The history of Life has exercised the minds of people through millennia. How, why and when are questions which science perpetually tries to answer. The Natural History Museum's permanent exhibition, "The History of Life" tells about the development of living organisms in the light of fresh scientific results. This virtual exhibition is based on the museum's on-site exhibition.
The virtual exhibition starts at the birth of the Earth about 4600 million years ago. You can move forwards and backwards in time by clicking on the timeline's links on the left side of the screen. The timeline's numbers shows the time from present-day in millions of years.
Most of the history of earth is very quiet as regards to life. The first multicellular organisms doesn't appear until about 500 million years ago. Since then the development of life has been very fast. So don't wonder why the top-part of the timeline looks quite empty.
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History. Updated 2005-09-23