The Enormity of Time

Today I released a video on my channel entitled “Enormity of Time” about just how ancient the world really is.  History is incredibly ancient, and incredibly enormous.  When I have existential crises I often think about just how old the Earth really is, so I’m going to share it with you.  In the form of a timeline, and a video.

The Roman Empire was formed in 27 BCE.

Boudicca led the Iceni revolt in 60-61 CE.

Nero fiddled in 64 CE.

The Colosseum was constructed from 70-80 CE.

via Flickr

Parthenon via

The Parthenon was built between 447-438 BCE.

 

Stonehenge was built between 3100 BCE – 2200 BCE.

Great Zimbabwe via Jan Derk

Great Zimbabwe via Jan Derk

Great Zimbabwe was created, flourished, and crumbled between the eleventh and the fourteenth centuries CE.

Harrappan civilization flourished between 3300 BCE and 1900 BCE.

Mohenjo Daro was founded in about 2600 BCE, and had city-wide sewers before anyone else.

Civilization in the Indus River Valley developed irrigation around 2500 BCE.

Cleopatra and Caesar by Jean-Léon Gérôme

Cleopatra VII was born in 69 BCE.

The Great Pyramid of Giza was constructed in 2584 BCE.

That time difference is 2,515 years.

The first moon landing was in 1969 CE.

That time difference was 2,038 years, which puts Cleopatra’s birth 477 years closer to the moon landing than to the building of the Great Pyramid.

 

Let’s get way more ancient.  We outlived Homo Neanderthalensis 25,000 years ago, and Homo Floresiensis 12,000 years ago.  The humans who would become Europeans, Asians, Americans, Australians, et al began migrating from Africa 125,000 years ago.  Humans have only been on the planet for 200,000 years.  Which seems long until you put it in context.

Homo Floresiensis Reconstruction by John Gurche via

Hominids developed about 15 million years ago, but didn’t develop bipedalism until 3 million years ago.  So for 12 million years our hominid ancestors were quadrupedal.  Before hominids though, there were other primates, and they developed 85 million years ago.  But primates are only part of the mammalian class, which developed 256 million years ago.

 

How incredible is that?  Seems pretty ancient now huh?  Well I’m about to blow what’s left of your mind.

This streamlines evolution, but is a great illustration. via

Life migrated onto land 360 million years ago.  But before animals adapted to live on land, they had to develop brains right?  But they developed brains 190 million years before they became adapted to live on land.  Which means brains developed 550 million years ago.

 

To me what’s incredible is how short some things are in truly ancient prehistory.  It took 550 million years to develop from fish with brains to modern humans, but it only took 50 million years to develop from primitive multicellular organisms to fish with brains.  Multicellular life developed from single-cellular life 600 million years ago.

And the final way that I’m going to blow your mind is this: the Earth is 4.54 billion years old, and life began on the planet 3.6 billion years ago.

 

Boom.  Is your mind blown?  Mine is.  I’d really appreciate it if you’d watch the video above, because I’m incredibly proud of it.  And if you like the video, please subscribe to my channel here.

 

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