568 Constantinople has been weakened by its prolonged wars and by warring tribes into its empire. The Lombards invade Italy, reaching Milan.
577 A Xiongnu chieftain, Yan Ch'ien, unifies northern China by force.
581 Diffusion brings Chinese rule in northern China back to the Chinese. The Xiongnu chieftain, Yan Ch'ien, dies in 580 under mysterious circumstances. Replacing him is his son-in-law, Yang Jian, a tough Buddhist soldier from an aristocratic Chinese family, who has had the title Duke of Sui. Yang Jian proclaims that heaven and earthly signs indicate that he, being virtuous and wise, has been designated by heaven as the rightful successor. He takes the name Emperor Wen, and to eliminate rivalry he has fifty-nine people murdered. The Sui Dynasty has begun.
587 In Japan, the Soga clan, which has intermarried with the royal Yamato family, fights the Mononobe and Nakatomi clans over influence in selecting a successor to the Emperor Yomei has taken place. The Soga favor importing Buddhism from the Asian mainland, described there as the religion of the most civilized. The Mononobe and Nakatomi hold that Buddhism would be an affront to the gods of the emperor. The Soga win the civil war. The head of the Soga family, Umako, makes his nephew, Sujun, emperor.
588 In Spain, the king of the Visigoths, Recared I, has discarded Arian Christian and converts to Catholicism. And as the king goes, so goes his nation.
589 From northern China, Emperor Wen has gained power through the south. After 271 years of division, China is again united.
592 Emperor Sujun wants to be rid of his benefactor, Umako, but Umako strikes first and has Sujun murdered. Umako places his thirty-nine year-old daughter, Suiko, on the throne and makes her twenty-nine year-old nephew, Shotoku, regent.
594 Shotoku converts Suiko to Buddhism. Buddhism becomes the state religion and is called upon to protect the Japanese nation.
600 Monotheistic religion has spread to Arabia. Jews have been in Arabia for centuries. Christian missionaries have been in Arabia for more than a century. The entire Arabian province of Najran is Christian. Christianity has been established superficially in various other centers of trade, and Arabs living on the borders of Constantinople's empire and Persia's empire have been influenced by those empires.
602 Constantinople's army mutinies against the Emperor Maurice and the masses join in against anyone who is wealthy – Christians against Christians. Maurice and his family are butchered as Maurice prays. Their heads are put on display and their bodies cast into the sea.
A non-commissioned army officer, Phocas, becomes emperor. Pope Gregory joyfully applauds Maurice's demise, and he describes the coming to power of Phocas as the work of Providence. He asks Catholics to pray that Phocas might be strengthened against all his enemies.
603 Khosrau II of Persia, who had had a good relationship with Maurice and his family, is disturbed by their deaths and declares war against Phocas and Constantinople. The Zoroastrian priesthood in Persia is pleased. As they see it, their king is responsible for conquering the world in order to spread peace, the Zoroastrian faith, individual salvation and to prepare all humankind for the great, worldwide battle against Satan at Armageddon.
610 The army of Phocas has been occupied by war with Persia, and Avars and Slavs have been advancing through Constantinople's empire in Europe. Constantinople's governor in Egypt, Heraclius, sails with a small army to Constantinople, and with Phocas having lost much of his support, Heraclius easily defeats him. Phocas is executed and Heraclius became emperor.
613 Muhammad has begun preaching publicly in his hometown, Mecca, and he is being ignored or is thought to be crazy.
618 In China, the Sui Dynasty has worked people too hard on public works projects and has lost economic prosperity in its wars against Korea. With flooding and famine has come rebellion and civil war. The victor, the Duke of Tang, becomes Emperor Gao-zu. The Sui Dynasty has ended and the Tang Dynasty has begun.
622 Pilgrims from Yathrib visiting Mecca (a holy city before the existence of Islam) are favorably impressed by Muhammad and invite him to return with them to their town. The town has no unifying governmental authority. Muhammad is fifty-two and becomes recognized in Yathrib as a religious leader and someone to go to for settling disputes.
623 Yathrib has a large Jewish community, and its leaders reject Muhammad's claim to be a leader of Judaism. Muhammad and his followers stop bowing toward Jerusalem and begin bowing toward Mecca, and Muhammad abandons Saturday as the Sabbath and makes Friday his special day of the week.
624 Mohammad has responded to economic hardship in Yathrib by organizing raids on merchant's caravans. He has his greatest success so far, at Bedr, where the raiders kill an estimated fifty to seventy persons from Mecca. Muhammad and Mecca are hostile, Muhammad claiming God to be on his side and blaming Mecca for having rejected him.
626 Avars, helped by Slavs, attack the walls of Constantinople. The Persians also assault the city. The Patriarch of Constantinople, Sergius, leads a defense of Constantinople and defeats the Avars.
630 Muhammad's military has grown stronger, and in his war with Mecca he emerges victorious. Mecca's wealthy are obliged to donate to the well being of its poor. People in Mecca see Muhammad's strength as the power of his god, and they see the other gods as having become powerless. There is a mass conversion to Islam, and Muhammad adds Mecca's army to his own. Muhammad conquers the rest of Arabia, puts down others claiming to be prophets.
630 Constantinople's army pushed through Mesopotamia, destroying as they went. The great canal works in Mesopotamia have been destroyed. The Persian army has overthrown Khosrau II. His son is crowned Khavad II and signs a peace treaty with Constantinople and returns Egypt, Palestine, Asia Minor and western Mesopotamia to Constantinople's empire.
632 Muhammad the Prophet dies