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Indian History Timeline : Ancient to Modern History Chronology

Last Updated : 28 Feb, 2024
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Indian History Timeline: The Indian history chronology is divided into three periods: ancient, medieval, and modern. The chronology of Indian history spans thousands of years, from prehistoric times to the modern era. Each period is marked by various events, rulers, and social transformations that shaped Indian history.

Below are the Indian history timelines including ancient India, medieval India, and modern India.


Indian History Timeline

Category of Indian History

The order of Indian history is divided into three periods, as follows:

  1. Ancient India
  2. Medieval India
  3. Modern India

Indian History Timeline

Timeline  Event
9000 BCE Early Neolithic Period
7000 to 3300 BCE Mehrgarh Culture
3000 to 1500 BCE


  • 3000 – 2600 BCE
  • 2600 – 1700 BCE
  • 1700 – 1500 BCE
Indus Valley Civilization, Early Harappan Phase, Mature Harappan Phase, Late Harappan Phase
1400 BCE Complete disappearance of Harappan towns
1500 to 1000 BCE Early Vedic age, also known as the Rigveda age
1000 BCE Iron age of India
1000 to 500 BCE Later Vedic Age
600 BCE Emergence of 16 Mahajanapadas
563 BCE Birth of Gautama Buddha (Founder of Buddhism)
540 BCE Birth of Vardhamana Mahavira (Founder of Jainism)
516 BCE Penetration of Iranian ruler, Darius into Northwest India
326 BCE Invasion of India by Alexander of Macedonia (Battle of Hydaspes)
322 BCE Establishment of the Mauryan dynasty
273 to 232 BCE Reign of Ashoka
265 BCE Beginning of Kalinga war
261 BCE End of the Kalinga war
250 BCE The Third Buddist Council was held
200 BCE Beginning of Central Asian contacts and invasion of Bactrian Greeks
184 BCE The decline of the Mauryan Empire
100 BCE Establishment of Satavahana Dynasty in Deccan
78 BCE Shaka era was started by the Kushan ruler, Kanishka
57 BCE Beginning of the Vikram era
Common Era
78 CE Gautamiputra Satakarni becomes Satavahana ruler
240 CE Establishment of the Gupta Empire by Sri Gupta
319 CE Beginning of the Gupta era by Chandragupta I
319 to 334 CE Reign of Chandragupta I
335 to 380 CE Reign of Samudragupta
380 to 412 CE Reign of Chandragupta II
450 CE Hunas invasion and end of Gupta Empire
606 to 647 CE Period of King Harshavardhana
973 to 1190 CE Reign of Chalukyas of Kalyani
753 CE Establishment of the Rashtrakuta dynasty by Danti Durga
760 to 1142 CE Reign of Palas in Eastern India
788 CE Birth of Adi Sankaracharya
985 to 1014 CE Reign of Rajaraja Chola
1014 to 1044 CE Reign of Rajendra Chola
1000 to 1027 CE Invasion of India by Mahmud of Ghazni
1191 CE First Battle of Tarain (Mohammad Ghori defeated by Prithviraj III)
1192 CE Second Battle of Tarain (Prithviraj III defeated by Mohammad Ghori)
1192 to 1206 CE Ganga-Jamuna doab and its surrounding was under Turkish rule
1206 CE Establishment of the Delhi Sultanate by Qutbuddin Aibak
1210 CE Death of Qutbuddin Aibak
1210 to 1236 CE Reign of Iltutmish
1236 to 1240 CE Reign of Raziya
1265 to 1287 CE Reign of Balban
1290 CE Establishment of the Khalji dynasty by Jalaluddin Khalji
1290 to 1296 CE Reign of Jalaluddin Khalji
1296 to 1316 CE Reign of Alauddin Khalji
1320 CE Establishment of the Tughlaq dynasty by Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq
1320 to 1325 CE Reign of Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq
1325 to 1351 CE Reign of Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq
1327 CE Transfer of capital from Delhi to Daulatabad (by Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq)
1333 CE Arrival of Ibn Batuta to India
1351 to 1388 CE Reign of Firuz Tughlaq
1394 to 1412 CE Reign of Nasiruddin Mahmud
1398 CE Invasion of Delhi by Timur
1412 CE The Reign of the Tughlaq dynasty came to an end
1414 to 1451 CE Reign of the Sayyid dynasty
1451 CE Establishment of the Lodi dynasty
1451 to 1489 CE Reign of Bahlul Lodhi
1489 to 1517 CE Reign of Sikandar Lodhi
1517 to 1526 CE Reign of Ibrahim Lodhi
1526 CE First Battle of Panipat
1336 CE Establishment of the Vijayanagara Empire by Harihara and Bukka
1377 to 1404 Reign of Harihara II
1404 to 1422 CE Reign of Deva Raya I
1425 to 1446 CE Reign of Deva Raya II
1509 CE Tuluva dynasty was founded by Krishna Deva Raya
1509 to 1530 CE Reign of Krishnadeva Raya
1565 CE Battle of Talikota or Battle of Rakshasa-Tangadi. Marked the decline of the Vijayanagara empire
1346 CE Establishment of Bahmani Kingdom
1327 to 1358 CE Reign of Ala-ud-din Hasan Bahman Shah
1397 to 1422 CE Reign of Firuz Shah Bahmani
1419 CE Defeat of Firuz Shah Bahmani by Deva Raya I
1498 CE Arrival of Vasco da Gama at Calicut
1510 CE The Portuguese Governor, Alfonso Albuquerque captured Goa from the ruler of Bijapur.
1526 CE First Battle of Panipat (Defeat of Ibrahim Lodi by Babur)
1526 CE Establishment of the Mughal Empire by Babur
1527 CE Battle of Khanwa
1530 CE Accession of Humayun to the throne
1539 CE Defeat of Humayun by Sher Khan at Chausa
1540 CE Battle of Kanauj between Sher Khan and Mughals
1540 CE Establishment of Sur Empire by Sher Shah
1555 CE Humayun recaptured the throne by defeating Sikandur Suri in the Battle of Sirhind.
1556 CE Accession of Akbar to the throne
1556 CE Second Battle of Panipat
1556 – 1605 CE Reign of Akbar
1564 CE Abolition of the Jizyah system by Akbar
1565 CE Battle of Talikota and end of Vijayanagar empire
1575 CE Ibadat Khana (Hall of Prayer) was constructed in Fatehpur Sikri
1576 CE Battle of Haldighati (Defeat of Maharana Pratap by Akbar)
1581 CE Promulgation of Din-i-Ilahi by Akbar
1605 to 1627 CE Reign of Jahangir
1628 to 1658 CE Reign of Shah Jahan
1658 to 1707 CE Coronation of Aurangzeb
1679 CE Jizyah system was reintroduced by Aurangzeb
1707 CE Death of Aurangzeb
1709 to 1712 CE Reign of Bahadur Shah I
1712 to 1713 CE Reign of Jahandar Shah
1713 to 1719 CE Reign of Farrukhsiyar
1719 to 1748 CE Reign of Muhammad Shah
1738 to 1739 CE Persian emperor, Nadir Shah invaded India
1739 CE Battle of Karnal (Mughals were defeated by Nadir Shah)
1740 to 1748 CE First Carnatic War
1748 to 1754 CE Reign of Ahmad Shah
1754 to 1758 CE Reign of Alamgir II
1757 CE Battle of Plassey
1758 to 1759 CE Reign of Shahjehan II
1759 to 1806 CE Reign of Shah Alam II
1760 CE Battle of Wandiwash
1761 CE Third Battle of Panipat
1764 CE Battle of Buxar
1765 CE Diwani rights of Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa were granted to the British East India Company by Shah Alam II
1765 to 1772 CE Dual Government in Bengal
1767 to 1769 CE First Anglo-Mysore war
1770 CE Great Bengal Famine
1772 CE Warren Hastings was appointed as Governor of Bengal
1772 CE Abolition of dual government in Bengal
1773 CE The Regulating Act of 1773 was passed
1775 to 1782 CE First Anglo-Maratha war
1776 CE Treaty of Purandhar
1780 to 1784 CE Second Anglo-Mysore war
1782 CE Treaty of Salbai
1784 CE Pitt’s India Act was passed
1786 to 1793 CE Lord Cornwallis served as the Governor-General
1790 to 1792 CE Third Anglo-Mysore War and Treaty of Srirangapatnam (1792)
1793 CE The Charter Act of 1793 was passed
1793 to 1798 CE Sir John Shore served as the Governor-General
1798 CE Lord Wellesley was appointed as Governor-General
1798 CE Introduction of Subsidiary Alliance 
1799 CE Fourth Anglo-Mysore war
1802 CE Treaty of Bassein
1803 to 1805 CE Second Anglo-Maratha war
1806 to 1837 CE Reign of Akbar II
1807 to 1813 CE Lord Minto served as the Governor-General
1813 CE The Charter Act of 1813 was passed
1813 to 1823 CE Lord Warren Hastings served as the Governor-General
1817 to 1819 CE Third Anglo-Maratha war
1823 to 1828 CE Lord Amherst served as the Governor-General
1828 CE Brahmo Sabha was founded by Raja Rammohan Roy
1828 to 1835 CE Lord William Bentinck served as the Governor-General
1833 CE The Charter Act of 1833 was passed
1836 to 1842 CE Lord Auckland served as the Governor-General
1837 to 1857 CE Reign of Bahadur Shah II and the end of the Mughal empire
1842 to 1844 CE Lord Ellenborough served as the Governor-General
1844 to 1848 CE Lord Hardinge served as the Governor-General
1845 to 1846 CE First Anglo-Sikh War
1848 to 1849 CE Second Anglo-Sikh War
1848 to 1856 CE Lord Dalhousie served as the Governor-General
1853 CE The Charter Act of 1853 was passed
1854 CE Charles Wood’s despatch on Education
1856 to 1858 CE Lord Canning served as the Governor-General
1857 CE Revolt of 1857
1858 CE Lord Canning was appointed as the Viceroy
1861 CE Indian Council Act of 1861 was passed
1861 CE Indian Civil Service Act of 1861 was passed
1862 to 1863 CE Lord Elgin served as Viceroy
1864 to 1869 CE Sir John Lawrence served as Viceroy
1866 CE East India Association was formed by Dadabhai Naoroji
1867 CE Poona Sarvajanik Sabha was founded by M.G.Ranade
1869 to 1872 CE Lord Mayo served as Viceroy
1875 CE Arya Samaj founded by Swami Dayananda
1876 CE Indian National Association was formed by Surendranath Banerjea and Ananda Mohan Bose
1878 CE The Vernacular Press Act was passed
1880 to 1884 CE Lord Ripon served as Viceroy
1883 to 1884 CE Ilbert Bill Controversy
1884 to 1888 CE Lord Dufferin served as Viceroy
1885 CE The first session of the Indian National Congress
1888 to 1893 CE Lord Lansdowne served as Viceroy
1892 CE Indian Councils Act of 1892 was passed
1893 to 1899 CE Lord Elgin II served as Viceroy
1899 to 1905 CE Lord Curzon served as Viceroy
1905 CE Partition of Bengal
1905 to 1910 CE Lord Minto II served as Viceroy
1906 CE Swaraj was declared the goal of the Congress by Dadabhai Naoroji
1906 CE Formation of the Muslim League
1907 CE Surat Split of the Congress
1907 CE Seditious meeting act was passed
1908 CE Indian Newspapers Act was passed
1909 CE Morley-Minto Reforms
1909 CE Indian Councils Act of 1909 was passed
1910 CE Indian Press Act was passed
1910 to 1916 CE Lord Hardinge II served as Viceroy
1911 CE Annulment of Bengal Partition of 1905
1914 to 1919 CE First World War
1914 CE The arrival of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in India
1916 to 1921 CE Lord Chelmsford served as Viceroy
1916 CE Home Rule League was set up by Tilak and Annie Besant
1916 CE Lucknow pact between Congress and Muslim League
1916 CE Readmission of Extremists into Congress at Lucknow session of Congress
1917 CE August declaration was made by Edwin Samuel Montagu
1917 CE Champaran Satyagraha
1918 CE Ahmedabad Mill Strike
1918 CE Kheda Satyagraha
1919 CE Montagu-Chelmsford Reform was introduced
1919 CE Government of India Act of 1919 was passed
1919 CE Rowlatt Act was passed
1919 CE Jallianwala Bagh Massacre
1920 CE Khilafat and Non-Cooperation Movement
1920 to 1930 CE Several revolutionary movements took place
1921 to 1926 CE Lord Reading served as Viceroy
1922 CE Chauri Chaura incident
1926 to 1931 CE Lord Irwin served as Viceroy
1927 CE All India Women’s Conference was founded by Margaret Cousins
1927 CE Appointment of Simon Commission
1928 CE Nehru Report was put forth
1929 CE Jinnah’s Fourteen points were proposed
1930 CE Gandhiji’s Dandi March and Civil Disobedience Movement
1930 to 1931 CE First-round Table Conference
1931 CE Second Round Table Conference
1931 CE Gandhi-Irwin Pact
1931 to 1936 CE Lord Wellingdon served as Viceroy
1932 CE Third Round Table Conference
1932 CE Announcement of communal award
1932 CE Poona Pact was signed
1935 CE Government of India Act of 1935 was passed
1936 to 1944 CE Lord Linlithgow served as Viceroy
1939 to 1945 CE Second World War
1940 CE August Offer was announced
1942 CE Cripps Mission headed by Sir Stafford Cripps was sent to India
1943 CE The Bengal Famine
1944 to 1947 CE Lord Wavell served as Viceroy
1945 CE Wavell Plan
1946 CE Cabinet Mission was sent to India
1947 CE Mountbatten Plan was announced
1947 CE Indian Independence Act was passed
1947 CE Partition of India into India and Pakistan
1948 CE Assasination of Gandhi
1949 CE The Constitution of India was adopted
1950 CE The Constitution of India came into force

Ancient Indian Chronology

Events in ancient Indian chronology begin from the prehistoric period to the 7th century AD. Read below to learn more.


Ancient Indian Chronology

Prehistoric Periods:

1. Paleolithic Period (2 million BC–10,000 BC):

Characterized by stone tools, the discovery of fire, and significant sites like Bhimbetka, Hunsgi, and Narmada Valley.

2. Mesolithic Period (10,000 BC – 8,000 BC):

Introduction of microliths, domestication of animals, and notable climatic changes.

3. Neolithic Period (8000 BC–2000 BC): Agriculture emerges, the wheel is invented, and notable sites include Hallur and Burzahom.

4. Chalcolithic Period (4000 BC–1500 BC): Known as the Copper Age, part of the Bronze Age.

5. Iron Age (1500 BC–200 BC): Marks the Vedic Period and the arrival of Aryans.

Vedic Period

Early Vedic Period (1500 BC–1000 BC):

  • Arrival and settlement of Aryans in the northwest.
  • The Rig Veda, the oldest of the Vedas, is composed.
  • Development of early Vedic culture and religion.

Later Vedic Period (1000 BC–500 BC):

  • Expansion of Aryan culture into the Indo-Gangetic Plain.
  • Composition of the other three Vedas (Yajur, Sama, and Atharva).
  • The rise of Brahmanism and the beginnings of the caste system.

Mahajanapadas Period (600 BC–300 BC):

  • Formation of 16 major states, or Mahajanapadas.
  • Flourishing of urban centers and trade.
  • Development of early political entities and republics.

Buddhism and Jainism Rise (around 6th century BC):

  • The Emergence of Buddhism by Gautama Buddha.
  • The Rise of Jainism by Mahavira.
  • Challenge to the Vedic religious order.

Persian and Greek Invasions (around 550 BC–300 BC):

Influence of Persian culture and administration during the Achaemenid Empire.

Alexander the Great’s invasion, which leaves a lasting impact on the cultural landscape.

Mauryan Empire (321 BC–185 BC):

  • Chandragupta Maurya establishes a large empire.
  • Ashoka’s reign marked the peak of the empire, known for his spread of Buddhism.

Post-Mauryan Kingdoms (after 185 BC):

  • Sunga, Kanva, and the Satavahana dynasties.
  • Regional powers rise in the absence of a central authority.

Gupta Empire (around 320 AD–550 AD):

  • Often regarded as the Golden Age of India.
  • Significant developments in art, science, and literature.
  • Establishment of a strong central government and prosperous trade.

Post-Gupta Period (550 AD onwards):

  • Fragmentation of the empire and rise of regional kingdoms.
  • Cultural and trade continuities despite political changes.

Medieval Indian Chronology (AD 700–AD 1857)

The medieval Indian chronology spans from the 8th to the 18th centuries AD. This period marks the rise and fall of several powerful empires.


Medieval History Chronology

Early Medieval Period (AD 700–AD 1200)

Tripartite Struggle (AD 800-1200):

  • A power struggle for control of the Gangetic plains among the Pratiharas, Palas, and Rashtrakutas.
  • Significant for shaping the political landscape of North India.

Rise of Regional Kingdoms:

  • The emergence of powerful regional dynasties like the Cholas, Chalukyas, and Pallavas in the South.
  • These kingdoms made significant contributions to Indian culture, architecture, and literature.

High Medieval Period (AD 1200–AD 1526)

Establishment of the Delhi Sultanate (1206 AD–1526 AD):

  • Marked by the arrival of the Turks and the establishment of Muslim rule in North India.
  • Successive dynasties: the Mamluk/Slave Dynasty, the Khilji Dynasty, the Tughlaq Dynasty, the Sayyid Dynasty, and the Lodi Dynasty.
  • Expansion and consolidation of Muslim rule in the Indian subcontinent.

Invasions from Central Asia:

  • Raids by Timur (Tamerlane) in 1398 led to the temporary decline of the Delhi Sultanate.
  • Establishment of madrasas and libraries.
  • Growth of Indo-Islamic architecture, exemplified by the Qutub Minar and the Red Fort.
  • Expansion of trade with the Middle East and Southeast Asia.
  • Growth of urban centers like Delhi, Agra, and Lahore.

Late Medieval Period (AD 1526–AD 1857)

Mughal Empire (AD 1526–AD 1857):

  • Established by Babur after the First Battle of Panipat in 1526.
  • It reached its zenith under Akbar, Jahangir, Shah Jahan, and Aurangzeb.
  • Known for its administrative efficiency, military strength, and cultural achievements.

Maratha Ascendancy:

  • The Maratha Empire rose under Shivaji in the 17th century.
  • Became a major power in India, challenging the Mughal and later European powers.

European Colonization:

  • Arrival of European traders and colonizers, notably the Portuguese, Dutch, French, and British.
  • The establishment of trading posts and subsequent political influence led to colonial rule.
  • Gradual weakening of the Mughal Empire, especially post-Aurangzeb.
  • Rise of regional powers like the Hyderabadi Nizams, Rajputs, Sikhs, and Jats.
  • Growth of religious and social reform movements like Sikhism under Guru Nanak and subsequent gurus.

Establishment of Independent Kingdoms:

  • Formation of independent and semi-independent kingdoms like Bengal, Awadh, and Mysore.
  • These states played crucial roles in the resistance against British expansion.

This period of medieval Indian history was marked by a rich tapestry of political, social, and cultural transformations. It set the stage for the subsequent colonial period and the modern era, contributing significantly to the diverse and complex heritage of the Indian subcontinent.

Modern Indian Chronology

Modern Indian history, beginning in the mid-18th century, is a period marked by significant events that led to the end of traditional kingdoms, the rise of British colonialism, and eventually the birth of a modern, independent nation. Here’s a chronological overview of key events in this era:


Modern History Chronology

Colonial Era (Mid-18th Century–1947)

Establishment of British Rule:

  • 1757: Battle of Plassey, establishing British supremacy in Bengal.
  • 1764: Battle of Buxar, consolidating British power in India.

British Expansion and Administration:

  • Late 18th to 19th centuries: gradual expansion of British rule across India.
  • Introduction of administrative and legal reforms like the Permanent Settlement, Ryotwari System, and Civil Services.

Socio-Religious Reform Movements:

Early to mid-19th century: the emergence of reform movements like Brahmo Samaj and Arya Samaj and the activities of social reformers like Raja Ram Mohan Roy and Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar.

The Revolt of 1857:

  • The First War of Indian Independence, or the Sepoy Mutiny against British rule.
  • This led to the end of the East India Company’s rule and the establishment of direct British Crown control over India.

Nationalist Movements and Congress Foundation:

  • 1885: Formation of the Indian National Congress.
  • Early 20th century: Swadeshi Movement, Home Rule Movement.

Gandhian Era and Mass Movements:

  • 1915: Return of Mahatma Gandhi from South Africa; beginning of Gandhian era in Indian freedom struggle.
  • 1919: Jallianwala Bagh Massacre; Rowlatt Act protests.
  • 1920: Non-Cooperation Movement.
  • 1930: Civil Disobedience Movement; Salt Satyagraha.
  • 1942: Quit India Movement.

Partition and Independence:

1947: Partition of India; independence from British rule; creation of India and Pakistan.

Jawaharlal Nehru became the first Prime Minister of an independent India.

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Indian History Chronology – FAQs

What is the order of Indian history?

The order of Indian history starts from ancient, medieval, and modern Indian history.

What is the timeline of Indian history?

The timeline of Indian history is as follows:

Ancient History: 2 million BC to 550 AD

Medieval History: AD 700–AD 1857

Modern History, Mid-18th Century–1947

What are the periods of Indian history?

The periods of Indian history are divided into three. The periods are ancient, medieval, and modern. These are named as per the chronology of history.

What is the timeline of ancient Indian history?

The timeline of ancient Indian history starts in prehistoric times and lasts up to 550 AD.

Prehistoric Periods:

Paleolithic Period (2 million BC–10,000 BC), Mesolithic Period (10,000 BC–8,000 BC), Neolithic Period (8000 BC–2000 BC), Chalcolithic Period (4000 BC–1500 BC), and Iron Age (1500 BC–200 BC)

Early Vedic Period (1500 BC–1000 BC)

Later Vedic Period (1000 BC–500 BC)

Mahajanapadas Period (600 BC–300 BC)

Buddhism and Jainism Rise (around 6th century BC)

Mauryan Empire (321 BC–185 BC)

Gupta Empire (around 320 AD–550 AD)

What is the medieval history chronology in India?

The chronology of medieval Indian history can be explained in three sub-periods, as follows:

Early Medieval Period (AD 700–AD 1200)

Tripartite Struggle (AD 800-1200)

High Medieval Period (AD 1200–AD 1526)

Establishment of the Delhi Sultanate (1206 AD–1526 AD)

Late Medieval Period (AD 1526–AD 1857)

Mughal Empire (AD 1526–AD 1857)

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