Thessaloniki is a rare example of a city that boasts an urban character for over 2.300 years

315 BC

The city is founded by king Cassander of Macedon, who names it after his wife Thessalonike.

168 BC

The Kingdom of Macedon falls under Roman control. The city becomes capital of Roman province of Macedonia and enjoys a period of prosperity, especially after construction of the Via Egnatia and expansion of the increasingly busy harbor.

58-57 BC

The Roman rhetoric Cicero lived for seven month as an exile in Thessaloniki.

42 AD

The winners of Philippi battle Mark Antony and Octavian against the leaders of Julius Caesar's assassination, Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus made Thessaloniki a free city, giving financial and administrative privileges.

50 AD

Paul the Apostile visits the Thessaloniki and establishes the first Chriatian community.

293-305 AD

Galerius, as caesar of one of the four districts of the Roman Empire during the Tetrarchy, makes Thessaloniki his administrative center and adorns the city with splendid public buildings.

303 AD

303 AD Saint Dimitrios died in Thessaloniki. He was Roman officer. Thessaloniki remained a centre of his veneration, and he is the patron saint of the city. His feast day is 26 October for Eastern Orthodox Christians. You can find his Crypt under the Hagios Dimitrios church.

322 AD

Emperor Constantine builds a new port outside the city walls. Nowdays is "Ladadika" area.

330 AD

Thessaloniki becomes "co-reigning" city of the Roman Empire after the capital Constantinople.

380 AD

Theodosius the Great is baptized in Thessaloniki and fortifies the city's walls.

390 AD

At the city hippodrome with the order of Emperor Theodosius 7000 Thessalonian have been massacred. The occasion was a rebellion of the city citizens against Gothic guards and the death of the Butheric.

479 AD

Siege of Thessaloniki from the Ostrogoths, who are successfully repelled by the guard and the citizens.

536 AD

Emperor Justinian makes Thessaloniki the capital of the Illyricus theme.

580-582 AD

Two years of continuous and unsuccessful siege of the city of Thessaloniki by the Avars, people of Mongolian descent.

620 AD

Great earthquake hits Thessaloniki. Destroy public and private buildings, temples and monuments of the city.

863 AD

The Thessalonian brothers Cyril and Methodius, scholars and Christianists of the Slavs, invent the first "Slavic Alphabet".

904 AD

The Sack of Thessalonica in 904 by Saracen pirates was one of the worst disasters to befall the Byzantine Empire in the 10th century. The city is destroyed and thousands of Thessalonians are slaughtered or transported to slave bazaars at the East. The dramatic moments are described in the book of Ioannis Kameniatis

1185 AD

The Normans occupy Thessaloniki for three months. 7000 citizens have been massacred.

1204 AD

Thessaloniki is captured by the Fourth Crusade and becomes the capital of the Latin Kingdom. The great temples of the city are converted into Catholic temples.

1224 AD

The city was recaptured by Theodore Komnenos Doukas ruler of Epirus. The city became the capital of the Despotate of Epirus until 1246.

1246 AD

Thessaloniki is occupied by the emperor of Nikaia, Ioannis Vatatzis. Legend of "Marble King".

1261 AD

End of the Latin occupation, Byzantium grants privileges to Venetians and Genoans who live in the city and create a district later called "Frangomachalas".

1303 AD

The city is threatened by Serbian King Stephan Ouro II Milutin. A solution is given by marriage of Milutin and five-year-old daughter of Emperor Andronikos II, who is taking place in Thessaloniki. This creates an alliance.

1342-1349 AD

The Zealots were a political group that dominated political developments in Thessalonica from 1342 until 1349. They confiscated the property of the aristocracy, and redistributed their wealth. The zealots were overthrown by the emperor Ioannis Katakouzinos.

1376 AD

The first groups of German-speaking Ashkenazi Jews from Central Europe arrive in Thessaloniki.

1387 AD

Thessaloniki is temporarily occupied by the Turks, Bayezid I, but it is not incorporated into the Ottoman Empire but only pays an annual tax to the sultan. The city, after the battle of Ankara and the defeat of the Turks, is again surrendered to Byzantium.

1403 AD

In the battle of Ankara Bayezid is defeated by Timur or Tamerlan which gave an opportunity to the Εmperor Manuel II Palaiologos to take back Thessaloniki.

1423 AD

Under the threat of the violent occupation of the city by the Turks, Andronikos Palaiologos handed it over to the Venetians. The city will remain under Venetian rule until 1430 when it is definitively occupied by the Turks.

1430 AD

Thessaloniki is captured by the Ottomans, Murat II.

1492 AD

Thousands Sephardic Jews immigrated to Thessaloniki following their expulsion from Spain by Christian rulers under the Alhambra Decree in 1492. This community influenced the Sephardic world both culturally and economically, and the city was nicknamed la madre de Israel (mother of Israel).

1512 AD

The first printing press of the East is founded in Thessaloniki by the Jews.

1620 AD

Large fire in Thessaloniki and epidemic cholera.

1665 AD

Following the example of Shabbat Sievi ("Messiah" of the Jews from Smyrna, which embraces Islam), thousands of Jews were Islamized. They are the so-called Dönmeh with their religious center in Thessaloniki the Yeni Mosque.

1688 AD

Unsuccessul attempt by the Venetians to take Thessaloniki.

1706 AD

Jesuits, Catholic missionaries are settling in Thessaloniki.

1821 AD

The Greek war of Independence begins in the south of the country. Thousands of Greeks are slaughtered in Thessaloniki.

1864 AD

A French archaeologist Em. Miller with the permission of the Ottoman authorities removes fragments of architectural sculptures "Las incantadas" from the ancient market of Thessaloniki and takes them to France. (Louvre Museum)

1876 AD

In May 1876, a quarrel which arose in the city between Muslims and Christians on the issue of return to Christianity, a girl who had recently converted to Islam. Fanatical Turks slaughter the consuls of France and Germany in Thessaloniki. Eventually convicted and executed by public hanging at the beach 6 people whο was not responsible for attacks in front of the European representatives.

1881 AD

Mustafa Kemal is born at today's Turkish Consulate, who studied at the lower military school of Thessaloniki and starred in the 1908 Young Turks Revolution that began in Thessaloniki.

1888 AD

In 1888 Vitaliano Poselli who was an Italian architect from Sicilywas married and established his residence in Thessaloniki. He built some of the most important public edifices of the city. Many of his descendants still live in the city.

1890 AD

Big fire destroys the residential center of Thessaloniki.

1893 AD

The first horse-drawn tram in the city, which in 1907 became electrified.

1903 AD

From 28 April until 1 May 1903 the Bulgarian group launched a campaign of terror bombing in Thessaloniki, the so-called "Thessaloniki bombings of 1903". Their aim was to attract the attention of the Great Powers to Ottoman oppression in Macedonia and Thrace.

1904-1908 AD

The Macedonian Struggle was a series of social, political, cultural and military conflicts between Greeks and Bulgarians in the region of Ottoman Macedonia between 1893 and 1908. The conflict was part of a wider rebel war in which revolutionary organizations of Greeks, Bulgarians and Serbs all fought over Macedonia. Gradually the Greek bands gained the upper hand, but the conflict was ended by the Young Turk Revolution in 1908.

1908 AD

Young Turks was a political reform movement in the early 20th century that consisted of Ottoman exiles, students, civil servants, and army officers. They favoured the replacement of the Ottoman Empire's absolute monarchy with a constitutional government.

1912 AD

Outbreak of the First Balkan War. Thessaloniki is liberated by Greek army. Tahsin Pasha signed the surrender protocols of Thessaloniki.

1913 AD

While out on an afternoon walk near the White Tower on 18 March 1913, the king George I was shot at close range in the back by Alexandros Schinas, who was "said to belong to a Socialist organization" and "declared when arrested that he had killed the King because he refused to give him money.

1915-1918 AD

The Macedonian Front of World War I, also known as the Salonica Front, was formed as a result of an attempt by the Allied Powers to aid Serbia, in fall 1915, against the combined attack of Germany, Austria-Hungary and Bulgaria. The Macedonian Front remained quite stable, despite local actions, until the great Allied offensive in September 1918, which resulted in the capitulation of Bulgaria and the liberation of Serbia.

1917 AD

The Great Thessaloniki Fire of 1917 destroyed two thirds of the city of Thessaloniki, leaving more than 70.000 homeless. The fire burned for 32 hours and destroyed 9.500 houses within an extent of 1 square kilometer. Half the Jewish population emigrated from the city as their livelihoods were gone. Rather than quickly rebuilding, the government commissioned the French architect Ernest Hébrard to design a new urban plan for the burned areas Thessaloniki and for the future expansion of the city. His designs are still evident in the city, most notably Aristotelous Square.

1922-1924 AD

Mass influx of refugees to the city following the Greek defeats in Asia Minor and the subsequent Treaty of Lausanne providing for the compulsory exchange of populations. The city's Muslim inhabitants leave Thessaloniki.

1926 AD

The first Thessaloniki International Fair is held.

1941 AD

Thessaloniki is occupied by the Germans.

1943 AD

Before World War II, Salonika had the largest Jewish community in Greece. Between March and August 1943, the Germans deported more than 45.000 Jews from Salonika to the Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp. Only 1.950 came back.

1960 AD

The Film Festival opens for the first time in 1960. It becomes the Thessaloniki International Film Festival since 1992.

1962 AD

Inauguration of the building that now houses the Archaelogical Museum, were unique treasures of Macedonia are exhibited, including finds from the royal tombs of Vergina.

1970 AD

The Hellenic Telecommunications Organization Tower (76m tall) is built within the grounds of the Thessaloniki International Fair. Nowdays a bar-restaurant operates round on the top floor.

1978 AD

The Great Thessaloniki earthquake. The clocks in the Malakopi arcade have stopped moving since the 1978 earthquake.

1989 AD

Unesco lists 15 of the city's Early Christian and Byzantine monuments as World Heritage Sites.

1997 AD

Thessaloniki is designated European Capital of Culture. George Zongolopoulos sculpture "Umbrellas" is erected on the new waterfront and a number of important museums are founded.

2006 AD

The construction of the Underground network of Thessaloniki begins. The base line of the underground metro in Thessaloniki will be completed by 2020 and the "Venizelos" Station will be the only one of its kind in the world.

2013 AD

The redevelopment of the Nea Paralia ("New Waterfront" area), from the White Tower to the Concert Hall, is completed.

2014 AD

Thessaloniki is declared European Youth Capital for the year 2014.

2016 AD

Inauguration of the Jewish Museum.


Las Incantadas are back home, exact copies made in the Louvre are now at Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki.