World 200 CE
Great religions spread along the trade routes of the Eastern Hemisphere. Meanwhile one of the largest cities in the whole world now flourishes in the Western Hemisphere.
World history in 200 CE - the ancient world at its height
This map shows what is happening in world history in 200 CE.
The great empires of Rome, China and India almost straddle Eurasia from east to west.
- Premium Timemap : The Rise and Fall of the Roman empire
- Premium Timemap : China in late Han times
- Premium Timemap : India at the time of the Kushana empire
The Roman empire is at its height, but is just about to enter its long decline. It has given its inhabitants two centuries of almost unbroken peace, and so, like the Han dynasty in China, ranks as one of the longest periods of peace in world history.
The Han empire, however, is already in steep decline, and will not last for much longer.
Another great state whose end is fast approaching is the Parthian empire, which has ruled much of the Middle East for the past 300 years (though without the stability of the Roman and Han empires).
The Kushanas have succeeded the Scythians in ruling a huge empire stretching from central Asia into India. Their state plays a major role in global history by acting as the base for the spread of Buddhism to China and East Asia.
To the west, the small land of Judeae has been the springboard of the spread of two major religions. Christianity is finding millions of converts throughout the Roman and Parthian empires. At the same time, the Jewish people are now experiencing the early stages of their Diaspora, which by this time has also reached the frontiers of Rome and Parthia. The Jews will play a major role in the history of Europe, particularly in the development of commerce and finance.
Around the World
The appearance of Roman merchants in south Chinese ports shows the strength of trade links between different parts of the Eastern Hemisphere by this time.
These links are being extended in West Africa, where Berber traders are pioneering the trans-Saharan trade routes, with vital aid of camels.
To the south, the Bantu migration is now moving down into southern Africa.
The Chinese Han empire still dominates eastern central Asia, despite its internal weaknesses. One group of Huns, refusing Chinese overlordship, has moved westward. In due course they will reappear in history as attackers of the Roman empire under their fearsome king, Attila.
Indian-style kingdoms are emerging in South East Asia.
In the Pacific, a variety of different societies are emerging on the numerous islands.
In central America, the Mayan civilization is on the rise, while in Mexico one of the largest cities of the pre-Columbian Americas, Teotihuacan, is in its pomp.
In South America, the Moche civilization is now flourishing, bringing Andean urban culture to new heights.
Two developments stand out in this period as highly significant for the history of world technology. Paper has been invented in Han China. This will make the dissemination of written information much easier and cheaper. The heavy plow probably appears about now in northern Europe. This will be of great importance in opening up the heavy clay lowlands of the region to arable farming, and so be one the keys to future European growth.
Civilizations of the world3500BCE - 300BCE Ancient Mesopotamia 3000BCE - 300BCE Ancient Egypt Civilization 2700BCE - 550CE Ancient Indian civilization 1766BCE - 1912CE 1700BCE - 200CE The civilization of Ancient China 1300BCE - 550BCE Ancient Israel 1000BCE - 1550CE Pre-Columbian Civilizations of North and South America 800BCE - 50BCE Ancient Greek Civilization 750BCE - 500CE Ancient Rome: civilization and society 500CE - 1450CE Medieval Europe 550CE - 1500CE Medieval Indian civilization 600CE - 1850CE West African kingdoms 600CE - 1250CE Islamic Caliphate 1200CE - 1450CE The Mongol Empire 1350CE - 1900CE Ottoman Empire 1400CE - 2000CE Western Civilization 1950CE - 2000CE A Global Civilization
What else is happening in the rest of the world...
Middle East history 3500BCE
The first civilizations in world history, those of Mesopotamia and Ancient Egypt, are emerging