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Turning points in world history:

Agricultural revolution
(ca. 8000-5000 B.C.)
Time period when humans first domesticated plants and animals
Allowed people to switch from hunting and gathering to farming and herding
rigin o! civili"ations
(ca. #500 B.C.)
Establishment of farming and herding societies in river valleys encouraged the development of civilizations
Main characteristics include cities, commercial activity, written language, and complex forms of government
and religion
Classical period
(ca. $000 B.C.%A.&. 500)
Development and expansion of very large civilizations
Includes ancient hina, ancient !reece, and the "oman Empire
Main characteristics include extensive trade networ#s, expansion through military con$uest, and emergence
of many of the world%s ma&or religions
&evelop'ent o! co'ple( societies in the A'ericas
(ca. A.&. #00-$5#5)
Maya and Aztec in parts of Mexico and entral America
Inca in 'outh America
'ystems of writing, highly accurate calendars, far(reaching trade networ#s, densely populated cities, and
massive stone buildings
)iddle Ages
(ca. A.&. *50-$*50)
Main political and economic systems was feudalism
Monarchs and landowning nobles depended on each other for political, economic, and military support
"oman atholic hurch played a ma&or role in European politics and society
"eligion of Islam emerged and spread rapidly through 'outhwest Asia, )orth Africa, and parts of Europe
European hristians engaged in the rusades, a series of wars to recapture *erusalem from Islamic control+
Approximately one(third of Europe%s population died of the bubonic plague in the mid(,-..s
(ca. A.&. $#00-$,00)
A period of /rebirth0
"enewed interest in classical !ree# and "oman #nowledge spar#ed many advances in the arts and sciences
1olitical power in many parts of Europe shifted from nobles to centralized governments, headed by national
!rowth of international trade encouraged the exchange of goods and ideas among different parts of the world
-rotestant +e!or'ation
(ca. $500-$,50)
A movement of reform the "oman atholic hurch in Europe+
A new form of hristianity #nown as 1rotestantism was formed+
2as related to the scientific revolution
ompetition between atholics and 1rotestants encouraged colonization of the Americas
.cienti!ic revolution
(ca. $500-$/00)
A surge of scientific discoveries occurred in Europe
The printing press was invented
Discoveries were made in astronomy, physics, and biology
This led to other ma&or turning points in world history, such as the Industrial "evolution
Age o! e(ploration and coloni"ation
(ca. $*50-$000)
Europeans explored the world and con$uered ma&or portions of it
At first the goal was to find a trade route to Asia+ 3ater they explored and set up colonies in )orth and 'outh
America to gain wealth and convert native peoples to hristianity+
Established European(style governments and economies around the world+
olonization caused ma&or disruptions to many existing societies and led to war and oppression+
4ne result was the Atlantic slave trade in which millions of Africans were enslaved and transported across
the Atlantic 4cean
1ndustrial +evolution
(ca. $/50-$000)
'hift from agricultural production to industrial production that started in !reat 5ritain
aused by the development of steam(powered machinery and the factory system
3asting effects included the rapid growth of cities and increased global trade
Age o! de'ocratic revolution
(ca. $/50-present)
"ise of democracy, a political system based on the ideal of government by the people+
5egan with the American and 6rench "evolutions and then spread through much of Europe and the
The era o! world wars
3ed to the end of several European monarchies as well as the "ussian "evolution
The communist(led 7nion of 'oviet 'ocialist "epublics, or 'oviet 7nion, was established
'ettlements following the !reat 2ar helped promote the principle of self(determination+
A war between the totalitarian countries 8!ermany, *apan, and Italy9 and an alliance led by the 7nited 'tates,
!reat 5ritain, and the 'oviet 7nion+
'purred many technological brea#throughs, including radar, &et aircraft, antibiotics, guided roc#ets, and
nuclear weapons+
The Cold 2ar
The 7+'+ and 'oviet 7nion emerged as the world%s strongest nations, the superpowers+
Throughout, the superpowers avoided open warfare because each side feared the terrible effects of nuclear
Ended when the people of Eastern Europe overthrew their communist governments and the 'oviet 7nion
bro#e apart into ,: independent countries+