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  • 3100-2686 B.C. Early Dynastic Period. For the first time Egypt unites under a single ruler, with his capital in Memphis.

  • 3100 B.C. Pharaoh Narmer depicted in the Narmer Palette wearing the crowns of Upper and Lower Egypt.

  • 2686-2181 B.C. Old Kingdom Period. The Giza Pyramids and the necropolis in Saqqara are built.

  • 2613-2589 B.C. Reign of Sneferu; he builds the Bent Pyramids at Dashur.

  • 2589-2566 B.C. The biggest of the three pyramids in Giza is built under the reign of Khufu.

  • 2181-2025 B.C. First Intermediate Period. The country is fragmented, and the power of the rulers in Memphis barely extends beyond the city.

  • 2125-1750 B.C. Middle Kingdom Period spans the 11th and 12th dynasties; both are ruled from Thebes.

  • 1750-1550 B.C. Second Intermediate Period. Government is fractured, with lengthy periods in which a large part of the country is ruled from the Delta city of Xois.

  • 1550-1069 B.C. New Kingdom Period in which many of the most spectacular monuments, such as Karnak Temple and many of the Valley of the Kings tombs, of Upper Egypt are built.

  • 1473-1458 B.C. Hatshepsut rules; her mortuary temple is in Luxor.

  • 1352-1336 B.C. Akhenaten, who started as Amenhotep IV, starts a new religion in a new city miles from home.

  • 1336-1327 B.C. Tutankhamun, son of Akhenaken, oversees the reinstatement of more traditional worship, and became famous very late in life.

  • 1279-1213 B.C. Ramses II's longevity allows him to leave several huge monuments to himself, including the world-famous temple in Abu Simbel.

  • 1069-747 B.C. Third Intermediate Period, characterized by overlapping family lines and regional disputes.

  • 747-332 B.C. Late Period. Egypt struggles to regain the unity and stability of the New Kingdom and is invaded and successfully divided during this period.

  • 332 B.C. Alexander the Great arrives, establishes a coastal city in his name, consults the Oracle of Amoun in Siwa, and leaves.

  • 332 B.C.-A.D. 30 Ptolemaic Period. Egypt is under the control of a Macedonian dynasty, with its capital in the city of Alexandria.

  • 305-85 B.C. Ptolemy I is left to run Egypt in Alexander's absence, makes himself ruler, and establishes a dynasty after Alexander's death.

  • 51-30 B.C. Cleopatra VII takes part in Roman politics and one of the most famous affairs of all time before committing suicide.

  • A.D. 30-640 During the Roman Period, Egypt is the breadbasket of Rome; Christianity flourishes.

  • 640-969 First Islamic Period. Egypt invaded and held by Muslim forces. Governed from Damascus, Fustat (near Cairo), and Baghdad.

  • 969-1071 Fatimid Dynasty. The country is ruled from the new city of Al Qahira by Shia invaders from the west.

  • 1074-1252 Ayyubid dynasty, founded by a Syrian Kurd named Salah al Din, saw off the European invaders of the Crusades.

  • 1252-1517 Egypt is ruled by a military caste known as the Mamlukes, whose roots are in the Ayyubid practice of importing slaves to serve in the army.

  • 1517-1798 Ottoman Rule. Run nominally from Istanbul; Egypt enjoys a great deal of independence from the empire.

  • 1798-1802 Napoleonic Interlude. Bonaparte's occupation thwarted by the combined efforts of the Ottomans and the British, but it had a big impact.

  • 1805-1848 Mohamed Ali reasserts Ottoman rule and establishes a dynasty that spends ruinously on attempts to modernize the country.

  • 1882-1954 British occupation sees two world wars and the development of modern tourism.

  • 1899-1902 Construction of the first Aswan Dam by the British.

  • 1952-present Modern Egypt run under military rule.

  • 1952 Free Officers Movement, led by Gamal Abdel Nasser, seizes power, taking control of the government and exiling the king.

  • 1954-1970 Nasser's presidency.

  • 1956 Suez Crisis is prompted by Nasser's threat to nationalize the canal and close the Straits of Tiran; Great Britain, France, and Israel invade the canal zone.

  • 1967 The Six-Day War. Preceded by a military and rhetorical buildup, Egypt and Israel fight a brief war on the Sinai; Israel wins.

  • 1970 Aswan High Dam completed.

  • 1970-1981 Sadat's presidency.

  • 1973 October War results in brokered peace and Egypt is able to reclaim the Sinai.

  • 1978 Camp David Accords lay out the terms under which Israeli forces returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt.

  • 1981-present Mubarak's presidency.

  • 1991 In exchange for a reported $20 billion, Egypt takes part in the operation to drive Iraqi forces from Kuwait.

  • 1997 Sixty-three people are killed in an attack by terrorists in Luxor.

  • 2003 Riots erupt in Cairo in protest of the U.S. invasion of Iraq, despite Egypt's nonparticipation.

  • Aug. 2004 Wrestler Karim Ibrahim wins Egypt's first Olympic gold medal since 1948.

  • March 2007 Amendments to the constitution are designed to preserve security forces' power and restrain the Muslim Brotherhood's political advances.

  • 2008 Egypt's national football team wins the Africa cup for the sixth time.

  • Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.