Ancient World

The invention of writing to the fall of Rome

The ancient or 'classical' world begins with the invention of written language, and follows the organization of human culture into governments and societies much like we practice today. Ancient Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, and Rome were civilizations that lasted for hundreds — and in Egypt's case thousands of years. They were super powers because they brought law and order to their people, providing a certain amount of peace and stability. Peace and stability leads to a civic life, creating the space for creativity, education and commerce. This in turn grows prosperity and enables building projects, temples, roads and art. Written language, unified law, and centralized government allowed these ancient cultures to thrive on a scale that warped past hunter and gatherer societies and created the foundation on which we create our modern civilization in the west.

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Ancient Egypt

Super power of all super powers.

4000 BCE-30 BCE


Poetry, war, and the invention of law

3500 BCE-1000 BCE

Aegean Civilizations

The lost faces of the ancient world

3000 BCE-1200 BCE

Ancient China

Three dynasties birth Chinese art and philosophy.

2070 BCE-256 BCE

Kingdom of Kush

A Nubian Empire rivals Egypt for 1000 years

2000 BCE-400 CE

Lapita Expansion

History's greatest navigators, and the beautiful vessels they left behind

1500 BCE-600 CE

Olmec Civilization

The pouting ancestors of Mesoamerica

1400 BCE-400 BCE

Ancient Greece

Know Thyself

800 BCE-31 BCE

The Celts

Death & Gold

800 BCE-43 CE

The Etruscans

A mysteriously happy people at the fringes of the classical world

768 BCE-100 BCE

Ancient Rome

The roads make the empire

753 BCE-530 CE

The Iberians

Human-animal hybrids in the melting pot of ancient cultures

600 BCE-500 CE

Teotihuacan Culture

City of Water & Fire

400 BCE-600 CE

Classical India

The largest economy in the world for 1500 years

230 BCE-550 CE
Next Era

Middle Ages

Feudalism and the rise of organized religion

300 CE-1500

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