Pharaoh Chronology




Narmer (Menes) conquers the Nile Valley up to the Mediterranean


Aha founds the city of Memphis

Uadji leads an expedition into the Sinai

3000 BCE
Cultures of Uruk, Mari, and Susa in Mesopotamia


Development of Jericho in Palestine

Peribsen moves the capital to Memphis


Khasekhemui proclaims the cult of Horus as the highest religion with the seat of power at Heliopolis

2850 BCE
Ancient Minoan culture in the Aegean


Founding of Tyre and Byblos in Syria come under the Egyptian protectorate

Zoser identifies worship of the sun god with worship of the king. His high priest at Heliopolis, Imhotep, is first great physician and architect in history; construction in Saqqara of mausoleum-city of Zoser centered on large stepped pyramid


Sekhemkhet has fortresses built along all frontiers

Khaba, last king of the 3rd dynasty

2770 BCE
Beginning of the golden age of the Sumerians of Ur and Lagash; temples and palaces are built of brick
Snefru is remembered as a kind and humane pharaoh; builds first smooth-faced pyramid


Khufu (Cheops) builds first great pyramid

Khafre builds second great pyramid with mortuary temple and granite valley temple

Menkaure (Mycerinus) builds smallest of the great pyramids

2620 BCE
Development of Troy I


First temples at Ashur; temple of Ishtar and of Samak at Mari

Userkaf builds pyramid at Saqqara


Sahura digs canal of Bubastis joining Mediterranean with the Red Sea

Unas builds a pyramid, decorating the interior with the “Pyramid Texts” and “Wisdom of Ptah-Hotep,” two of the most important Egyptian texts

2500 BCE
Beginning of King Sargon’s Akkadian Empire in Mesopotamia; the dynasty rules for about two centuries
Pepi I witnesses the decline in royal power with increase in the power of the princes


Pepi II, with the longest reign in Egyptian history (94 years)

2350 BCE
Beginning of the Gutian dynasty in 2240; ziggurat of Ur is built
Neferkare installs a monarchy as “God given” but not divine; the king is primus inter pares among the princes, but not all princes recognize him
2180 BCE
Development of Troy II, III, IV


Development of Minoan culture in the Aegean

Sumerians regain their independence with the third dynasty of Ur

Sehertani-Antef, self-appointed king, shifts power to Thebes
2120 BCE
Middle Minoan culture in the Aegean
Sesostris I (Senusret) is the first pharaoh to introduce co-regency with his son to ensure dynastic continuity


Amenemhet II extends the empire as far as Megiddo in Palestine

Amenemhet III builds an imposing residence in the Fayyum, the “Labyrinth”

1991 BCE
End of 3rd dynasty of Ur in Mesopotamia


First palaces of Knossos and Phaestot in the Aegean

Sekhemre marries the ruling regent and assumes part of her power; Nubia withdraws from Upper Egypt
1785 BCE
Reign of Hammurabi in Babylonia


Development of art
Neferhotep carries the protectorate to Byblos in Lebanon; the Hyskos invade the fertile Delta land, bringing the horse and the wheel and the cult of the god Baal
1745 BCE
Invention of the alphabet in Phoenicia


Indo-Europeans move down towards India and Persia

Ahmose reconquers Nubia to Abu Simbel
1622 BCE
Beginning of the Hittite empire in Asia Minor

Shang dynasty and culture in China

Amenophis I extends the frontiers to the Euphrates River and clashes with the Hittites


Thutmosis I takes Thebes to its maximum splendor; the temple at Karnak is enriched with pylons and obelisks; the Great Hypostyle Hall is raised

Thutmosis II marries half-sister Hatshepsut

Hatshepsut reigns for 20 years as regent for her son, wears male attire and false beard

Thutmosis III defeats the Mitanni at Kadesh; extends his dominion to Crete and Cyprus; Egyptian art and culture spread throughout the world

Akhenaten and wife Nefertiti replace the polythestic religion of Amon with worship of a single god, Ra (the sun)

Tutankhamun re-establishes cult of Amon, but dies at age 18

Horemheb destroys all traces of one-god religion

1580 BCELegendary kingdom of Minos in Crete


Expansion of the Hittite empire in Asia Minor

The Kassites conquer Babylonia in Mesopotamia

Zenith of Mycenean culture in Greece: beehive tombs, Lion’s Gate

Beginning of middle Assyrian empire in Asia Minor

Shang dynasty in China

Ramses I comes to power and moves the capital to Tanis


Seti I drives back the Hittites, takes back Phoenicia, and occupies Kadesh

Ramses II takes the royal residence to Avaris; signs first historical international treaty

Seti II defends the Delta from Libyan invasions

1314 BCEEpic Trojan war begins in 1280


Beginning of the Ionian immigration in the Aegean

Ramses III continues to restore empire; assassinated by corrupt members of his own staff


Ramses IX tries to wrestle power away from the priests of Amon

1200 BCEBeginning of protogeometric art in Greece
Mendes governs lower Egypt from Tanis1085 BCEReign of Saul, and then David, in Palestine
Shesonq I, after the death of King Solomon, renews campaign to conquer Palestine950 BCEZenith of Israel with the building of the Temple of Jerusalem by King Solomon, who later marries an Egyptian princess
Tefnakhte conquers Hermopolis and recovers part of lower Egypt


Bocchoris forms a peace with the Assyrians; raises workers and lower middle classes

730 BCEBeginning of the Olympic Games in Greece


Founding of Rome

Piankhi annexes upper Egypt to Nubia


Shabaka moves capital back to Thebes

Tanutamon is overwhelmed by an Assyrian invasion which sacks Thebes

716 BCEBeginning of Chou dynasty of art in China


Beginning of Corinthian art in Greece; Greek philosopher Pythagoras

Psamtik I (Psammetichus) conquers the Delta and places friends and relatives in key positions


Necho II reconstructs the Red Sea canal

Psamtik II reconquers Nubia and the gold mines; the pharaoh is no longer a son of Osiris — his power rests solely with the people

666 BCEBeginning of Etruscan art in Italy


Destruction of Nineveh and the end of the Assyrian empire in Mesopotamia

Beginning of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylonia; ziggurat and palace with hanging gardens; gates of Ishtar

Destruction of Jersalem and the Temple of Solomon

Cambyses, after conquering Egypt, is crowned at Sais and consecrated at Heliopolis


Darius I reorganizes Egyptian economy; once again opens up the Red Sea canal to join the Mediterranean Sea and Indian Ocean

Xerxes puts down two revolts in lower Egypt

Darius II puts down a third revolt

524 BCEPreaching of the Buddha in India

 Dialogues of Confucius and Lao-Tse in China

Persian wars and defense of Thermopoliae in Greece

Era of Pericles in Greece; peace with Persia, treaty with Sparta, great acropolis of Athens is built

Nephritis I, head of the Egyptian army, takes over power


Nectanebo II takes over the vascillating power, but when betrayed by Greek mercenaries, flees into Upper Egypt

Kabbas is nominated pharaoh by priests at Memphis

Darius III reconquers Egypt

Alexander the Great drives the Persians from Egypt; recognized as the son of Ra by the oracle at Luxor; founds a new capital at Alexandria, which becomes the economic and cultural center for the entire ancient world

398 BCERoman expansion; Camilus drives back the Gauls


Philip of Macedon invades Greece; his son, Alexander the Great, conquers the Persian empire, Egypt, and continues up to the Indus River

Philosophy of Plato and Aristotle

Ptolemy I Soter declares himself king of Egypt and founds the city of Ptolemais, near Thebes

  Ptolemy II Philadelphus takes back Cyprus, Tyre, and Sidon and signs a friendship pact with Rome

Ptolemy V Epiphanes obtains Syria as dowry of Cleopatra I, given to him as wife by King Antiochus

Ptolemy XIII Neos Dionysos has Pompey assassinated to ingratiate himself with Caesar, the new absolute lord of Rome. On a visit to Egypt, Caesar marries Cleopatra VII, (sister of Ptolemy) and the two dream of the union of Rome and Egypt; they have a son, Caesarion

Cleopatra VII, on Caesar’s death, tries to revive the Egyptian economy with the help of Antony; Caesarion becomes pharaoh; Rome declares war on Egypt, and under mounting pressure, Cleopatra and Antony commit suicide

311 BCE

44 BCE

Empire of the Selucids in Mesopotamia


Construction of the first stupas in India

First and Second Punic wars between Rome and Carthage in Italy; expansion of Rome in the Mediterranean

Building of Great Wall of China

Third Punic War — Rome destroys Carthage and conquers Greece, Asia Minor, and Tunisia

Rome draws up political and economic relationship with Egypt

 0Conventional date of the birth of Jesus in Nazareth
Nero restores and renovates monuments but also organizes expeditions to find the source of the Nile54 A.D. 
Trajan reactivates the ancient canal leading from Bubastis to the Red Sea (much of this route becomes present-day Suez Canal)98 A.D.  
Hadrian founds the city of Antinoe, visits the Colossi of Memnon and the Temples at Thebes117 A.D.  Work is begun on Hadrian’s Wall