The Portuguese explored present-day Guinea-Bissau, and the Cape Verde islands, in the fifteenth century.
Before the arrival of the Portuguese the area which is now Guinea-Bissau came under the influence of the Mali Empire and was known as Gabu.
The Portuguese set up a trading post in the area in the seventeenth century.
Cacheu became a centre of the slave trade.
European countries traded in slaves until legislation prohibited the trade. Acts of Parliament were passed in European countries at different times.
The Portuguese abolished slavery in their colonies in 1858 but slaves had to serve an apprenticeship for twenty years.
Portuguese Guinea and the Cape Verde islands were administered jointly by the Portuguese.
Portuguese Guinea became a separate Portuguese Colony in 1870.
In 1951 Portuguese Guinea was made a province of Portugal.
Amilcar Cabral established the African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC) in 1956.
Many Cape Verdeans fought in the war against Portuguese rule in Guinea-Bissau.
Amilcar Cabral was assassinated in 1973.
PAIGC declared Guinea-Bissau an independent country.
A coup d'etat in Portugal, in 1974, led to former Portuguese possessions gaining independence.
The brother of Amilcar Cabral, Luis Cabral, became the first president of Guinea-Bissau.
Luis Cabral was overthrown in a coup led by Joao Bernardo Vieira in 1980.
A civil war in 1998 led to the involvement of forces from Senegal and Guinea in support of the government.
Vieira remained in power until 1999.
Kumba Yala was elected as president of Guinea-Bissau at the beginning of 2000. He was removed from office by a coup in September 2003.
Former President Vieira, who was re-elected in 2008, was assassinated in March 2009.
At the beginning of 2011 the European Union suspended some of its aid to Guinea-Bissau because of concerns over governance and the rule of law.
In December 2017 West African leaders threatened sanctions on politicians in Guinea-Bissau unless it resolved its ongoing political crisis.