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Year Occurrence  
6 million The first hominids appear in Central Africa, of course, naturally in the nude.  
2.5 million The oldest stone tools mark the beginning of the Stone Age.  
2 million Homo erectus appears. Already for his earliest representatives the use of stone equipment is proven, later individuals also used the fire.  
1.5 million Homo erectus was so adaptable to be able to spread from Africa via the Near East to India, today's China (Homo erectus pekinensis resp. Peking Man) and Southeast Asia (Homo erectus erectus resp. Java Man), as well as to Southern and Central Europe ("Out-of-Africa" theory). The late representatives of Homo erectus – but they are often assigned to Homo heidelbergensis – can already be described as a hunter-gatherer, because eight wooden, at least 270,000 years old spears (the Schöningen spears) were discovered in the pen brown coal pit Schöningen in the administrative district of Helmstedt, Germany.
0.5 million In Europe developed the Homo neanderthalensis resp. the Neanderthal from Homo erectus via the intermediate stages of the Homo heidelbergensis and the Homo steinheimensis, a species of the genus Homo, perfectly adapted to the specific environmental conditions of the Ice Age. The Neanderthals are rated today (contrary to to earlier assumptions) as culturally developed: For the first time, cultic practices of them in Central Europe are verifiable, for example burials are documented with grave goods (e.g. La Ferrassie). The Neanderthals developed a technique of stone working, in which no longer only tools were made out of cores of flintstone, quartzite, or other rocks, but also the sharp-edged flakes were further processed. A special case of processing so-called "preformed" cores is the Levallois technique.  
160 thousand First appearance of Homo sapiens in Africa. About 100,000 modern humans reached the eastern Mediterranean, 70,000 years ago Southeast Asia.  
100 thousand Ethnology assumes that around this time, "body shame", "shame of sexual action", and then "genital shame" arose, and people began to separate themselves from the community for the activities of excretion and sexual union. Over the next 95,000 years, most societies slowly began to cover their genital and anal zones.  
33 thousand Oldest articles of virtu like the Venus of Willendorf and cave painting in the Chauvet cave prove the artistic creativity of the genus Homo sapiens.
28 thousand The human species of Neanderthals dies out. According to a theory, because his intellectual and technical skills did not allow him to invent multi-layered clothing – mandatory to survive during the Ice Age. The genes of humans living today are bsased between 0.5 and 2 % on the genome of Neanderthal. This means, that there must have been a lot of mixing between the Homo neanderthalensis and the Homo sapiens.
10 thousand From India, within a few centuries, the the perception spreads, that the male sperm is the source of the woman's foetus. Subsequently, the phallus becomes the new symbol of fertility and the object of religious worship worldwide. As a result, the previously predominantly matriarchal forms of society are gradually being replaced by patriarchal ones.
4 thousand For the "Old Kingdom" of Egypt (around 4500 BC), it is certain that people usually were nude in everyday life. The only exceptions were people senior in hierarchy, such as the Pharaoh's civil servants, who were sweating there aprons all day long, instead of working. The same applies to the simultaneous cultures in Mesopotamia: The upper classes dressed, the ordinary people often lived without clothes. Only in the following millennia, then clothing became a common commodity step by step.  
1600 One of the last major matriarchal societies, the Minoan Empire in Crete, is drowning after a catastrophic tsunami.  
around 1200 The trousers are invented. At the same time as the first cavalry warriors appeared in the Eastern European steppes, the legwear was created. Probably the oldest trousers in the world were found together with bridles in a tomb in China. The trousers is tailered to allow for a wide spreading of the legs, as riders need it. This made the essential advantage over the hitherto customary, wrapped apron, which significantly restricted the mobility of the legs.
around 750 In Sparta, Greece, one is nude at sports. This affects initially only the boys, a short time later, also for the girls. However, there was only separate training for girls and boys.
720 At the Olympic Games, the apron is abolished as the (until then only) item of clothing of the athletes. From now on, the athletes competed only completely nude (except for the horse race). Also the Isthmian Games (in Corinth) and the Pythian Games (in Delphi) were soon performed in the nude.  
around 600 The Gymnasion becomes an established institution for athletic training and exercise in Athens, in particular wrestling. Of course, the training was done in the nude. The Gymnasion was usually in the immediate vicinity of the Palaistra, the meeting place for spiritual-philosophical training.
567 At the age of 32, Mahavira decides to take off all clothes and wander around as a nude ascetic. The wandering life lasted for twelve years, and the texts depict vividly adversities of the weather and hostilities of people. After 12 years, he attained omniscience and continued to teach the religion of Jainism he founded. According to their founder, the Digambaras, the "air-clad" monks in the south of India, are still traditionally unclothed today.
326 Alexander the Great, in his India campaign, encounters a group of gymnosophists – nude philosophers who considered people's pursuit of wealth and luxury to be the source of all earthly evil and therefore renounced all their goods, including clothes.
around 150 In Rome, the first spas are being errected. The use is separated by gender. Men bathed naked, women wore at least in Rome a kind of bikini (panties and breast scarf).
6 BC Year of birth of Jesus of Nazareth.
around 30 AC Jesus is crucified being naked together with two criminals. He dies on the cross.
around 150 In the spas of Rome, the common nude use by people of both sexes prevails.
393 Flavius Theodosius I (347-395), Christian emperor in the Eastern Roman Empire, abolishes the Panhellenic Olympics, the oracle of Delphi, the mysteries of Eleusis, and numerous other pagan customs, thus destroying the foundations of paganism in the East – and thus also the practice in many ancient sports competitions to compete in the nude.
around 400 The spas of the Roman Empire degenerate into sites of sexual debauchery.
556 The bathing culture in Rome was ruined, even because of the shortage of water caused by the destruction of the aqueducts by peoples invading Italy.
around 1000 Drama groups and moving singers are travel across the country. They bring messages from distant areas and entertain the population with mystery plays. It is sometimes easy, a free chest or a free upper body provide for rare stimuli and challenge the church to damnatory sermons, the authorities to prohibitions.
around 1100 The Christian crusaders are distinguished after victorious battles by massive rape orgies on Saracen women. In doing so, they far outnumber the Muslims, who are less aggressive in reverse victories.
around 1200 The crusaders bring from the Orient the practice of steam baths and bathhouses back to Central Europe. The use is strictly separated by gender. Children up to 6 years (Also boys! That's unheard of!) may be taken to the women's baths.
1206 Francis of Assisi completely undressed during a trial on the cathedral square of Assisi, in order to substantiate his renunciation of all earthly goods. He also renounced his father, a wealthy merchant, and devoted himself entirely to the heavenly values.
1228 Francis (Francis of Assisi) is canonised.
around 1250 The duty of virtue and morality is increasingly imposed on women because of constant sermons in the church.
around 1250 The inquisition begins. Investigations with a legally questionable background have led to convictions, mostly death sentences, without legal legitimacy based solely on faith and ideology-based arbitrariness. The end of the inquisition is stated as around 1850.
around 1400 The medieval bathhouses are used only to a small extent as such, most houses of this kind are brothels at the same time.
around 1450 In the period from 1450 to 1750, the age of witch hunts lasted in Central Europe. Witches were accused of being in league with the devil and causing all sorts of bad things for their fellow human beings. As a rule, they were subjected to torture and degrading "witch trials" and were often burned naked at the stake.
around 1450 People bath in rivers, lakes, and also in the sea mostly in the nude. Not until about 100 years later, the first nude bathing bans in rivers, at least within cities such as Frankfurt or Paris. They remained practically without effect for centuries.
1492 Christopher Columbus reaches the "West Indies" in the Caribbean and meets the first Indian tribes, who live (almost) clothes-free and worship nature religions.
1532

The Indian tribe of the Yanomami is discovered in today's Brazil. The Yanomami men's clothing consists of a simple lumbar cord without apron and is used, to tie up the penis with a loop around the foreskin. On festive occasions, they wear magnificent feather trimming on the shoulders and upper arms. The women are nude and wear a lumbar cord, which is used to attach various small objects.

1565 The soldiers of the Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro break, after the victory over King Atahualpa, the rule, which was firmly established in the Inca culture rule, to bathe separated by gender, mingled, bathed nude with almost 100 bathing Inca women and raped them all. Thus, they documented the superiority of the "civilized Christian peoples" over the "naked savages".
1601 As Queen of France, Maria de Medici, in the presence of the most important representatives of the French nobility, gives birth to the heir to the throne, Ludwig, because the first childbirth of the French queen had to be made in public, in order to prove the legitimate birth of the heir | heiress to the throne.
around 1650 Although the "brouche" as underpants for men was common since the early Middle Ages, the underpants for women was invented only around 1650 – until then women wore only petticoats, and this also to some extent far into the 20th century. Of course, this was only possible without underpants.
"My own memory goes back to the 1950s, when market women still walked to the gutter behind their booth and without lifting their skirts, urinated through the petticoats into the gutter." – Helmut
around 1750 The Englishman Benjamin Beale from Kent invented the "bath carriage", with which ladies are driven into the open water, to step down a staircase into the water there – protected from looks of others. The carriages remained in use at some places until about 1930.
1775 After Johann von Wolfgang Goethe accompanied the two young counts of Stollberg, his former travel companions, in a village near Darmstadt, Germany, for nude bathing, he himself went swimming with them nude in Lake Lucerne. While 100 years ago, the practice of swimming nude was still commonplace and accepted in Switzerland, it now caused massive criticism.
1777 To stop the widespread nude bathing, the first outdoor swimming pool was opened in Mannheim. Under control of the bathing supervision, decent full-body clothing could be enforced here for bathing.
1887 Fidus, whose real name is Hugo Höppener, leaves the preschool of the Munich Academy and joins the painter and nature apostle Karl Wilhelm Diefenbach (1851-1913) as a student. Both worked hard for a life in harmony with nature, the renunciation of any religion, exercise in the fresh air and the practice of naturism and a meatless diet.
1892 Heinrich Pudor publishes his book "Nackende Menschen, Jauchzen der Zukunft" [en: "Nude people, heer of future"], the first important German-language work on naturism in Germany.
1893 In Essen, Germany, the first naturist association is founded.
1906 Richard Ungewitter publishes the book "Die Nacktheit" [en: "The nudity"], in which he formulated the central approaches and demands of the awakening "culture of nudity".
1907 The public bathing beach Wannsee in Berlin, Germany, was opened as one of the first family baths. The prescribed swimwear, however, had to cover shoulders and knees.
1908 Richard Ungewitter publishes the book Nackt [en: Nude], in which he reflects on the public reaction to his 1906 published book "Die Nacktheit"" [en: "The nudity"] and presents new experiences and demands. Here he also talks about his nude hikes in the Black Forest, Germany.
1910 The Odenwald School in Germany arose in close connection with the movement on educational reforms at the beginning of the 20th century. It was founded on 14 April 1910. At the time, there were only 14 students, who were all housed in the Goethe House. Their concept was initially characterised by the principles of the "working" school. Examples therefor are the introduction of a course system and the abandonment of age groups. Other features of the educational concept of the school included – long before the emergence of anti-authoritarian education – calling the teachers by their first names. In physical education, boys and girls practised nude together until a certain age.
Prominent ex-alumni are Daniel Cohn-Bendit, Wolfgang Hildesheimer, Klaus Mann, Wolfgang Porsche, Beate Uhse and Andreas von Weizsäcker.
In the history of the Odenwald School, there has been long-term sexual abuse of students by teachers took place for a length of time.
The Odenwald School went bankrupt in 2015.
1919 The Priory Gate School, founded 1919 in England, pursued the reform pedagogical concept with elements of a naturist pedagogy very consistently. Every child got the full opportunity for self-development. Theodore J. Faithfull, founder and head of the school, saw in this individualistic approach an alternative to established schools, which he believed worked to over-adapt students. Part of the concept of this boarding school was nudity at sports, at (sun) bathing as well as, for example, during drawing lessons. The school's headquarters was initially Sudbury (Suffolk), later moving to Walsham Hall in Walsham-le-Willows, near Bury St Edmunds.
1920 With "Nacktheit und Kultur" [en: "Nudity and culture"] as well as "Nacktheit und Aufstieg" [en: "Nudity and advancement"], Ungewitter begins his assimilation of nazi ways of thinking and ideals and is therefore now suspect for naturists.
1924 Adolf Koch founds the first nude physical education institution as a gym teacher in Berlin and subsequently a further 12 of this kind in Germany.
1927 A similar approach as the Priory Gate School in 1919, pursued the Summerhill school, founded by Alexander Sutherland Neill in 1927. Even in this first "democratic school", sports in the nude was an integral part, but as voluntary as just the lessons themselves.
1927 Bertrand Russell, together with his wife Dora Black, founded the libertarian experimental Beacon Hill School, where students, on an equal footing with teachers in the school parliament, determined school practice. This also included the joint physical education in the nude of boys and girls.
1927 In Germany, the Lichtschulheim Lüneburger Land (LLL) was also founded in 1927 in Glüsingen (Lüneburg Heath). The educator Walter Fränzel thus realised his plan, to found a high school in the countryside, in which he could implement all his reform ideas. For sports, games and sunbathing, he leased an area nearby with forest around. Part of his concept was i.a. the permanent stay "in constitutional air within forest and heath", organic connection of life with instruction, the friendly-companionable relationship of teachers and students, moreover the "acclimatisation to wind and weather particularly by being in the nude t gymnastics, runningn in the morning, sports and games in the spirit of naturism". In 1933, the Nazis shut the school down.
1932 The German »Zwickel-Erlass« [en: »Gusset Edict«] regulates the prescribed swimwear in German baths. It is considered as the last inappropriate state intervention in personal freedom before Hitler's dictatorship.
Since 1933 Like all associations, naturist associations were also banned, if they did not incorporate nazi objectives into their statutes. From then on, naturist goals went hand in hand with efforts at "eugenics".
1939 The sociologist Norbert Elias completes his 2-volume work "On the process of civilisation", in which he traces the social history of nudity, shame and decency from antiquity to modern times. He saw the development of loose customs of antiquity to the prudery of the 19th century as an inevitable accompaniment to the progressive process of civilisation.
1942 An order of the state repeals the interdiction to bathe in the nude.
1949 The "Deutscher Verband für Freikörperkultur" (DFK) [en: German Association of Naturists] is founded as governing body of the naturist associations in the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG).
1951 Hildegard Knef triggers a scandal with a short nude scene in the movie "The sinner", which the Catholic Church attacked also because of the theming of prostitution and suicide.
"From today's perspective, the film is rather boring, cheerless and overloaded with problems, and even then did not inspire by its story or its quality. In the end he owed his fervor to the fact that he was considered a scandal her moralizing forefinger involuntarily advertised the movie, and the bigger the circles of excitement became, the more people wanted to see the movie."
1953 The German naturist association "Deutscher Verband für Freikörperkultur" (DFK) [en: "German naturists' association"] honours Richard Ungewitter's achievements with an honourary membership despite his close ties to the nazi ideology.
1960 The miniskirt conquers the fashion scene and gives the conservative circles a very, very tiny pretence for a scandalous theme.
1960 Karol Woytila (later Pope John Paul II), archbishop and professor of catholic social ethics, authored his fundamental work "Love and responsibility", still relevant today as it was then, in which he formulated the assessment of human nudity by the Catholic Church: "Because of being created by God, the human body can remain naked and uncovered, yet, untouched, still preserves its splendour and beauty."
1962 Oswalt Kolle conquers the cinemas of the world with his educational films, which made the results of the Kinsey reports accessible to a broad audience.
from 1965 The English Garden in Munich becomes a meeting place for hippies and naturists around the Monopteros, who for the first time used a public park for sunbathing in the nude. The example has formed a precedent in many other major cities, so that today naturist zones have been originated in numerous public urban parks.
1968 The youth movement of the '68 generation creates the climate for naked provocations with the slogan "Make Love, Not War", hippie villages and anti-authoritarian approaches.
from 1970 "Streakers" hit the headlines with nude runs in bustling city centres or – especially – at events like football matches or at a parade in honor of the British Queen.
around 1975 Nude bathing is accepted as normal at countless, tolerated nude beaches and bathing lakes.
1988 Ethnologist Hans Peter Duerr publishes the first of five volumes of his response to Elias' "On the Process of Civilisation", titled "Nacktheit und Scham – der Mythos vom Zivilisationsprozess" [en: "Nudity and shame – the Myth of the Civilization Process"]. Duerr disproves Elias on many counts and comes to the opposite conclusion, that the shamefacedness of people from ancient Greece to the 19th century has always remained the same. The currently sinking threshold of shame presupposes a very high degree of civilisation.
1998 The doctor of sociology, Peter Niehenke, based in Freiburg (Breisgau), Germany, begins his active campaign against the adverseness against nudity in our society. His nude jogging initially stirs only some Freiburg citizens, but reached Niehenke quickly nationwide attention. His messages 'The Perversion of Shame' u.a.m. accuse the "grotesque misrepresentation of our values", but he does not reach the broad agreement with his performances everywhere.
2000 The Higher Regional Court of Karlsruhe, Germany, condemns the "nude jogger of Freiburg" Peter Niehenke for harassing the public. Niehenke was jogging nude in the city of Freiburg. Qualified lawyers soon remarked that a similar judgment would henceforth be unthinkable, since the procedure was very significantly influenced by the person of the presiding judge and this form of expression was not comprehensible and not legally compliant.
2001 Among the naturists in Germany, a group of hikers in the nude emerges. Their aim is, to hike in the nude in nature on remote, little frequented tracks. They distinguish their attitude deliberately from the provocative approach of Peter Niehenke. The judgement of the Higher Regional Court Karlsruhe, which concerns nude actions within built-up areas, is kept out of focus, because they choose consequently hiking tracks in the great outdoors. A priest in the German Siegerland (area named after the river "Sieg") founds the initiative "Nacktwandergruppe Siegerland" [en: "Nude hiking group Siegerland"].
2004 The first nude hike on Whit Sunday takes place in the Rothaar montains, Germany. It will become a well known venue for naturists to meet and hike from then on.
2005 In France, naturists found and get registered the association APNEL, whose goal is the decriminalization of nudity in public spaces. The French legislation knows only the offence "sexual deed in the public" and sets harmless simple nudity equal to this offence – an inexcusable blunder of the French legislator. However, in recent years (since about 2010), a slow changing of this legal practice – perhaps, a result to which also the work of APNEL has contributed.
2008 Nude hikers in Germany cause broad interest by public media, radio, press and television report several times. In the Harz mountains, the first German nude hiking naturist trail is planned. Nude hiking in the Sauerland mountains
2009 The pentecost nude hike takes place for the 6th time in the Rothaar montains, Germany, on Whit Sunday. 52 nude hikers aged between 8 and 72 years participate.
2009 A French hiking group with 62 participants is doing a nude walk in the south of France with the highest figure of participants so far.
2010 In the Harz mountains, Germany, near the dam wall of the Wipper dam, the first nude hiking naturist trail, the so-called »Naturistenstieg«, is inaugurated. Local press and dpa) [en: German Press Agency] are present to document that event. Their pictures, on which Horst inaugurates this naturist trail, are on the news across the globe.
2011 Precisely 10 years after the first nude hike in the Siegerland, German film author Christian Dassel is preseent with his team, to accompany 25 naturists at their hike in the Siegerland between Forsthaus Hohenrodt and the Obernau dam. He films for the TV series "Wir in NRW" [en: Us in Northrhine-Westphalia] the episode "Das Siegerland" [en: The river Sieg country].
to date Nude hiking and biking tours in the Münsterland, in Thuringia, in Saxon Switzerland, in der Lüneburg Heath, in the Sauerland, in the Rothaargebirge, in the Westerwald, in the Pfälzer Wald, in the Rhön, at the Vogelsberg, in the Teutoburger Wald and in many other regions ensure a wider spread of the idea of naturist hiking – and partly for hot local discussions. Television, radio and the press report several times. Alfons, the humorous Frenchman, makes nude hiking the subject of one of his Puschel TV contributions.