The World from 500 BC to 500 AD
The period covered in 0 AD is the thousand-year time span between the year 500 B.C. and 500 A.D. In this period of time some of the most famous events in early western history occurred.
In our opening year of 500 B.C. the Bronze Age comes to an end, and the Iron Age begins. Rome, the nation that will in time become one of the empires that defines this period, has just founded the Republic barely a decade ago. Achaemenid Persia had just started to become the world’s first superpower. And in Greece the great philosophical flowering that has come to define that country and its people has only just begun.
In our closing year of 500 A.D. the once great Roman Empire’s western half had fallen 23 years earlier, a mere technicality, and Theodoric the Great has taken control of the Italian Peninsula from the man who take up the mantle, Odovacar. Clovis, the first barbarian king to convert to mainline Christianity, has begun his road to supremacy in France. And in Britain some speculate the mysterious King Arthur won peace for 70 years against the Anglo-Saxons. In the east the Roman Empire continues from Constantinople and Sassanian Persia began to recover from the disastrous previous century.
The period in between these two points is what makes the bulk of 0 AD. In this period western civilization will see a great blooming, especially in such places as Greece, Rome, and the Celtic lands. The increase in population, greater complexity in the economic, social, and political fields, increasingly higher yields of foodstuffs due to improved techniques in the production of food, the rise of classical art, philosophy, architecture, poetry, and learning all mark this period. Many major religions were founded in this period, including Christianity, which was founded circa 33 AD.
However this period was not only marked by peaceful endeavors but by war as well. In the opening of the era Persia’s founding rulers would begin to forge their empire. In time the Persians would invade Greece in the famous Greco-Persian Wars, and be defeated. Carthage, one of the world’s first naval superpowers, would wage war on the Iberian Peninsula in search of silver. And of course fight the famous Punic Wars against Rome. This period would also see many famous military minds rise and fall. Such as Cyrus, the man who founded the Achaemenid Empire both militarily and politically, Alexander, who conquered the world as he knew it, Hannibal Barca, whose use of strategy and tactics are legendary even to this day, and Julius Caesar, whose military conquests and political dealings ended the Roman Republic.
In conclusion this period of time is one of the most interesting to study. Beginning with the world shaking itself from the Bronze Age, and ending with the start of the Dark Ages this period is full of great history just waiting to be written down and told. Though much has been written on this period, especially of the culture of the Greeks and the wars of Rome, there is still much to be written. I hope you enjoy reading our archives and enriching your knowledge of this great period in time.
-Joshua Gilbert (Shogun 144)