Post Biblical History - 200 BCE to 700 CE
200 BCE100 CE
Throughout this era the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) is gradually canonized. Jewish religious works that were written after the time of Ezra were not canonized, although many became popular among many groups of Jews and subsequently, Christians. Those works that made it into the Greek translation of the Bible (the Septuagint) became known as the deuterocanonical books.
Christianity emerges as a movement, and then splits from Judaism.
The Great Jewish Revolt ended with destruction of the Second Temple and the fall of Jerusalem.
Period of the tannaim, rabbis who organized and debated the Jewish oral law. The decisions of the tannaim are contained in the Mishnah, Beraita, Tosefta, and various Midrash compilations. (see Torah (at Shamash))
The fall of Masada.
The Roman emperor Hadrian renamed Jerusalem into Aelia Capitolina and forbade Jews to set a foot there.
Bar Kokhba (Bar Kosiba) leads a doomed Jewish revolt against Rome in response to Hadrian's actions. In the aftermath of the revolt, Hadrian renamed the province ofJudea as Syria Palaestina.
The Mishnah, the standardization of the Jewish oral law as it stands today, is redacted by Judah haNasi.
Period of the amoraim, the rabbis of the Talmud.
Redaction of Talmud Yerushalmi (Talmud of the land of Israel)
The main redaction of Talmud Bavli (Babylonian Talmud) is completed under Rabbis Ravina and Ashi. To a lesser degree, the text continues to be modifed for the next 200 years.
Period of the savoraim, the sages in Persia who put the Talmud in its final form. Jews at this time in Israel were living under the oppressive rule of the Byzantines.
In the 7th century C.E. the Khazars (a Turkic semi-nomadic people from Central Asia who adopted Judaism) founded the independent Khazar kingdom in the southeastern part of today's Europe.
701 to 1500
Period of the Gaonim (the Gaonic era). Jews in southern Europe and Asia Minor lived under the often intolerant rule of Christian Kings and clerics. Most Jews lived in the Muslim Arab realm (Andalusia, North Africa, Palestine, Iraq and Yemen). Despite sporadic periods of persecution, Jewish communal and cultural life flowered in this period. The universally recognized centers of Jewish life were in Sura and Pumbeditha (Iraq). The heads of these law schools were the Gaonim, who were consulted on matters of law by Jews throughout the world.
Muslim armies invade and occupy most of Spain (At this time Jews made up about 8% of Spain's population). Under Christian rule, Jews had been subject to frequent and intense persecution, but this was alleviated under Muslim rule. Some mark this as the beginning of the Golden age of Jewish culture in Spain.
The Karaites reject the authority of the oral law, and split off from rabbinic Judaism.
An incomplete marriage contract dated to October 6 of this year is the earliest dated document found in the papers of the Cairo Geniza.
The Golden age of Jewish culture in Spain. Abd-ar-Rahman III becomes Caliph of Spain in 912, ushering in the height of tolerance. Muslims granted Jews and Christians exemptions from military service, the right to their own courts of law, and a guarantee of safety of their property. Jewish poets, scholars, scientists, statesmen and philosophers flourished in and were an integral part of the extensive Arab civilization. This ended with the invasion of Almoravides in 1090.
In Iraq, Saadia Gaon compiles his siddur (Jewish prayer book.)
Rabbi Yitchaki Alfassi (from Morocco, later Spain) writes the Rif, an important work of Jewish law.
Rabbi Shlomo Yitzhaki (Rashi) writes important commentaries on almost the entire Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) and Talmud.
Christian Crusades begin, sparking warfare with Islam in Palestine. Crusaders temporarily capture Jerusalem in 1099. Tens of thousands of Jews are killed by European crusaders throughout Europe and in the Middle East.
Time of the tosafot, Talmudic commentators who carried on Rashi's work. They include some of his descendants.
Moroccan Almoravid ruler Yoseph Ibn Tashfin expells Moroccan Jews who do not convert.
Rabbi Moses ben Maimon, aka Maimonides is the leading rabbi of Sephardic Jewry. Among his many accomplishments, he writes an influential code of law (The Mishneh Torah) as well as, in Arabic, the most influential philosophical work (Guide for the Perplexed) in Jewish history.
Pope Gregory IX orders Christian kings to destroy Hebrew Books.
The life of Moses de Leon, of Spain. He authors the Zohar (Book of Splendor) which contains mystical interpretations of the Torah. This begins the modern form of Kabbalah (esoteric Jewish mysticism).
Period of the Rishonim, the medieval rabbinic sages. Most Jews at this time lived in lands bordering the Mediterranean Sea or in Western Europe under feudal systems. With the decline of Muslim and Jewish centers of power in Iraq, there was no single place in the world which was a recognized authority for deciding matters of Jewish law and practice. Consequently, the rabbis recognized the need for writing commentaries on the Torah and Talmud and for writing law codes that would allow Jews anywhere in the world to be able to continue living in the Jewish tradition.
Rabbi Jacob ben Asher of Spain writes the Arba'ah Turim (Four Rows of Jewish Law).
Jews are expelled from England.
Rabbi Levi ben Gershom, aka Gersonides. A 14th century French Jewish philosopher best known for his Sefer Milhamot Adonai ("The Book of the Wars of the Lord") as well as for his philosophical commentaries.
Jews are repeatedly expelled from France and readmitted back, for a price.
Persecuted in Western Europe, Jews are invited to Poland by Casimir the Great.
First Jewish prayer book published in Italy.
Rabbi Yosef Karo spends 20 years compiling the Beit Yosef, an enormous guide to Jewish law. He then writes a more concise guide, the Shulkhan Arukh, that becomes the standard law guide for the next 400 years.
Approximately 200,000 Jews are expelled from Spain, in 1496 from Portugal and from many German cities. The expelled Jews relocate to the Netherlands, Turkey, and the Arab lands, including Palestine; some eventually go to South and Central America. However most of them go to Poland. In the later centuries more than 50% of Jewish world population lived in Poland.
Jews expelled from Sicily. As many as 137,000 exiled.
1501 to 1800
King Alexander of Poland readmitts Jews to Grand Duchy of Lithuania.
Ghetto of Venice established, the first Jewish ghetto in Europe. Many others follow.
Rabbi Moshe Isserles (The Rama) of Cracow writes an extensive gloss to the Shulkhan Arukh called the Mappah, extending its application to Ashkenazi Jewry.
King Sigismund I of Poland abolishes the law that required Jews to wear special clothes.
First Yiddish book published, in Poland.
Issac Luria develops the modern form of esoteric Jewish mysticism AKA Kabbalah.
First Hebrew Jewish printing house in Lublin.1580-1764.
First Jewish university Jeshiva found in Poland.
First session of the Council of Four Lands (Va'ad Arba' Aratzot) in Lublin, Poland. 70 delegates from local Jewish kehillot meet to discuss taxation and other issues important to the Jewish community.
First time separate (Va'ad) Jewish Sejm for Grand Duchy of Lithuania.
False Messiah Sabbatai Zevi.
Jews of Poznan granted a privilege of forbidding Christians to enter into their city.
Jewish population of Poland reached 450,000 or 4.5% whole population. Bohemia 40,000 and Moravia 25,000. Worldwide population of Jewry is estmated at 750,000.
The Ukrainian Cossack Bohdan Chmielnicki leads a massacre of Polish gentry and Jewry that leaves an estimated 65,000 Jews dead and a similar number of gentry. The total decrease in the number of Jews is estmated at 100,000. 
Jews readmitted to England by Oliver Cromwell.
Israel ben Eliezer, known as the Ba'al Shem Tov, founds Hasidic Judaism, a way to approach God through meditation and fervent joy. He and his disciples attract many followers, and establish numerous Hassidic sects. The European Jewish opponents of Hassidim (known as Mitnagdim) argue that one should follow a more scholarly approach to Judaism. Some of the more well known Hassidic sects include Breslover, Lubavitch (Chabad), Satmar, Gerer, and Bobover Hasidim.
Rabbi Elijah of Vilna, the Vilna Gaon.
Moses Mendelssohn, and the Haskalah (Enlightenment) movement. He strove to bring an end to the isolation of the Jews so that they would be able to embrace the culture of the Western world, and in turn be embraced by gentiles as equals. The Haskalah opened the door for the development of all the modern Jewish denominations and the revival of Hebrew as a spoken language, but it also paved the way for many who, wishing to be fully accepeted into Christian society, converted to Christianity or chose to assimilate to emulate it.
Jewish population of Poland reaches 750,000 or 8.0% of total. The worldwide Jewish population is estimated at 1,200,000.
Followers of Jacob Frank joined ranks of Polish szlachta (gentry) of Jewish origins.
Partitions of Poland between Russia, Kingdom of Prussia and Austria. Main bulk of World Jewry lives now in those 3 countries. Old privileges of Jewish communities are denounced.
American Revolution; religious Freedom guaranteed.  
The French revolution. In 1791 France grants full right to Jews and allows them to become citizens, under certain conditions. 
In the USA, President George Washington sends a letter to the Jewish community in Rhode Island. He writes that he envisions a country "which gives bigotry no sanction...persecution no assistance". Despite the fact, that initially US are predominantly protestant country, theoretically Jews are given full rights. In addition, their mentality shaped by the role of merchants they played in Eastern Europe, had prepared them well to compete in the American society. So far, their number is limited.
Russia creates the Pale of Settlement, that includes area taken over from Poland, with huge Jewish population and Crimea. The Jewish population of the Pale was 750,000. 450,000 Jews lived in the Prussian and Austrian parts of Poland. 
When the French troops were in Palestine, and besieging the city of Acre, Napoleon had prepared a Proclamation making Palestine an independent Jewish state, but his unsuccessful attempt to capture Acre prevented it from being issued.
1801 to 1900
The Golden Age of Yiddish literature, the revival of Hebrew as a spoken language, and the revival of Hebrew literature. 
The development of Orthodox Judaism, a set of traditionalist movements that resisted the influences of modernization that arose in response to the European emancipation and Enlightenment movements; characterized by continued strict adherence to Halakha.
Greece grants citizenship to Jews.
Jewish militias take part in the defense of Warsaw against Russians.
Moses Haim Montefiore is knighted by Queen Victoria, the first Jew to receive an English Knighthood.
Rabbi Yisroel Meir ha-Kohen (Chofetz Chaim) opens an important yeshiva. He writes an authoritative Halakhic work, Mishnah Berurah.
Beginning of the rise of classical Reform Judaism.
Rabbi Israel Salanter develops the Mussar Movement. While teaching that Jewish law is binding, he dismisses current philosophical debate and advocates the ethical teachings as the essence of Judaism.
Positive-Historical Judaism, later known as Conservative Judaism, is developed.
David Levy Yulee of Florida is elected to the United States Senate, becoming the first Jew elected to Congress.
Norway allows Jews to enter the country. They are not emancipated until 1891.
Jews emancipated in England.
Alliance Israelite Universelle, an international Jewish organization is founded in Paris with the goal to protect Jewish rights as citizens.
Jews are taking intensive part in Polish national movement, that was followed by January rising.
Henrietta Szold. Educator, author, social worker and founder of Hadassah.
The Zion Society is formed in Frankfurt, Germany.
Jews are given equal rights in Poland. The privileges of some towns regarding prohibition of Jewish settlement are revoked.
Jews emancipated in Hungary.
Benjamin Disraeli becomes Prime Minister of England. Though converted to Christianity as a child, he is the first person of Jewish descent to become a head of state in Europe.
Russian Zionist group Hovevei Zion (Lovers of Zion) and Bilu (est. 1882) set up a series of Jewish settlements in the Land of Israel, financially aided by Baron Edmond James de Rothschild. In Rishon LeZion Eliezer ben Yehuda revives Hebrew as spoken modern language.
Jews emancipated in Italy.
Jews emancipated in Germany.
Reform Judaism's Hebrew Union College is founded in Cincinnati. Its founder was Rabbi Isaac Mayer Wise, the architect of American Reform Judaism. Hebrew Union CollegeJewish Institute of Religion
New Hampshire becomes the last state to give Jews equal political rights.
World Jewish population around 7.7 million, 90% in Europe, mostly Eastern Europe; around 3.5 million in the former Polish provinces.
18811884, 19031906, 19181920
Three major waves of pogroms kill tens of thousands of Jews in Russia and Ukraine. More than two million Jews emigrate in the period 18811920.
The First Aliyah; the first major wave of Jewish immigrants to build a homeland in Palestine. Aliyah
Rabbi Sabato Morais and Alexander Kohut begin to champion the Conservative Jewish reaction to American Reform, and establish The Jewish Theological Seminary of America as a school of 'enlightened Orthodoxy'.
The term "Zionism" is coined by an Austrian Jewish publicist Nathan Birnbaum in his journal Self Emancipation and was defined as the national movement for the return of the Jewish people to their homeland and the resumption of Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel.
14,000 Jewish families expelled from Moscow by Grand Duke Segai, those who refuse to convert or become prostitutes are exiled to the Pale of Settlement.
In response to the Dreyfus affair, Theodore Herzl writes Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State), advocating the creation of a free and independent Jewish state in Israel.
The Bund is formed in Russia.
First Russian census: 5,200,000 of Jews, 4,900,000 in the Pale. The Kingdom of Poland has 1,300,000 Jews or 14% of population.
1901 to 1945
Rabbi Dr. Solomon Schechter reorganizes the Jewish Theological Seminary and makes it into the flagship institution of Conservative Judaism.
Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel, one of the most significant Jewish theologian of the twentieth century.
Yeshiva College (later University) and its Rabbi Issac Elchanan Rabbinical Seminary is established in New York for training in a Modern Orthodox milieu.
The British defeat the Turks and gain control of the land of Israel. The British issue the Balfour Declaration 1917 which gives official British support for "the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people". Many Jews interpret this to mean that all of Palestine was to become a Jewish controlled state.
February - The Pale of Settlement is abolished, and Jews get equal rights.
The period between the two World Wars is often referred to as the "golden age" of hazzanut (cantors). Some of the great Jewish cantors of this era include Abraham Davis, Moshe Koussevitzky, Zavel Kwartin (1874-1953), Jan Peerce, Joseph Yossele Rosenblatt (18801933), Gershon Sirota (18741943), and Laibale Waldman.
At the San Remo conference Britain receives the League of Nations' British Mandate of Palestine.
British military administration of the Mandate is replaced by civilian rule.
Britain proclaims that all of Palestine east of the Jordan River is forever closed to Jewish settlement, but not to Arab settlement.
Polish-Soviet peace treaty in Riga. Citizens of both sides are given rights to choose the country. Hundred thousands of Jews, especially small businesses forbidden in the Soviets, move to Poland.
Reform Rabbi Stephen S. Wise established the Jewish Institute of Religion in New York. (It merged with Hebrew Union College in 1950.)
Britain gives the Golan Heights to the French Mandate of Syria. Arab immigration is allowed; Jewish immigration is not.
2,989,000 Jews according to religion poll in Poland (10,5% of total). Jewish youth consisted 23% of students of high schools and 26% of students of universities.
World Jewry: 15,000,000. Main countries USA(4,000,000), Poland (3,500,000 11% of total), Soviet Union (2,700,000 2% of total), Romania (1,000,000 6% of total). Palestine 175,000 or 17% of total 1,036,000.
Adin Steinsaltz born, author of the first comprehensive Babylonian Talmud commentary since Rashi in the 11th century.
The British government issues the 'White Paper' and reverses their support of the Balfour Declaration. They announce an absolute limit of only 75,000 on future Jewish immigration to Palestine.
The Holocaust (Ha Shoah).
1946 to Today
Post-Holocaust refugee crisis. British detain many Jews making aliyah to Palestine in detention camps.
The struggle for the creation of a Jewish state in the British mandate of Palestine is resumed by Jewish underground movements: Haganah, Irgun, and Lehi (group).
November 29 - The United Nations approves the creation of a Jewish State and an Arab state in the British mandate of Palestine.
May 14 - The State of Israel declares itself as an independent nation. Andrei Gromyko, the Soviet Union's UN ambassador, calls for the UN to accept Israel as a member state. The UN approves.
May 15 - Arab-Israeli War: Syria, Iraq, Transjordan, Lebanon and Egypt invade Israel. The attack fails. See also 1949 Armistice Agreements and Immigration to Israel from Arab lands.
Almost 250,000 Holocaust survivors make their way to Israel. "Operation Magic Carpet" brings thousands of Yemenite Jews to Israel.
The 1956 Suez War Egypt blockades the Gulf of Aqaba, and closes the Suez canal to Israeli shipping. Egypt's President Nasser calls for the destruction of Israel. Israel, England, and France go to war and force Egypt to end the blockade of Aqaba, and open the canal to all nations.
Creation of the Palestine Liberation Organization PLO
Jewish-Christian relations are revolutionized by the Catholic Church's Vatican II.
Shmuel Yosef Agnon (1888-1970) becomes the first Hebrew writer to win the Nobel Prize in literature.
May 16 - Egyptian President Nasser demands that the UN dismantle the UN Emergency Force I (UNEF I) between Israel and Egypt. The UN complies and the last UN peacekeeper is out of Sinai and Gaza by May 19.
May - Egyptian PresidentGamal Abdel Nasser closes the strategic Straits of Tiran to Israeli shipping and states that Egypt is in a state of war with Israel. Egyptian troops group in the Sinai.
June 5-11 - The Six-Day War.
September 1 The Arab Leaders meet in Khartoum, Sudan. The Three No's of Khartoum: No recognition of Israel. No negotiations with Israel. No peace with Israel.
Mid 1970s to present
Growing revival of Klezmer music (The folk music of European Jews).
Oct. 6-24 - The Yom Kippur War. Syria, Egypt and Morocco launch a surprise attack against Israel. Subsequently, OPEC reduces oil production, driving up oil prices and triggering a global economic crisis.
President Gerald Ford signs legislation including the Jackson-Vanik amendment, which ties U.S. trade benefits to the Soviet Union to freedom of emigration for Jews.
United Nations adopts resolution equating Zionism with racism. Rescinded in 1991.
Israel rescues hostages taken to Entebbe, Uganda.
September 18. At Camp David, near Washington D.C., Israel and Egypt sign a comprehensive peace treaty, The Camp David Accord, which included the withdrawal of Israel from the Sinai.
Yiddish writer Isaac Bashevis Singer receives Nobel Prize
Prime Minister Menachem Begin and President Anwar Sadat are awarded Nobel Peace Prize.
Operation Elijah: Rescue of Ethiopian Jewry.
JuneDecember - The Lebanon War. Israel invades Southern Lebanon to drive out the PLO.
American Reform Jews formally accept patrilineal descent, creating a new definition of who is a Jew.
Operations Moses, Joshua: Rescue of Ethiopian Jewry by Israel.
Elie Wiesel wins the Nobel Peace Prize
Anatoly (Nathan) Sharansky, Soviet Jewish dissident, is freed from prison.
Beginning of the First Intifada against Israel.
Fall of the Berlin Wall between East and West Germany, collapse of the communist East German government, and the beginning of Germany's reunification (which formally began in October 1990).
The Soviet Union opens its doors to the three million Soviet Jews who had been held as virtual prisoners within their own country. Hundreds of thousands of Soviet Jews choose to leave the Soviet Union and move to Israel.
Iraq invades Kuwait, triggering a war between Iraq and Allied United Nations forces. Israel is hit by 39 Scud missiles from Iraq.
Operation Solomon: Rescue of the remainder of Ethiopian Jewry in a twenty four hour airlift.
October 30. The Madrid Peace Conference opens in Spain, sponsored by the United States and the Soviet Union.
September 13. Israel and PLO sign the Oslo Accords.
The Lubavitcher (Chabad) Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson, dies.
October 26 Israel and Jordan sign an official peace treaty. Israel cedes a small amount of contested land to Jordan, and the countries open official diplomatic relations, with open borders and free trade.
December 10 Arafat, Rabin and Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon Peres share the Nobel Peace
November 4 Israeli Prime Minister Yitschak Rabin is assassinated.
Peres loses election to Benyamin (Bibi) Netanyahu (Likud party).
Ehud Barak elected Prime Minister of Israel.
May 24 - Israel unilaterally withdraws its remaining forces from its security zone in southern Lebanon to the international border, fully complying with the UN Security Council Res. 425. Syria continues to occupy Lebanon.
July - Camp David Summit.
September 29 - The al-Aqsa Intifada begins.
Election of Ariel Sharon as Israel's Prime Minister. http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/biography/sharon.html
March 31 The Government of Israel officially recognizes the Bnei Menashe people of North-East India as one of the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel, opening the door for thousands of people to immigrate to Israel.