Take another quiz >

Biggest Cities in History

Name the cities that were the most populous on Earth at any time from 1000 B.C. - 2000 A.D.
According to Wikipedia. We added cities mentioned by at least 2 of 4 sources
Country is the modern day country where the city or its ruins are located
We use the modern name for the city, but ancient names are accepted as type-ins
Last updated: November 14, 2018
Rate:
6:00
Enter city here:
0
 / 22 guessed
The quiz is paused. You have remaining.
Scoring
You scored / = %.
This beats or equals % of test takers
The average score is
Your high score is
Your best time is remaining
Keep scrolling down for answers and more stats ...
From
To
Max Pop
Country
City
1965
2000
26 mil
Japan
Tokyo
1925
1962
15 mil
USA
New York
1825
1914
7.5 mil
UK
London
1420
1825
1.35 mil
China
Beijing
1637
1700
800 k
Turkey
Istanbul
1358
1400
1 mil
China
Nanjing
1315
1391
500 k
Egypt
Cairo
1180
1350
1 mil
China
Hangzhou
1145
1210
500 k
Turkmenistan
Merv
1000
1200
1 mil
China
Kaifeng
1160
1170
200 k
Morocco
Fez
1013
1160
500 k
Turkey
Istanbul
775
1200
1.2 mil
Iraq
Baghdad
From
To
Max Pop
Country
City
935
1000
450 k
Spain
Córdoba
600
900
1 mil
China
Xi'an
340
637
500 k
Turkey
Istanbul
100 BC
400
1.2 mil
Italy
Rome
200 BC
25 BC
400 k
China
Xi'an
300 BC
100 BC
1 mil
Egypt
Alexandria
300 BC
195 BC
350 k
India
Patna
1770 BC
300 BC
250 k
Iraq
Babylon
700 BC
650 BC
120 k
Iraq
Nineveh
1000 BC
700 BC
100 k
China
Luoyang
2059 BC
700 BC
100 k
Egypt
Luxor
3100 BC
700 BC
100 k
Egypt
Memphis
1000 BC
800 BC
125 k
China
Xi'an
+6
level 74
Jun 19, 2013
Great quiz. One of my favorites on the site. I know I already plug this quiz quite a lot:

Oldest Cities by Country

But this may be the single most appropriate place to do so, the subject matter is so similar. And not everyone cares about ancient geography.
+1
level 67
Jun 19, 2013
I've only heard of 18 of the cities - not a good quiz for me.
+1
level 74
Jun 19, 2013
18's not so bad considering the average score is 11.
+1
level 73
Jun 19, 2013
Well...i only missed 3 that I had ever heard of or had a chance to spell. I call it a success.
+1
level 61
Jun 19, 2013
Could you accept Mary for Merv?
+1
level ∞
Nov 27, 2017
Yes
+1
level 24
Jul 4, 2013
I can't believe I didn't think of Rome!
+1
level 44
Aug 8, 2014
This was a great quiz. I would have liked to see a couple more 20th/21st century entries though.
+1
level 59
May 21, 2017
Heck, I didn't feel so bad when I saw the ones I'd missed. Sheesh!
+2
level 75
Nov 27, 2017
Maybe accept Nineve? And if you're feeling generous, Ninive, which seems to be the most common spelling in other European languages.
+1
level 75
Nov 30, 2017
What... is the capital of Assyria?
+1
level 58
Mar 13, 2018
I, I... I don't know that! :::BOING!!!::: Yaaaaaah!!!
+1
level 62
Mar 13, 2018
Blue....... no!
+1
level 36
Jun 9, 2018
Nineveh !
+2
level 69
Feb 20, 2018
It's kind of funny to think that the most populous city in the world used to be in Turkmenistan.
+6
level 74
Mar 13, 2018
central Asia... not far from the original cradle of civilization. Important city in the Muslim world. For a time it was the capital of the Abbasid Caliphate. And it was a center for scholarship, worship and other things- but in the 12th century when it is said to have been the largest city in the world this was probably due mostly to it's place on the Silk Road.
+1
level 74
Mar 13, 2018
I think you added some cities to this? I think the dates might extend back farther than they used to. Still no Akkad, Anyang or Uruk. This is much easier for me than the sports quizzes.
+1
level 61
Mar 13, 2018
Uruk is mentioned by two sources for 3000 BCE. That's also the case with Girsu in 2075, Akkad in 2240, Ur in 2000, Avaris in 1600 (BCE of course).
+2
level ∞
Mar 13, 2018
"Name the cities that were the most populous on Earth at any time from 1000 B.C. - 2000 A.D."
+1
level 71
Mar 13, 2018
i forgot to mention, forgot to mention memphis
+1
level 48
Mar 15, 2018
lol
+1
level 66
Mar 14, 2018
Quinquireme of Nineveh from distant Ophir ............ one of my favourite poems
+1
level 74
Mar 20, 2018
Nice one, QM.
+1
level 51
Oct 15, 2018
The quiz was irritating...wasn't able to answer many after guessing many.