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7th Century

603 - Persian Raids

Beginning of series of devastating Persian raids into Anatolia.

Truce between Byzantines and Lombards in Italy.


604- Pope Gregory the Great

March 12 - Death of Pope Gregory the Great.


609 - St Columban

St Columban founds Luxeuil.


610 - Archangel Gabriel

Near Mecca, Muhammad (pbuh) has his first vision of Archangel Gabriel instructing him to recite revelations.

Heraclius adopts the royal title ‘basilius’ used by ancient Greek kings and subsequently the official title of Byzantine emperors.


611 to 643 - King Cynegils

English monarch.


613 - St Columbanus

Foundation of monastery of Bobbio by Irish missionary St Columbanus.


613 - King Chosroes

Sassanid king of Persia, Chosroes conquers parts of Asia Minor, Syria and Palestine.


614 - General Shahrbaraz

Jerusalem falls to Persians led by General Shahrbaraz. The Church of the Holy Sepulchre is burned and the True Cross captured.


616 to 632 - King Edwin of Northumbria

English monarch Edwin of Northumbria.


619 - Muhammad Widowed

Death of Muhammad’s (pbuh) wife Hedija and uncle.

Sassanid king of Persia, Chosroes conquers Egypt almost defeating the Byzantine Empire.


622 - The Hejira

Muhammad’s (pbuh) teachings were so unpopular that he and his followers fled from Mecca to Yathrib which would become Medina, 280 miles to the north; this event marks the beginning of the Islamic Hejira calendar. Hejira meaning migration.


625 - Prophetic Mission of Muhammad

“If you reflect on these proofs of prophesy and fulfilment, you will correctly find the reasons and causes for which we have accepted the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), are the same reasons and causes by which you had accepted Christ and Moses (peace be upon them). Al-Tabari

Muhammad (pbuh) begins his Prophetic Mission.


626 - Constantinople

Repulse of Avaro-Slav siege of Constantinople.


627 - King Raedwald

Death of Raewald, possible ruler of East Anglia. The magnificent treasures in the burial ship at Sutton Hoo, Suffolk, may be his grave.


628 - Emperor Heraclius

Near Nineveh, Byzantine Emperor Heraclius forces the Persian Army to withdraw, reclaiming Syria and Palestine. Peace is declared between Romano-Byzantine and Sassanian empires.


629 - Jerusalem Recaptured

March 21, Byzantine Emperor Hearclius retakes Jerusalem.


629 to 639 - Dagobert

Reign of Dagobert, king of the Franks. He unites the Frankish peoples, making them a powerful force in Europe.


630 - Mecca: The Centre of Islam

After many struggles, Muhammed (pbuh) returns triumphant with 10,000 followers, establishing Mecca (Makkah) as the centre of Islam, with the Ka’aba as its heart.

The Six Articles of Faith

1) Belief in God.

2) Belief in His Angels.

3) Belief in His Books.*

4) Belief in His Prophets and Messengers.

5) Belief in the Day of Judgment.

6) Belief in God’s Divine Decree.

The original forms of texts as revealed to Abraham, Moses, David, Jesus and Muhammad (pbut).

The Five Pillars of Islam

1) The declaration of faith: The Shahadah (The Creed) The kalima: ‘la ilaha allah; Muhammadom rasul Allah’ There is no god but Allah (tawheed); Muhammad is the messenger of Allah (risallah).

2) To pray five times a day. (Salah)

3) To pay yearly alms to charity (Zakah).

4) To fast during the month of Ramadan (Sawm).

5) To make the pilgrimage to Makkah (Hajj).


632 - Death of The Prophet Muhammad

“Seek knowledge, even unto China”. Muhammad (Hadith)

Death of the Prophet Muhammad. Peace and blessings be upon him.


633 - Etymologies

Completion of Etymologies by Isidore of Seville.

‘False prophet’ Musailama and several followers are killed at Aqraba Yamama.


633 to 655 - Penda of Mercia

Penda of Mercia.


540 - Silk Worms

Foundation of English Settlements in Britain.


541 - Buddhism

Buddhism reaches Japan.


633 to 641 - Oswald of Northumbria

Oswald of Northumbria, Deira, and Bernicia.


634 - 642 - Caliph Umar

Khalifa, literally ‘successor’. The title was adopted by the first leaders of the Muslim state after the death of Muhammad (pbuh) and designated the spiritual and temporal commander of the believers, or ‘prince of the faithful’.

On Abu Bakr’s death, Omar (Umar) ibn al-Khattab, the second Rashidun caliph, builds an Islamic Umayyad empire comprising Persia, Syria, and the whole of North Africa ending the Sassanian Empire. The Byzantine empire loses most of its Middle Eastern territories to Muslim armies.


635- Khalid al-Wadir

Islamic army under Khalid ibn al-Walid, the Sword of Allah, captures the Byzantine city of Damascus.


635 - St Aidan

Arrival of St Aidan at Lindisfarne.


636 - Yarmouk

Islamic army defeats Byzantines at Yarmouk.


637 - Ctesiphon

Defeat of Persian Empire by Islamic army conqueings Ctesiphon.

Defeats Byzantines at Qadisiyah.


638 - Islamic Jerusalem

Caliph ‘Umar ibn al- Khattab’s army under Khalid al-Wadir captures Jerusalem from Christian Byzantium and will remain in Muslim hands for four hundred and sixty years. Caliph Umar personally goes to Jerusalem to receive its submission, cleansing and praying on the Temple Mount.

Caliph Umar allows the Jews back into the city and freedom to live and worship after four hundred years.


568 - The Lombards

Pushed westwards by invading Avars the Germanic Lombards (Long-Beards) cross south of the Alps and found a kingdom around the river Po.

The Lombards overrun northern Italy making it their own.

Antioch falls to Islam.


639 - King Dagobert

Death of Dagobert, Merovingian King of the Franks.


639 - Heliopolis

After the death of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), his general leads an Arab army against Byzantine Egypt. The Christians are routed near Heliopolis. The Muslims occupy Egypt.


640 - Arabian Knights

The Christian Greek Orthodox Byzantine Empire comes under increasing attack from the Muslim Arabs.


642 - Islamic Alexandria

Alexandria is conquered by Islamic forces ending Greek rule in Egypt. Islam begins to spread through North Africa.

The Library of Alexandria is burned by the forces of Caliph Omar.


643 - The Flame of Islam

Tripoli in Lybia, North Africa falls to Muslim forces.


643 - King Rothari

Issue of Lombard law code by King Rothari.


643 to 672 - King Cenwealh

English monarch.


644 - The Koran

‘In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful / Praise be to Allah / The Cherisher and Sustainer of the Worlds: / Most Gracious, Most Merciful; / Master of the Day of Judgement. / Thee do we worship, / And Thine aid we seek.’ - The Koran, opening praise.

Uthman ibn Affan, 644 to 656, Rashidun Caliph orders the compilation of the writings and teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) into a book. The resulting Koran is divided into one hundred and fourteen chapters, called suras.


649 - Mu’awiya

Creation of effective Arab fleet by Mu’awiya.


650 - Islamic Settlements

Islamic settlements established on African coast by traders.


651 - Khazars, Bulgars and Magyars

The Persian Sassanid Empire in Central Asia collapses under Arab attacks. The Khazars, the Bulgars and the Magyars disperse.


654 - King Recceswinth

Issue of extensive law code by Visigoth King Recceswinth.


656 - Caliph Ali

Caliph Uthman is murdered. Muhammad’s (pbuh) son-in-law, Ali, is nominal successor.

Bloody civil wars lead to a major split in Islam: the majority Sunnis take control, and Shiites, who follow Ali.


656 - Battle of the Camel

Zubayr and Talha form an army with Muhammad’s wife Aisha against his cousin, Caliph Ali.

Zubayr and Talha are killed at the Battle of the Camel.


657 - Battle of Siffin

Battle of Siffin ends in a truce led by troops of Mu’awiya ibn Ali Sufyuan, governor of Syria.


661 - Umayyad Caliphate

Sunni:

Majority religious group, Sunni Moslems claim the authority of the sunna, or ‘practice’ of the prophet.

Shi’a

Minority religious group, Shi’a Moslems are of the party or faction of Ali.

Ali, cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad (pbuh) and leader of the Islamic world, is assassinated; Mu’awiyah becomes caliph at the request of Muhammad’s son Hasan. Ali’s followers, the Shi’ites break away from the rest of the Islamic world.

Foundation of Umayyad caliphate.

End of the Rashidun caliphate. The succession to the caliphate divided Islam between Sunni and Shi’a. The Sunni support Mu’awiyah, the first caliph of the Umayyad Dynasty and moves the capital to Damascus in Syria.


663 - Emperor Constans the Second

Invasion of southern Italy by Byzantine Emperor Constans the Second.


664 - Synod of Whitby

In England the Synod of Whitby settled dispute within the Northumbrian Church between Romanist Christianity over Celtic Christianity brought to northern England by Irish missionaries. Roman Catholicism becomes the standard.


665 - Battle of Basra


670 - Islamic Empire

Only sixty years after its inception, the Islamic Empire extends from India through the Middle East and North Africa, soon will expand into Spain and Southern Europe.

Establishment of first Bulgar Khanate in Balkans.


671 - Greek Fire

Only sixty years after its inception, the Islamic Empire extends from India through the Middle East and North Africa, soon will expand into Spain and Southern Europe.

“Greek Fire,” a missile weapon of sulphur, rock salt, resin and petroleum (naphtha) invented by Kallinikos of Byzantium. A formidable weapon when used against siege engines.


672 - King Perctarit

Acceptance of Catholicism by Lombards under King Perctarit.


672 to 674 - Queen Seaxburh

English monarch.


674 to 678 - First Siege of Constantinople

First Islamic naval blockade of Constantinople.

Greek fire, invented by the architect Kallinikos, is first used at the battle of Cyzicus by the Byzantines. Used mainly in naval warfare.


674 - King Cenfus

English monarch.


674 to 676 - King Aesewine

English monarch.


676 to 685 - King Centwine

English monarch.


680 - Lombardy

Treaty made by Byzantine Empire recognizing Lombard kingdom.

Husayn is killed in a conflict between Umayyads and the “descendants of Muhammad.”


685 - Ecgfrith

Northumbrian army led by Ecgfrith defeated by Piucts at Nechtansmere.

Conflict between Palestine, Syria and Iraq divides the Islamic state.


685 to 688 - King Cedwalla

English monarch becomes a Christian.


687 - Battle of Tertry

Battle of Tertry marks the beginning of Carolingian supremacy in northern Gaul.


688 to 726 - King Ine

English monarch.


689 - Pepin the Second

Pepin the second defeats the Frisians expanding the Christian Frankish kingdom.


690 - Cyprus

Muslims take Byzantine territory then share Cyprus in the Arab War.


691 - Caliph Abd al-Malik

Umayyad Caliph Abd al-Malik reunites Palestine, Syria and Iraq.


692 - Council of Trullo

Orthodox Council in Trullo formally makes Jerusalem one of the Pentarchy.

Caliphal authority is completed when Abd al-Melik takes Mecca.

The Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, the oldest monumental Islamic construction, is built on the orders of the Umayyad Caliph ‘Abd al-Malik..

Willibrord converts Frisians.


694 - King Edica

King Edica, the Visigothic king in southern Spain eyes the forces of Islam massing a mere eight miles across the pillars of Hercules in Morocco, along with Tunisia and Algeria making up the new province of Ifriqiyah. The king orders the Jews to accept baptism and pledge loyalty to the Christian faith. Some do. Those who don’t renounce Judaism are relieved of their possessions and declared slaves to Christian masters. Their children are taken away to be brought up as Catholics. The servitude would last seventeen years.


696 - Cairo

When Fatimid Muslims conquered Egypt they claimed the rich delta basin as their own and named it al-qahira ‘the victorious’ after their victory.


697 - Carthage Destroyed

Byzantine Carthage is destroyed by an Arab and Berber army led by Hassan ibn Numan.

Venetians elect thier first ruler the Doge of Venice.


698 - Dome of the Rock

Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem is completed, enshrining the stone from which Muhammad (pbuh) ascended into heaven during the Isra.

Note the octagonal and gold-sheeted Dome is the Al-Sakhrah Mosque, the Dome of the Rock. The Al-Aqsa mosque is the building beside it.


700 - Serbs and Croats

The Serbs are converted to Byzantine Orthodoxy while Croats are converted to Roman Christianity