The Big Picture

The value of a table like this is to be able to see what is going on in many areas simultaneously, so to keep the table to reasonable proportions all events are tabulated in the nearest 5 year cell; actual date (if known) is given in brackets.  Innovations and developments in technology are very difficult to date accurately. Unless there is a date in brackets after such an entry, its position in the table should be regarded as approximate, indicating our earliest evidence of such a technology, rather than the date of its invention (which would be earlier).

This page is continuously under development. It is large, and will take a minute to download. 1-250 AD is now included. 

X(X) indicates battle(s). b. indicates birth. d. indicates death. c. (circa) means approximately. fl. (floruit) means active around this time. MSS means manuscripts. Aqua is an aqueduct of Rome, Fossa a canal, Pons a bridge.

Date BC Military Technology Political Science Other
500   Eupalinos' tunnel, 1km long; Eretria jetty 700m long, 20m deep. Ionian Revolt (499-94 BC) Herakleitos fl.; Skulax fl.; b.Anaxagoras d. Pythagoras
495   Anchor with flukes     b. Sophokles (496)
490 Persians invade Greece; X Marathon Shear-leg cranes in common use   d. Hekataios; b. Zeno of Elea Aiskhulos' Suppliants (492)
485   Silver bonanza at Laurion     b. Herodotos (484)
480 Persians invade Greece; Carthaginians invade Sicily. XX Artemision, Thermopylae, Salamis, Himera Athos canal completed (481); prosthetics made; submarine warfare invented   Agatharkhos fl. Parmenides fl.; d. Xenophanes;  Anaxagoras at Athens  
475         Bacchylides fl.
470       b. Sokrates (469) Aiskhulos' Persians (472) Seven against Thebes (467)
465 X Eurymedon (467)     b. Theodoros  Meteorite fell near Aegospotami; earthquake in Sparta (464)
460   Linear perspective for stage scenery Ephialtes' reforms (461) Demokedes fl. b. Thucydides; b. Lusias (458); Aiskhulos' Oresteia (458)
455       Philolaos fl b. Aristophanes (457); d. Aiskhulos
450       Alkmaion fl.; Archelaos fl.  
445   Parthenon begun (447)   Empedokles fl.; b. Antisthenes d. Pindar (446); Sophokles' Ajax (447)
440   Indirect lost wax process for casting bronze     b. Andokides (440); Sophokles' Antigone (442) 
435       Leukippos fl. b. Isokrates (436)
430 Start of Peloponnesian War (431)     d.Perikles (plague) (429) Meton's calendar scheme adopted in Athens (432); d.Anaxagoras  (428); b. Plato (428) Solar eclipse 3 Aug 431; Euripides' Medea; Plague in Athens; Sophokles' Oidipous Rex (430); b. Xenophon
425  Thucydides loses Amphipolis to Brasidas (424); tried; writes History of the Peloponnesian War in exile The winch used to reduce broken limbs; Thebans use a flame-thrower at X Delium   d. Zeno of Elea; Hippokrates of Cos fl.  Antiphon fl; Hippokrates of Khios fl.; Euktemon fl. Solar eclipse 21 March 425; d. Herodotos. Aristophanes' Acharnians (425) Knights (424) Clouds (423)
420       Cult of Asklepios introduced at Athens Aristophanes' Wasps (422) Peace (421); b. Isaios (420)
415 Sicilian expedition (415-3); Athenian siege of Syrakuse (414)   Mutilation of the Herms and Profanation of the Eleusinian Mysteries b. Theaitetos Aristophanes' Birds (414); Sophokles' Elektra (c.415) Women of Trachis (413)
410   Cranes on ships (D.S. 13.78-9) Oligarchic regimes at Athens (411) Demokritos fl.; b. Eudoxos (408); b. Speusippos (408) d. Antiphon (411). Aristophanes' Lysistrata (411) Thesmophoriazusai (411); Sophokles' Philoktetes and Oidipous at Kolonus (409)
405 X Arginousai (406); Athenian defeat in P. War (404) Complex pebble mosaics (Olynthus) Trial of the Generals (406). 30 Tyrants at Athens (404) Ekphantos fl. d. Euripides (406); d. Sophokles (406); Aristophanes' Frogs (405)
400 Expedition of the 10,000 First crossbow (gastraphetes, belly-bow) at Syrakuse Restoration of democracy at Athens (403) b. Diogenes; Ktesias fl. d.Sokrates (execution, 399) Winter of 400/399 seven feet of snow fell on Rome (Dio.Hal. 12.8).
395 Romans introduce pay for army service   Accession of Amyntas III (393) b. Xenokrates (396) b. Aiskhines (393)
390 Korinthian war (395-86)     b. Herakleides Aristophanes' Ekklesiazusai (392);  d.Andokides (390); b. Lukourgos (390); b. Hyperides (389); Aristophanes' Wealth (388)
385 Gauls sack Rome (387) Some foods available out of season; hairpieces (Aristophanes fr. 898 Edm.) b. Demosthenes (384) Academy founded (386). Gorgias fl.;  b.Aristotle (384) d. Aristophanes; b.Demosthenes (384)
380   Baker called Thearion invented loaf tins in various shapes (Antiphanes fr. 176, Plato Gorgias 518b)   Leodamas fl.; Thumaridas fl. d. Lusias (380); pig hide valued at c. 3dr (IG2[2nd ed]1356.5-13)
375       Archutas fl. b. Theopompos (377); Helike (Akhaia) destroyed by earthquake (373) W
370 X Leuktra (371)     b. Theophrastos (371); d.Theaitetos (369)  
365   Salamis metrological relief   Aristotle joins the Academy (367)  
360   Aineias Taktikos' How to Survive under Siege Accession of Philip II  (359) d. Demokritos (361) b. Dinarkhos (360)
355 Philip defeats Pudna, Poteidaia, Illyrians, Paeonians (356) Onomarkhos uses stone-throwing machines in the field against Philip (353). Burnt brick first used in Greece, but unreliable (Vit. 2.8.19) b. Alexander (356) d. Eudoxos  
350 Third Sacred War (356-46) Development of siege machines by Philip. Aineias Taktikos On the defence of a besieged city   Mago of Carthage fl.; Kallippos fl. Aristoxenos fl.; b. Megasthenes d. Isaios (350)
345   Donkey-powered mills (Alexis fr. 13)   d. Plato (347); Speusippus becomes scholarch of Academy Aiskhines Against Timarkhos (345)
340 X Khaironeia (338); Philip controls Greece fl. Poluidos; Torsion catapult used (338) Philip forms League of Greek States at Korinth; Lukourgos controls Athens' finances b. Epikouros (341); b. Praxagoras; d.Speusippus (339);  Xenokrates becomes scholarch of Academy b. Menander (342); Isokrates' Panathenaicus (339). d.Isokrates (338)
335 X Granicus (334) X Issus (333)  Ballista used (334); poultry eggs incubated artificially (Aristotle HA) d. Philip (336); accession of Alexander Aristotle settles in Athens, founds Lyceum.   fl. Anaxarkhosb. Zeno (333) Ephoros fl.; peach introduced to Greece
330 X Guagamela (331); siege of Tyre (330) Fire-ship (330); The Capua artificial leg; punctuation of texts (Arist. Rhetoric 3.5) Alexander takes Persepolis (331) b. Kleanthes (331); b.Herophilos; fl. Eudemos; fl. Diades    Foundation of Alexandria (331); an ox hide valued at c. 7dr at this time (IG2[2nd ed]1496.68-151)
325 X Hydaspes (326) Scallop dredgers used (Arist. HA); shock-absorber invented for Alexander's funeral carriage (DS 18.27) d. Alexander (323) b. Euclid; Nearchos' voyage; d.Diogenes (323) d. Lukourgos (325)
320   Compound pulley used  ([Aristotle] Mechanics 18) d. Demosthenes (322) d. Aristotle (322); Theophrastos becomes scholarch of the Lyceum d. Aiskhines (322); d.Hyperides (322);  d.Theopompos
315 Offense begins to dominate in sieges Diving bell used ([Aristotle] Problems) Demetrios of Phaleron rules Athens (317-07) Pytheas fl.; d.Xenokrates (313)  
310 War Agathokles of Syrakuse v. Carthage (311-06) Appian Way started (312). Aqua Appia (10 miles long) completed (312)   Zeno arrives in Athens (312); d.Herakleides; Autolukos fl.; b.Aratos; b.Aristarkhos  
305 Siege of Rhodes (305-4) Use of cubes of coloured stone, tesserae (as well as coloured pebbles) for mosaics Demetrios of Phaleron exiled (307). Antigonos and Demetrios assume royal titles (306). Ptolemaios, Kassandros, Lusimakhos and Seleukos assume royal titles (305) Diodoros Kronos fl.; Diokles of Karystos fl.; Dikaiarkhos fl.; Epikouros opens his Garden in Athens (306); b. Erasistratos (304)  
300 X Ipsus (301)     Zeno founds the Stoa (301) Foundation of Antioch
295   Aromatherapy (Alexis fr. 190)      
290   Multicoloured marbles used (Menander fr. 956)   d. Theophrastos (288); Strato becomes scholarch of the Lyceum d. Dinarkhos and Menander (292)
285     d. Ptolemy I Soter (283); accession Ptolemy II Phil. b. Archimedes (287); b.Eratosthenes (284). Zenodotos head of Library at Alexandria (285)  
280 War between Rome and Tarentum aided by Pyrrhus Pharos lighthouse d. Seleukos I (281) b. Khrusippos  
275   First mention of soap? (smema, Theocritus Idyll 15)   Timokharis fl.  
270   Ktesibios fl.; Aqua Anio Vetus (63km) completed (270). Roman silver coinage beings (269) Hieron II becomes king of Syrakuse d. Epikouros; d.Euclidd.Strato; Lyco becomes head of the Lyceum d. Demetrios of Phaleron
265 First Punic War begins (264) Appian Way completed   Ktesibios fl.  
260   Rome gets its first state sundial, plunder from Catina in Sicily (Pliny NH 7. 214); Sounion catapult   d. Zeno (262); Kleanthes becomes scholarch of the Stoa  
255       Hiketas fl.  
250   Water screw invented?   d. Herophilos d.Erasistratos Concept of plagiarism (before 246)
245     Accession of Ptolemy III Euergetes (246) Konon fl.  
240 First Punic War ends (241); Janus temple gates closed (241)     d. Aratos; b. Apollonios of Perga  
235     b. Cato (234)    
230 Attalos I's victory over the Galatians, commemorated by the Dying Gaul Properties of Pozzolana discovered   d. Aristarkhos; d. Kleanthes (232) Andreas fl.  
225   Colossos of Rhodes destroyed by earthquake (227)   Dositheus fl.  
220 Second Punic War begins (218)   Accession of Ptolemy IV Philopator (221) Arkhagathos fl.  
215 X Cannae (216); First Macedonian War begins (214) Archimedes made a celestial globe   b. Karneades (213)  
210 Capture and sack of Syrakuse (211) Philo of Byzantium fl.; refers casually (Pol. C10) to one-armed stone-thrower catapults (later Roman  versions also called onager), 'rope' ladders and pitons (D 73-4) Hannibal marched on Rome; Publius Sulpicius Galba sold the inhabitants of Aegina into slavery (210) d. Arkhimedes (211)  
205 First Macedonian War ends (205); X Ilipa (Spain, 206) Dry dock; Pons Mulvius (timber) (207) Accession of Ptolemy V Epiphanes (204) d. Khrusippos (206)  
200 Second Punic War ends (201); Second Macedonian War begins Harbour mole at Alexandria built (mile long, 200m wide, 100m deep);   b. Serapion; d. Eratosthenes (202); Bolos fl. b. Polubios
195 X Cynoscephalae; defeat of Philip V (197); end of Second Mac. War (196) Paintings on display in the Propylaia on the Athenian Akropolis (Polemon wrote about them) Welfare payments to the needy in Boiotia (Polybios 20. 6) Diokles fl. Volcanic island rose up from the sea (197; Seneca NQ 2.26.4))
190 Syrian War (192-189) Cooks began to have value in Roman eyes (Livy 39. 6)   b. Hipparkhos; the relative geography of Pamphylia and the Taurus Mountains was debatable (Polybios 21. 45) 785 bronze and 230 marble statues from Aetolia displayed in Fulvius' triumph (189)
185 Slave revolt in Apulia (185) Masts in the circus (187); sulphur torches (186); Cato qua Censor shut off private pipes tapping into public water supplies (184); Basilica Porcia must have used tie-beam truss (184) Death of Philopoimen in a vault closed by machine in Korone (183); death of Agesipolis III, briefly king of Sparta, at the hands of pirates b. Panaitios Showers of stones fell on Picenum for 3 days, and 'flames in the air' set clothes alight (186) new island appeared from the sea near Sicily (183)
180   Pons Aemilius built with stone piers (179); Pergamon relief catapult   Zenodoros fl.; b. Apollodoros Hurricane? in Rome (182, Livy 40. 2); Corsica is required to pay as tribute 100,000 Roman pounds of wax (Livy 40. 34)
175   First paving of roads within Rome (174; Livy 41.27.5)   Hypsikles fl. Antiokhos IV Epiphanes introduced gladiatorial games, gradually, to the Greeks (Livy 41. 20); plague in Italy; meteor?
170 Third Macedonian War (172-67); X Pydna (168) Kataphrakt (chain mail) horses and men Romans stripped Haliartos of statues, paintings and whatever costly adornments it had; enslaved2500 people; razed city; gave territory to Athens (171). d. Apollonios Corsicans required to supply 200,000 lbs of wax (Livy 42. 7); Polubios taken to Rome (167)
165   Rome gets its first sundial designed for the latitude of Rome (! Pliny NH 7. 214); Ephyra catapults (167) Epirus devastated (167)   Terence's Mother-in-law (166), Woman of Andros (166) Self-Tormentor (163)
160   Rome gets its first water-clock (159; Pliny NH 7. 215)     Terence's Eunuch (161) Phormio (161) Brothers (160)
155   Rotary mill invented (sometime between C4 and end C1)   Agatharkhides fl. Karneades, Kritolaos, Diogenes at Rome as envoys (155) and lecture on philosophy
150 Third Punic War begins (149) Semaphore; Pergamon catapult   Nikander fl.; Seleucus fl.; b. Zeno of Sidon  
145 Third Punic War ends (146); Sack of Carthage (146); Sack of Korinth (146); Numantian War begins (143) Quintus Marcius Rex granted 180 million sesterces to restore Rome's 2 existing aqueducts and to build a new one (the Aqua Marcia; 92km)   Panaitios at Rome (144)  
140    First stone arched bridge over Tiber completed (Pons Aemilius 142). Aqua Marcia (91km) completed (140)      
135 Numantian War ends (133)   Tib. Gracchus assassinated (133) b. Poseidonios d. Attalos III; Pergamum bequeathed to Rome
130   Antikythera mechanism   d. Karneades (129)  
125   Aqua Tepula completed (125); G Gracchus built paved roads & erected milestones along them      
120   Earliest dated Roman concrete structure: platform of Temple of Concord (121) d. G.Gracchus d. Hipparkhos;  d. Apollodoros; Theodosios fl. Notable population decline in Greece (Poly. 36. 17)
115       b. Varro (116) d. Polubios
110 Jugurthine War (112-05) Oldest surviving stone arches in Mulvian bridge over Tiber (109)      
105 Second Sicilian Slave War (104)   b. Cicero (106); b. Pompey (106)    
100 End of 2nd Sic.SlaveWar Fossa Mariana cut (101); Ampurias catapult Marian Reforms (107-00). b. Caesar (100)  Zopyrus fl. b. Nigidius  
95   First hanging baths   b. Lucretius (94)  
90 Social Wars (91-88) First shower heads   Asklepiades fl.  
85 First Mithridatic War (89-5)   Aristion makes himself tyrant of Athens; Sulla sacks Athens (86)d.Marius (86) Sulla takes Aristotle's MSS to Rome (83) b. Catullus (86)
80 Second Mithridatic War (82-80) Azaila catapults Sulla's Reforms (82-80)   Cicero in Athens and Rhodes (79)
75 Sertorian revolt in Spain (76-72); Third Mithridatic War (74-63) Caminreal catapult     Spartacus leads slave uprising at Capua (73)
70 Spartacus' army defeated (71) Mahdia catapults Trial of Verres, governor of Sicily (70)  Krateuas fl.; b. Areius (70) b. Virgil
65 Pompey finishes war against the pirates (67). Mithridates defeated (66); d.Mithridates (63) Woodworking plane (64, though may go back to Greece C5 BC) First Cataline Conspiracy (66). End of Seleucid monarchy (64). Cicero cos. (63). b. Octavian (63) Pompey orders Latin translation of Mithridates' toxicological research results. b. Strabo (64); b. Nicolaos Damascus Non-citizens evicted from Rome (64). Fall of Jerusalem (63); b. Agrippa (63); b. Horace (65)
60   Burnt brick becomes common; Pons Fabricius completed (62); first silver mirrors (Pliny NH 33. 130) First Triumvirate Diodoros Siculus in Alexandria b. Livy (59)
55 Caesar in Gaul (58-49); first expedition to Britain (55-4); X Carrhae (53) The Rhine bridged. First stone theatre in Rome dedicated by Pompey. Forum Julium begun (54) Cicero exiled (58-7) d. Lucretius (55); Xenarkhos fl. Nepos fl.; d. Catullus (54)
50 Siege of Alesia (52); Caesar crosses the Rubicon (49)  Tower of the winds built; Caesar's most treasured possession was a beautifully veneered table (Pliny NH 16.84); Cicero paid HS 500,000 for a table (NH 13.91).   d. Pompey (48, murdered) Caesar dictator (47-4) Poseidonios in Rome (51). Sosigenes fl. Asklepiodotos fl. d.Poseidonios  Caesar's Gallic War published (51)
45 X Munda (45) Amalgamation process for gold extraction. Water-wheels common; Rome made a pedestrian zone in daytime (44) d. Caesar (44, assassinated). d. Cicero (43, murdered) Caesar's reform of the calendar (46) Geminos fl. Strabo at Rome (44) d. Nigidius Cicero's Tusc. Disp published (44). b. Ovid (43)
40   Overshot water-wheel driven grain mill; Caesar deified (42) Boethus fl. Athenodoros fl. Diod.Sic.fl.; first public library at Rome opened by Asinius Pollio in the Hall of Liberty (39)
35   Vitruvius fl. Aqua Julia (23km) completed (33); Agrippa restores and extends cloaca maxima (c. 33)   Varro's  de Re Rustica published (37)  
30 X Actium (31); Janus temple gates closed (31) Restoration of Theatre of Pompey (32); Agrippa built road tunnels at Cumae and Puteoli, and harbour facilities at Misenum    Anaxilaus fl. Apollonios Mys fl. Census of 28BC recorded 4,063,000 Roman citizens
25 Janus temple gates closed (25) Agrippa builds first Pantheon (27); undershot water-wheel mills (Vit. 10.5.2)  Act of Settlement; Octavian called Augustus (27) d. Varro (27)  
20   Aqua Virgo (21km) completed (19). Groundplans, elevations and perspective drawings of new buildings.   b. Isidoros of Charax. Vitruvius De architectura published  d. Virgil (19); d.Tibullus (19)
15   Piscina Mirabile      
10   Fossa Drusiana cut (12); Glass-blowing invented   d. Areius (10) d. Agrippa (12); d.Horace (8); d.Maecenas (8)
5 Campaign in Germany (8-6) Artificial lake dug beside the Tiber for a mock sea-battle   b. Seneca (4); d. Nicolaos (4)  
BC-AD   Forum Augustum completed (2); so-called 'Temple of Mercury' 25m domed bath built at Baia   Dorotheus fl.; b. Rufus  
5 Campaign in Germany (4-6); Campaign in Illyria (6-9) Creation of praefectura vigilum (fire brigade) (6)     Record speed overland travel: 200 miles covered in 24 hours (Pliny NH 7. 84)
10 3 legions destroyed in the Teutoburg Forest (9)        
15   Aqua Alsietina (33km) d. Augustus; accession of Tiberius (14) fl. Scribonius Largus Quadruplets born in Ostia (Pliny NH 7. 33). Earthquake in Asia Minor (17) destroys Sardis, Magnesia, Temnos, and 9 other cities 
20       d. Strabo (21)  
25   Boiler for hot water Amphitheatre at Fidenae collapsed; 20,000 people killed (Suet. Tib. 40) b. Pliny the Elder (23); fl. Celsus; fl. Alexander of Myndos b. Silius Italicus
30   Sponge painting   b. Frontinus (30); fl. Manilius fl. Valerius Maximus
35 Parthian War (34-6) Temple of Divius Augustus consecrated, Aqua Anio Nova started; collapsible hide boats d. Tiberius; acccession of Caligula (37)   The city of Rome a pedestrian zone during daylight
40 Mauretanian War (41-2) Aqua Claudia started; Claudian basin at Ostia started (42); oxen used to haul in fishing nets and ships on shore d. Caligula; accession of Claudius (41) Seneca exiled to Corsica (41); ?fl. Kleomedes b. Martial (41)
45 Final invasion of Britain; Claudius present (43) Claudius attempts to drain Lake Fucinus   b. Plutarch (46); fl. Pomponius Mela Volcanic island rose up from the sea (46/7; Seneca NQ 6.21.1, Pliny NH 2.202)
50   Aqua Anio Nova (87km) completed (49); Aqua Claudia (69km) completed (52); Xanten catapult   Seneca recalled and made tutor to Nero (49); Anon Periplus of the Erythraian Sea.  
55   Companion planting; complex mirrors d. Claudius; accession of Nero (54) fl. Dioscorides; fl. Agathinus Seneca's Apocolocyntosis published
60 British revolt under Boudicca Romans mining in Britain; Ostia harbour built; first dome (at Baiae); wigs for sale   Astrologer called Ptolemy with Otho in Spain (Tacitus Hist. 1. 22) Storm destroys 200 ships in Ostia harbour (62); Seneca's Natural Questions
65 Expedition to Ethiopia (64); Temple of Janus closed (66); Jewish War (66-70) Canal from Ostia to Lake Avernus begun (64); Nero's Golden House (c. 65); canal at Corinth started by Nero (67); Steam engine    d. Seneca; fl. Columella; fl. Heron of Alexandria Fire in Rome for 19 days (July 64); d. Lucan; d. Petronius; b. Juvenal
70 Temple of Janus closed (71) Capitoline temple restoration completed; mechanical harvesters in NW Roman Empire (NH 18.261); Cremona catapults (69) d. Nero (68); Year of the 4 Emperors (Galba, Otho, Vitellius, Vespasian) (69) Mathematici (learned men) banished from Rome by Vitellius  (Tac. Hist. 2.42) (69) First paid annual holidays (for soldiers only) Tacitus Hist. 1.46; Tiber flooded Rome (69); Rhine reduced to a fordable river by drought (Tacitus 4. 26)
75 Campaign against Germany (73-4) Forum Vespasiani completed (75); road tunnels dug for Via Flaminia and Via Domitiana (76-7); Auerberg catapults Frontinus consul (74) fl. Thessalus of Tralles; astrologer called Seleukos with Vespasian (Tacitus Hist. 2. 78)  
80   dough-kneading machines; folding doors; armaria; partition walls; screw press; taps; tether points d. Vespasian; accession of Titus (79) d. Titus, accession of Domitian (81); Colosseum inaugurated (80); restored Capitoline temple dedicated (81) d. Pliny the Elder (79; fl. Quintilian Eruption of Vesuvius (79); Pompeii buried; Fire in Rome, Capitoline temple destroyed (80)
85     Agricola governor of Britain (78-85) fl. Dio Chrysostom; b. Arrian; b. Favorinus  
90   Elginhaugh catapult Edict against philosophi (89) Epictetus exiled (89); Plutarch in Rome (92-3)   
95 War against Suebii (97-8) Via Domitiana completed (95); Forum Nervae completed (97) Philosophers expelled from Italy (95); d. Domitian, accession of Nerva (96) fl.? Aretaeus Tacitus consul (97)
100 Trajan's 1st invasion of Dacia (101) Frontinus studies the aqueducts of Rome; Bath catapult d. Nerva, acccession of Trajan (98) fl. Soranus; fl. Aetius d. Silius Italicus
105 Second Dacian War (105-6)  Trajan's bridge over the Danube (105) Trajan's bridge over the Tagus (106); Ostia harbour area rebuilt in hexagonal shape with numbered docking areas (106-113); Trajan's column   d. Frontinus (104) d. Martial (104)
110   Aqua Traiana completed (109)      
115 Parthian War (114-7) Trajan's Column erected (112-3); Forum Trajani completed (114); Parthians show snow shoes to Romans d. Trajan, accession of Hadrian (117)    
120   The Pantheon (118-25)   d. Plutarch (119)  
125         d. Juvenal (127); b. Aulus Gellius 
130       fl. Theon of Smyrna; b. Galen (129)  
135 Judean War (132-5) Pons Aelius completed (134)   fl. Claudius Ptolemy   
140     d. Hadrian, accession of Antoninus Pius (138)    
145     Fronto consul (143)    
150         fl. Lucian; b. Dio Cassius
160     d. Antoninus Pius, accession of Marcus Aurelius and Lucius Verus (161)   d. Suetonius; b. Tertullian; fl. Pausanias 
165 War against Marcomani, Quadrati & Sarmatians (166-75)     Galen in Rome (162-6); d. Favorinus Plague spreads from Seleucia to Asia Minor, Egypt, Italy and the Rhine; plague in Rome 167
170     d. Verus b. Aelian b. Hippolytus
175 Second War against the Germans (178-80) Erection of Marcus Aurelius' Column (176)   Marcus Aurelius established salaried 'regius' teaching posts in every branch of knowledge at Athens, (176) Dio 72. 31. 3. d. Arrian  
180     d. Marcus Aurelius, accession of Commodus (180)   Earthquake destroyed Smyrna and many other cities (178)
185         b. Origen
190     d. Commodus, accession of Pertinax (192); d. Pertinax accession of Septimius Severus (193)   Killer epidemic in Rome, Dio 73. 14. 3
195   Lyon catapult (197)     Meteor impact near Rome? Dio 76. 4. 6-7
200 Severus' attacks on Hatra (198, 200) Forma Urbis Romae   fl. Alexander of Aphrodisias, Sextus Empiricus, Athenaios  
205   Glass cups could cost 200,000 sesterces, Dio 77. 5. 6   b. Plotinus fl. Philostratos; fl. Sammonicus  
210     d. Sept. Severus, accession of Antoninus (Caracalla) and Geta (211); d. Geta (211)Universal citizenship granted within the empire - to increase tax revenue (212) Dio 78. 9. 5-6 d. Galen  5% tax on emancipation of slaves raised to 10%, Dio 78. 9. 4
215   Colosseum severely damaged by fire following lightning strike (217) Dio 79. 25. 2 d. Caracalla; accession Macrinus (217)    
220     d. Macrinus, accession of Elagabalus (218); d. Elagabalus, accession Alexander Severus (222) Vaginoplasty entertained if not undertaken, Dio 80. 16. 7  
225   So-called 'Temple of Diana' at Baia constructed   Murder of Ulpian (223) fl. Diogenes Laertius
235     d. Alex. Sev.; accession Maximinus (235) d. Aelian d. Dio Cassius
240   Hatra catapults (241) d. Maximinus, accessions and deaths of Gordian I, II, Pupienus and Gordian III (238) b. Iamblichus  
245     d. Gordian II; Accession of Philip the Arab (244)   Philip the Arab the first Christian Emperor of Rome, Anon. Valesius 1.6.33
250   Aqua Alessandrina (22 km) d. Philip, accession Decius (249) fl. Diophantos; fl. Anatolius  


Dura-Europus destroyed   accession Valerian (253)    
260 Gallic Empire declares UDI under Postumus   d. Valerian (260)    
285   Volubilis catapults Accession of Diocletian (284); splits empire (286); he rules East, Maximian rules West    
305 accession of Constantine in Western empire (307)   retirement of Diocletian (305)    
325     d. of Licinius; Constantine sole ruler of reunited empire (324)    
335     d. Constantine (337)    
350   Libraries going out of fashion, water organs coming in, Amm. 14. 6. 18; Pityous catapult      
355 X Strasbourg (357) Antioch lighting compared to daylight, Amm. 14. 1. 9 Julian appointed Caesar in West (355)    
360 Siege of Amida (359) Water organs still exist, but rare (Gk Anth 9.365) Julian proclaimed Augustus (360)   Earthquake, epicentre near Nicomedia (358) Amm. 17. 7
365   Sign language for the deaf accession and d. of Jovian (363-4); accesion of Valentinian (West) and Valens (East)   2/12/363, Another earthquake at Nicomedia and Nicaea, Amm. 22. 13. 5; possible tsunami in Cyrenaica
375   Gornea, Orsova, Sala catapults      
This page was created by T E Rihll 20 August 2000, based upon Bickerman Chronology, the Dictionary of Scientific Biography, White Greek and Roman Technology, Howatson (ed) Oxf. Comp. Cl. Lit., and my own 25 years' study of the subject.
Last modified: 11 January 2010 . The C3 and C4 AD part of the table is under construction.
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