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Chronology of Palestinian History

Following is a compiled chronology of Palestinian history from early stages till the beginning of the current occupation.


600,000 - 10,000
Paleolithic and Mesolithic period. Earliest human remains in the area (found south of the Lake of Tabariyya), date back to ca. 600,000 BC.

10,000 - 5,000
Neolithic period. Establishment of settled agricultural communities.

5,000 - 3,000
Chalcolithic period. Copper and stone tools and artifacts from this period found near Jericho, Bi'r As-Sabi' and the Dead Sea.

3,000 - 2,000
Early Bronze Age.Arrival and settlement of the Canaanites (3,000 - 2,500 BC)

Israelite conquest of Canaan.

965 - 928
King Solomon (Sulayman), construction of the temple in Jerusalem.

Division of the Israelite state into the kingdom of Israel and Judah.

Assyrian conquest of the kingdom of Israel.

Judah defeated by Babylonians under Nebuchadnezzar, deportation of its population to Babylon and destruction of the temple.

Persians conquer Babylonia, allowance of deportees to return and construction of a new temple.

Alexander the Great conquers Persia and Palestine comes under the Greek rule.

Alexander the Great dies, alternate rule by Ptolemies of Egypt and Seleucids of Syria.

Maccabees revolt against the Seleucid ruler (Antiochus Epiphanes) and establish an independent state.

Incorporation of Palestine into the Roman Empire.


Destruction of the second temple by the Roman Emperor Titus.

Suppression of the Bar Kokhba revolt. Jews barred from Jerusalem and Emperor Hadrian builds a pagan city on its ruins.

Palestine under Byzantine rule, Christianity spreads.

Omar ibn al-Khattaab enters Jerusalem and ends the Byzantine rule.

Palestine administered by the Umayyad chaliphs from Damascus and construct the Dome of the Rock ('Abd al-Malik, 685-705) and Al-Aqsa in its current shape (al-Walid, 705-715).

Palestine administered from Baghdad by the'Abbasid caliphs.

Palestine administered by the Fatimids from Egypt as rivals to Baghdad.

Saljuqs (originally from Isfahan) rule Jerusalem and parts of Palestine (officially still under the 'Abbasids).

The Crusaders arrive and establish the "Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem".

Salah al-Diin al-Ayyoubi (from Kurdistan) conquers the crusaders in the battle of Hittin, kicks them back to Europe and frees Jerusalem. Plaestine administered from Cairo.

The Mamluks succeed the Ayyubis, continue to administer Palestine from Cairo and kick the Mongols in thebattle of 'Ayn Jaluut near An-Nasira.

The Mamluks (Khalil bin Qalawuun) conquer the last crusader stronghold in Akka and Qisariya.

Palestine incorporated into the Ottoman state and administered from Istanbul.

Moh'd Ali Basha (Egypt) rules Palestine, Ottomans take over afterwards.

First Palestinian deputies from Jerusalem attend the first Ottoman parliament.

First Zionist settlement (Petach Tiqva) established under the guise of agricultural community.

First wave of Zionists (25000 strong) enters Palestine as illegal immigrants from Eastern Europe.

French Baron E. de Rothschild starts backing Zionists activities in Palestine financially.

Ottomans divide Palestine into three districts: Jerusalem (follows Istanbul) , Akka and Nablus (follow the 'wilaya' of Beirut).

Theodor Hertzl, a journalist from an Austro-Hungarian origin published Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State) advocating the establishment of a Jewish state in Palestine or elsewhere.

JCA (Jewish Coloniation Association) starts aiding Zionist settlements in Palestine.

First Zionist congress in Switzerland issues the Basle Program "calling for a home for the Jewish people in Palestine" and establishes the WZO (World Zionist Organization to that end.

JNF (Jewish National Fund) set up by the 5th Zionist congress to acquire land (in Palestine) and 'make it Jewish'.

Second wave (around 40000 strong) of Zionist illegal immigrants arrive in Palestine and increase the Jewish percentage to 6% of the total population.

First Zionist Kibbutz (collective farm), establishment of Tel Aviv north of Yaafa.

Until the end of World War I Palestine was part of the Islamic Ottoman Empire. The Ottoman Empire stretched from North Africa to the Arabian Peninsula through the Fertile Crescent around the Black Sea and to the Adriatic Sea. The Ottoman Empire for centuries was the most tolerant state in the world and was a haven for the persecuted religious minorities of Europe especially, but not exclusively,the Jews. Such toleration was due to the fact that it based its laws and legislation on the Qur'an and Sunnah. Within the large Islamic state there were no clearly defined borders; however, the general area in which Palestine is now located was recognized as being part of Southern Belad al-Sham. After World War I, Palestine was separated from the general area that included what is known today as Syria, Jordan, and Lebanon by the British colonizers. For the first time in its history Palestine become a country with defined borders nd a defined area estimated at 10,429 square miles. Its borders become: to the East the Jordan River, to the West the Mediterranean Sea, to the North Lebanon and to the South the Sinai Desert and the Gulf of Aqabah.