480 BCE Start of the second Persian war: Xerxes leads a huge combined land and invasion against Greece. At the Battle of Thermopylae, the Persian advance is delayed by the Spartans under King Leonidas I.
The Greek and Persian fleets battle inconclusively for two consecative days off Cape Artemisium. The Persians march south to capture Athens.
In the Bay of Salamis, Themistocles with an armada of 483 Greek ships; with "Greek fire" ships ram into the larger Persian vessels, setting them on fire and winning the battle.
479 BCE Xerxes returns to Sardis leaving Mardonius in change of the army.
Mardonius conquers central Greece but is unsuccessful in gaining an alliance with Athens. He is killed and his army defeated at the Battle of Plataea.
The Greeks defeat the Persians again at Mycale, destroying the last of the Persian fleet.
A Greek fleet under Pausanias captures Cyprus, then sails to the Hellespont to seize Byzantium.
478 BCE The Delian League is founded to drive the Persians from previously Greek holdings in Asia Minor. A Greek fleet under the command of the Spartan General Pausanias, the winner of Platæa, takes Cyprus, then Byzantium.
475 BCE The city of Eion falls. Its Persian garrison were besieged since the previous year by the Athenians led by Cimon.
466 BCE Battle of Eurymedon. The Persians are defeated by Cimon of Athen in a naval battle off the Eurymedon River in Asia Minor.
465 BCE Artaxerxes becomes king of Persia after his father, Xerxes, is assassinated.
Themistocles accused of 'Medising' is given asylum in Persia.
460 BCE Athens supports a rebellion that captures Memphis, the capital of Egypt. The Persian garrison however holds out for 4 years until an army arrives from Persia. The Athenians withdraw to an island in the Nile and held out for two years.
Pericles becomes head of the Athenian State. Pericles preferred to make peace with Persians and oppose Spartans.
454 BCE Artaxerxes I reconquered Egypt.
450 BCE Cimon leads 200 ships against Persians in Egypt and Cyprus. Cimon dies in battle, no further large scale battles between Delian League and Persians.
448 BCE The Greco-Persian War came to end with the "Peace of Callias".
431 BCE War begins between Sparta and Athens.
424 BCE Death of Artaxerxes. Palace intrigues lead to the successive assassinations of two of his sons, Xerxes II and Sogdianos.
Eventually a third of his sons takes hold under the name of Darius II.
407 BCE Cyrus, younger son of Darius II, King of Persia, is named Satrap of Asia Minor in replacement of Tissaphernes. Cyrus is instructed to support Sparta and helps finance Lysander's fleet, eventually contributing to the victory of Sparta.
404 BCE Death of Darius II, king of Persia. He is succeeded by his son Artaxerxes II.
Sparta conclusively defeats Athens, and takes control of the Athenian State.
401 BCE Cyrus is killed by his elder brother Artaxerxes II at the Battle of Cunaxa near Babylon. Last mention of gerhon or spara shielded infantry in Persian army.
399 BCE Sparta sends forces to Ionia to protect them from Persians.
Trial and death of Socrates.
395 BCE Start of Corinthian War. Persians stir up Athens, Argos, Corinth & Thebes to revolt against Sparta.
394 BCE Persian fleet defeats the Spartan fleet off Cnidus and begin to overthrow Greeks from the Aegean.
390 BCE Rome is captured and burned by the Gauls under the leadership of the chieftain Brennius.
385 BCE Pelopidas leads an uprising in Thebes against the Spartans, supportedby Athens.
382 BCE Sparta invades Thebes.
371 BCE The Thebans,led by Epaminondas,conclusively defeat the Spartans, ending their domination of the Aegean altogether.
369 BCE Athens becomes an ally of Sparta against Thebes.
362 BCE The Theban general Epaminondas is killed at Battle of Mantinea.
359 BCE Phillip II is crowned king of Macedonia.
356 BCE Alexander III (the Great) is born in Macedonia, to Phillip II and Olympias.
359 BCE Death of Artaxerxes II, king of Persia at more than 90. After more palace struggle and assassinations, one of his sons, succeeds him under the name Artaxerxes III.
343 BCE Artaxerxes III reconquers Egypt
338 BCE Death of Artaxerxes III, poisoned by the eunuch Bagoas. He is succeeded by his son Oarses.
Phillip II of Macedonia decisively beats a comnbined force of Athenians and Thebens at the Battle of Chaironeia.
336 BCE Phillip II is assassinated. His son Alexander assumes the throne.
Death of Oarses, poisoned, like his father, by the eunuch Bagoas. He is succeeded by his cousin, a great-grandson of Darius II,who becomes king under the name Darius III.
334 BCE Alexander crosses into Asia at Gallipoli and defeats a Persian army at the river Granikos.
333 BCE Darius III of Persia is beaten decisively by Alexander at the Battle of Issus.
332 BCE Alexander besieges and then captures both. He goes on to conquer Babylon.
327 BCE Alexander captures and burns the Persian capital of Persepolis.