What Were the Major Time Periods in History?

Our history goes back millions of years ago. The world would not have arrived to where it is right now if it had not gone through a long and extensive process of historical development. In keeping up with the study of the advancement of the world, one has to ask himself, "What were the major time periods of history?" The answers seem simple, yet the story behind each goes back to a rich and colorful process of social and cultural revelations.

The world is said to begin during the prehistoric era. History is all about the act of recording events that had happened in the past, and the prefix "pre" in "prehistoric" implies that this is the period of time when human beings still lack the capacity to aggregate important events. This era dates back from a more than two million years in the past until 6,000 B.C. It is divided into certain periods, namely the Stone Age, the Bronze Age, and the Iron Age. As of now, this is the era that has the fewest recorded facts by modern humans, although a huge number of archeologists are working night and day to excavate and study various artifacts from this period.

Right after the prehistoric era comes the ancient period. This is considered as the official time when humans begin to record events. The span is said to be almost five thousand years. After the Neanderthals began migrating to different parts of the globe, various settlements were established which soon turned into towns and cities. Excavations were made on the land. The use of fire was mastered. This era would not have been complete without the rich dynasties of Egypt, China, India, Greece, and many more. Most historians consider this as the period of enlightenment in terms of culture and religion.

The middle ages, more known as the medieval period, succeeded the ancient period in a gradual manner. After the fall of the Roman Empire in the year 476, the era finds itself continuing certain aspects of Late Antiquity, which includes depopulation and any form of barbaric acts. Agriculture plays a huge role in the development of its feudal system, which in turn strengthens the presence of monarchy. This period is also well-known for the birth of numerous personalities such as Thomas Aquinas, Dante Alighieri, Leonardo da Vinci and Marco polo. The Catholic Church's role in the development of the middle ages is said to be vaster than ever.

The arrival of the modern period was considered quick and almost non-felt. Beginning sometime in the 16th century, a number of significant events highlight the era's importance. Historians often attribute Europe in the overall definition of the period. Modern history primarily includes the Industrial Revolution, which involves the invention of a number of products such as the steam engine. Engineering as a field skyrocketed due to the number of advanced technology emerging each year.

Contemporary history is considered by many as the final historical period as of the present. The term has been used as early as the 19th century whereas most historians consider contemporary era as the era that can still be remembered by living memory. Some of the most significant events to ever happen during this period are the first two World Wars, the LSD controversy of the 70's, the debates regarding the greenhouse effect, and of course, the emergence of the computer, the cellphone, and the numerous social media networking sites. In conclusion, in asking the question, "What were the major time periods of history," it is vital to begin from the prehistoric era before ending with the present.

Websites For Learning All About Time Lines and Time Periods

Ancient History  
European History World History


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