Timeline of Greece

An introduction to Greece history from the Minoan times onwards and an overview of the locations within a time frame.

  • 3100 – 1100 BCE


    Minoan civilization

    A Bronze Age culture on the island of Crete, often regarded as the first civilization in Europe. First urban settlements. Often absence of fortifications. Linear A script. Various styles of pottery.
    Examples: Knossos (Crete)

  • 1750 – 1050 BCE


    Mycenean civilization

    Construction of fortified settlements like Mycene, Pylos and Tiryns – organized as city states. Cyclopean masonry. Geometric pottery. Linear B script. Shrines and cult centers.
    Examples: Mycenae, Pylos (Nestor’s palace), Nemea, Acropolis

  • Around 1150 BCE


    Bronze Age collapse

    Environmental change, mass migration and destruction of cities through natural desasters or invasions.
    Major sites like Mycenae, Tiryns, Thebes and Pylos are abandoned.
    Further information from the World History Encyclopedia: The Bronze Age Collapse

  • 1100 – 800 BCE


    Greek Dark Age (Iron Age)

    Widespread famine and depopulation, no large cities, no script, simple pottery. Not much archeological evidence.

  • 800 – 490 BCE


    Archaic Greece

    Expansion of the Greek culture through settlements in the Mediterranean and Asia Minor, the Polis (Greek city state), Greek alphabet, Homer, refined pottery decoration. Establishment of the key states Athens, Corinth and Sparta in the 8th century.
    Examples: Corinth, Olympia, Eleusis, Athens, Acropolis

  • 490 – 323 BCE

  • 323 – 146 BCE


    Hellenistic period

    Alexander the Great and the Diadochi, expansion of Greek culture, merging with Persian and Buddhist culture.

    Examples: Athens, Corinth, Ephesus, Eleusis

  • 146 BCE – 324 CE


    Roman Greece

    In the 2nd century BCE the Romans conquer Greece. Greece is divided into four Roman provinces. The Romans adapt many components of the Greek culture. From around 50 CE onwards Christian missionaries start conversions in the Roman empire. In the 4th century CE Greek religion is systematically eradicated. When the Roman empire is split into a western and an eastern part, the Greek provinces stay with the eastern part.
    Examples: Ephesus, Messene, Eleusis, Corinth

  • 324 – 1453 CE

  • 480 - 700 CE


    Invasions from the North

    Invasions by various non-Christian tribes like Visigoths, Ostrogoths and Slavs. They conquer large parts of the Greek mainland, but never take control over the whole country.

  • 1204 – 1797 CE

  • 1453 – 1821 CE


    Ottoman Greece

    Greece under the influence of the Ottoman empire. Many members of the orthodox church retreat into the mountains.
    Example: Palamidi, Meteora , Methoni, Monemvasia

  • Since 1821


    Modern Greece

    Independence since 1833