Millennium: 1st millennium BC
Centuries: 4th century BC · 3rd century BC · 2nd century BC
Decades: 290s BC 280s BC 270s BC 260s BC 250s BC
240s BC 230s BC 220s BC 210s BC 200s BC
Categories: BirthsDeaths

The 3rd century BC started the first day of 300 BC and ended the last day of 201 BC. It is considered part of the Classical era, epoch, or historical period.

Hannibal Crosses the Alps during the Second Punic War

The first few decades of this century were characterized by a balance of power between the Greek Hellenistic kingdoms in the east, and the great mercantile power of Carthage in the west. This balance was shattered when conflict arose between Carthage and the Roman Republic. In the following decades, the Carthaginian Empire was first humbled and then destroyed by the Romans in the first and second Punic wars. Following the Second Punic War, Rome became the most important power in the western Mediterranean.

In the 3rd century BC the Xiong Nu were at the height of their power in Mongolia. The Warring States period in China drew to a close, with Qin Shihuang conquering other nation-states and establishing the Qin dynasty, the first empire of China. The Protohistoric Period began in the Korean peninsula.


The Chinese Terracotta Army of Qin Shihuang's tomb at Xian, Shaanxi, China.

290s BC[]

280s BC[]

270s BC[]

260s BC[]

The Pyramid of the Moon, one of several monuments built in Teotihuacán

240s BC[]

230s BC[]

220s BC[]

210s BC[]

200s BC[]

Significant persons[]

File:Bust of Hannibal.jpg

Bust of Hannibal, the most prominent general of Carthage during the Second Punic War

Inventions, discoveries, introductions[]


Much of what we know of this century comes down to us from the works of the Roman historian Polybius, whose main concern is the story of how Rome comes to dominate the known world.

Decades and years[]

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at 3rd century BC. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.