8th millennium BC

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  • 80th century BC
  • 79th century BC
  • 78th century BC
  • 77th century BC
  • 76th century BC
  • 75th century BC
  • 74th century BC
  • 73rd century BC
  • 72nd century BC
  • 71st century BC

In the 8th millennium BC, agriculture became widely practised in the Fertile Crescent and Anatolia.

Pottery became widespread (with independent development in Central America) and animal husbandry (pastoralism) spread to Africa and Eurasia. World population was approximately 5 million.


The south area of Çatalhöyük. An archaeological dig is in progress.
Cave painting in Doushe cave, Lorestan, Iran, 8th millennium BC
The Stone Age

before Homo (Pliocene)


Lower Paleolithic
Early Stone Age
Control of fire
Stone tools
Middle Paleolithic
Middle Stone Age
Homo neanderthalensis
Homo sapiens
Recent African origin of modern humans
Upper Paleolithic
Late Stone Age
Behavioral modernity, Atlatl,
Origin of the domestic dog


Microliths, Bow, Canoe
Heavy Neolithic
Shepherd Neolithic
Trihedral Neolithic
Pre-Pottery Neolithic


Neolithic Revolution,
Pottery Neolithic

Environmental changes

Holocene Epoch
Preboreal (10.3–9 ka)
Boreal (9–7.5 ka)
Atlantic (7.55 ka)
Subboreal (52.5 ka)
Subatlantic (2.5 ka–present)

Inventions, discoveries, introductions

  • Rise of agriculture
  • The earliest evidence of lentil cropping is in association with wheat and barley at Mureybit in Syria 8500-7500 BC, Hacilar and Cayonu in Turkey 7500-6500 BC[2]
  • Bladed tools found in southwest Iran date from around 8000 BC. They were made from obsidian that had been transported from Anatolia[3]
  • Potatoes and beans are cultivated in South America
  • Beginning of millet[4] and rice cultivation in East Asia
  • Domestication of the cat and Bos aegyptiacus ox in Ancient Egypt
  • Domestication of sheep in Southwest Asia
  • Huts, hearths, granaries, and nonportable stone tools for grinding grains Africa
  • Catal Huyuk, men wear animals skins, plus hats of the same material Asia
  • Houses, kilns, pottery, turquoise carvings, tools made from stone and bone, and bone flutes China
  • Clay and plaster are molded to form statues at Jericho and Ain Ghazal Mediterranean
  • First evidence of incised "counting tokens" about 9,000 years ago in the Neolithic fertile crescent, Asia
  • Japanese potters begin to decorate pottery cooking vessels
  • Simple pottery traditions sometimes with cord impressions or other decorative markings Korea
  • Evidence of wheat, barley, sheep, goats, and pigs suggests that a food-producing economy is adopted in Aegean Greece
  • Franchthi Cave in the Argolid, Greece, attests to the earliest deliberate burials in Greece
  • North Sea: North Sea bottoms are largely dry land before this period, England
  • Pottery making, burial mound construction, and garden technology Mexico
  • In the valley of Mexico, chili peppers and "grain" (amaranth and maize) are grown.
  • World—Between 12,000 BC and 5000 BC it appears that massive inland flooding was taking place in several regions of the world, making for subsequent sea level rises, which could be relatively abrupt for many worldwide

Cultural landmarks

In works of fiction

  • Jebediah of Canaan, better known as the wizard Shazam of DC Comics, is born near the end of the millennium. Some references say 7061 BC.
  • In the Warhammer 40,000 universe, the birth of the Emperor of Mankind is placed in Central Anatolia at some point during this millennium.
  • The ancient incarnations of The Five magical children in Anthony Horowitz's Power Of 5 series save the whole planet from the evil "Old Ones" at around 8010 BC-8005 BC, after a 50-year war over the face of the earth
  • In the Japanese series Sailor Moon, the Silver Millennium culture on the Moon is brought to an end at this time.
  • In 2268 of Star Trek: The Original Series, the crew of the starship USS Enterprise rush to stop an asteroid from colliding with a Federation world, but discover the asteroid called Yonada is actually an inhabited multi-generation ship of millions of people. It is learned that the Fabrini people are the ones who constructed the asteroid ship 10,000 years ago, before their star exploded into a supernova and head to a new home planet light-years away.
  • In Stargate universe, the ancient human civilization of 8000 BC encounters a Pyramidal Spacecraft, supposedly of the Alien Ra, who has been searching the Galaxy for a Host which can sustain his dying form and prevent his demise. Upon encountering Humans, he decides to possess the body of a young Egyptian boy and rules the planet Earth as a god. His godly status is enhanced by his superior technology which seems to humans like magic.
  • In Myst, the D'ni first travel to Earth in around 7656 BC.
  • In Mortal Kombat, the antagonist Shang Tsung mentions Princess Kitana as being 10,000 years old.
  • In The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series, the civilization of Danu Talis falls around this time.
  • In The Fairly Oddparents this is when Cosmo proposes to Wanda.


  1. an average of figures from different sources as listed at the US Census Bureau's Historical Estimates of World Population
  2. Pulses, Sugar and Tuber Crops By Chittaranjan Kole, 2007, Introduction 5.1.1, page 91, quoting Cubero JI (1981) Origin, taxonomy and domestication. In: Webb C, Hawtin G (eds) Lentils. CAB, Slough, UK, pp 15-38.
  3. Roberts, J: "History of the World.". Penguin, 1994.
  4. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1/Identifiers at line 47: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value).