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10Mil BC
The Ankarapithecus skull, dating to about this time, was found in the Turkish desert in 1996. The remains show many similarities to Sivapithecus from South Asia, and have sometimes been included in that genus.
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5500 BC
People sweeping out from Turkey colonized Europe, likely as a part of the agricultural revolution, reaching Germany about 7,500 years ago.
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4000 BC
The Hittites settled around Cappadocia in present day Turkey.
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1275 BC
1240 BC
The Trojan War is usually dated to this period.
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1250 BC
1000 BC
Troy VIIa, another discernible era on the site of the Trojan War. Evidence shows that Troy V was destroyed by fire and that Troy VI saw the establishment of an entirely new principality. An earthquake hit the thriving city of 5-6 thousand people, but after the crisis, the same people returned and repaired the city. The renovated Troy VIIa lasted some seventy years and was then destroyed by a conflagration.
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1184 BC Jun 11
Greeks finally captured Troy. This corresponds to excavation levels VIi or VIIa at the site of Hisarlik, Turkey. [see 1150BC]
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1150 BC
Troy fell about this time. Estimated date for the beginning of the Aeneid. [see 1275-1240BC] After King Agamemnon, leader of the Greeks, returned home to Mycenae he was killed by his wife Clytemnestra and her lover. In 2006 Cathy Gere authored “The Tomb of Agamemnon.”
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1000 BC
Bronze age nomads erected mysterious megaliths throughout regions of Mongolia and southern Siberia about this time. Some scholars believed them to be the work of Iron Age peoples who appeared by 700BC.
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391 BC
377 BC
Hecatomnus, satrap of Caria, ruled over Mylasa about this time. The Persian king Artaxerxes II Mnemon appointed Hecatomnus as satrap of this part of the Achaemenid Empire. A 2,800-year-old tomb and carved coffin, decorated with reliefs of a bearded reclining man, believed to be Hecatomnus, was discovered in 2010.
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300 BC
Seleucia was founded about this time in southeastern Turkey as a Greek settlement by Seleucus I Nicator one of Alexander’s generals. Seleucia was on the west bank and Apamea on the east bank of the Euphrates River. In 64 BC it was conquered and ruled by the Roman Empire and with this shift the name of the city was changed into Zeugma, meaning "bridge-passage" or "bridge of boats."
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197 BC
156 BC
The Pergamon Altar, decorated with a marble frieze, was built between during the reign of Pergomene King Eumenes II. Pergamon later became known as the Turkish town of Bergama. In 1878 German engineer Carl Humann began official excavations on the acropolis of Pergamon. Frieze fragments following later negotiations, became the property of the Berlin museums.
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64 BC
The Greek settlement of Seleucia (in southeastern Turkey) was conquered and ruled by the Roman Empire and with this shift the name of the city was changed into Zeugma, meaning "bridge-passage" or "bridge of boats."
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50
60
The Didache, the earliest catechism of the Catholic church, was written about this time as teachings of the 12 Apostles to the gentiles. It was later discovered in a monastery in Constantinople and published by P. Bryennios in 1883.
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52
St. Paul of Tarsus, Christian preacher, arrived in the port city of Ephesus (Turkey) about this time and spent 3 years there. Silt from the Kaistros River ended cargo shipping by the end of the first century. By 2007 the sea was 7 miles from the former port.
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330
Constantine began the building of the Great Palace in Constantinople.
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345 Dec 6
Nicholas of Myra (later Demre) died on this day in either 345 or 352. He reported as bishop to the Byzantine church in Constantinople. In 2005 Jeremy Seal authored “Nicholas: The Epic Journey from Saint to Santa Claus.”
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348
345 BC
Aristotle lived and taught in Assos, (later Behramkale), Turkey, before he was summoned to teach Alexander in Macedonia.
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360 Feb 15
The first Hagia Sophia was inaugurated by Constantius II. It was built next to the smaller church Hagia Eirene in Constantinople. Both churches acted together as the principal churches of the Byzantine Empire.
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397
In southeastern Turkey the Mor Gabriel monastery was founded by Syriac Christians. In 2009 it had just 3 monks and 14 nuns and faced the loss to the state of some 100 acres representing 60% of its core property.
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412 Feb 8
St. Proclus, Patriarch of Constantinople, was born. [see 411]
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425 Feb 27
Theodosius effectively founded a university in Constantinople.
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431
The Council of Ephesus was held to deal with the heretics and heresies of the day such as Arianism and Apollinarianism. The council condemned Nestorianism, which taught that there were 2 person in Christ and that Mary was the mother of the human Christ but not of God. In 2009 Miri Rubin authored “Mother of God: A History of the Virgin Mary.”
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500
Ancient Turks are believed to have originated in Mongolia about this time.
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527 Apr 4
In Constantinople, Justin, seriously ill, crowned his nephew Justinian as his co-emperor. [see Apr 1]
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532 Jan 13
532 Jan 14
The 2nd Hagia Sophia cathedral burned down in Constantinople during the Nika uprising, which failed leaving some 30-40,000 people dead. Justinian and his wife Theodora had attended festivities at the Hippodrome, a stadium for athletic competition. Team support escalated from insults to mob riots and in the end Constantinople lay in ruins. Justinian proceeded to rebuild the city with extensive commissions for religious art and architecture, including the new Hagia Sophia.
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532 Jan 18
The Nika uprising at Constantinople failed and 30-40,000 died.
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537 Dec 27
The Hagia Sophia Byzantine cathedral in Constantinople was consecrated. St. Sophia (meaning "the holy wisdom" in Greek) was built by Emperor Justinian. It remained a symbol of Byzantine grandeur until Istanbul was conquered by Muslim armies.
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550
730
Ancient Turkic people flourished in Mongolia during this period.
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558 May 7
The dome of the church of St. Sophia in Constantinople collapsed. Its immediate rebuilding was ordered by Justinian.
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610 Oct 5
Heraclitus' fleet took Constantinople.
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632
661
The Rashidun Caliphate, also known as the Rightly Guided Caliphate, comprising the first four caliphs in Islam's history, was founded after Muhammad's death. At its height, the Caliphate extended from the Arabian Peninsula, to the Levant, Caucasus and North Africa in the west, to the Iranian highlands and Central Asia in the east. It was the one of the largest empires in history up until that time.
Links: Azerbaijan, Qatar, UAR, Armenia, Iraq, Turkey, Pakistan, Cyprus, Libya, Iran, Egypt, Israel, Palestine, Syria, Sudan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, Afghan, Tunisia, Islam     Click to see the source(s) for this event 
 
700
800
Invading Slavs assimilated the Thracians in the area of modern Bulgaria and parts of Greece, Romania, Macedonia and Turkey.
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700
900
The Hadith, the main guide for Muslims in interpreting the Koran, were evaluated and gathered into large collections mostly during the reign of Umar ibn AbdulAziz during the 8th and 9th centuries.
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842 Feb 19
The Medieval Iconoclastic Controversy ended as a council in Constantinople formally reinstated the veneration of icons in the churches.
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843 Mar 11
Icon worship was officially reinstated in Aya Sofia, Constantinople.
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860 Jun 18
Swedish Vikings attacked Constantinople.
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891 Feb 6
Photius, Byzantine theologist, patriarch of Constantinople, saint, died.
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904 Jul 31
Arabs captured Thessalonica of the Byzantine Empire.
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921
In Turkey the Armenian Akdamar church, called the Church of Surp Khach, or Holy Cross, was inaugurated. Written records say the church was near a harbor and a palace on the island on Lake Van, but only the church survived. Turkey restored the church in 2007.
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969 Oct 28
After a prolonged siege, the Byzantines ended 300 years of Arab rule in Antioch.
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989
1020
Ani, a medieval city-site situated in the Turkish province of Kars, beside the border with Armenia, attained the peak of its power during the long reign of King Gagik I (989-1020). It was the capital of a medieval Armenian kingdom that covered much of present day Armenia and eastern Turkey. Armenian chroniclers such as Yeghishe and Ghazar Parpetsi first mentioned Ani in the 5th century AD.
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999
Turkish dynasties became the rulers of Transoxania, and area that covered much of what later became Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan.
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1000
Turkic-speaking people wrote in Runic, the official script.
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1055
The Seljuks under Tughril Beg ousted the Buyids (Buwayhids) in Baghdad. The nomadic Turks from Central Asia, descended from a warrior named Seljuk, took control of the government and continued governing the empire in the tradition of Islamic law.
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1097 Jul 1
The 1st Crusaders defeated Sultan Kilidj Arslan of Nicea.
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1147 Oct 25
At the Battle at Dorylaeum (Turkey) Arabs beat Konrad III's crusaders. Conrad III of Germany and Louis VII of France had assembled 500,000 men for the 2nd Crusade. Most of the men were lost to starvation, disease and battle wounds.
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1204
1205
Georgia’s Queen Tamara marched with her men to the rousing victory over the Turks at the Battle of Basiani where she is hailed with the cry, "Our King Tamara."
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1271
The Mamelukes under Sultan Baibars captured The Crac des Chevaliers in Syria and converted the chapel into a mosque. It had been held by the Knights Hospitallers since 1144.
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1281
Osman I came to power at the age of 23 and began a steady campaign against the Byzantines until his death in 1324. He managed to capture many Byzantine fortresses, most notably Bursa, consolidating Ottoman power in the region. Generally regarded as the founder of the Ottoman Turkish state, Osman I (also known as Osman Gazi) led ongoing campaigns against the Byzantines in the 13th and early 14th centuries AD. Part of the migration of Turkic tribes into Anatolia, Osman was the son of Ertugrul, who had established a principality in present-day Sögüt, Turkey.
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1281
1326
Osman Gazi (1258-1326) or Othman Ghazi, ruled as Sultan of the Ottomans.
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1348
In Istanbul Genoese merchants rebuilt an old wooden lighthouse that dated from the 6th century. The Galata Tower was rebuilt in stone.
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1389 Jun 15
The Serbs were defeated by Ottoman Turks in the Battle of Kosovo at the Field of the Blackbirds. In the battle, the Serb prince Lazar was captured by the Turks and beheaded. Lazar's bones were placed in the monastery at Grancanica in Kosovo. Sultan Murad, the Ottoman leader was killed in the battlefield by the wounded son-in-law of King Lazar. Serbs say that Albanians aided the Turkish invaders. Historical evidence shows that both forces were multinational and that Serbs and Albanian fought on both sides. In 1999 Ismail Kadare, Albanian author, wrote "Elegy for Kosovo," in which he retells the story of the battle. Bosnian King Tvrtko and other Balkan princes along with Albanians fought under the command of Serbian Prince Lazar.
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1425 Jul 21
Manuel Palaeologus, Byzantine Emperor (1391-1425), writer, died. He ended his days after signing a humiliating peace with the Ottoman Turks.
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1453 Apr 22
1453 Apr 23
The Ottomans hauled 76 warships out of the water and dragged them on wood rails to bypass the Greek blockade of the Constantinople harbor.
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1453 May 29
Constantinople fell to Muhammad II, ending the Byzantine Empire.
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1461
Ottoman Sultan Mehmet II conquered Trabzon, a Greek port on the Black Sea. Trabzon had formed the basis of several states in its long history and was the capital city of the Empire of Trebizond between 1204 and 1461.
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1463
The Ottomans conquered Bosnia.
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1479
Gentile Bellini (1429-1507), Italian artist, was selected by the Venetian Republic to work at the court of the Ottoman sultan, Mehmed II, in Istanbul.
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1479
Venice signed a peace treaty with Ottoman Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror (1432-1481) ending 16 years of war.
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1480
In Italy 813 people were slain in Otranto for defying demands by Turkish invaders to renounce Christianity. In 2013 the "Martyrs of Otranto" were canonized as saints by Pope Francis.
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