Roman History Until 501 B.C.


A note about this page and Expired Knowledge.


Prehistory 1,300,000 (c) Date of fossils found in the 1980’s near Benevento of Scipionyx samniticus. Living in the early Cretaceous, this dinosaur was a Maniraptor, a relative of the better-known Velociraptor. At the time this animal lived, the site was on a sandy, scrub-covered island with a few trees and surrounded by warm shallow lagoons. 1,000,000 (c) Lower Paleolithic site at Pineta di Isernia. One of the earliest Paleolithic sites in Europe, it contained remains linked to Homo erectus (aka Homo Aeserniensis (Man of Isernia)) (to 730,000 BC). 800,000 (c) Remains of Homo erectus (Homo cepranensis) dating from this period were discovered near Ceprano, in southern Latium, in 1994. Estimates of the age of the remains, a portion of the skull cap, range from 900 thousand to 750 thousand years. 700,000 (c) Humans (Homo Aeserniensis) at the site of Pineta di Isernia, near Isernia, become the world’s earliest known users of fire. (c) Evidence of Homo erectus in Calabria. 500,000 (c) Lower Paleolithic sites in the Abruzzi (Teramano, Maiella), Basilicata (Venosa), Puglia (Gargano), and Campania (Capri). (c) Evidence of early humans living in caves along the coast of the Cilento in southern Campania. (c) Human remains (female skulls) found in Agrigento area dates to this time period. (c) About this time the famous volcano, Mt. Etna, in eastern Sicily, begins to form. 350,000 (c) World’s oldest known human footprints are left in the volcanic ash of the Roccamonfina volcano. 150,000 (c) Volcanic island of Alicudi forms. 70,000 (c) Neanderthal Homo camaerotensis living in the vicinity of Camerota (SA) in the Cilento area of Campania (to c35,000 BC). 60,000 (c)Middle Paleolithic. Evidence of Neanderthals on the Italian mainland. Sites located on the coast of the Salento (Grotta Romanelli) and on the coast of the Gargano. 28,000 (c) Volcanic activity ends on Alicudi island. 20,000 (c)Earliest evidence of modern humans (Homo sapiens) on Sicily. 11,000 (c)A Paleolithic burial in San Teodoro Cave revealed an arrowhead embedded in the pelvis bone of an adult female. This burial is sometimes seen as evidence of violence among the population of Sicily at this time. 10,000 (c)Cave paintings in Levanzo, off the W coast of Sicily (to c8700 BC). 9500 (c)Date for the death of Romito 2, a teenage male dwarf whose remains were found in a cave in Calabria. He apparently suffered from a form of chondrodystrophy, which stunted his growth. At the time of his death at the age of c17 years, he stood only about 4 feet in height. His remains were found with those of an elderly woman, possibly his mother. The burial indicates that the community in which he lived was such that it cared for those members unable to fend for themselves. 8000 (c)Tool-makers at Grotta dell’Uzzo in Sicily (to c7000 BC). (c) Upper Paleolithic wall-art in the Addaura Caves on Mt. Pellegrino in Sicily. Its main scene depicts humans involved in what may be a circumcision or initiation (to c7000 BC). (c) Earth’s climate warms as the last Ice Age comes to an end. (c) Neolithic culture begins to replace the Palaeolithic. Events Elsewhere: (c) Permanent brick buildings are built at Jericho. 7980 (c) Eruption of the Campi Flegrei. (± 500 yrs). 7900 (c) Volcanic eruption of Lipari Island. 7590 (c) Eruption of the Campi Flegrei. (± 50 yrs). 7550 (c) Eruption on Ischia. 7500 Events Elsewhere: (c) The settlement of Çatalhöyük arises in Anatolia. 7370 Events Elsewhere: (c) Walled town of Jericho ends. 7050 (c) Possible eruption on Pantelleria Island 7000 (c)Neolithic settlers arrive on Malta from Sicily. Events Elsewhere: (c) Pottery-making begins in the Middle East. Ceramic industry established on Crete. Events Elsewhere: (c) Settlement of Lepenski Vir arises in the central Balkans. The rise of this town and other settlements marks the beginning of the Neolithic Old European Culture which will herald the first metal-based technologies. The peoples of this culture are pre-Indo-European and believed to have had a matrilineal system centered on an earth-goddess based religion. The people of the Old European Culture may have been the ancestors of the prehistoric Sikans and Elymians of Sicily, and perhaps of the Etruscans as well. 6650 (c)Eruption of the Campi Flegrei. (± 100 yrs). 6550 (c) Possible eruption on Vulcano Island. 6490 (c)Eruption of the Campi Flegrei. 6350 (c) Eruption on Vulcano Island. 6300 (c) Eruption of the Campi Flegrei. (± 50 yrs). 6190 (c) Mt Etna erupts (±200 yrs) 6130 (c) Eruption on Pantelleria Island. 6000 (c)Sikans arrive on Sicily. Their principal settlement was at Sant’ Angelo Muxaro, Sicily. (or 1500 BC). (c) Large landslide on Mt. Etna plunges into the sea, creating an enormous tsunami. Reaching a maximum height of about 130 feet, it traveled at an estimated speed of 450 mph. The wave first overwhelmed the southern Italian coastlands probably 15 minutes after the date. About a hour after the events, the inundated coasts and islands of western Greece. Only a half hour after hitting Greece, the wave reached North Africa where the modern city of Benghazi is located. About 3 and a half hours after the tsunami formed, it hit the shores of the eastern Mediterranean, inundating the coasts of modern Lebanon, Syrian, Israel and Palestine. Because this wave occurred at such an early date, little mention is made of it. Archaeology, however, reveals the existence of the disaster. This tsunami was probably significantly larger than the famous 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean. Events Elsewhere: (c) Decorative Wall-painting begins at Çatalhöyük. Events Elsewhere: (c) Cycladic culture arises in the Aegean Sea area. Events Elsewhere: (c) Copper Age (also called the Chalcolithic or Enolithic) begins in the Middle East. Events Elsewhere: (c) Earliest known wine is produced in prehistoric Persia. 5960 (c)Eruption of Mt. Vesuvius. 5950 (c) Neolithic settlement at Capo Alfiere, near present day Crotone, Calabria. 5610 (c) Eruption on Pantelleria Island. 5600 Events Elsewhere: (c) Warm, dry climate begins to create the Sahara desert in North Africa. Migrating herdsmen, the ancestors of the ancient Egyptians, travel eastward and establish themselves the Nile valley and delta. 5140 (c) Mt Etna erupts (±150 yrs). 5000 (c) Obsidian trade begins on Lipari. Network stretches as far as western North Africa. (c) Agriculture spreads to Europe from the Middle East. (c) Cultivation of wheat spreads to the Italian peninsula. (c) Neolithic Ghar Dalam farming culture is established on Malta. It’s people are believed to have been Sikan immigrants from central Sicily.(to c4500 BC). 4500 (c) Neolithic agricultural communities near Catignano and Ripoli in the Abruzzi. 4150 (c) Mt Etna erupts (±150 yrs). 4100 (c) Renewed immigration to Malta from Sicily (to c3500 BC). 4050 (c) Eruption on Ischia. 3650 (c) Eruption on Stromboli. 3640 (c) Eruption on Pantelleria Island. 3600 (c) Development of the megalithic temple complex of Ġgantija (Gganthia) on the Maltese island of Gozo. Believed to have been dedicated to an Earth Mother goddess, these temples are both the  world’s oldest free-standing structures and the oldest religious structures. 3580 (c) Eruption on Ischia. (c) Possible eruption of Vesuvius. 3550 (c) Eruption on Vulcano Island. 3510 (c) Mt Etna erupts (±150 yrs) 3500 (c)Piano Conte culture in southern Italy and Sicily (to 3000 BC). (c) Eruption of Mt. Vesuvius. A Bronze Age settlement on the site of Pompeii is destroyed at this time by ash-fall from Mt. Vesuvius. Initial excavations done in 2005 have revealed remains of burnt wood and emmer wheat. Settlement at the site may have existed at a far earlier Neolithic period as well. (c) Bronze Age development in settlements near the future Neapolis/Naples. (c) Earliest known human settlement on Ischia. (c) First permanent villages in Calabria. 3390 (c) Mt Etna erupts (±50 yrs) 3300 Events Elsewhere: (c) Rise of the Indus Valley (Harappan) Civilization. 3200 (c) Eruption creates the caldera of the Campi Flegrei (Phlegraean Fields), in Campania, 15 kilometers west-southwest of Naples. (c) Tarxien phase begins in Malta (to c2500 BC). The Hagar Qim temple is built of a hilltop of the island of Malta. The alignments of the temple reveal an advanced knowledge of solar and lunar movements. 3150 Events Elsewhere: Egypt is united under one ruler (Pharaoh). First Dynasty under Narmer begins. The Egyptians begin to use hieroglyphics about this time. (alt. date c3100 BC). 3100 Events Elsewhere: (c) Earliest phases of Stonehenge in Britain. 3050 (c) Eruption on Ischia. (c) Possible eruption on Stromboli. (c) Mt Etna erupts (±150 yrs) (c) Stentinello Culture in Sicily. (c)Earliest use of copper on Sicily.