- 8th century
The 8th century is the period from
701to 800in accordance with the Julian calendarin the Christian/ Common Era.
During this century the
Middle East, the coast of North Africaand the IberianPeninsula comes rapidly under Islamic Arabdomination. The westward expansion of the Arab Empireis famously halted at the Siege of Constantinople by the Bulgariansand the Byzantinesand the Battle of Toursby the Franks. The tide of Arab conquest came to an end in the middle of the 8th century. [Roberts, J: "History of the World.". Penguin, 1994.] Late in the century the Vikings, seafaring peoples from Scandinaviabegin raiding the coasts of Europeand the Mediterraneancreating a terrifying legacy. They go on to found several important kingdoms.
* Probably at some time in this century,
* The first Serbian state is formed at the beginning of the century.
Borobodur, the famous Indonesian Buddhiststructure, begins construction, probably as a non-Buddhist shrine.
Jatakastories are translated into Syriacand Arabic as Kalilag and Damnag.
* An account of Buddha's life is translated into Greek by Saint
John of Damascus, and widely circulated to Christians as the story of Barlaamand Josaphat.
Moravian principalityand the Principality of Nitraarise in central Europe (see Great Moravia)
Volga Bulgarians convert to Islam.
* Kanem-Bornu arises north of
* Height of the Classic period in
pre-Columbian Maya civilizationhistory.
* Śāntideva, a Buddhist monk at Nalanda Monastery in India, composes the famous Bodhicharyāvatāra, or "Guide to the Bodhisattva's Way of Life"
* The height of the
Giant Wild Goose Pagodain Xian, China is extended by 5 stories.
701, the Taihō Codeis enacted in late Asuka periodJapan
705, the reign of China's first and only sole-ruling empress, Wu Zetian, ends in this year
708- 711, Arab armies occupied Sindh. [Roberts, J: "History of the World.". Penguin, 1994.]
710, Empress Gemmeimoves the capital to Heijō-kyū (present day Nara), initiating the Nara periodof Japan.
711, Tariq ibn-Ziyadcrosses the Straits of Gibraltar. [Roberts, J: "History of the World.". Penguin, 1994.] With the creation of Al-Andalus, most of the Iberian peninsulais conquered by Araband Berber Muslims, thus ending the Visigothic rule, and starting almost eight centuries of Muslim presence there.
717- 718, Siege of Constantinople. The Bulgariansand the Byzantinesdefeated the Arabs thus holding their advance towards Eastern Europe. In the decisive battle the Bulgarian army slaughtered between 20,000 and 32,000 Arabs.
726, Byzantine Emperor Leo III the Isaurian, destroys the Chalke Gate in the capital city of Constantinople, beginning the first phase of Byzantine Iconoclasm.
732, Battle of Tours. Near Poitiers, France, leader of the Franks Charles Martel and his men, defeat a large army of Moors under the governor of Cordoba, Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi, who is killed during the battle. The Battle of Tours halts the advance of Islam into Western Europe and establishes a balance of power between Western Europe, Islam and the Byzantine Empire.
742, for the municipal censusof the Tang DynastyChinese capital city Chang'anand its metropolitan areaof Jingzhou Fu (including small towns in the vicinity), the New Book of Tangrecords that in this year there were 362,921 registered families with 1,960,188 persons.
748, the Chinese Buddhistmonk Jian Zhen writes in his "Yue Jue Shu" of the international sea traffic coming to Guangzhou, ships from Borneo, Persia, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and others bringing tons of goods.
750, The last Umayyad Caliph Marwan II( 744–750) is overthrown and executed by the first AbbasidCaliph, Abu al-Abbas al-Saffah. The Caliphateis moved to Baghdad, within the territory of the former Persian Empire; this would prove to be a momentous event for Baghdad which developed into a centre of trade and culture.The Ghana Empirebegins.
751, Arabian armies defeated Chinese Tang Dynastytroops in the Battle of Talas, in the high Pamirsnear Samarkandand conquest central Asiacompletely.
755– 763, the An Shi Rebelliondevastates China during the mid Tang Dynasty.
758, Araband Persian pirates and travelers burn and loot the Chinese city of Guangzhou, while the Tang Dynasty authorities shut the port down for the next five decades.
772– 804, Charlemagneinvades what is now northwestern Germany, battling the Saxonsfor more than thirty years and finally crushing their rebellion, incorporating Saxony into the Frankish Empireand the Christian world
785, beginning in this year, Tang DynastyChinese begin landing regular maritime missions on the coast of East Africa, cutting out middlemen Arab sea merchants.
785– 805, writing between these years, the Chinese geographer Jia Dandescribes large lighthouse pillars built in the Persian Gulf, which is confirmed a century later by al-Mas'udiand al-Muqaddasi
787, The Empress Irene of Athensconvenes the Seventh Ecumenical Council, ending the first phase of Byzantine Iconoclasm.
792, Battle of Marcelae. The Bulgarian victory over the Byzantines marked the end of the half-century political instability in Bulgaria.
793, the very first Vikingraid is carried out on the abbey of Lindisfarnein northern England.
794, Emperor Kammumoves the capital to Heian-kyō (present day Kyoto), initiating the Heian periodof Japan.
800,Begins the ancient west African state of Takruror Tekrour, which flourished roughly parallel to the Ghana Empire.
Jia Dan, Chinese scholar-official, cartographer, and geographer
*Tervel, Khan of Bulgaria from
Charles Martel, Frankish leader until 741( Battle of Tours, 732)
Pippin the Younger, king of the Franksuntil 768
Charlemagne, king of the Franksfrom 771to 814
Alcuin, English monk, scholar, and teacher; Charlemagne's advisor in educational affairs
Bede, English scholar
Harun al-Rashid, fifth Abbasid Caliph
*Li Po, Chinese
Du Fu, Chinese poet
Han Gan, Chinese painter
Muhammad bin Qasim, Arab general who conquered Sindhand Punjab.
Inventions, discoveries, introductions
* heavy plow in use in the
horse collarin use in Northern Europein 8th or 9th century— perhaps introduced from Asia
papermaking introduced from Chinato Arabs
* beginning of the decline of the Classical
* ca. 770 —
iron horseshoes came into common use
Pattadakal, Chalukya Architecture
* The Chinese
Buddhist monk Yi Xingapplies the first known clockwork escapementmechanism to operate and rotate his astronomical celestial globe
* The Pictish peoples of
Scotlanddesign the first European triangular harp
Decades and years
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