historical timeline

of the African Provinces

700 - 799 C.E.
800 - 899 C.E.
900 - 999 C.E.
600s
Ethiopian kingdom remains linked with Coptic patriarchate; metropolitan chosen by patriarch of Alexandria
605-616
Anastasius, Patriarch of Alexandria.
610-641
Lengthy reign of Heraclius the younger; emperor of the Christian orient, who asserts Byzantine interests in Egypt.
614
Irish monk Columbanus founds monastery of Bobbio in Italy where ancient African Vetus Latins Ur-texts still reside.
616-623
Andronicus, patriarch of Alexandria
619-629
Persian occupation of Egypt ends Byzantine Rule.
622
The Hejira, Muhammad's flight from Mecca to Medina, begins Islamic era; first year in Muslim calendar, 1 A. H. = Anno Hegirae.
622-624
Muhammad attempts to convert 10,000 Jews of Medina; disappointed, he changes direction of the qibla from Jerusalem to Mecca; deports and annihilates the Jewish tribes of Arabia.
622-680
Monothelite controversy.
623-662
Benjamin I, patriarch of Alexandria, author of Easter Epistles and Homily on Cana Wedding, spends ten years in exile under Heraclius and three under the Muslims.
625
Muhammad begins dictating Qur'an to scribe.
628-646
Maximus the Confessor residing in Africa as refugee from Palestine due to Persian invasion, was tried, tortured, and died in exile in 662; writes on forced baptism at Carthage in 632.
629
Muhammad captures Mecca.
629-642
Byzantine recovery of Egypt.
630
Death of Stephen of Alexandria, philosopher-alchemist-astronomer.
631-642
Emperor Heraclius sends Cyrus as pro-Chalcedonian patriarch of Alexandria, and governor of Egypt, attempting to bring Copts into Melkite church.
632
Death of Muhammad at Medina; Caliph Abu Bakr begins conquest of Palestine.
634
Church of Saints Cyrus and John first built in Babylon/ Old Cairo (now st. Barbara.)
634
Teachings of Jacob (anon.) written after forced conversions in Carthage.
634-642
Expansion of Islam, Palestine, Syria and Egypt, where majority populations of Jews and Christians lived, come under Arab domination.
638
Ps.-Shenute's Vision, prophesies calamities; falsely attributed to Shenute of Atripe.
639
Arab Conquest of Egypt begins with fall of Pelusium.
c. 640
Coptic Homily on the Child Saints of Babylon (anon.)
641
Fall of Fort Babylon, Old Cairo, to Arabs.
642
Fall of Alexandria; destruction of library of Alexandria witnessed by John of Nikiu, author of universal history, Chronicle, that survived only in Ethiopic- key source for Arab conquest and end of Byzantine rule in Egypt.
643-656
Arab conquest of Cyrenaica; Arabs besiege Tripoli, lay waste to Sabratha, and invade eastern Fezzan; Caliphate of Uthman; canonical compilation of the Koran.
646
African exarch Gregory declares himself Roman Emperor, although he remains in Africa; moves his capital to Sufetula (Sbeitla.)
646
Arabs burn cathedral of St. Mark in Alexandria.
646
Victor becomes bishop of Carthage.
647
Arab conquest of portions of the Maghreb; Gregory dies when defeated outside Sufetula.
c. 650
Thalassius of Libya, Abbat of monastery in Libyan desert, authored Maxims, befriends Maximus the Confessor.
650s
Irish ornamentation characterized by interlacing motif found frequently in Coptic art; Coptic influence spreads through monks who copied in the scriptoria.
652
Christian Nubians and Arabs in Egypt agree that Aswan on Nile should mark southern limit of Arab expansion.
c. 661-750
Ummayad caliphate; Muslims divide into Sunni (orthodox) and Shia, followers of the caliph Ali.
662
Death of Maximus Confessor, after the mutilation of his tongue and his right hand, the parts of his body with which he had opposed non-Chalcedonian Christology in his testimony in Africa.
662-680
Agathon, patriarch of Alexandria during Arab conquest; ransomed captive slaves; authored Panegyric on Benjamin.Third Council of Constantinople, Sixth ecumenical Council, begun under Constantine IV, completed by the synod in Trullo (692) under Justinian II, condemns monothelitism and monoenergism, confirming that in Christ are two inseparable wills and two inseparable. energies, reemphasizing Chalcedonian Christology.
669
Campaign of Okba, capture of Tripolitania and Byzacena; foundation of Arab city of Kairouan in Tunisia, a leading intellectual center for early Islamic law.
680-681
Third Council of Constantinople, Sixth ecumenical Council, begun under Constantine IV, completed by the synod in Trullo (692) under Justinian II.
680-689
John III (John of Sammanud), patriarch of Alexandria, answers Questions of Theodore.
680-700
Monks of Africa flee to Gaul and Ireland amid Arab conquest through Africa.
689-692
Coptic Life of Isaac of Rakoti, patriarch of Alexandria.
690-692
Isaac, patriarch of Alexandria; Menas, Bishop of Nikiu writes Life of Patriarch Isaac.
690-715
Coptic eschatology amid Arab rule: Ps.-Athanasius, Apocalypse.
692-700
Simon I, patriarch of Alexandria.
695-698
Hassan captures Carthage; Arabs defeated by Al-Kahena, queen of the Aures; Carthage recaptured by Byzantines; Hassan retreats to Cyrenaica; Carthage is reconquered by Arabs who rule Ifriqiya.
Late 600s
Menas, monk of Akhmim, remained at Ashmunayn monastery until captured by Arabs; martyred.