How To Remember Historical Events
~~ Paul V. Hartman ~~
One of the valuable tools I use to remember historical events in their proper sequence is to commit to memory a reasonably brief outline of significant events at convenient breakpoints in the span of time of human existence. For instance, the first walled settlement of an agricultural society in history I place at 7000 BC at Jericho. The bow and arrow came into use at 15,000 BC, which is also a suspected date for the arrival of man into South America. The land bridge from England to France submerged to form the English channel at 5000 BC, and the Minoan civilization appears in Crete at 2500 BC. These dates are not dead accurate, but they are reasonably close, and by creating a ladder of several of them, one can then place other events within rememberable time periods, and this aids memory.
Here then is the "ladder" I use for events Before Christ:
100,000 BC Beginning of most recent Ice Age.
40,000 Cro-Magnon man appears in Europe.
30,000 Neanderthal dies out. Humans reach North America.
20,000 Maximun ice age extent. Cave paintings appear: France, Spain.
15,000 Bow and arrow appears. Man in South America.
10,000 Ice age begins withdraw; temperatures warm.
8,000 Agriculture appears in Middle East.
7,000 Walled settlement at Jericho. Pottery. Copper.
5,000 Land bridge to England submerges: channel complete.
3,500 Rice farming in China. Mayan civilization begins.
3,000 Evidence for Wheel and Bricks in Egypt and Assyria.
2,500 Pyramids in Egypt; Minoan civilization begins.
2,000 Bronze Age begins in Europe; Stonehenge.
1,700 Hammurabi (Babylon); Code of Law.
1,250 Moses leads the Exodus; Greeks attack Troy. Phoenicia.
1,000 Saul dies, David unites Judah and Israel.
800 Phoenicians establish Carthage; Homer writes Odyssey.
750 Romulus and Remus found Rome. (If you believe it.)
600 Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
550 Cyrus the Great establishes the Persian Empire.
500 Roman Republic begins; so does Athenian Democracy.
460 Pericles. First Peloponnesian War.
400 Death of Socrates. Romans defeat the Etruscans.
335 Alexander begins conquest of the known world.
300 Ptolemy, first Greek Pharoah of Egypt.
265 Punic Wars (Rome vs. Carthage) begin.
220 C'Hin Dynasty will give China its name.
60 First Roman triumvirate: Julius Caesar, Pompey, Crassus
54 Romans invade Britain; Cleopatra Queen of Egypt.
44 Ides of March.
30 Octavian defeats Antony, becomes "Caesar Augustus".
5 Probable year of birth of Jesus of Nazareth.
So. Which event appears in history first, the reign of Solomon or
the story of the wooden horse at Troy? Answer: Solomon is not on
your list, but you know he follows David, who is King in 1000 and
Homer isn't born yet, but Homer will write about events occurring
in 1200, so the wooden horse story is older than Solomon but the
Odyssey isn't. Look how smart you are!
There are some nice books available on the "TimeLine of History" if
you wish to continue this list beyond this period.
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