From Andy May at Watts Up With That, a fascinating chart that plots estimated global mean temperatures along with historical events over the last 4,000 years. Most of the time line is based on ice cores, while the most recent temperatures are from the HadCRUT (probably inflated) database. There are explanation and commentary at the link, but for now, the chart. Click to enlarge:
As has been noted many times, cold eras are bad for humans (e.g., the Dark Ages), while warm eras are good.