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MONARCHY: 753-510 BC

753: Romulus (Remus), traditionally first king of Rome Etruscans expanding in Latium 5 other kings at Rome: Numa, Hostilius, Ancus Martius, L. Tarquinius Priscus, Servius Tullius

510: Expulsion of last king, Tarquinius Superbus


509-146: Roman Expansion in Italy & Mediterranean


  • Establishment of Republic (traditional) with 2 consuls
  • Continued, if intermittent, struggle for power: patricians vs plebeians

450: Twelve Tables, first Roman written law

396: Destruction of Veii, great Etruscan city

390: Battle of Allia; sack of Rome by Gauls

343-290: Rome battles Latins, Samnite neighbors, & Etruscans; expands in Central Italy

287: Secession of plebs; Lex Hortensia makes plebiscites binding

281-272: Pyrrhus (& Tarentum) vs Rome; Rome supreme in Italy

264-241: First Punic War; Carthage loses, cedes Sicily to Rome, Corsica & Sardinia follow

c.254: T. Maccius Plautus, comic playwright, word-play & slapstick, born in Umbria

229-228: First Illyrian War

225-222: Gauls defeated

218-201: Second Punic War; Hannibal

217-216: Battles of Trebia, Trasimene Lake & Cannae, huge Roman losses

215: First Macedonian War

202: Battle of Zama; Scipio Africanus defeats Hannibal; Spain annexed

197: Battle of Cynocephalae; Roman legions beat Greek phalanx

192-189: War with Antiochus the Great; Rome looks further east

c.190: P. Terentius (Terence) Afer, comedy of manners, born in N. Africa (?)

168-118: Polybius, Greek historian of Rome

146: Destruction of Corinth and Carthage in Third Punic War; Rome supreme in Mediterranean

136: Slave war in Sicily


133: Pergamum willed to Rome; Tiberius Gracchus tribune (murdered), but land distributions proceed

129: Province of Asia organized

123-122: Gaius Gracchus tribune (murdered in 121)

111-105: War with Jugurtha drags on; Gaius Marius (a novus homo) wins in field after nobiles have dragged war on, but L. Cornelius Sulla (Felix) captures Jugurtha

107: Marius opens army to volunteers

106: M. Tullius Cicero born in Arpinum

105: Romans defeated by Cimbri & Teutones at Arausio

104-100: Marius, in successive consulships, defeats Teutones & Cimbri; slave war in Sicily

100: C. Julius Caesar born in Rome

94?: T. Lucretius Carus born

91: M. Livius Drusus tribune, presses for citizenship for allies, murdered

90-88: Social (Italian/Marsic) War; Italians granted citizenship

89-63: Three Wars with Mithridates of Pontus

88: Massacre of Italians in Asia

87-83: Civil War between Marius & Sulla (proscriptions by Marius in 87, by Sulla in 82 after death of Marius)

86: C. Sallustius Crispus, (Sallust) born at Amiternum

84: C. Valerius Catullus born at Verona

82-81: Dictatorship of Sulla;senatorial power restored,tribunes curbed

78: Death of Sulla

77-71: Cn. Pompeius Magnus (Pompey the Great) fighting in Spain

74-66: L. Licinius Lucullus fighting in east

73-71: Revolt of Gladiators under Spartacus, ended by M. Licinius Crassus

70: Pompey & Crassus consuls, weaken senate; Cicero prosecutes Verres; P. Vergilius Maro (Vergil) born near Mantua (province of Gaul)

67: Lex Gabinia: Pompey destroys pirates

66: Lex Manilia: Pompey succeeds Lucullus in east; finishes war with Mithridates in 65

65: Q. Horatius Flaccus (Horace), poet, born at Venusia (S. Italy)

64/59: T. Livius (Livy), historian, born in Padua

63: Cicero (& C. Antonius), as consul, crushes conspiracy of L. Sergius Catilina (Catiline); C. Octavius (Augustus) born

60: First Triumvirate C. Julius Caesar (consul 59), the broker Cn. Pompeius Magnus (Pompey the Great), troopsM. Licinius Crassus, money (publicani)

58-57: Cicero exiled; Livia (future wife of Augustus) born

58-56: Caesar pro-consul in Gaul

55: Triumvirate renewed for another 5 years; Pompey & Crassus consuls; Caesar invades Britain; death of Lucretius (?)

54: Death of Catullus (?); Albius Tibullus born

53: Crassus killed by Parthians at Carrhae

52-51: Caesar crushes revolt of Vercingetorix in Gaul

52: Pompey sole consul

50?: Sextus Propertius born at Assissi

49-46: Civil War between Caesar and Pompey/Senate/optimates (inc M. Porcius Cato, the Younger/Uticensis)

48: Battle of Pharsalus; Pompey flees,is killed at Alexandria on orders of Ptolemy/Pothinus

47-44: Dictatorship of Julius Caesar

44: Ides (15) of March; Caesar assassinated by Brutus, Cassius, etc

43: Second Triumvirate:Mark Antony (M. Antonius), Caesar's lieutenantC. Julius Caesar Octavianus, Caesar's heir M. Aemilius Lepidus, troopsproscriptions; death of Cicero Publius Ovidius Naso (Ovid) born in Sulmo (90 mi. N of Rome)

42: Battle of Phillipi: Brutus & Cassius, defeated by Antony & Octavian, commit suicide

31: Battle of Actium: Antony & Cleopatra defeated by Octavian


27: Octavian becomes Augustus

25: Pantheon built by Agrippa

23: Horace publishes 3 books of Odes

19: Death of Vergil

9 AD: Arminius (German) revolts, ambushes Varus & 9 legions in Teutoberg forest

14: Death of Augustus; step-son Tiberius succeeds


14-37: Reign of Tiberius

14-31: Sejanus, Praetorian Prefect

29: Livia (Augusta) dies

37-41: Reign of Caligula

39: M Annaeus Lucanus (Lucas), Silver Latin epic writer, born at Corduba

41-54: Reign of Claudius; conquest of much of Britain

54-68: Reign of Nero

60?: D. Junius Juvenalis (Juvenal), satirist, born at Aquinum; Boudicca revolt in Britain

61?: C. Plinius Caecilius Secundus (Pliny the Younger) born at Comum

62-68: Tigellinus, Praetorian Prefect

64: Great Fire in Rome; persecution of Christians

65: Conspiracy of Piso; Suicides of Seneca & Lucan

68-69: Year of the 4 Emperors: Galba, Otho, Vitellius & Vespasian

69-79: Reign of Vespasian

70: Destruction of Jerusalem by Titus

79: Eruption of Vesuvius buries Pompeii & Herculaneum; Pliny escapes

79-81: Reign of Titus (older son of Vespasian)

81-96: Reign of Domitian (younger son of Vespasian)

80: Colosseum finished

96-180: Reign of Five Good Emperors begins with Nerva (96-98)

98-117: Reign of Trajan; empire reaches greatest extent

104-107: Pliny the Younger governor in Bithynia-Pontus

117-138: Reign of Hadrian

128?: Death of Juvenal

138-161: Reign of Antoninus Pius

161-180: Reign of Marcus Aurelius

166: Plague throughout empire

167: Commodus made co-emperor

193-235: Dynasty of Severi: Septimius Severus, Caracalla & Geta, Elegabalus, Severus Alexander

285-305: Reign of Diocletian as absolute monarch; Christians persecuted

306-337: Reign of Constantine the Great

313: Edict of Milan makes Christianity equal with other religions

328: Capital moved from Rome to Constantinople

360-363: Reign of Julian the Apostate

378-395: Reign of Theodosius the Great, ending with division of empire

410: Sack of Rome by Visigoths & Alaric

434-53: Attilla, King of the Huns invades Italy in 452

455: Sack of Rome by Vandals & Gaiseric

476: Fall of Western Empire's last emperor, Romulus Augustulus

527-565: In East: Reign of Justinian (wife of Justinian, Theodora); Code of Justinian (Corpus Juris Civilis)

Timeline: Ancient Rome (another useful Roman timeline source)

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