The Universe is old. According to the most recent measurements, it is 13.7 billion years old. The rise of mankind, on the other hand, is fairly recent, with Homo Erectus, the first "modern human," appearing around a million years ago and Homo Sapiens, today's humans, arriving only in the past 200,000 years. Imagine compressing the time the Universe has existed into the span of a single day with the Big Bang occurring at the stroke of midnight. Humans crash the party late - at 11:59:56pm, just four seconds before the end of the day. When did other major events in the history of the Universe occur? Check out the Universe Timeline tool.