Africa is the world's second largest continent, second only to Asia. Covering about 12 million sq mi, Africa contains 20% of the Earth's land mass and 6% of its surface.
The continent is surrounded by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, both the Suez Canal and the Red Sea along the Sinai Peninsula to the northeast, the Indian Ocean to the southeast, and the Atlantic Ocean to the west.
Africa is considered to be the oldest inhabited continent, where humanity was found to have been first origins from the Horn of Africa. By the year 2000 CE there were known remains of early humans as old as eight million years. Remains of what is believed to have evolved into man have been found as old as ten million years.
At about 3300 BC, the historical record opens in Northern Africa with the rise of literacy in the civilization of Ancient Egypt. One of the world's earliest and longest-lasting civilizations, the Egyptian state continued, with varying levels of influence over other areas, until about 1900 CE when the empire of Egypt started to decline.
The Great Golden Age
The First African Golden Age (About 200 CE - 1000 CE) was the first continental and longest golden age of Africa. It was an age of prosperity in Africa. It marked great scientific and military inventions and also it modernized most African areas to that date. Contact with Europe and Asia starts.
African Dark Ages
The African Dark Ages (1000 CE - 1450 CE) started in 1000 CE when a massive famine and disease broke through most of Northern, West and the Horn of Africa. This was followed by warfare and the end of the Great Golden Age.
Age of Discovery
The Age of Discovery (1450 CE - 1550 CE) marked the end of the African Dark Ages. Little was known of Asia and Europe past their coast and their ports. This age was started when Ethiopian emperor Zara Yakob launched an expeditionary force of 1000 to map Southern Europe, and they found little civilization that were far less developed then their own. Several nations launched their own forces and started mapping the land. Hardly any colonization efforts began.
Age of Colonization
The Age of Colonization (1550 CE - 1860 CE) was an era where large African powers started claiming and settling mass land masses in Europe and Asia. This resulting in many wars known as the "Wars of Colonization".
The Industrialization (1860 CE - 1900 CE) was an era of time where the old world started to disappear and people left the countryside to live in cities to work in more efficient jobs in factories, and shop owning. The major invention that dominated this era was the factory, which changed the way products were made forever.
The Modern Age (1900 CE - Present) is where the world began to reform after a thousand years of warfare. Africa began projects to end the past warfare and make future peace. This was somewhat successful. The expansion officially ended as of 1960 CE.