4406 entries. 94 themes. Last updated December 26, 2016.

Timeline Outline ViewEra: All Eras   |   Theme: Food / Wine / Cookery / Diet


Circa 1,500,000 BCE
Five bone tools excavated in Swartkrans, South Africa, once used by Parantrhopus robustus for foraging purposes. Photography by Jim Di Loreto and Don Hurlbert, Smithsonian Institution. (View Larger)
Early Humans Make Bone Tools
Circa 1,500,000 BCE – 790,000 BCE
Scorched stone tools excavated in 2004 at Gesher Benot-Ya-aqov, in Israel, provide evidence for the existence of early hearths. Photograph by Chip Clark, Smithsonian Institution. (View Larger)
The Earliest Hearths
Circa 500,000 BCE
Photocredit: James Di Loreto, & Donald H. Hurlbert, Smithsonian Institution. (View Larger)
Hunting Large Animals With Spears
Circa 104,000 BCE
A projectile point, estimated to be over 104,000 years old, uncovered in Omo Kibish, Ethipia. Photocredit: Chip Clark, Smithsonian Institution. (View Larger)
Tools for Capturing Fast or Dangerous Prey
88,000 BCE – 78,000 BCE
The Katanda Bone Harpoon Point. Photocredit: Smithsonian Institution.
Katanda Bone Harpoon Point
Circa 21,000 BCE – 16,000 BCE
Fish hooks made of shell found in the Jerimalai Cave in East Timor. (Click on image to view larger.)
The Oldest Fish Hooks and Evidence of Paleolithic Offshore Fishing
Circa 18,000 BCE
Two of the 20,000 year-old pottery fragments found in the Xianrendong Cave in China.  Photo by AFP/Science/AAAS. (Click on image to view larger.)
The Oldest Known Pottery
Circa 7,000 BCEThe Earliest Known Fermented Beverage Circa 5,500 BCE – 5,000 BCE
Fragment of clay sieve from central Europe.  Credit: Mélanie Salque. (Click on image to view larger.)
The Earliest Evidence of Cheese-Making in Europe
Circa 4,000 BCE
From National Geographic. (View Larger)
The Earliest Known Winery
Circa 3,500 BCE
The Botai culture originated from the Akmola province of Kazakhstan, highlighted in green. (View Larger)
Horse Domestication Revolutionizes Transportation, Communication, and Warfare
Circa 3,500 BCE
The Areni-1 shoe. (View Larger)
The Oldest Known Well-Preserved Leather Shoe
Circa 3,300 BCE
Model of Ötzi the Iceman in exhibit at the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology.
The First Prehistoric Human Ever Found with his Everyday Clothing and Equipment
Circa 3,100 BCE – 3,050 BCE
The Word Bibliography is Derived from a Greek Word for Papyrus
Circa 1,900 BCE – 700 BCEProbably the Most Ancient Surviving Fermented Beverages Circa 1,800 BCEProbably the Earliest Surviving Recipe for Making Beer Circa 1,700 BCE
YBC 4644, one of three tablets in Yale's collection inscribed with ancient recipes.
The Earliest Surviving Recipes
1,375 BCEThe Uluburun Shipwreck Circa 850
The frontispiece of a 1709 edition of De re coquinaria. (View Larger)
Apicius's De Re Coquinaria, the Earliest Surviving Cookbook
Circa 850The Oldest Western Medical Document after the Hippocratic Writings, and How it Survived the Middle Ages Circa 1000
The reconstructions of three Norse buildings are the focal point of this archaeological site, the earliest known European settlement in the New World. The archaeological remains at the site were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978.
The First Conclusive Proof that Norsemen Reached North America
Circa 1304 – 1309
Folio 11 of MS M.232, the Morgan Library's 1470 Belgian manuscript of Ruralia Commoda. (View Larger)
Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, and Horticulture
Circa 1390
A recipe for pork in a sage sauce, from The Forme of Cury. (View Larger)
One of the Oldest Known Manuscripts on Cookery in English, Written in the…
1473 – 1474G√ľnther Zainer Issues "Vocabularius", the First Technical Dictionary Circa 1475 – 1479The First Printed Cookbook: Platina's "De honesta voluptate" October 1478Arnald of Villanova's "Von Bewahrung und Bereitung der Weine", the First Printed Book on Wine March 23, 1487Isaac Judaeus' "De particularibus diaetis", the First Separately Printed Treatise on Diet 1500
A recipe for Custarde taken from the Boke of Kokery, c. 1440.
Richard Pyson Issues the First English Cookbook, Known from a Single Surviving Copy
1508Wynkyn de Worde Issues the First English Book on Preparing and Carving Meat, Game and Fish 1542Andrew Boorde Issues the First Printed Book to Set Out Rules for a Healthy Diet 1651
The title page of Le Cuisinier Francois, by Francois Pierre de La Varenne, 1680.
La Varenne Writes the Founding Text of Modern French Cuisine
1747Hannah Glasse's "The art of Cookery", Probably the Most-Widely Read English Cookery Book of the 18th Century 1796Amerlia Simmons Writes the First American Cookbook Written by an American 1798Malthus on Population 1810Nicholas Appert Issues the First Book on Modern Food Preservation Methods 1859 – 1861"Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management": One of the Major Publishing Successes of the 19th Century 1927Animal Ecology November 17, 1951First Stored-Program Computer to Run Business Programs on a Routine Basis November 20, 2001
An image associated with U.S. Patent 6,319,530 depicting what could be printed onto a birthday cake using an inject printer and edible ink.
Printing on Cakes Made Possible
February 28, 2013PBS Digital Studios: Will 3D Printing Change the World? April 2014Using Data-Mining of Location-Based Food and Drink Habits to Identify Cultural Boundaries