The history of life

The history of life

Life on Earth has been around for quite a while - hundreds of millions of years - and the Earth itself is much older.

Timescales like these can be really tricky to understand, so we have tried to simplify it all for you. One way of doing this is by compressing all of geological time into a single year.

In this section you can also discover the geological timescale that shows you all the different time periods, and you can investigate the past by playing with our interactive geological map of Britain.

Cartoon scene of meteorites striking a prehistoric landscape with various animals


Find out more about the history of life and geological time