World History

Ancient and Medieval Eras (Academic)

by David Tipton, Lee Eysturlid, Rob Kiely, and Peter Stearns, Editors

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ABC-CLIO Solutions

Topics World History/General
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World History: Ancient and Medieval Eras takes researchers through time from antiquity to the 16th century and around the globe from the Islamic world to the Americas, all through an unmatched collection of primary and secondary sources.

World History: Ancient and Medieval Eras provides a comprehensive survey of early human history around the world, from prehistoric times to the beginnings of the Renaissance. Reference content is organized by both place and time and includes narrative historical accounts; profiles of city-states, countries, and regions of the ancient world; and detailed overviews of religions, cultural practices, conflicts, and more. In original journal articles, prominent historians consider the mysteries of our world's past as well as the political and cultural themes throughout history that continue to warrant scholarly investigation today.


  • More than 6,000 reference entries, including approximately 1,800 biographies of important figures such as Alexander the Great, Confucius, William the Conqueror, and Eleanor of Aquitaine
  • Detailed explorations of roughly 75 distinct eras, such as The Roman Republic, The Han Dynasty, The Rise of the Ottomans, and The Italian Renaissance
  • More than 5,000 primary sources and images, including key documents and images of significant individuals, artifacts, and buildings
  • Nearly 30 vetted essays from scholars such as Bob Brier, Garrett G. Fagan, and Stuart Tyson Smith that tackle historical controversies such as "Was the Egyptian pharaoh Akhenaton a monotheist?" and "Were the Americas settled by migration over a land bridge between Siberia and Alaska?"
Suite Features

ABC-CLIO Solutions Academic Editions

The ABC-CLIO Solutions Academic Edition suite supplies the digital reference collections and full-text scholarship integral to undergraduate research in the humanities. In each of the suite's 14 dynamic and discipline-specific databases, student researchers are empowered to broaden their understandings, analyze historical and societal complexities, and develop innovative and informed perspectives.

Contributions from more than 3,000 field scholars and real-time updates ensure researchers are always accessing relevant and credible material. Across all 14 databases, investigations into critical topics yield three integrated but distinct content components to support thesis-driven research:

Original journal articles, authored by leading academics and vetted by advisory boards of credentialed experts, that offer varied viewpoints on the complexities and nuances inherent in the discipline to serve as both sources and exemplars of evidence-based scholarly thought,

A robust reference library that draws from 200,000+ primary and secondary sources, including media and data,

And a course companion, comprised of both text and video lectures, designed to reinforce coursework or drive independent study.


  • Coverage spans the humanities, from core disciplines like American history to emergent fields of study, including modern genocide and popular culture.
  • All material is authored by accomplished academics and vetted by database-specific advisory boards, while daily updates across the suite ensure that database content evolves to reflect changing understandings and developments in the field.
  • Both browsing and linear learning are supported by the databases' topic center structure, with each topic center housing a variety of relevant content including primary sources, reference material, and journal articles.
  • Targeted research is served by the federated search engine, which pulls content from across multiple databases to connect students with any and all applicable material. Researchers can then apply advanced search filters to locate the precise resources they seek.
  • Built-in tools are available to support and streamline the research process, including the cite tool for instant citation generation and the CLIOview feature for comparative data analysis.
Advisory Board

Lee W. Eysturlid is a history instructor at Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy in Aurora, Illinois. He also serves as an adjunct for Northwestern University's School of Continuing Studies program. Dr. Eysturlid earned his PhD in history from Purdue University, where he specialized in Intellectual Military History and the Habsburg and Ottoman empires. He is a member of the Citadel Historical Association and is an ABC-CLIO History Fellow. His published works include Philosophers of War: The Evolution of History's Greatest Military Thinkers (Praeger, 2013) and The Formative Influences, Theories, and Campaigns of the Archduke Carl of Austria (Praeger, 2000).

Rob Kiely is an adjunct assistant professor of liberal arts at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is also an instructor in such courses as the history of biology and the history of philosophy at Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy in Aurora, Illinois. Kiely has also delivered many lectures at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago, Illinois. He received his PhD from Northwestern University, where he studied the history of ideas and the history of science. His awards include a National Science Foundation Research Grant, an Outstanding Teaching Award from Northwestern University, and the Faculty of the Year Award from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Peter N. Stearns is Professor of History and Provost Emeritus at George Mason University. Professor Stearns has written widely on world and emotions history, including two popular textbooks. Other books include A History of Shame (forthcoming), The Industrial Turn in World History (forthcoming), Guiding the American University: Challenges and Choices, Doing Emotions History, Gender in World History, Satisfaction Not Guaranteed: Dilemmas of Progress in Modern Society, Childhood in World History, and American Fear: The Causes and Consequences of High Anxiety, among many others. He also edited the Encyclopedia of World History, 6th edition. Before coming to George Mason University, Professor Stearns taught at the University of Chicago, Rutgers University, and Carnegie Mellon University. He served as vice president of the American Historical Association, Teaching Division, from 1995 to 1998. He was also founder and editor of the Journal of Social History from 1967 to 2015.

Topic Centers


Prehistory, Beginnings to 1000 BCE
• The Paleolithic and Mesolithic Periods
• The Neolithic Revolution
• The Emergence of Civilizations
Ancient Rome, 1000 BCE–500 CE
• The Roman Republic
• The Height of the Roman Empire
• The Decline and Fall of Rome
The Americas, 3000 BCE–1500 CE
• North America
• Mesoamerica
• South America
Egypt and the Near East, 3200–500 BCE
• Ancient Egypt
• The Ancient Near East
The Byzantine Empire and Russia, 300–1500 CE
• The Byzantine Empire
• The Emergence of Russia
Central and East Asia, 500–1500 CE
• Chinese Dynasties: Tang, Song, and Ming
• The Mongol Empire
• Japan and Korea
• Southeast Asia
Ancient Asia, 3000 BCE–500 CE
• Early Civilizations in Asia
• The Mauryan and Gupta Empires of India
• Chinese Dynasties: Zhou, Qin, and Han
• Buddhism and Hinduism
The Islamic World, 600–1500 CE
• Muhammad and the Spread of Islam
• The Ottoman Empire
Medieval Europe, 500–1500 CE
• The Early Middle Ages
• The High Middle Age
• The Late Middle Ages and Early Renaissance
Ancient Greece, 2000–30 BCE
• The Early Aegean Age
• The Classical Age
• The Hellenistic Age
Africa, 3000 BCE–1500 CE
• Early Africa
• Western Kingdoms
• Trading Cultures and City–States



"World History's handsome but straightforward interface permits casual visitors to begin by exploring the featured era displayed on the main page. . . . This resource gives fresh life to valuable reference content from ABC-CLIO and Greenwood Publishing. More importantly, it provides college students with a starting point from which to launch a research project on the history, prominent figures, movements, and key concepts of ancient Greece, ancient Rome, and other eras up to the beginning of the Renaissance. By wrapping the results of each search in much deeper historical context, the database stimulates a far broader appreciation of historical events. The discussion questions associated with each overview highlight the resource's value as a teaching tool, and finally, the inclusion of in-depth scholarly dialog effectively conveys the notion that history is not just an accumulation of ancient facts but a complex account of human interaction that will always be subject to interpretation and re-interpretation. "
Library Journal


2019 Silver Award — Modern Library Awards



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