List of Bronze Age states
Near East (c. 3300–1200 BC)
South Asia (c. 3000–1200 BC)
Europe (c. 3200–600 BC)
China (c. 2000–700 BC)
The Bronze Age is a period, 3300 - 1200 BC, characterized by the use of copper and its alloy bronze and proto-writing, and other features of urban civilization, circa 3300 BC to 1200 BC. The Bronze Age is the second principal period of the three-age Stone-Bronze-Iron system, as proposed in modern times by Christian Jürgensen Thomsen, for classifying and studying ancient societies. Ancient civilizations can be in the Bronze Age either by smelting its own copper and alloying with tin, or by trading for bronze from production areas elsewhere. Worldwide, the Bronze Age generally followed the Neolithic period. but in some parts of the world, the Copper Age served as a transition from the Neolithic to the Bronze Age.
Development of states
The development of states—large-scale, populous, politically centralized, and socially stratified polities/societies governed by powerful rulers marks one of the major milestones in the evolution of human societies. Archaeologists often distinguish between primary (or pristine) states and secondary states. Primary states evolved independently through largely internal developmental processes rather than through the influence of any other pre-existing state. The earliest known primary states appeared in Mesopatamia c. 3700 BC, during the end of the Neolithic period, in Egypt c. 3300 BC, in the Indus Valley c. 2500 BC, India c. 1700 BC, and in China c. 1600 BC. As they interacted with their less developed neighbors through trade, warfare, migration, and more generalized ideological influences, the primary states directly or indirectly fostered the emergence of secondary states in surrounding areas, for example, the Hittites in Anatolia, the Minoan and Mycenaean states of the Aegean, or the Nubian kingdoms in the Sudan. Professor Gil Stein at the University of Chicago Oriental Institute states "The excavations and archaeological surveys of the last few decades have vastly increased both the quantity and quality of what we know about ancient states and urbanism. Archaeologists have broadened the scope of their research beyond the traditional focus on rulers and urban elites. Current research now aims at understanding the role of urban commoners, craft specialists, and village-based farmers in the overall organization of ancient states and societies. Given the immense geographical scope encompassed by the term 'the Ancient World'". This list's the main types state that existed in Africa, Americas, Central Asia, East Asia, Europe, Eurasian Steppe, South Asia, and West Asia, from the beginning of the Bronze Age to the beginning of Iron Age, a period of approximately 2,000 years.
|Aethiopia||Adulis||Kingdom||c. 13th - 5th century BC|
|Egypt||Memphis, Thebes||Kingdom||3100 - 1550 BC|
|Egyptian Empire||Akhetaten, Pi-Ramesses, Thebes,||Empire||1550 - 1069 BC|
|Kerma||Kerma||Principalities||2500 - 15th century BC|
|Libu||Not specified||Tribal chiefdoms||1550 - 630 BC|
|Nubia||Kerma||Kingdom||3300 - 2500 BC|
|Punt||Not specified||Kingdom||2400 - 1069 BC|
|Maya||Various||Kingdom city states||2000 BC - 900 AD|
|Olmec||La Venta, Tenochtitlán||Kingdom city states||1400 - 400 BC|
|Preceded by Prehistory|
|Ancient Near East|
|Followed by the Postclassical Era|
North and West
South and East
|Athens||Athens||Kingdom city state||1556 - 1068 BC|
|Alba Longa||Lavinium||Kingdom||1200 - 753 BC|
|Alashiya||Enkomi, Kalavasos||Kingdom||1450 - 1050 BC|
|Crestonia||Creston||Principality||14th century BC - 431 BC|
|Elis||Elis||Kingdom||1300 BC - 431 BC|
|Lacedaemon||Sparta||Kingdom||1300 - 950 BC|
|Locria||Amphissa, Naupactus||Kingdom||1250 - 386 BC|
|Messenia||Messene||Kingdom||1300 - 724 BC|
|Minoa||Knossos||Kingdom city states||2700 - 1420 BC|
|Mycenaea||Mycenae||Kingdom city states||1600 - 1100 BC|
|Mygdonia||Not specified||Tribal kingdom||16th century BC - 6th century BC|
|Pelasgia||Pavlopetri||Tribal kingdom||3000 - 1183 BC|
|Phrygia||Not specified||Tribal kingdom||1450 - 1200 BC|
|Sea Peoples||Not specified||Tribal confederacy||c. 2000 - 1175 BC|
|Sicani||Not specified||Tribal confederation||c. 13th century - 300 BC|
|Thrace||Various||Tribal chiefdoms||1500 - 450 BC|
|Chorasmia||Not specified||Tribal confederation||1290 - 180 BC|
|Cimmeria||Not specified||Tribal confederation||1300 - 626 BC|
|Colchis||Phasis||Kingdom||1300 BC - 2nd century AD|
|Donghu||Not specified||Nomadic tribal confederation||1400 - 150 BC|
|Qiang||Not specified||Tribal chiefdoms/confederation||2000 BC - 150 BC|
|Ba||Yíchéng||Tribal confederation||13th century BC - 311 BC|
|Gojoseon||Asadal, Wanggeom-seong||Kingdom||2333 - 108 BC|
|Qi||Qi||Dukedom||1600 - 445 BC|
|Shang||Anyang||Kingdom||1600 - 1046 BC|
|Sumpa||Not specified||Tribal chiefdom/client||1600 BC - 7th century AD|
|Văn Lang||Anyang||Confederation/kingdom||2879 - 258 BC|
|Xia||Yangcheng||Kingdom||2205 - 1600 BC|
|Xu||Gusu||Viscountcy/client||2000 - 512 BC|
|Anga||Champa or Campā||Kingdom||1380 - 550 BC|
|Āryāvarta||Multiple||Tribal confederated kingdoms||1750 - 600 BC|
|Chedi||Suktimati||Kingdom||1300 - 405 BC|
|Chola||Urayur/Kaveripattinam||Kingdom||2645 - 110 BC|
|Gandhara||Kapisa, Pushkalavati||Kingdom||1450 - 510 BC|
|Sindhu Sapata||Harrapa, Mohenjo Daro||Federated kingdom city states||3100 - 1300 BC|
|Kalinga||Dantapura/Rajapura||Kingdom||1376 - 285 BC|
|Kamboja||Rajapura||Kingdom||1450 - 195 BC|
|Kasmira||Asirgarh Qila||Kingdom||1250 - 322 BC|
|Kekeya||Kingdom||1250 - c. 4th century BC|
|Kirata||Tribal kingdom||1350 - c. 300 BC|
|Kosala||Ayodhya||Kingdom||1300 - 266 BC|
|Kuru||Āsandīvat, Indraprastha||Kingdom||1376 - 285 BC|
|Lanka||Lankapura||Kingdom||1200 - 543 BC|
|Madra||Sagala||Kingdom||1350 - 350 BC|
|Magadha||Rajagriha or Rajgir||Kingdom||1200 - 799 BC|
|Matsya||Viratanagara||Kingdom||1250 -318 BC|
|Panchala||Ahichatra, Kampilya||Kingdom||1200 - 700 BC|
|Pandya||Madurai||Kingdom||1350 - 460 BC|
|Pundra||Pundravardhana||Kingdom||1300 BC - 550 AD|
|Sindhu||Vrsadarbhpura||Kingdom||1300 - 320 BC|
|Surasena||Methora||Kingdom||1300 - 323 BC|
|Vanga||Gange||Kingdom||1300 BC - 580 AD|
|Virata||Virata Nagari||Kingdom||1300-322 BC|
|Vriji||Vaishali||Confederacy||1250 - 322 BC|
|Yaksha||Narmada||Kingdom||1200 - 350 BC|
|Ahhiyawa||Milawata or Millawanda||Kingdom||1450 - 1220 BC|
|Akkadian Empire||Akkad||Empire||2334 - 2193 BC|
|Amorite||Various||United kingdoms||2000 – 1595 BC|
|Aramea||Various||Tribal chiefdom's/kingdom||2300 – 700 BC|
|Arme-Shupria||Van||Kingdom||1290 - 1190 BC|
|Armi||Armi||Kingdom city state/client||2290 - 40 BC|
|Arzawa||Apasa||Confederation of principalities||2300 - 1200 BC|
|Assyria||Assur||Kingdom||1975 - 934 BC|
|Assuwa||Various||Confederation of city states||1300 - 1250 BC|
|Babylonia||Babylon||Kingdom||1894 - 732 BC|
|Bashan||Bashan||Confederation||1330 - 928 BC|
|Byblos||Byblos||Kingdom city state||1800 - 970 BC|
|Canaan||Various||Confederation of city states||3500 - 1194 BC|
|Karuwa or Caria||Apasa||Kingdom||1250 - 560 BC|
|Dardania||Dardania||Kingdom||1527 - 1183 BC|
|Dilmun||Qal'at||Kingdom||2600 - 675 BC|
|Ebla||Ebla||Kingdom||3500 - 1600 BC|
|Edom||Rabbath Ammon||Kingdom||1200 - 125 BC|
|Elam||Susa||Kingdom||2700 - 1210 BC|
|Eshnuna||Eshnunna||Kingdom city state||2000 BC - 8th century BC|
|Gutium||Arrapkha||Kingdom||2108 - 2089 BC|
|Hatti||Hattusa||Principality city states||2700 - 1900 BC|
|Harappa||Harrapa, Mohenjo Daro||Kingdom city states||3100 - 1300 BC|
|Hayasa-Azzi||Samuha||2 Kingdom confederation||1500 - 1190 BC|
|Hitti||Hattussa||Kingdom||1900 - 1600 BC|
|Hittite Empire||Hattusa||Empire||1600 - 1178 BC|
|Hyksos||Itjtawy, Thebes||Confederacy||1800 - 1178 BC|
|Kassite||Babylon||Kingdom||1531 - 1135 BC|
|Kaskia||Zalpa, Nerik||Tribal confederation/kingdom||1430 - 1200 BC|
|Kizzuwatna||Kummanni||Kingdom||1600 - 1220 BC|
|Kussara||Kussara||Kingdom city states||1900 - 1650 BC|
|Lydia||Sardis||Kingdom||1200 - 680 BC|
|Lukka||Not specified||Tribal kingdom||2000 - 1183 BC|
|Lullubi||Lulubuna||Tribal kingdom||2400 - 650 BC|
|Luvia||Tribal kingdom||2300 - 1400 BC|
|Magan||Not specified||Kingdom||2200 - 550 BC|
|Ma'in||Ḥaram, Yathill||Kingdom||1200 - 85 BC|
|Mari||Mari||Kingdom city state||2900 - 1759 BC|
|Mittani||Washukanni||Kingdom||1690 - 1300 BC|
|Mysia||Pergamene||Kingdom||1320 - 301 BC |
|Namar||Namar||Kingdom||2350 - 750 BC|
|Moab||Dibon||Kingdom||1200 - 1300 BC|
|Paphlagonia||Gangra||Kingdom||1480 - 183 BC|
|Phoenicia||Various||Kingdom city states||1800 - 539 BC|
|Phrygia||Gordium||Kingdom||1200 - 547 BC|
|Purushanda||Purušhanda||Kingdom city state||2000 - 1650 BC|
|Sam'al||Samal||Principality/kingdom||1200 - 680 BC|
|Sea Peoples||Not specified||Tribal confederacy||c. 2000 - 1175 BC|
|Sumeria||Various||Kingdom city states||2900 - 1674 BC|
|Troas||Troy||Kingdom||3000 - 700 BC|
|Tyre||Tyre||Kingdom city state||1500 - 990 BC|
|Ugarit||Ugarit||Kingdom city state||2500 - 1090 BC|
|Upper Mesopotamia||Assur||Kingdom||1809 - 1776 BC|
|Urkesh||Urkesh||Kingdom city state/client||2250 - 1350 BC|
|Yamhad||Halab||Kingdom||1810 - 1525 BC|
|Zalpa||Zalpa||Kingdom city state/client||1830 - 1670 BC|
Types of state
A chiefdom is a form of hierarchical political organization in ancient tribal societies usually based on kinship, and in which formal leadership is monopolized by the legitimate senior members of select families or 'houses'. These elites form a political-ideological aristocracy relative to the general group. A chiefdom is thus led by a highly ranked incumbent of an inherited political role, tribal chief or king: chiefs lead because of their ascribed status, not their achieved status. Examples of this type of state would be: Aedui, Brigantes.
- City states
A city-state is an independent or autonomous entity, not administered as a part of another local government, whose territory consists of a sovereign city its dependencies and possibly its surrounding territory. Examples of this type of state would be: Sparta, Tyre.
- Client states
A client state is a state that is economically, politically or militarily subordinate to another more powerful state in international affairs. Types of client states include: satellite state, associated state, puppet state, neo-colony, protectorate, vassal state and tributary state. More powerful ancient states would create client states by making the leaders of that state subservient out of those it defeated. Examples of this type of state would be: Armenia, Ammon, Zheng.
A confederation is a union of political units for common action in relation to other states. Usually created by treaty, confederations tended to be established for dealing with critical issues (such as defense, foreign affairs, or central form of government being required to provide support for all its members.In the context of the history a confederation may refer to a semi-permanent political and military alliance consisting of multiple nations (or "chiefdom's" "tribes", "bands", or "villages") which maintained their separate leadership. Examples of this type of state would be: the Alemanni, Caledonii, Xiongnu.
A dukedom, or duchy, is a territory, fief, or domain ruled by a duke or duchess. Some historic duchies were sovereign in areas that would become unified realms, others were subordinate districts of those kingdoms that unified either partially or completely during the ancient era. Examples of this type of state would be: Qin and Swabia.
A Earldom is a territory, fief, or domain ruled by an Earl, Count or Countess in which case it would be called a Countship. Some historic earldom's/countship's were sovereign in areas that would become unified realms,others were subordinate districts of those kingdoms that unified either partially or completely during the ancient era, examples of this type of state would be the,
A Federation is a political entity characterized by a union of partially self-governing states or regions under a central (federal) government. Several ancient chiefdoms and kingdoms, such as the 4th century BC League of Corinth, Noricum in Central Europe, and the Haudenosaunee Confederation in pre-Columbian North America, could be described as federations or confederations. The Old Swiss Confederacy was an early example of formal non-unitary statehood.
The term empire derives from the Latin imperium (power, authority). Politically, an empire is a geographically extensive group of states and peoples (ethnic groups) united and ruled either by a monarch (emperor, empress) or an oligarchy. An imperial political structure is established and maintained in two ways: (i) as a territorial empire of direct conquest and control with force (direct, physical action to compel the emperor's goals) or (ii) as a coercive, hegemonic empire of indirect conquest and control with power (the perception that the emperor can physically enforce his desired goals). Examples of this type of state would be: the Athenian Empire, Median Empire and Roman Empire.
A khanate, or chanat, is a Turco-Mongol-originated word used to describe a political entity ruled by a khan. In modern Turkish, the word used is kağanlık or hanlık and in modern Azeri of the Republic of Azerbaijan, xanlıq. In Mongolian the word khanlig is used, as in "Khereidiin Khanlig" meaning the khanate of the Kerait. This political entity is typical for people from the Eurasian Steppe and it can be equivalent to tribal chiefdom, principality, kingdom or even empire. Examples of this type of state would be, the Göktürk Khaganate,
A kingdom is a state ruled by a king or queen) is a form of government in which sovereignty is actually or nominally embodied in a single individual (the monarch). Forms of monarchy differ widely based on the level of legal autonomy the monarch holds in governance, the method of selection of the monarch, and any predetermined limits on the length of their tenure. When the monarch has no or few legal restraints in state and political matters, it is called an absolute monarchy and is a form of autocracy. Examples of this type of state would be, Epirus, Nabatea and Pontus.
A marquisate, or march, is a territory, fief, or domain ruled by a marquis or marchioness. Some historic marquisates were sovereign in areas that would become unified realms,others were subordinate districts of those kingdoms that unified either partially or completely during the ancient era. Examples of this type of state would be the Jin.
A principality, or princedom, can either be a monarchical feudatory or a sovereign state, ruled or reigned over by a monarch with the title of prince or by a monarch with another title within the generic use of the term prince. Most of these states have historically been a polity, but in some occasions were rather territories in respect of which a princely style is held. The prince's estate and wealth may be located mainly or wholly outside the geographical confines of the principality. Examples of this type of state would be: Gardman, Corduene.
A republic is a form of government in which power is exercised by the public at large, and affairs of state are a concern of the public sphere (from Latin: res publica), rather than privately accommodated (such as through inheritance or divine mandate). In modern times the definition of a republic is also commonly limited to a government which excludes a monarch. Examples: Roman Republic, and Kalinga.
A viscountcy, or county, is a territory, fief, or domain ruled by a viscount or viscountess. Some historic viscountcies were sovereign in areas that would become unified realms, others were subordinate districts of those kingdoms that unified either partially or completely during the ancient era. Examples of this type of state would be: Xu, Chu.
- Ancient Africa
- Ancient Americas
- History of Central Asia
- Ancient China
- History of East Asia
- Ancient Europe
- History of India
- Ancient Iran
- Ancient Middle East
- Ancient Near East
- History of South Asia
- List of pre-modern great powers
- List of pre-modern states
- List of largest empires
- List of Late Antiquity Age states
- List of Classical Age states
- List of Iron Age states
- List of states during the Middle Ages
- Lists of state leaders by year
- Stein, Gil J (2001). Understanding Ancient State Societies in the Old World. New York: Kluwer Academic/Plenum Press. pp. 353–379.
- "Karmah Archaeological site (The Sudan)". Encyclopedia Britannica. Britannica Inc. Retrieved 11 August 2014.
- Taylor, Francis. "Kingdoms of North Africa: Encyclopaedia of African History: Volume 1 A-G". 1999-2014. The History Files. Retrieved 18 March 2014.
- "European Kingdoms Ancient Greece". 2014. The History Files. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
- "Far East Kingdoms, South Asia". 2014. The History Files. Retrieved 13 March 2014.
- "Kingdoms of Anatolia". 2014. The History Files. Retrieved 31 May 2014.
- "Middle East Kingdoms Ancient Anatolia". 2014. The History Files. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Helms, Mary W. (198). Access to Origins: Affines, Ancestors and Aristocrats. Austin: University of Texas Press. p. 4.
- Michael Graham Fry, Erik Goldstein, Richard Langhorne. Guide to International Relations and Diplomacy. London, England, UK; New York, New York, USA: Continuum International Publishing, 2002. Pp. 9.
- Oxford English Dictionary
- Stuart Berg Flexner and Leonore Crary Hauck, editors, Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2nd Ed., Random House, New York (1993)
- A Chronology of World Political History
- Empires Throughout History
- Ancient Asia Minor-Anatolia
- History Files
- Regnal Chronologies Ancient States
- Livius Ancient History Articles
- World History Maps (individual) from 1300 BC to 1500 AD