypt.
2285 BCE - 2250 BCE: Life of Enheduanna, daughter of Sargon of Akkad, and world's first author known by name.
2250 BCE: Beer brewed in Egypt.
2150 BCE - 1400 BCE: The Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh written on clay tablets.
2134 BCE - 2040 BCE: The Coffin Texts developed from the Pyramid Texts.
2100 BCE: First ziggurats in Ur, Eridu, Uruk, and Nippur.
1900 BCE - 1600 BCE: Composition of The Descent of Inanna.
1800 BCE: Written form of the Hymn to Ninkasi, the goddess of beer.
1700 BCE: The Ludul-Bel-Nimeqi written (known as the Sumerian 'Book of Job').
1640 BCE - 1700 BCE: Written form of the Atrahasis Myth of the Great Flood.
1550 BCE - 1070 BCE: The Egyptian Book of the Dead (The Book of Coming Forth by Day) written.
1500 BCE - 1000 BCE: Development of the religion of Zoroastrianism in region of ancient Persia.
1500 BCE - 500 BCE: The Vedic Period in India.
1500 BCE - 1100 BCE: The Rig Veda written, mentioning the god Rudra (Shiva) for the first time.
1500 BCE: First temple to Demeter & Persephone is built at Eleusis.
1500 BCE - 1000 BCE: Zoroaster develops his new vision of religious truth which becomes Zoroastrianism.
1500 BCE - 1000 BCE: Development of Ahriman in religion of Zoroastrianism.
1500 BCE - 1000 BCE: Concept of the Chinvat Bridge develops with the religion of Zoroastrianism.
1336 BCE - 1327 BCE: Reign of pharaoh Tutankhamun who reverses Akhenaten's policies and restores traditional religion to Egypt.
1336 BCE: Tutankhamun re-establishes the old Egyptian religion after the death of Akhenaten; cult of Amun resumes.
1320 BCE - 1295 BCE: Horemheb rules Egypt, restores the old religion and temples.
1300 BCE: The Myth of Adapa appears in written form.
1250 BCE - 1150 BCE: Destruction of many Canaanite towns hints at a possible invasion of the Israelites into Canaan.
1120 BCE: Extant copy of the Sumerian Enuma Elish (creation story) is made from much older text.
1100 BCE: The Enuma Elish creation myth written down.
1000 BCE: Height of Tyre's power.
1000 BCE: Emergence of Yahwism.
900 BCE - 590 BCE: The Urartu civilization flourishes in ancient Armenia, eastern Turkey and western Iran.
814 BCE: Traditional founding date for the Phoenician colony of Carthage by Tyre.
800 BCE: The site of Delphi first acquires a religious significance.
800 BCE - 500 BCE: Indian scholars codify and reinterpret Aryan beliefs to create the Upanishads which postulate the basic tenets of Hinduism.
800 BCE: The oracle of Zeus is established at Dodona.
776 BCE: First athletic games in honour of Zeus are held at Olympia with one event, the stadion foot race.
700 BCE: Greek poet Hesiod writes his Theogony and Works and Days.
700 BCE: The temple of Apollo is built on the island of Delos.
700 BCE - 379 CE: The Letoon sanctuary dedicated to Leto is active at Xanthos in Lycia.
700 BCE - 600 BCE: Temples are built in honour of Apollo, Demeter and Dionysos on the island of Naxos.
700 BCE: The site of Sounion first acquires a religious significance.
650 BCE - 600 BCE: Heraion, temple dedicated to Hera built at Olympia.
650 BCE: The first temple in honour of Apollo is built at Delphi.
630 BCE - 560 BCE: The Tomb of the Bronze Fans is in use at the Etruscan site of Populonia.
600 BCE - 550 BCE: The Dionysia becomes a major Athenian festival in honour of Dionysos.
600 BCE: Development of the Charvaka school of philosophy in India.
600 BCE: The Eleusinian Mysteries become part of the official Athenian religious calendar.
599 BCE - 527 BCE: Traditional dating of the life of Vardhamana, according to Jain tradition.
573 BCE: First athletic games at Nemea in honour of Zeus.
566 BCE - 486 BCE: The life of Siddhartha Gautama according to the Corrected long chronology.
563 BCE: Siddhartha Gautama is born in Lumbini (present day Nepal).
550 BCE: The temple of Apollo is constructed at Corinth.
550 BCE - 330 BCE: Zoroastrianism adopted by the Achaemenid Empire.
540 BCE: Athens removes and prohibits further burials on Delos to purify the sacred island.
515 BCE - 70 CE: The Second Temple Period; Judaism is revised, scriptures canonized, Yahweh becomes sole deity, monotheism established.
513 BCE - 512 BCE: Darius I of Persia campaigns against Scythians into European Scythia, past the Danube River, Scythians refuse to fight and Darius is forced to abandon the campaign due to lack of provisions.
510 BCE: The second temple to Apollo is constructed at Delphi, replacing the first temple destroyed by fire.
500 BCE: Asclepius becomes principal god of worship at Epidaurus.
500 BCE: Beginning of the Roman Saturnalia festival according to Livy (although there is evidence it was a much older tradition).
490 BCE - 410 BCE: The life of Siddhartha Gautama according to modern scholar consensus.
480 BCE: Persians destroy the sanctuary at Sounion.
460 BCE - 457 BCE: Temple of Zeus is built at Olympia with a statue of Apollo dominating the west pediment and containing the cult statue of Zeus by Phidias.
460 BCE: The bronze Poseidon or Zeus statue (of Cape Artemesium) is sculpted.
449 BCE: The Hephaisteion, temple to Athena & Hephaistos, built in Athens.
447 BCE - 432 BCE: The construction of the Parthenon in Athens by the architects Iktinos and Kallikrates under the direction of Phidias.
444 BCE - 440 BCE: Temple of Poseidon at Sounion re-built.
438 BCE: The cult statue of Athena Parthenos is dedicated in the Parthenon of Athens.
430 BCE: The cult statue of Zeus by Phidias is dedicated in the Temple of Zeus, Olympia. It is one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
430 BCE - 420 BCE: Sanctuary of Aphrodite constructed at Argos.
425 BCE - 420 BCE: The Temple dedicated to Athena Nike is constructed on the acropolis of Athens.
421 BCE - 406 BCE: The Erechtheion of Athens acropolis is constructed with six Caryatids in the south porch.
380 BCE - 375 BCE: Temple to Asclepius constructed at Epidaurus.
330 BCE: The third temple to Apollo is constructed at Delphi, replacing the earlier temple damaged by earthquake.
330 BCE: Temple of Zeus built at Nemea.
320 BCE: Temple dedicated to Aphrodite constructed at Epidaurus.
295 BCE: The first temple to Venus is dedicated on Rome's Aventine Hill.
292 BCE - 280 BCE: The Colossus of Rhodes, a representation of Helios, is built in Rhodes town harbour, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
292 BCE: The Romans adopt the Greek god of medicine Asclepius by stealing his sacred snake from Epidaurus and setting up a temple on the Tiber Island.
263 BCE: A shrine is dedicated to Minerva on the Aventine in Rome.
247 BCE - 224 CE: Empire of the Parthians.
247 BCE - 224 CE: Zoroastrianism continued by the Parthian Empire.
225 BCE - 150 BCE: The Temple of Hercules is built at Ostia.
186 BCE: The Roman Senate bans the Cult of Bacchus.
146 BCE: End of the Third Punic War. Carthage is destroyed and its lands become the Roman province Africa.
146 BCE: First Roman all-marble building is constructed, the temple of Jupiter Stater in Rome.
141 BCE: Persis passes from Seleucid to Parthian domination.
6 BCE - 30 CE: Life of Jesus Christ.
1 CE - 100 CE: The Mahayana movement begins in India with its belief in bodhisattva - saintly souls who helped the living.
1 CE - 100 CE: Mithraism spreads in the Roman empire.
14 CE: The Temple of Rome and Augustus is built at Ostia.
42 CE - 62 CE: Paul the Apostle goes on missionary journeys across Asia Minor, Greece, and Rome.
50 CE - 60 CE: Establishment of various Christian communities in the Eastern Mediterranean, Greece, Egypt, and at least the city of Rome.
64 CE: Unofficial persecution of Christians in Rome.
65 CE - 100 CE: The tales of the life and work of Jesus (gospels) composed.
66 CE - 73 CE: The Jewish Revolt against Rome.
75 CE - 450 CE: Kushan rule in the Gandhara region, arguably the golden era of the Gandhara civilization in which art, architecture and the propagation of the Buddhist religion excelled.
110 CE: First documented martydom in the Colosseum of Rome, that of St. Ignatius of Antioch.
125 CE: The Pantheon is completed in Rome.
132 CE: Septuagint (Greek translation of the Bible) composed at Alexandria.
224 CE - 651 CE: Zoroastrian texts written during the Sassanian Period, preserving the oral tradition of the religion, including the concept of the Chinvat Bridge.
224 CE: Zoroastrianism becomes Persian state religion under the Sassanian Empire.
224 CE - 651 CE: Avesta is committed to writing under the Sassanian Empire who make Zoroastrianism the state religion.
224 CE - 651 CE: Zoroastrianism made state religion under the Sassanian Empire.
224 CE - 240 CE: Reign of Ardashir I, who reformed the Persia by centralizing power, making Zoroastrianism state religion, and rivalling Rome.
224 CE - 651 CE: Sassanian Empire adopts Persian model of government but bases it on religion of Zoroastrianism.
224 CE - 651 CE: Sassanian Empire adopts satrapy system and founds its principles on religion of Zoroastrianism/Zorvanism.
224 CE - 651 CE: The religious "heresy" of Zorvanism, first suggested under the Achaemenid Empire, is fully developed during the Sassanian Period.
284 CE - 305 CE: Reign of Roman Emperor Diocletian.
300 CE - 400 CE: Rise of Christianity in Egypt replaces Heka and old religion with new model of belief.
306 CE - 337 CE: Reign of Roman Emperor Constantine I.
313 CE: The Edict of Milan enacted by Constantine I.
313 CE: Roman emperor Constantine I tolerates Christianity.
314 CE: Armenia adopts Christianity as the state religion.
325 CE: Roman Emperor Constantine I calls the Council of Nicaea.
372 CE: A Confucian Academy is established in the Goguryeo kingdom of northern Korea and Buddism is adopted as the state religion.
379 CE: Theodosius I orders the closure of all Greek pagan sites.
384 CE: Buddhism is adopted as the state religion by the Baekje kingdom of western Korea.
391 CE: Christianity becomes official religion of Empire.
393 CE: Roman Emperor Theodosius definitively ends all pagan Games in Greece.
415 CE: Cult of Amun proscribed by the new religion of Christianity.
426 CE: Emperor Theodosios II orders the destruction of Olympia.
500 CE - 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.
600 CE: Babylonian Talmud is compiled.
608 CE: The Pantheon in Rome is converted into a Christian church.
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: Siege of Bani Qurayzah: Muslims capture the Jewish stronghold.
627 CE: Battle of the Trench: Quraysh troops attempt to siege Medina (then called Yathrib), but lose to the Muslim force.
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.
628 CE: Treaty of Hudaybiyyah: A peace agreement is signed between Muhammad's Muslims and the people of Mecca.
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: 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.
632 CE: "Farewell Hajj Pilgrimage": This is the only Hajj pilgrimage in which Muhammad participates.
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.
651 CE: Muslim Arab conquest of Persia; Zoroastrianism/Zorvanism is suppressed and forcible conversion efforts instituted.
656 CE - 661 CE: Ali ibn Abi Talib succeeds Uthman to become the fourth and final caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate.
710 CE: Date favoured by historians for the founding of the Kasuga Taisha Shinto shrine at Nara, Japan.
712 CE: The Kojiki is written, a collection of oral myths forming the basis of the Shinto religion.
712 CE - 756 CE: Taoism becomes official religion of China under the Emperor Xuanzong.
720 CE: The Nihon Shoki is written, a collection of oral myths forming the basis of the Shinto religion.
794 CE: Emperor Kammu moves the Japanese capital to Heiankyo (Kyoto).
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.
1164 CE: The Buddhist Sanjusangendo temple is founded at Heiankyo (Kyoto), Japan.
1313 CE - 1341 CE: Uzbeg rules the Golden Horde and makes Islam the state religion.
1345 CE - 1521 CE: The Aztec civilization flourishes in Mesoamerica.
1351 CE: New Fire Ceremony celebrated by the Aztecs.
1403 CE: New Fire Ceremony celebrated by the Aztecs.
1425 CE - 1532 CE: The Inca Empire flourishes in South America.
1455 CE: New Fire Ceremony celebrated by the Aztecs.
1471 CE - 1493 CE: The sacred site of Pachacamac is taken over by the Incas.
1487 CE: The Templo Mayor is completed at Tenochtitlan and inaugurated with the sacrifice of 20,000 captives.
1493 CE - 1526 CE: Huayna Capac reigns as Inca leader and constructs fortresses, religious temples and roads throughout the empire.
1507 CE: New Fire Ceremony celebrated by the Aztecs.
1533 CE: Pizarro takes the Inca capital of Cuzco.
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