10 th Century, 901 to 1000 AD
In middle Mexico, the Toltecs have established themselves at Tula.
Recent emperors in China have been incompetent and the puppets of
palace eunuchs. Many in China believe that these emperors have lost the
Mandate of Heaven.
Axtec Empire Map
China's emperor loses control over Annam (northern Vietnam). There a
village notable, Khuc Thua Du, has led a rebellion. The Chinese
garrison at Tong Binh (Hanoi) is vanquished. Khuc Thua Du declares
911 The King of France, Charles III, gives Normandy to
Vikings in return for the Viking leader, Rollo, a Norwegian, pledging
his allegiance to him - the Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte. Rollo and
his Vikings (mostly Danes) are to defend his part of the coast of
France from attacks by other Vikings.
Rollo and his Vikings become Christian.
Bulgarians overrun the lands of Prince Caslav Klonimirovic in what
today is Serbia.
Prince Caslov drives away the Bulgarians and expands his kingdom,
uniting what today is Serbia, Montenegro, East Herzegovina
(Hercegovina) and Bosnia, then called Raska, Duklja, Travunija and
Bosnia. This is said by Serbians to be the founding of Serbia. Orthodox
Christianity is the state religion.
At Cordoba Spain, Abd-ar-Rahman, of the Umayyad dynasty, elevates
himself from an emir to caliph, putting himself in rivalry with the
Abbasid caliph at Baghdad.
Women in a Chinese harem invent playing cards.
In China, palace guards surround their commander and demand that he
become emperor. The commander agrees but only if they vow to obey him
and not plunder, not harm citizens and not harm the ruling family they
are overthrowing. The troops agree. The new emperor is Taizu, who will
begin the Song Dynasty.
Córdoba, on the Iberian Peninsula, is Europe's intellectual center and
the world's most populous city. Constantinople is the only other
European city in the top ten of the world's most populous cities.
Córdoba is a Muslim city. Caliph al Hakam II has been in power since
961 and is contributing to the building of Cordoba's libraries. Córdoba
has Europe's best university, with a spirit of free inquiry. It has
medical schools. Work is being done also in math and astronomy. The
city is tolerant toward its Jewish and Christian minority.
In China, paper money, invented there around 100 C.E., now dominates as
the monatery unit.
Around this year in China, a ruler's consort who has bound her feet
with strips of silk cloth performs a dance that impresses the
aristocrat artsy crowd. Other court females adopt the practice. The
binding of feet becomes a part of aristocratic culture for women
expected to be playthings and entertainers rather than having the
mobility needed for labor among common women.
Europeans begin to use Arabic numerals (1, 2, 3, et cetera), which are
more convenient in arithmetic than Roman numerals.
Wealthy landowners in Japan have freed themselves from paying taxes.
The government has little in revenues and has stopped supporting a
national army. The wealthy landowners have been consolidating their
various lands into single administrative units and creating their own
armies. The men hired for these armies are to be known as samurai (men
who serve), or bushi (warriors).
Erik the Red has been expelled from Iceland. He leads a group in the
exploration of Greenland.
Erik the Red has returned to Iceland. With 25 ships filled with people
and their belongings he heads back to Greenland. Many are lost at sea.
With the 350 persons who arrive in Greenland, he establishes a
In Kiev, Prince Vladimir I adopts the religion of the Byzantine Empire
as the state religion.
Between Timbuktu and the Atlantic coast, authoritarian kings have
enriched themselves by forcing tradesmen to give them a cut in the gold
that has been passing through their territory from mines to their south
on their way northward. Their kingdom is called Ghana. Ghana extends
its empire by conquering the Berber-dominated town of Awdaghost, to the
northwest of Ghana, and Ghana is now at the peak of its power.
Northern Maya cities begin to be abandoned. The Toltecs have arrived
from central Mexico, and at what had been a Maya city, Chichen Itza,
they build their own monuments.
A few Turks are in Iran employed as soldiers. Now tribes of Turks start
moving into Iran.
Muslims looking forward to the future are expanding southward along the
Somali coast in eastern Africa. The town of Mogadishu is founded, where
Muslim merchants are to trade in gold dust from the south.
For centuries Christians have been expecting the Second Coming of Jesus
- the Day of Judgment. Giving importance to a round figure such as
1000, and assuming that Jesus was born exactly one thousand years
earlier, many believe this is the year that it will happen. The passing
of the year leaves believers thanking God for the postponement of
Per capita world Gross Domestic Product (according to today's economic
historian Angus Maddison) is $435, measured in 1990 dollars. This
(according to Maddison) is down from $444 in the year 1. And (according
to Maddison) income levels in Europe are below those of Asia and North
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