Time Line of Events Covered in Summary

  • Last updated on November 10, 2022

An annotated time line of important events in the eighteenth century.

Date Region Event 18th cent. Africa/Americas Expansion of the Atlantic Slave Trade: Benefiting from the complicity of European nations, the Atlantic slave trade expanded dramatically during the eighteenth century. This development set the stage for the mass transportation of Africans to the Americas, with more than 70 percent of all slaves arriving in the New World after 1700. Although an antislavery movement emerged in the late eighteenth century, economic influences obstructed its effectiveness. 1701 North America Louisiana Becomes a French Province: Following numerous explorations, France officially established the area drained by the Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio Rivers as a province. c. 1701 Africa Oman Captures Zanzibar: Portugal’s decline during the 1600’s led to cracks in its control of East Africa. Oman took advantage of Portugal’s weakness to seize Zanzibar by 1701, effectively ending Lisbon’s rule north of Mozambique. 1701 Europe Plumier Publishes L’Art de tourner : Charles Plumier’s L’Art de tourner provided the basis for advances in manufacturing at the beginning of the eighteenth century. It cataloged every significant development in the history of lathes and prepared the way for further advances in the art of wood turning. 1701 Europe Tull Invents the Seed Drill: Jethro Tull’s invention of the seed drill revolutionized farming. The drill replaced the wasteful and labor-intensive broadcast method of seeding and paved the way for subsequent advances in mechanized agriculture. c. 1701-1721 Europe Great Northern War: The Great Northern War established Russia as the dominant power in the Baltic region and led to Sweden’s decline as a great military power in Europe. 1701-1732 Europe Decline of Executions for Witchcraft: From a peak in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, executions for witchcraft declined dramatically throughout Europe after the beginning of the eighteenth century. c. 1701-1750 Europe Bach Pioneers Modern Music: Johann Sebastian Bach pioneered modern music, creating a vast library of compositions for keyboard and stringed instruments and ushering in technical innovations that would influence later generations of musicians and composers. 1701-1750 Africa Expansion of Asante Influence in West Africa: With the Battle of Feyiase in 1701, the Asante people began to displace their Denkyira overlords in the region of modern Ghana. Feb. 4, 1701-Feb. 4, 1703 East Asia Revenge of the Forty-Seven Ronin: After the lord of Ako was disgraced and forced to kill himself, his samurai devised a plan for a revenge killing that took two years to execute. Though they succeeded and were regarded as heroes, the Tokugawa shogunate forced them to commit suicide for defying its authority. Their deed has been celebrated in numerous stories, plays, and films as a model of loyalty and courage in the face of injustice and tyranny. May 26, 1701-Sept. 7, 1714 Europe War of the Spanish Succession: The death of Spain’s King Charles II sparked the first of several eighteenth century wars of succession. The Spanish throne was the nominal source of the conflict, but more at stake was the international balance of power, as every major power in Europe struggled for advantage. June 12, 1701 Europe Act of Settlement: The Act of Settlement ensured the Protestant succession to the English throne and increased the power of Parliament. As a result of its passage, the Hanover Dynasty was installed as the ruling family of Great Britain in 1714, and the Stuarts were permanently disenfranchised. July 6, 1701 Europe William Kidd Hanged in England: The notorious pirate had been in Boston in 1699, then sent to England for trial. July 9, 1701 Europe Marsh Builds Ireland’s First Public Library: Narcissus Marsh’s library, Ireland’s first library open to the public, acquired and preserved several extensive collections of books, including the finest private library at that time in England. The library’s founding was revolutionary, given its mission of free and open access to all, which included disenfranchised, and uneducated, Dubliners. 1702 North America Founding of Ft. Louis: The first French settlement on North America’s Gulf Coast (later to become Mobile, Alabama) established a settled French presence throughout the Louisiana province. 1702 North America New Jersey Established: After years of bickering between the proprietors of East and West Jersey, the two were combined to form a single colony. 1702 or 1706 Middle East First Arabic Printing Press: Arabic-language printing began at Aleppo in Syria in the first decade of the eighteenth century. May 15, 1702-Apr. 11, 1713 Europe Queen Anne’s War: The death of Charles II brought about the War of the Spanish Succession, a struggle for power between all the major nations of Europe, which inevitably spread to their colonial territories. In the portion of the war fought in the Americas, known separately as Queen Anne’s War, Great Britain gained territory and commercial concessions and consolidated its status as the world’s most powerful empire. July 24, 1702-Oct. 1, 1704 Europe Camisard Risings in the Cévennes: The risings of the Camisards--Protestant peasants in the Cévennes region of southern France--renewed the religious unrest between Catholics and Protestants that had plagued France during the Reformation. This rebellion challenged the absolute authority of the French king and the alliance of church and state. 1703-1711 Europe Hungarian Revolt Against Habsburg Rule: While the Habsburgs battled the Bourbons to gain greater power in Europe, the peasants of Hungary staged a rebellion against their Habsburg king, seeking Hungarian independence from the Habsburg Holy Roman Empire. The failure of the rebellions confirmed the strength of the Habsburgs’ empire and the predominance of the Hungarian nobility. May 27, 1703 Europe Founding of St. Petersburg: Czar Peter the Great created the city of St. Petersburg on the northwestern frontier of Russia to be a window to the West, a Western-style, modern capital far from the eastward-looking traditions of Moscow. June 20, 1703 East Asia Chikamatsu Produces The Love Suicides at Sonezaki : Chikamatsu’s The Love Suicides at Sonezaki created a new genre of puppet theater, “domestic” plays in which chōnin (ordinary townspeople), rather than the samurai, were presented as tragic heroes. Dec. 30, 1703 East Asia Japanese Earthquake and Fire: A massive earthquake and fire destroy much of the capital city of Edo (later Tokyo), killing as many as 200,000 people. 1704 North America Appearance of the News-Letter : John Campbell begins publishing the weekly News-Letter, the first regular newspaper in the American colonies. 1704 Middle East Death of Iṣtifān al-Duwayhī: This Maronite patriarch had emerged as the first important historian from the Arabic-speaking Christian community in Lebanon. 1704 Middle East Hasan Paşha Appointed Governor of Baghdad: Hasan’s appointment established a quasi-hereditary dynasty that brought order to central Iraq and ruled the region throughout the eighteenth century. 1704 Europe Newton Publishes Optics : Sir Isaac Newton’s Optics established a new theory of light and a more quantitative and experimental style of science. 1704 Europe Publication of The Arabian Nights’ Entertainments : This edition made the famous tales of Sinbad widely available to Europeans for the first time. 1704 Europe Swift Publishes A Tale of a Tub : English author Jonathan Swift famously satirizes religious corruption. 1704 Europe Weekly Review Founded: This important thrice-weekly paper, founded in the midst of the Tory-Whig controversy, was sparked by the War of the Spanish Succession. 1704-1712 Europe Astronomy Wars in England: John Flamsteed was compelled by the queen of England and the Royal Society of London to publish the results of his decades-long observations of star locations. Flamsteed repudiated this unfinished publication of his work and publicly burned most of the available copies. In the end, the conflict would hamper astronomical research in the first two decades of the eighteenth century, despite the catalog’s early publication. 1704-1757 Southeast Asia Javanese Wars of Succession: After decades of growing Dutch influence in Java, uncertainty as to the rightful succession to the dynastic throne of Mataram resulted in a series of wars for the crown. These wars provided the Dutch East India Company with an opportunity, and it seized control of Java. Aug. 4, 1704 Europe Britain Captures Gibraltar: English forces seized this strategic fortress, which guarded the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea, in one of the key early allied victories of the War of the Spanish Succession. Aug. 13, 1704 Europe Battle of Blenheim: The Battle of Blenheim marked the greatest military triumph in the War of the Spanish Succession and the first English victory on the Continent since Agincourt in 1315. 1705 Europe Blenheim Palace Constructed: This great English palace was commissioned as a reward and commemoration of the duke of Marlborough’s victory at Blenheim, Bavaria, the year before. 1705 Europe Halley Predicts the Return of a Comet: Halley’s successful prediction of the return of a comet, later named for him, was a stunning confirmation of Sir Isaac Newton’s law of gravity and laws of motion. Halley’s prediction also established that Comet Halley orbits the Sun. 1705-1712 Europe Newcomen Develops the Steam Engine: Thomas Newcomen built the first steam engine, providing the power to operate pumps needed to remove water from coal mines that penetrated the English landscape. 1706 Europe Rømer Publishes Astronomical Observations : The last major publication of the pioneering Danish astronomer Ole Rømer. Feb., 1706-Apr. 28, 1707 Europe Act of Union Unites England and Scotland: The Act of Union united England and Scotland in the nation of Great Britain, ending centuries of war and animosity between the two countries by forging a single political entity. May 23, 1706 Europe Battle of Ramillies: John Churchill, the first duke of Marlborough, defeats François de Neufville, the duc de Villeroi, in the War of the Spanish Succession. The Engllish and their allies gain Brussels, Antwerp, Ghent, and Ostend, overrunning Spanish Netherlands. 1707 Europe Emigration from the Rhineland Palatinate to England: The first phase of the German immigration that would eventually bring tens of thousands of mainly Calvinists and Lutherans to the American colonies. 1707 Europe Fortnum and Mason’s Opens in London: Based upon a growing international trade, this new enterprise successfully catered the best of wines and specialty foods to wealthy English households. 1707 Europe Newton Publishes Arithmetica universalis : Sir Isaac Newton presents his theory of equations and observations on algebra developed during the 1670’s and 1680’s. 1707 Europe “Pulse Watch” Invented: English doctor John Floyer develops the first effective precision diagnostic instrument. 1708 South Asia Creation of the United East India Company: By combining two rival British trading companies, the British government established the strongest European presence on the Indian coast. 1708 Middle East Governor of Damascus Becomes Commander of the Annual Damascus Pilgrimage to Mecca: This arrangement greatly enhanced the prestige and power of the governor’s position well into the twentieth century. Mar. 23-26, 1708 Europe Defeat of the “Old Pretender”: James Edward--the “Old Pretender,” son of James II--sailed to Scotland with an invasion force, but the French fleet assisting him was thwarted, and he returned to France, ending his bid to reclaim the English throne for the Stuarts. July 11, 1708 Europe Battle of Oudenarde: England’s first duke of Marlborough John Churchill and Eugene of Savoy defeat Frence’s duke of Vendôme and the duke of Burgandy, leading to the surrender of Lille and abortive negotiations in the War of the Spanish Succession. 1709 Europe Black Death Ravages Prussia: An estimated 300,000 die in one of numerous recurrences of the plague. 1709 Europe Darby Invents Coke-Smelting: Abraham Darby developed a coal-based process for smelting iron ore. This process facilitated a major shift in the West from manufacturing predominantly with commonly available organic materials to manufacturing finished products out of mineral components that were themselves industrially produced. Had this shift in the nature of manufacturing not occurred, the Industrial Revolution would never have come about. 1709 Europe Fahrenheit Invents the Alcohol Thermometer: Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit established his famous Fahrenheit scale, in which the freezing point at sea level is 32 degrees and the boiling point 212 degrees. This early Fahrenheit thermometer led the way to the mercury thermometer a few years later. c. 1709 Europe Invention of the Piano: Bartolomeo Cristofori created the first pianoforte, a keyboard instrument capable of gradations in both volume and intensity of the notes played. His invention inspired others to adapt and improve his fundamental design, which became the basis for modern pianos. As the instruments became more common, composers began to write music specifically for the piano. 1709 Europe The Tatler Appears in London: Playwright Richard Steele begins publishing this famous journal of politics and social criticism, including essays written by Joseph Addison. 1709-1747 Middle East Persian-Afghan Wars: With the weakening of the Ṣafavid Empire during the seventeenth century, Afghan tribes under Persian occupation grew restive. Through a series of conflicts now known as the Persian-Afghan Wars, they asserted their independence and in 1722 decisively defeated the Persian army in the Battle of Gulnabad before seizing the capital city of Eşfahān. June 27, 1709 Europe Battle of Poltava: Peter the Great’s reformed and modernized Russian army secured a major victory over the Swedish army led by Charles XII. The victory marked the ascendancy of Russia over Sweden as a European power and secured the newly founded city of St. Petersburg as a potential capital of the Russian Empire. Sept. 11, 1709 Europe Battle of Malplaquet: The bloodiest battle of the War of the Spanish Succession, which revealed new tactics and attitudes toward warfare. The outcome was a British allied victory, but the battle’s grim toll--more than ten thousand dead and twenty thousand wounded--shocked Europe. 1710 Europe Berkeley Publishes A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge : Irishman George Berkeley laid the groundwork for the empiricist school of philosophy. 1710 North America Germans Settle at New Bern, North Carolina: This immigration of 650 Swiss and Germans from the Palatinate in North Carolina began a long process of German immigration that made them the largest European immigrant group of the eighteenth century other than the British. 1710 Europe Tory Party Defeats the Whigs in Britain: In the first clear transfer of power since the Glorious Revolution of 1688, the duke of Marlborough and the Whig ministry were voted out of power, in part because of their perceived association with the Jacobite cause. Nov. 20, 1710-July 21, 1718 Europe Ottoman Wars with Russia, Venice, and Austria: Russia invaded Ottoman territory but was humiliated at the River Pruth. The Ottomans, encouraged by their easy victory, decided to attempt to recover territory they had lost to Venice in 1699, but they were defeated when Austria intervened in the conflict. 1711 Europe Ascot Races Established: Queen Anne of England approves support of formalized racing for cash prizes. 1711 Middle East Civil War in Egypt: Mamlūk beys emerge as the most important political force, reducing Ottoman governors to figureheads. 1711 Europe Landed Property Qualification Act Passed: This English law prohibits the election to Parliament of British financiers, merchants, and industrialists. Mar. 1, 1711 Europe Addison and Steele Establish The Spectator: Although it lasted for only two years, Joseph Addison and Richard Steele’s Whig newspaper The Spectator set the standard for taste and prose style in early eighteenth century London. Mar. 7, 1711 Europe Rinaldo Opens at London’s Haymarket Theatre: Debut of the opera featuring music by George Frideric Handel and libretto by Giacomo Rossi. Sept. 22, 1711-Mar. 23, 1713 North America Tuscarora War: Conflict over land, property, and trade led the Tuscarora Indians to declare war on European colonists in North Carolina. The Tuscaroras were decimated in the war, their society was dispersed, and the way was opened for Carolinian settlers to expand westward. Dec., 1711 Europe Occasional Conformity Bill: Stipulated that taking Communion once per year was insufficient to meet the requirement that those holding public office in Britain must take Anglican Communion. The law was an attempt to ensure that only authentic Anglicans could join the government. 1712 North America Carolina Colony Divided: Founded in 1663, the Carolina colony was divided into North Carolina and South Carolina. 1712 North America First Sperm Whale Harpooned in Modern Times: Christopher Hussey’s kill sparked a new international trade in sperm oil, spermaceti, whale ivory, and ambergris. 1712 Europe The History of John Bull Published: Literature and politics merged when Scottish physician John Arbuthnot satirized the duke of Marlborough and established “John Bull” as a symbol of England. 1712 Europe Philip V Founds the Royal Library of Spain: A French aristocrat who succeeded to the Spanish throne, Philip was eager to demonstrate his support of institutions that fostered Spanish culture. By founding the Royal Library of Spain, he helped to revive the Spanish Golden Age, which thrived under the Habsburgs. The Royal Library, controlled by the Crown, became the government-run National Library of Spain in 1836. 1712 Europe Pope Publishes The Rape of the Lock : Alexander Pope famously satirized the royal court in his mock-heroic poem. 1712 Europe Stamp Act: Responding to an appeal from Queen Anne to curb the licentiousness of the press, England’s Parliament enacted a tax of one-half cent per sheet on periodical publications. The tax became an important source of revenue and was expanded several times during the eighteenth century. As a vehicle for censorship, it was largely ineffective. Apr. 6, 1712 North America New York City Slave Revolt: A small group of black and American Indian slaves rebelled against mistreatment and restrictive laws, leading to further legal restrictions on slaves--free or not--including the weakening of due process rights and the prohibition against owning or inheriting property. Also, slave owners, before they could free a slave, had to pay a bond to the government as well as an annual allowance for life to each freed slave. Apr. 13-Aug. 11, 1712 Europe Second Villmergen War: In Switzerland’s fourth and last religious war, Swiss Protestants were victorious, thus gaining constitutional equality as well as political powers commensurate with their majority status and economic wealth. July 24-25, 1712 Europe Battle of Denain: the French under Claude-Louis-Hector, duc de Villars, defeated Eugene of Savoy and a British-Dutch force during the War of the Spanish Succession. Aug., 1712 Central America Maya Rebellion in Chiapas: An anticolonial, indigenous rebellion against Spanish occupation in southern Mexico, initially rooted in religious persecution but later a revolt encouraged by indigenous elites, was unprecedented in its scale, longevity, and leadership structure. The rebellion led to reform of the Mexican Indian labor system by the Spanish and set in motion demands for Mexican independence from Spain. 1713 North America Construction of First Schooner: Built by Andrew Robinson of Gloucester, Massachusetts, this distinctive vessel soon became the model for fleets fishing off the Grand Banks.1713 1713 Middle East Timoni Describes Immunization for Smallpox: Emmanuel Timoni, a Greek physician in Constantinople, described the method in a letter to London physician John Woodward, who in the following year published Timoni’s account in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. Apr. 11, 1713 Europe Treaty of Utrecht: This peace agreement between Great Britain and France concluded Britain’s participation in the War of the Spanish Succession. It revised territorial boundaries in North America and Europe, settled dynastic issues, and introduced trade patterns that resulted in Britain’s rise to world-power status. The war itself would not end until Austria also negotiated peace in the Treaties of Rastatt and Baden (1714). Aug. 3, 1713 Europe Foundation of the Spanish Academy: The Spanish Academy was founded to regulate the use and development of the Spanish language throughout the Spanish Empire. When Spain lost that empire, the academy continued to function, in concert with the academies of the Spanish language that were established in all former Spanish colonies. These academies, taking their lead from the Spanish Academy, have served to keep the Spanish language unified into the early twenty-first century. Sept. 8, 1713 Europe Papal Bull Unigenitus: Clement XI issued the papal bull Unigenitus, condemning French Jansenist teachings. The bull met stiff opposition among the French clergy, which seriously undermined papal authority. 1714 Europe Fahrenheit Develops the Mercury Thermometer: Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit developed sealed mercury thermometers with reliable scales that agreed with each other, revolutionizing the scientific measurement of temperature. By developing a method for calibrating different thermometers to the same scale, he made it possible for different people in different parts of the world to compare temperature measurements accurately and reliably. 1714-1718 Europe Ottoman War with Venice and Austria: The Ottomans, although regaining Morea, could not regain Hungary and lost territory in the Balkans as military power increasingly passed to European states. 1714-1762 Europe Quest for Longitude: John Harrison’s chronometer was used to make the first accurate measurement of longitude at sea, revolutionizing ocean exploration and travel. His invention opened new vistas in cartography, astronomy, world commerce, and international timekeeping. 1714-1777 Southeast Asia Burmese-Manipuri Wars: Manipur, an Indian state located on the western border with Burma, engaged in a series of conflicts with Burma during the eighteenth century and evenutally sought British assistance in protecting its homeland. British influence in the region increased as a result. Jan. 7, 1714 Europe Mill Patents the Typewriter: Henry Mill created the first machine for printing individual letters and documents. Queen Anne, recognizing the merits of Mill’s innovation, issued a patent guaranteeing his rights to manufacture and sell machines based on his design. Mar. 7, 1714, and Sept. 7, 1714 Europe Treaties of Rastatt and Baden: France and the Holy Roman Empire signed the treaties of Rastatt and Baden, respectively, officially ending the War of the Spanish Succession. The treaties supplemented the provisions of the Treaty of Utrecht (1713), which had concluded peace between all the other combatants in the war, but they failed to establish peace between the Holy Roman Empire and Spain. Summer, 1714-1741 North America Fox Wars: For almost three decades, the Fox Indians waged war against French settlers and against other Native American tribes, greatly destabilizing North America’s Great Lakes region and hampering trade and diplomacy for other inhabitants of the region. 1715 South Asia French Conquest of Mauritius: France seized the Indian Ocean island group from the Dutch, who had held it since the 1630’s. 1715 East Asia Japan Increases Limits Foreign Trade: Alarmed at the trade imbalance with the west, the Japanese government sets export limits on copper and reduces to two the number of Dutch ships permitted to trade annually at Nagasaki. 1715-1737 Europe Building of the Karlskirche: The Karlskirche, a votive church commissioned by Emperor Charles VI, represented the supreme architectural achievement of Johann Bernhard Fischer von Erlach, who set his distinctive mark upon the Kaiserstil (the imperial style) of Baroque Vienna. Feb. 5, 1715 Europe James Edward Flees to France: After Jacobite troops were routed by the Royalist forces of John Campbell, duke of Argyll, James Edward, the Old Pretender, fled to France. The Jacobite cause would be revived by his son, Charles Edward Stuart, the Young Pretender (b. 1720). Sept. 1, 1715 Europe Death of Louis XIV: The great exemplar of European royal absolutism, Louis XIV dies at age seventy-six after seventy-two years on the throne. Sept. 6, 1715-Feb. 4, 1716 Europe Jacobite Rising in Scotland: Supporters of the exiled Stuart Dynasty rose up in Scotland, in an attempt to overthrow the new Hanover Dynasty and place James Edward on the British throne. This Jacobite movement drew enough adherents to pose a serious threat to the Hanoverian monarchy, but it ended in failure because the Jacobites lacked good intelligence, adequate communications, and decisive military leadership. Nov. 13, 1715 Europe Battle of Sheriffmuir: Royalists under John Campbell, the duke of Argyll, forced the Jacobite army to retreat to Perth, Scotland, prior to the December arrival of James Edward, the Old Pretender. 1716 East Asia China Outlaws Christian Teaching: After an earlier period of relative openness, the incompatibility between Chinese rites and Christian doctrine led the Chinese government to outlaw Christian missionary activity. 1716 North America Virginians Settle in the Shenandoah Valley: Alexander Spotswood led a band of Virginia colonists across the Blue Ridge Mountains. 1717 North America German Religious Dissenters Immigrate to America: German Dunkers, Mennonites, and Moravians began an extensive migration of religious dissenters that would last until the American Revolutionary War. Most settled in Pennsylvania. 1717 Europe John Law Secures a Monopoly on Trade and Government in Louisiana: Having been unsuccessful in attracting French settlers to Louisiana, the French government granted Scottish entrepreneur John Law a twenty-five-year monopoly on trade and government in exchange for establishing at least six thousand white settlers in the region. 1717 Latin America Viceroyalty of New Granada Established: In order to govern its large New World empire more efficiently, the Spanish government created a new viceroyalty, carved from the viceroyalty of Peru and with its capital in Bogotá. Aug. 16, 1717 Europe Battle of Belgrade: After a long siege by 180,000 Turkish troops, Prince Eugene of Savoy successfully drove them back with a force of 40,000. Aug. 20, 1717-Feb. 17, 1720 Europe War of the Quadruple Alliance: France and Britain forced Spain, Austria, and Savoy to accept, with minor revisions, settlements reached at Utrecht and Rastatt that ended the War of the Spanish Succession. 1718 Europe Bernoulli Publishes His Calculus of Variations: By the early eighteenth century, various approaches had been tried to solve several mathematical problems known since antiquity. Johann I Bernoulli organized much of the earlier material and produced an account that could be followed by a wide range of mathematicians. 1718 North America Death of Blackbeard the Pirate: The pirate Edward Teach, known as Blackbeard, was killed in a battle off the coast of North Carolina, marking the decline of the great age of piracy in North America. 1718 Europe First English Banknotes Issued: After reforms borrowed from the Dutch, including establishment of the Bank of England in 1694, the English issued official banknotes to foster more efficient trade and commerce. 1718 Europe Geoffroy Issues the Table of Reactivities: Geoffroy produced the first systematic treatment of chemical reactivities. He presented a table illustrating these relationships to the French Academy of Sciences, along with a law stating that highly reactive substances will displace less reactive ones in compounds. 1718 Europe Montagu Reports on Smallpox Vaccination: In “Inoculation Against Smallpox,” Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, wife of the English ambassador to Constantinople, reports on the practice of variolation, commonly used in the Middle East to prevent severe cases of smallpox. 1718 North America New Orleans Founded: A new commercial city, founded at the mouth of the Mississippi River by Sieur de Bienville, attracts only a handful of French settlers but nevertheless lays the foundation for commercial development. 1718-1730 Middle East Tulip Age: The last twelve years of the reign of Ahmed III were known to the Turks as lale devri, or the Tulip Age, named after the sultan’s fascination with the cultivation and display of tulips. It was a period of hedonism and extravagance, artistic and literary florescence, and architectural projects, eventually extinguished by popular religious fanaticism. June 26, 1718 Europe Czarevitch Alexius Petrovich Dies of Flogging: Fearing rebellion, Peter the Great has his son and heir beaten to death in St. Petersburg. 1719 Europe Creation of the Principality of Liechtenstein: Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI created a new sovereign territory following the purchase of Vaduz and Schellenberg by the Austrian count, Hans Adam von Liechtenstein. 1719-1724 Europe Stukeley Studies Stonehenge and Avebury: William Stukeley’s systematic method of investigating Stonehenge, Avebury, and related prehistoric stone temple sites produced exceptional notes and drawings that became models for archaeological fieldwork. Apr. 25, 1719 Europe Defoe Publishes the First Novel: Daniel Defoe wrote Robinson Crusoe, a fact-based, realistically detailed account of a shipwrecked man struggling for survival, was the first novel written in English. The genre as a whole would come to be defined in terms of several of Robinson Crusoe’s key features, especially its studied focus on character psychology, its association of detail with realism, and its alignment with middle-class values and experience. 1720 Europe Financial Collapse of the John Law System: The fall of Scottish banker John Law’s Banque Générale and the collapse of his Mississippi Company in 1720 brought down France’s first national bank, ended serious attempts to modernize the state’s public financing and tax systems, and indirectly contributed to the massive debts that helped precipitate the French Revolution. 1720 Europe Handel Named Director of the Royal Academy of Music: George Frideric Handel was named director of the London academy and presented his oratorio Esther there. May, 1720-Dec., 1721 Europe Last Major Outbreak of Plague: On May 20, 1720, a ship carrying victims of plague arrived at the French port of Marseilles. Several days later, an epidemic began in the city. By the time the disease ran its course, fifty thousand people in the city had died, as well as an equal number throughout the countryside. The epidemic represented the last major outbreak of the plague in Europe. Sept., 1720 Europe Collapse of the South Sea Bubble: Fraudulent activities within the South Sea Company--a British concern granted a monopoly on all British trade with South America and the islands of the South Sea in exchange for assuming part of the national debt--along with political corruption and mass mania for speculation, resulted in a major stock market crash and widespread financial ruin. Dec., 1720 East Asia Japan Lifts Ban on Foreign Books: The Tokugawa shogunate lifted a nearly century-long ban on books containing minor references to Christianity. In harmony with Shogun Yoshimune’s policy of promoting “practical learning,” the Japanese began to import science and technology books, most of which were well illustrated and were either Chinese translations of European works or books in Dutch. Christian religious books, however, remained banned. 1721 Latin America Diamonds Discovered in Brazil: Once the diamond discovery near Tejuco, Brazil, was authenticated in Europe in 1729, a diamond rush began, greatly altering the character of the region. 1721 Europe/North America Regular Postal Service Between England and America: In a display of British administration and mastery of the sea, regular postal service was established between London and the principal New England cities. 1721 North America Smallpox Epidemic in Boston: Differences of opinion over the newly learned process of vaccination led to heated debate in the city. The survival rate for those vaccinated proved to be much better than that for those who were not vaccinated. 1721-1742 Europe Development of Great Britain’s Office of Prime Minister: The modern concept of the prime minister functioning as the head of Britain’s government evolved between 1721 and 1742, with Robert Walpole serving as the first prime minister. 1721-1750 Europe Early Enlightenment in France: During the three decades following publication of Montesquieu’s Lettres persanes (1721; Persian Letters, 1722), French writers produced a growing number of literary, scientific, and philosophical works advocating individual liberty, empirical investigations of all kinds, secular progress, and a skeptical attitude toward religion and tradition. 1722 Europe Réaumur Discovers Carbon’s Role in Hardening Steel: René-Antoine Ferchault de Réaumur wrote a treatise on transforming iron ore into steel, revolutionizing metallurgy in France. Réaumur’s recommendations and analysis made it possible for France to produce steel for itself and paved the way for the Industrial Revolution. Apr. 5, 1722 Pacific Islands European Discovery of Easter Island: Explorer Jacob Roggeveen discovered a remote, inhabited island about two thousand miles west of the South American continent. The hundreds of massive stone statues and absence of large trees led to centuries of speculation about the island’s history, a mystery that scientists have yet to unravel. 1723 Europe Bach Appointed Cantor at the St. Thomas School, Leipzig: After the leading candidate, Georg Philipp Telemann, declined the position, Johann Sebastian Bach auditioned and was hired; the following year he directed the first performances of the St. John Passion. 1723 Caribbean Coffee First Planted in the New World: French naval officer Gabriel Mathieu de Cheu plants a coffee plant seedling on the Caribbean island of Martinique, laying the foundation for a new commercial cash crop. 1723 Europe Jewish Oaths Permitted in Britain: In a display of the gradual liberalization of British society, Jews were permitted to take oaths without employing the phrase “On the true faith of a Christian.” 1723 Europe Stahl Postulates the Phlogiston Theory: In eighteenth century chemistry, the phlogiston theory--proposed by Georg Stahl--was the dominant model explaining combustion and fermentation. Until the discovery of oxygen, the theory was the basis for all serious chemical experimentation and research. It constituted the first systematic and comprehensive theory of chemistry. 1723-1725 Middle East Ottomans Occupy Georgia, Azerbaijan, and Shirvan: Taking advantage of Afghan attacks in eastern Iran, the Ottoman Empire and Russia partitioned the Caucasus region. 1724 Europe Foundation of the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences: As part of his program to Westernize and modernize Russian culture, Peter the Great founded an academy of sciences on the model of the British Royal Society and the French Academy of Sciences. 1725 Europe Flamsteed’s Star Catalog Marks the Transition to Modern Astronomy: John Flamsteed’s catalog, and later atlas showing the locations of the stars, more than doubled the number of stars accurately charted and established a standard used for more than a century by navigators and cosmologists. 1725 Europe Russian Academy of Sciences Established: On his deathbed, Peter the Great established the Russian Academy of Sciences, despite the fact that there were then few Russian scientists of note. 1725-Nov., 1794 Middle East Persian Civil Wars: As the Ṣafavid Empire weakened in the seventeenth century, tribal leaders fought one another for control of Persia. Political stability was maintained intermittently under Nādir Shāh and later under the benevolent rule of Karīm Khān Zand. Periods of anarchy nevertheless marked much of the eighteenth century until the establishment of the Qājār Dynasty in 1794 finally brought a stable government to Persia. Jan. 28, 1725 Europe Death of Peter the Great: By the time of his death after a forty-two-year reign, Peter had transformed Russia into a modern, and sometimes progressive, European power. Aug. 15, 1725 Europe Louis XV Marries Marie: At the age of fifteen, Louis XV married Marie, daughter of Poland’s former king Stanisław I Leszczyński, a marriage that provided few diplomatic complications but to many seemed beneath the dignity of the French crown. Oct., 1725 Europe Vico Publishes The New Science: Giambattista Vico viewed the state as emerging from primitive origins rather than reasoned philosophical argument, and his “new science” developed this thesis in analyses of both ideas and language. 1726 Latin America Montevideo Founded: The future capital of Uruguay, Montevideo was established at the mouth of the Rio de la Plata by families from Buenos Aires and the Canary Islands who were given lands by the Spanish crown to stem the Portuguese influence in the area. 1726 Europe Swift Satirizes English Rule of Ireland in Gulliver’s Travels: Jonathan Swift’s cutting satiric voice harshly criticized the British government and forced England to examine its treatment of its Irish colonial subjects. 1726-1729 Europe Voltaire Advances Enlightenment Thought in Europe: After self-exile to England, Voltaire returned to France and introduced advances made by the British in the sciences, religious tolerance, government and political theory, free thinking, and the elimination of aristocratic privilege. British thought thus became a model for the eighteenth century Enlightenment on the Continent. 1727 Europe Schulze Studies Silver Salts: Experiments by German J. H. Schulze established that light, rather than heat, darkens silver salts, laying a foundation for later work in photography. Oct. 21, 1727 Europe/East Asia Treaty of Kiakhta: The Treaty of Kiakhta defined trade between Russia and China for more than a century. It freed the two empires from worrying about each other. Thus, it enabled Russia to concentrate on developing its newly won position as a European power, while in China the Manchu Qing Dynasty could likewise concentrate on consolidating its control over its own far-flung and rapidly growing empire. May, 1727-1733 Europe Jansenist “Convulsionnaires” Gather at Saint-Médard: The Convulsionnaires were a group of Jansenists who gathered at the tomb of one of their members, where miracles seemed to occur. Jansenism had been officially condemned as heretical by the Church in 1713. Thus, for miracles to occur at the tomb of one of the followers of this declared heresy represented a threat to the spiritual authority of the Church. Jan. 29, 1728 Europe Gay Produces the First Ballad Opera: With The Beggar’s Opera, John Gay established a new genre, the English ballad opera, replacing the previous British passion for Italian opera with a new appreciation of native folksongs. His work paved the way for the light operas of the nineteenth century, notably the works of W. S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan. July, 1728-1769 Europe/North America Russian Voyages to Alaska: Russian explorers and scientists mounted expeditions to the northern Pacific, surveying and occupying the region. These excursions paved the way for the later Russian settlement of Alaska. 1729 North America Franklin Purchases The Pennsylvania Gazette : After years of working for others, Benjamin Franklin purchased his own newspaper with the assistance of partner Hugh Meredith. 1729 Europe Gray Discovers Principles of Electric Conductivity: Stephen Gray discovered that electricity could flow from one object to another and that, while some materials were conductors of electricity, other materials were insulators of electricity. His meticulous and imaginative experiments transformed the study of static electricity from a parlor amusement to a science. 1729 Europe Holy Club Established at Oxford University: John and Charles Wesley, James Hervey, and George Whitefield met each week to worship, pray, read the classics, and fast, establishing “Methodism” within the Episcopal Church at Oxford. Nov. 9, 1729, and Feb., 1732 Europe Treaty of Seville: In 1727, Spain mounted an unsuccessful attempt to recapture Gibraltar from Britain, which had held the peninsula since 1704. The Treaty of Seville ended this military conflict and contributed to the rising power of Britain and the decline of Spain in the eighteenth century. Nov. 28, 1729 North America Indian Attacks in Louisiana: Following demands that the Natchez Indians relinquish their burial grounds, a war party attacked Louisiana settlers and soldiers, leaving more than two hundred dead and taking several hundred prisoner. 1730 Middle East Patrona Hailil Revolt: In the wake of defeat at the hands of the Persians, Janissaries revolted, attacking many wealthy Turks before being captured and executed. 1730 Europe Townshend Introduces Scientific Farming in England: Learning from Dutch agriculturalists, Charles Townshend introduced the use of turnips as cattle feed, enabling farmers to provide fresh meat year-round. 1730-1736 Middle East Ottoman-Persian War: Laying siege to Baghdad in 1733, the Ṣafavids secured Ottoman renunciation of previous gains in the Caucasus region. 1730-1739 Caribbean First Maroon War: Two groups of rebellious and escaped slaves, as well as their descendants, fought British soldiers to a draw during nearly a decade of fighting in Jamaica, securing for themselves some freedoms but only at the expense of those slaves still in bondage. Mar. 8, 1730 Europe Anna Ivanovna’s Coup d’État: When the Russian czar Peter II died of smallpox on January 30, court intrigues led to the coup d’état of his cousin, who appointed Ernst Johann Biron as grand-chamberlain, initiating a brutal ten-year reign. 1731 Europe France Prohibits Barbers from Practicing Surgery: France forbade barbers from doubling as surgeons (which at this time was still a common practice in Europe), although the law usually allowed barbers to perform minor surgeries such as bloodletting and pulling teeth. 1731 Europe Hadley Invents the Reflecting Quadrant: Mathematician John Hadley’s precisely engineered quadrant enabled navigators to determine latitude day or night, proving so successful that it was adopted by Britain’s Royal Navy. July 1, 1731 North America Franklin Establishes North America’s First Circulating Library: Benjamin Franklin encouraged members of his Philadelphia intellectual circle to subscribe to a book-purchasing scheme and pool their books for the common good. 1732 Europe Comte de Bonneval Begins Modernization of Ottoman Artillery: French convert to Islam Claude Alexandre de Bonneval, also known as Ahmed Pasha, opens a military engineering school in 1734, inviting opposition from the Janissaries. 1732 North America Poor Richard’s Almanack Appears: Benjamin Franklin’s practical advice and agricultural observations made his almanac second only to the Bible as the most widely read book in the American colonies. c. 1732 Europe Society of Dilettanti Is Established: In response to a growing interest in Greek and Roman antiquities--especially among aristocratic British travelers who had seen them firsthand--the Society of Dilettanti was established in London for the study and discussion of those antiquities. The society helped fund and promote major archaeological expeditions and also contributed to the rise of neoclassicism in British art and architecture. June 20, 1732 North America Settlement of Georgia: Georgia became the last of North America’s original thirteen British colonies when it was settled in 1732. The philanthropists who settled the colony hoped it would relieve the plight of thousands of destitute debtors and provide a haven for persecuted Protestants from other European countries. Dec. 7, 1732 Europe Covent Garden Theatre Opens in London: Rivaled only by the Drury Lane Theatre and rebuilt three times after fire damage, Covent Garden Theatre was home to many of the best plays and musical productions of the eighteenth century. It became the foremost opera house in England. 1733 Europe British Parliament Passes the Molasses Act: This legislation was designed to raise revenue in the American colonies by heavily taxing molasses, sugar, and rum imported from non-British colonies leads to widespread smuggling. 1733 Europe De Moivre Describes the Bell-Shaped Curve: Abraham de Moivre was the first person to describe the so-called normal curve, a symmetrical bell-shaped graph that symbolizes probability distribution. This graph of the average distribution of events resolved a serious issue that had been left hanging by the previous generation of mathematicians. 1733 Europe Du Fay Discovers Two Kinds of Electric Charge: In extending the electrical experiments of Stephen Gray, Charles- François de Cisternay Du Fay discovered two types of electric charge, which he called vitreous and resinous electricity. He demonstrated the two-fluid theory of electricity: that like charges repel and unlike charges attract. Benjamin Franklin modified this idea with his one-fluid theory, in which an excess or deficiency of the electric fluid was designated positive or negative. 1733 Europe Kay Invents the Flying Shuttle: John Kay’s flying shuttle allowed a single weaver to produce fabrics of any width, alleviating the need for two weavers to cooperate on unusually wide fabrics. The invention also leant itself in principle to mechanization, helping to begin the mechanization of the textile industry that constituted the first phase of the Industrial Revolution in England. 1733 Europe Voltaire Publishes Letters Concerning the English Nation : Living under Bourbon absolutism, Voltaire praised English representative government. 1733-1734 Europe Pope Publishes his Essay on Man : Alexander Pope’s poem addresses the human ability to reason, one of the chief concerns of the Enlightenment. Oct. 10, 1733-Oct. 3, 1735 Europe War of the Polish Succession: When Polish king Augustus II died in 1733, France favored the restoration of Poland’s deposed former king, Stanisław I Leszczyński, while the Holy Roman Empire and its allies supported Augustus III’s claim to his father’s throne. In the resulting War of the Polish Succession, Poland became a pawn through which Western European powers attempted to increase their territory and influence. Nov. 23, 1733 Caribbean Slaves Capture St. John’s Island: Dozens of Amina slaves, originally from the Gold Coast of West Africa, conquered much of St. John in one of the Caribbean region’s most successful slave revolts. 1734 North America Schwenkenfelders Immigrate to America: The Schwenkenfelders, a religious group persecuted for their beliefs in Silesia, immigrated to America, settling first in Delaware. 1735 Europe British Parliament Passes the Copyright Act: In an age of increasing public debate in the press, Parliament moved to protect authors from pirated editions of their works. The act was one of the earliest modern laws concerning intellectual property. 1735 Europe Hadley Describes Atmospheric Circulation: George Hadley, an amateur scientist, described global atmospheric circulation as driven by solar heating and the rotation of the Earth. He was the first person to provide a working explanation for the atmospheric circulation patterns observed in the tropics and subtropics, including the trade winds. Beginning 1735 Europe Linnaeus Creates the Binomial System of Classification: Carolus Linnaeus designed a hierarchical taxonomic system for naming and classifying plants and animals. His system gave each organism a two-term name that was derived from its unique, or specific, defining characteristics (species name) and its position within the hierarchical system (generic or genus name). Linnaeus’s classification system brought an intellectual order to biology that persists to this day. May, 1735-1743 Latin America French Scientists Explore the Amazon River: Charles La Condamine and his crew rafted the 3,000-mile-long Amazon River, producing the first scientific accounts of the river and region. In addition to charting the river, he discovered the value of rubber and observed the work of Jesuit missionaries with indigenous peoples. Aug. 4, 1735 North America Trial of John Peter Zenger: Zenger published articles criticizing the governor of New York, who had him prosecuted for libel. Zenger was acquitted based on the argument--a novel one at the time--that the truth of an utterance should be a defense in libel cases. The case became a crucial step in the evolution of the freedoms of speech and of the press in Great Britain and subsequently the United States. 1736 Europe Concordat Between the Vatican and the Maronite Church: The Maronite Church accepted the pope’s authority in return for the allowance to maintain a distinctive hierarchy, liturgy, canon law, and customs. 1736 Middle East End of the Ṣafavid Dynasty in Persia: The death of ՙAbbās III at the age of six ended the Ṣafavid Dynasty, which had ruled Persia since 1502. 1736 Europe Euler Publishes the First Mechanics Text: Swiss mathematician Leonhard Euler’s Mechanica sive motus analytice exposita (mechanics or motion explained with analytical science), published nine years after Euler had joined the Russian Academy of Sciences, was the first systematic textbook on mechanics. 1736 Europe Gentleman’s Magazine Initiates Parliamentary Reporting: Between 1736 and 1746, England’s first magazine established a new standard of parliamentary reporting, providing an unbiased--albeit thinly disguised--account of debates in the face of government sanctions. 1736-1739 Europe Russo-Austrian War Against the Ottoman Empire: Russia, along with its ally Austria, invaded the Ottoman Empire. This ill-managed and inconclusive aggression ended in a stalemate which left the Russian aggressors determined to build up their army. The Ottomans, believing that their forces were sufficient to maintain their empire, failed to augment them, setting the stage for their defeat at Russian hands later in the century. 1737 Europe British Parliament Passes the Licensing Act: The measure required that all plays be approved by the Lord Chamberlain and limited the number of theaters in London. 1737 North America First City-Paid Police Force in America: Dissatisfied with the “city watch” in Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin helped establish a city-paid police force, a precursor to other progressive urban reforms instituted by Franklin. 1737 Europe Last Medici Ruler in Tuscany: With the death of Gian Gastone de’ Medici, Austria gave the ducal throne to Franz Stefan, duke of Lorraine and husband of Maria Theresa, heir apparent to the imperial throne. 1737 Europe Revival of the Paris Salon: After two failed attempts to revive the official annual exhibition of art by members of the French Royal Academy earlier in the century, the salon was finally reestablished as a regular event in 1737. This institutionalization of art’s public exposure created a cogent and aesthetically reactive public in Paris and a critical literature at once erudite and crudely popular that shaped both taste and art. Sept. 19, 1737 North America Walking Purchase: Pennsylvania, relying on a questionable deed and practices, acquired a great deal of Lenni Lenape tribal territory. This acquisition led to a greater colonial presence, diminished the prestige of the Lenni Lenape tribe, and enhanced Iroquois dominance over the other tribes of eastern Pennsylvania. 1738 Europe Bernoulli Proposes the Kinetic Theory of Gases: Daniel Bernoulli developed the first systematic theory to explain the behavior of gases in terms of their kinetic (or motion-related) properties. Using a mathematical approach, he established a formal relationship between, on one hand, the many tiny collisions between individual gas molecules and the walls of a container and, on the other hand, the overall pressure exerted on the container by the gas taken as a whole. 1738 Europe Excavation of Herculaneum Begins: Buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 b.c.e., Herculaneum represented one of the great archaeological challenges of the eighteenth century and would continue to be excavated for forty years. 1738 Europe Maupertuis Publishes Sur la figure de la terre : French mathematician and biologist Pierre-Louis Moreau de Maupertuis popularized Newtonian mechanics in his report on an expedition to Lapland, confirming the view that Earth is a spheroid flattened at the poles. May 15, 1738 Europe Foundation of St. Petersburg’s Imperial Ballet School: The St. Petersburg Imperial Ballet School’s founding marked the beginning of the great tradition of Russian ballet, which was instrumental in the evolution of dance technique, choreography, and narrative ballets. Nov. 18, 1738 Europe Treaty of Vienna: The Treaty of Vienna was agreed to in the wake of the War of the Polish Succession. It transferred the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies from Austria to Spain and awarded the Duchy of Lorraine and the County of Bar to Stanisław I Leszczyński, the deposed king of Poland. 1739 North America Discovery of the Headwaters of the Arkansas River: Departing from St. Louis to locate a trade route between the Missouri and Santa Fe, French explorers Pierre and Paul Mallet discovered the headwaters of the Arkansas River in the Rocky Mountains. 1739 Europe Potato Crop Fails in Ireland: Cotters began to select potato varieties that provided the highest yields, thus breeding potatoes with little resistance to fungus but setting the stage for later, devastating crop failures. 1739-1740 Europe Hume Publishes A Treatise of Human Nature: Although not widely read or well regarded during his lifetime, Hume’s first book, A Treatise of Human Nature, became a central work in the four-hundred-year tradition of British empiricism. 1739-1741 North America War of Jenkins’s Ear: Great Britain’s launch of the War of Jenkins’s Ear against Spain brought about the fall of Robert Walpole, the peaceable Whig prime minister, and committed the British government to the use of war as a tool for achieving its imperialistic goals. 1739-1742 North America First Great Awakening: The First Great Awakening, a spiritual revival in North America, gave birth to religious tolerance and inclusiveness in American society. It influenced the values that would shape the founding of the United States and the framing of the U.S. Constitution a few decades later. Apr. 7, 1739 Europe Highwayman Dick Turpin Hanged: Richard “Dick” Turpin had been a thief and gang member for more than a decade and was living under the alias John Palmer when he was captured and convicted of stealing horses; most of the legends concerning his career are probably fictional. Sept. 9, 1739 North America Stono Rebellion: African slaves in South Carolina staged a rebellion that was quickly and brutally suppressed. The revolt demonstrated to white settlers, who were in the minority, the precariousness of their situation in the colonies, and it led them to pass laws designed both to increase their control over their slaves and to decrease discontent among slaves that might lead to future uprisings. Sept. 18, 1739 Europe Treaty of Belgrade: The Treaty of Belgrade ended the Russo-Austrian war against the Ottoman Empire. It checked Austrian expansion into the Balkans for another century and halted Russian expansion southward for a generation. 1740 Europe Maclaurin’s Gravitational Theory: Colin Maclaurin’s prizewinning essay on tides provided an elegant mathematical proof of a key assumption of Newton’s gravitational theory. Maclaurin’s recognition of the deflecting action of the Earth’s rotation also anticipated the more fully dynamical theory of tides that Pierre-Simon Laplace later developed in Traité de mécanique céleste (1799-1825; Celestial Mechanics, 1829-1839). 1740 North America Moravian Immigrants Introduce German Christmas Customs: Moravians founded Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, introducing customs such as the visit of St. Nicholas (Santa Claus) to the Christmas holiday tradition. 1740-1741 Europe Richardson’s Pamela Establishes the Modern Novel: The modern English novel came into its own as a literary form with Samuel Richardson’s writing of Pamela: Or, Virtue Rewarded. With this work, the episodic method employed by the very first English novels gave way to a plot that focused on a main event, a romantic pursuit, and the realities of contemporary marriage and mores. May 31, 1740 Europe Accession of Frederick the Great: Frederick the Great ascended the Prussian throne, setting the kingdom on an expansionist and imperialist course. During his reign, Prussia became the dominant Germanic state, significantly changing the balance of power Europe. Oct. 20, 1740 Europe Maria Theresa Succeeds to the Austrian Throne: In accordance with the Pragmatic Sanction, Maria Theresa succeeded to the Austrian throne upon the death of Charles VI. Although she was one of the greatest of all Habsburg rulers, Maria Theresa’s accession began an intense rivalry between Austria and Prussia that eventually led to the eclipse of Austria as a power and the creation of a German Empire under Prussian leadership. Dec. 16, 1740-Nov. 7, 1748 Europe War of the Austrian Succession: For eight years, the nations of Western and Central Europe battered each other over dynastic, economic, and territorial concerns. Austria, Britain, and Piedmont-Sardinia led one side, while France and Spain anchored the other. In the end, the ruling families remained in power, territorial changes were paltry, and economic rivalries continued unabated. 1741 North America Edwards Preaches “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God”: In this sermon, perhaps the most famous of the eighteenth century, Jonathan Edwards of the Massachusetts colony preached Calvinist doctrines in the face of growing opposition from clergy who were increasingly embracing rationalism.1741 1742 Europe Celsius Proposes an International Fixed Temperature Scale: Anders Celsius conducted a series of precise experiments that demonstrated that the melting point of snow or ice and the boiling point of water, when adjusted for atmospheric pressure, were universal constants. He used these results to establish a uniform temperature scale, which allowed the calibration of thermometers worldwide. 1742 North America Completion of Faneuil Hall: Boston merchant Peter Faneuil funded the construction of Faneuil Hall as a meeting house for the city of Boston. It became the site of many rousing speeches as the American Revolutionary War approached. 1742 Europe Fielding’s Joseph Andrews Satirizes English Society: Originally intended as a retort to Pamela, Samuel Richardson’s morally strident assessment of eighteenth century social relations, Fielding’s Joseph Andrews emerged as a sweeping analysis of the foibles of eighteenth century materialism, social snobbery, and moral bankruptcy. 1742 North America Franklin Invents the “Pennsylvania Fireplace”: America’s great scientist and inventor turned his attention to practical home heating, inventing a fire box, to be set inside a fireplace, that provided for the circulation of warmed air. The invention is now known as the Franklin stove. 1742 North America Verendrye Explores the Dakotas: Obsessed with discovering the great “Western Sea,” Pierre Gaultier de Varennes de La Vérendrye explored southward from Canada, traversing the Dakotas as far as the Yellowstone River. Apr. 13, 1742 Europe First Performance of Handel’s Messiah: In an attempt to branch out from Italian opera, at which he was an acknowledged master, George Frideric Handel composed Messiah, an English concert oratorio that would become his most famous work. The oratorio achieved an effect for which Handel had been searching, combining artistic and popular appeal, and it has withstood both time and revision by other composers. 1743 North America Battle of Pamphlets: Responding to the Jonathan Edwards sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” Congregationalist minister Charles Chauncy wrote “Seasonable Thoughts on the State of Religion in New England,” initiating a pamphlet war between orthodox Calvinists and more liberal rationalists in New England that would last until Edwards died in 1758. 1743-1744 Europe D’Alembert Develops His Axioms of Motion: Drawing upon elements of Cartesian and Newtonian thought, Jean le Rond d’Alembert formulated a set of laws describing the behavior of bodies in motion. The laws, all derived completely through mathematical calculation, combined to produce a general principle for solving problems in rational mechanics. 1743-1746 Middle East Ottoman-Persian War: Nādir Shāh of Persia was unable to make gains in Kurdistan but did expand Persian influence in the Caucasus region. 1744 Europe Publication of “God Save the King” in London: Published in 1744 and first publicly performed the following year, this royal anthem had its roots in seventeenth century France and eventually was adopted as the tune for the American patriotic song “My Country, ’Tis of Thee.” 1744 Europe Sotheby’s Auction Houses Established: London bookseller Samuel Baker auctioned a local library, then turned the business over to his nephew, John Sotheby, in 1767. 1744-1748 North America/Caribbean King George’s War: The War of the Austrian Succession spilled over into America, with Anglo-French battles, most notably at sea, from Nova Scotia to the Caribbean. Jan. 24, 1744-Aug. 31, 1829 Southeast Asia Dagohoy Rebellion in the Philippines: The Dagohoy Rebellion was the longest-running successful revolt against Spanish colonizers in the history of the Philippines. The extended conflict was representative of a lasting tradition of resistance to centralized control in the outer Phillipines and of the difficulties posed to any government that attempts to overcome that resistance. 1745 Europe Lomonosov Issues the First Catalog of Minerals: Soon after returning from scientific studies in Germany, Mikhail Vasilyevich Lomonosov began sorting and cataloging the mineral cabinet of the Kunstkammer in St. Petersburg. His resulting catalog of more than thirty-five hundred mineral specimens was published in 1745. May 11, 1745 Europe Battle of Fontenoy: French victory under Maurice, comte de Saxe, led to the capture of fortresses in the Austrian Netherlands during the War of the Austrian Succession. Aug. 19, 1745-Sept. 20, 1746 Europe Jacobite Rebellion: The attempt by Charles Edward Stuart, to launch an invasion of Great Britain through the Highlands of Scotland astounded the world by coming very close to success. However, the withdrawal of the prince’s army back into Scotland gave the Hanoverian monarchy the chance to regroup and eventually to crush the Jacobite uprising of Charles Edward Stuart (Bonnie Prince Charlie). Oct., 1745, and Jan., 1746 Europe Invention of the Leyden Jar: Experimenting independently of each other in different countries, Ewald Georg von Kleist and Pieter van Musschenbroek invented the Leyden jar, the first device that could accumulate and store large amounts of electric energy. Later called a condenser or capacitor, the Leyden jar could conserve an electric charge for future use or experimentation in another location. 1746 Europe Roebuck Develops the Lead-Chamber Process: John Roebuck found a way to produce sulfuric acid in greater quantities and at a lower price than had been possible previously. His lead-chamber process increased the British supply of sulfuric acid, making it possible to develop new applications and to export the substance for sale to foreign markets. 1746 Middle East Zāhir al-ՙUmar Creates a Stronghold in Galilee: Zāhir al-ՙUmar seized Acre, resurrecting this Crusader city and fortifying it against Ottoman forces. Ottoman leaders, facing external threats from Russia, were unable to defeat Zāhir and reconquer Acre. 1746-1754 South Asia Carnatic Wars: The Carnatic Wars established British superiority over the French in India and provided an opening for the British East India Company, allowing it gradually to extend its political control over most of the Indian subcontinent. 1746-1755 Europe Johnson Creates the First Modern English Dictionary: Samuel Johnson’s A Dictionary of the English Language, the first English dictionary by a major English writer, established a new standard in comprehensiveness and sound lexical judgment. Jan. 17, 1746 Europe Battle of Falkirk: The Young Pretender, Charles Edward Stuart, led Scottish Highlanders to victory over the British, giving hope to the Jacobite cause, although those hopes were quickly dashed by the defeat at the Battle of Culloden three months later. Apr. 16, 1746 Europe Battle of Culloden: The final defeat of the Jacobite rebels and the cause of Prince Charles Edward Stuart, who fled to France in September. Oct. 20, 1746 South Asia Madras Falls to France: As the War of the Austrian Succession spread to India, France under Joseph-François Dupleix continued its asendancy in southern India by capturing the British fort at Madras. 1747 Caribbean Britain Extends Control in the Caribbean: As the War of the Austrian Succession expanded globally, Britain won a number of victories in the Caribbean under Admirals George Anson and Edward Hawke, threatening the French sugar trade from its Caribbean colonies. 1747 Europe Marggraf Extracts Sugar from Beets: At a time when Europe was dependent on expensive sugar from sugarcane grown using slave labor in the Caribbean, Andreas Marggraf discovered that sugar extracted from a European crop, the beet, was identical to that from sugarcane. His discovery eventually led to the development of a commercially successful sugar beet industry in Europe and North America. 1747 Europe Wesley Spreads Methodism in Ireland: Seeking to model his holiness on the practices of the early Christian Church, Evangelical John Wesley began to spread his “Methodism” to Ireland, making the first of forty-two trips there in 1747. 1747-1773 Middle East Wars of Afghan Expansion: During prolonged conflict with the Ṣafavid Persians and the Indian Marathas, Afghanistan gained its independence and began to develop a sense of national identity. 1748 Europe Agnesi Publishes Analytical Institutions: Maria Agnesi published one of the first introductory textbooks for beginning students in the new field of calculus. By defining the terms in which the new discipline was taught, her text shaped the understanding of a generation of mathematicians. One of the curves discussed in her text is still associated with her name. 1748 Europe Bradley Discovers the Nutation of Earth’s Axis: After discovering the aberration of starlight in the late 1720’s, James Bradley proceeded to catalog the positions of more than three thousand stars between 1727 and 1747. His catalog led him to discover the nutation of Earth’s axis as Earth orbits the Sun. 1748 Europe Euler Develops the Concept of Function: The introduction of algebraic expressions for curves helped mathematicians to analyze geometrical figures. Leonhard Euler’s 1748 work marked a change in perspective by putting the function first and the curve second. By inverting the order of the expression, Euler reconceived the very subject matter of mathematics. 1748 Europe Excavation of Pompeii: The excavation of the intact ancient Roman city of Pompeii, which had been buried under layers of volcanic ash for more than sixteen centuries, caused a sensation among intellectuals and amateurs alike and brought about a revival of interest in the values and styles of the Roman world. 1748 Europe Montesquieu Publishes The Spirit of the Laws: De l’esprit des loix (1748; The Spirit of the Laws, 1750) set a standard for comparative political, cultural, and legal thought in Europe. It laid the foundation for the institution of the social sciences as disciplines more rigorous and distinct from those of the humanities. 1748 Europe Nollet Discovers Osmosis: Jean-Antoine Nollet discovered that membranes could be selectively permeable and analyzed the process by which a solvent concentrated on one side of such a membrane would pass through it until an equilibrium on either side of the membrane had been reached. Henri Dutrochet later related this process specifically to biological systems and gave it the name “osmosis.” 1748 North America Settlers Cross the Allegheny Divide: American colonists traveled beyond the Allegheny divide into territories claimed by France, heightening tensions between France and England. 1748-1755 Middle East Construction of Istanbul’s Nur-u Osmaniye Complex: The last great work of Ottoman religious architecture, the Nur-u Osmaniye mosque complex assimilated European stylistic influences into the classical Ottoman style. Combining a mosque, school, and library, the complex has functioned since its completion as an important repository and purveyor of Islamic knowledge and faith. Oct. 18, 1748 Europe Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle: The Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle temporarily ended the set of wars known collectively as the War of the Austrian Succession. Although it merely created a pause in the conflicts between France and England that lasted throughout the eighteenth century, the treaty is noteworthy as a signal of the waning power of the Holy Roman Empire. 1749 North America College of Philadelphia Founded: Benjamin Franklin suggests the founding of the institution of higher learning in Philadelphia that would become the University of Pennsylvania. 1749 Europe Fielding Publishes The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling : English author and playwright Henry Fielding published one of the earliest and best-known English novels, set against the backdrop of the Jacobite rebellion of 1745. Samuel Taylor Coleridge regarded the novel as having one of the three greates plots in all English literature. 1749-1789 Europe First Comprehensive Examination of the Natural World: The comte de Buffon’s thirty-six-volume Histoire naturelle, générale et particulière (1749-1789; Natural History, General and Particular, 1781- 1812) represents the first comprehensive and systematic exploration of the natural world. Although Buffon based his conjectures on physical evidence, he was frequently proven wrong by fellow scientists. Despite the work’s flaws, Buffon inspired immense respect because of the nature of the undertaking, his systematic approach to his subject, and the high quality of his prose style. June 10, 1749 Middle East Saՙīd Becomes Ruler of Oman: Aḥmad ibn Saՙid helped bring an end to the Yaՙrubi Dynasty in Oman. Establishing himself as imam, he founded his own dynastic house, the House of Āl Bū Saՙīd, which has continued to rule into the twenty-first century. 1750 North America Battle of Kathio: This legendary battle is based on oral traditions recounting the moment when the Ojibwe tribe drove the Dakota people from the Thousand Lakes region of northern Minnesota. 1750 Europe British Parliament Passes the Iron Act: Part of the mercantilistic Trade and Navigation Acts designed to impede the production of finished iron goods in the American colonies, this law encouraged the production of pig and bar iron, which might then be traded for English manufactures. 1750 Europe Maupertuis Publishes Essai de cosmologie : French scientist Pierre-Louis Moreau de Maupertuis first suggests the biological concept of survival of the fittest, later made famous by Charles Darwin. 1750 Europe Treaty of Madrid: The Treaty of Madrid altered the boundary between Portuguese and Spanish South America, formally recognizing that some lands on the western, Spanish side of the original boundary had already become de facto possessions of Portugal. Subsequent treaties reversed and modified the Madrid agreements. 1750 North America Walker Finds Cumberland Gap: Thomas Walker, Virginia land agent and physician, discovered access across the Appalachian Mountains through a gap at 1,665 feet, named for the duke of Cumberland. 1750 Europe Westminster Bridge Opens for Traffic in London: The long-anticipated bridge across the Thames River at Westminster, discussed for almost two centuries and designed by the Swiss engineer Charles Labelye, finally opened for traffic after eleven years in construction. 1750-1792 Central Asia China Consolidates Control over Tibet: Following the murder of Tibet’s last king by his Chinese advisers, China consolidated its indirect rule over Tibet in 1751 and strengthened its control over Tibet after defeating the Gurkha invasion of Tibet in 1792. Mar. 20, 1750-Mar. 14, 1752 Europe Johnson Issues the Rambler: Writing almost all the 208 essays in the semiweekly periodical the Rambler, Samuel Johnson established himself as a prominent literary figure in eighteenth century Britain and, through his rigorous examination of literature and human affairs in general, tried to move his readers toward sound judgment and moral wisdom. 1751 Europe Maupertuis Provides Evidence of “Hereditary Particles”: The theory of hereditary particles had been competing with other possible explanations of biological reproduction in 1751. However, with the publication of Système de la nature, Maupertuis became the first scientist to provide statistical evidence that the existence of particles inherited from both parents could explain specific, empirically observable patterns in the inheritance of physical traits. 1751-1772 Europe Diderot Publishes the Encyclopedia: The publication of Diderot’s Encyclopédie (Encyclopedia) was one of the great events of the French Enlightenment. A massive work of scholarship designed to assist the triumph of reason, progress, and tolerance, the Encyclopedia shaped French intellectual life for several decades. Aug. 31, 1751 South Asia British Seize Arcot: British Troops under Robert Clive seized the French fortress at Arcot, then held off a besieging Indian-French force during September and October to shake French authority in the region. 1752 North America Liberty Bell Cast in Philadelphia: John Pass and John Stow cast in bronze alloy the 2,080-pound bell that would be hung in the belfry of the Pennsylvania State House. 1752 Middle East Sabah Ibn Jābir Becomes Ruler of Kuwait: Established the Sabah Dynasty, which ruled into the twentieth century. 1752-Mar., 1756 Europe Mayer’s Lunar Tables Enable Mariners to Determine Longitude at Sea: Johann Tobias Mayer compiled and disseminated tables of astronomical distances, supplemented with mathematical formulas and instructions, to guide navigators to determine longitude at sea. These lunar tables helped sea travelers avoid dangerous areas, reduced the occurrence of shipwrecks and disappearances, and enhanced trade, exploration, and military expeditions. 1752-1760 South Asia Alaungpaya Unites Burma: The creation of the Burmese Third Empire by Alaungpaya ushered in the modern era of British colonial affiliation, featuring the exploitation of the production capacities of the Irriwaddy and Salween River Valleys to provide rice exports in the global colonial trade. June, 1752 North America Franklin Demonstrates the Electrical Nature of Lightning: By drawing lightning from storm clouds, Franklin’s dangerous kite experiment conclusively demonstrated that lightning was a form of electricity. The experiment also offered further proof of his single-substance theory of electricity and showed that this fluidlike static energy could be passed from one object to another. Sept. 2, 1752 Europe England Adopts the Gregorian Calendar: First proposed in the sixteenth century to correct the length of the mean year in the Julian calendar, the adoption of the Gregorian calendar led to the “loss” of eleven days but became the standard for the Western world. 1753 Europe Lind Discovers a Cure for Scurvy: Building upon previous medical accounts and motivated by the medical disasters of long sea voyages, James Lind proved that citrus fruits can prevent and cure scurvy. His results, published in 1753, helped to convince the British court to order the rationing of citrus juice to all sailors, thus dramatically reducing scurvy in the Royal Navy. Jan. 11, 1753 Europe Foundation of the British Museum: London physician Sir Hans Sloan left initial collections of books, coins, manuscripts, and pictures to the nation, which were enhanced by purchases as a royal foundation charter. 1754 Europe Büsching Publishes A New System of Geography: In 1754, Anton Friedrich Büsching began publishing a multivolume geographical work, Neue Erdbeschreibung (A New System of Geography), and by 1792 he had completed ten volumes, mostly dealing with Europe. His work was an advance over previous geographies, because it emphasized measurement and statistics rather than mere description. 1754 Europe Chippendale Publishes The Gentlemen and the Cabinet Maker’s Director : After opening a London factory for the production of furniture in 1749, Thomas Chippendale produced the best-known eighteenth century guide to furniture design.1754 1754 Europe Winter Begun in St. Petersburg: The baroque Winter Palace, designed as the winter home of the Russian czars, began construction under the direction of Italian architect Bartolomeo Rastrelli. Apr. 17, 1754 North America French Troops Halt Virginian Advance: A land-developing expedition of Virginians under George Washington was defeated while attempting to build a fort at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers. May 28, 1754-Feb. 10, 1763 North America French and Indian War: The French and Indian War was the final major European conflict for control of North America before the American Revolution. Great Britain defeated France and its Native American allies, establishing British dominance in the American northeast, but British economic dependence on the American colonies increased in the process. June 19-July 10, 1754 North America Albany Congress: In an attempt to preserve their alliance with the Iroquois and to prepare for war with the French, a congress of colonial delegates drafted a plan to unify the American colonies under a single government. The Plan of Union was rejected by the colonies, and the British government, rather than colonial officials, became responsible for conducting diplomacy with Native Americans. 1755 Europe Bakewell Develops Leicester Sheep: English agriculturalist Robert Bakewell developed the stocky Leicester sheep, one of the first breeds to designed for both wool and meat production. 1755 Europe Johnson Publishes A Dictionary of the English Language : English author Samuel Johnson published the first edition of the most famous dictionary in the English language. June 5, 1755 Europe Black Identifies Carbon Dioxide: Joseph Black showed that when intensely heated, magnesia alba (magnesium carbonate) and chalk (calcium carbonate) produced “fixed air,” a gas, later identified as carbon dioxide, with unique physical and chemical properties. July, 1755-Aug., 1758 North America Acadians Are Expelled from Canada: The British forcibly expelled most of the French population of Nova Scotia, which had been called Acadia when in was under French control. Many French Acadians subsequently returned to Nova Scotia or found new homelands elsewhere, especially in Louisiana. July 9, 1755 North America Battle of Monongahela: British General Braddock, badly defeated by the French and their Indian allies, demonstrated the unsuitability of British military techniques to the American frontier. Sept., 1755 Middle East Fire Ravages Istanbul: Fires in September, 1755, and July, 1756, destroyed much of old Istanbul (formerly Constantinople). Nov. 1, 1755 Europe Great Lisbon Earthquake: An earthquake of exceptional magnitude devastated the port city of Lisbon, Portugal. The massive destruction wrought by the quake resulted in the systematic rebuilding and modernization of the city, making it the most modern and architecturally advanced capital in Europe. The earthquake also occasioned a critical reexamination throughout Enlightenment Europe of the role of reason in nature and human affairs. 1756 South Asia English Prisoners Die in the “Black Hole of Calcutta”: The British public was outraged upon learning that 123 British prisoners had died when forced into a small guardroom by Sūraj-ud-Dowlah as he attacked the city. Jan., 1756-Feb. 15, 1763 Europe Seven Years’ War: The Seven Years’ War was both the continuation of a struggle for power in central Europe between Prussia and Austria and a chapter in the ongoing worldwide colonial rivalry between France and Britain. The war established Britain as the dominant world colonial power, and it secured Prussia’s status as a major European power, establishing the early framework for the creation of a unified German Empire. 1757 Europe Campbell Develops the Sextant: Expanding Hadley’s quadrant by 30 degrees, Royal Naval Captain John Campbell developed an instrument that could measure both longitude and latitude. 1757 Europe Monro Distinguishes Between Lymphatic and Blood Systems: Alexander Monro observed a system of fluid absorption associated with lymphatics that appeared to possess its own valvular system. As a result, he correctly argued that the system was unique and separate from that of the circulatory system for blood. 1757-1766 Europe Haller Publishes Elements of Human Physiology: Between 1757 and 1766, Haller published his textbook Elementa physiologiae corporis humani (1757-1766; elements of human physiology) in Lausanne and Bern, Switzerland. This comprehensive work established physiology as a science independent of anatomy. Haller’s discovery that contractility is a quality inherent in muscles, while sensitivity and pain perception characterize nerve function, laid the foundation of modern neurology. June 23, 1757 South Asia Battle of Plassey: The British East India Company’s triumph at the Battle of Plassey led first to British hegemony over Bengal and then to the establishment of the British Raj and to India taking its place as the crown jewel of the British Empire. Oct., 1757 Middle East Bedouin Attack on Damascus Pilgrims: The worst of frequent attacks, thousands of pilgrims were killed or left to die in the desert. Nov. 5, 1757 Europe Battle of Rossbach: Confronting an advancing allied army of French, German, and Austrian troops that was more than twice the size of his own, Frederick the Great wheeled his soldiers into a position from which they literally destroyed the allied forces. The defeat ended France’s advance in the Seven Years’ War. June 8-July 27, 1758 North America Siege of Louisbourg: Nearly fifteen thousand British soldiers under Major General Jeffrey Amherst encircled and bombarded the French Canadian fortress of Louisbourg, gaining victory over the French after seven weeks. Britain’s success opened up the St. Lawrence River and exposed Quebec, the center of French power in America, to subsequent British attacks, ultimately resulting in the conquest of Canada. July 8, 1758 North America Battle of Ticonderoga: In a brave but futile frontal assault on Louis-Joseph de Montcalm’s French forces, British troops under Abercromby failed to take Fort Ticonderoga during the French and Indian War. July 27, 1758 Europe Helvétius Publishes De l’esprit: A major work in the field of materialist ethics and best seller of the clandestine book trade in prerevolutionary France, De l’esprit immediately came under attack by those in church and government who opposed the Enlightenment philosophers. Its author, Claude-Adrien Helvétius, declared self-interest to be the motivating force behind all human actions. Oct. 14, 1758 Europe Battle of Hochkirk: Austrians under Count Leopold Joseph Daun surprised Frederick the Great and the Prussian army, seizing their artillery and forcing their retreat. 1759 Europe Aepinus Publishes Essay on the Theory of Electricity and Magnetism: Inspired by Sir Isaac Newton’s mathematical explanation of the gravitational force, Franz Maria Ulrich Theodor Hoch Aepinus’s Tentamen theoriae Electricitatis et Magnetismi (1759; Essay on the Theory of Electricity and Magnetism) provided the first systematic, mathematical analysis of the forces of electricity and magnetism. 1759 Europe Charles III Gains the Spanish Throne: Under King Charles III, Spain reached the high point of its “enlightened absolutist” monarchy. Charles initiated far-reaching social, political, and economic reforms, using his nearly absolute power to improve his society and the lives of its people. 1759 Europe Guinness Brewery Established: Arthur Guinness established a brewery in Dublin, Ireland, that would become the largest in the world. 1759 Europe Wedgwood Founds a Ceramics Firm: Wedgwood’s ceramics company developed revolutionary new products and business techniques in response to consumer needs and the new industrial economy, producing affordable, high-quality, functional ware, as well as beautiful ornamental wares in new, refined materials. Also, he instituted new labor and management practices that increased productivity and profit. 1759 Europe Wolff Lays Foundation of Modern Embryology: Careful observations made by German biologist Kaspar Friedrich Wolff established a foundation for the discipline of embryology. 1759-1766 Europe Construction of the Bridgewater Canal: The unique Bridgewater Canal, the first true industrial canal and the first canal to be dug from dry land and to have its own water supply, facilitated the movement of coal and other materials, advancing the Industrial Revolution in Great Britain. Jan., 1759 Europe Voltaire Satirizes Optimism in Candide: Voltaire published his most famous philosophical tale, a global satire on human corruption that gave birth to the term “pessimism.” Its impassioned advocacy of humanitarian principles, religious tolerance, social justice, and realistic confrontation with life’s grimness retains its power and relevance more than two centuries later. Jan. 19, 1759-Aug. 16, 1773 Europe Suppression of the Jesuits: Beginning in 1759, the governments of Portugal, France, and Spain began limiting the activities of the Society of Jesus, eventually expelling the order and seizing its property. In 1773, Pope Clement XIV, under pressure from Jesuit detractors, declared the order abolished. June 27-Sept. 18, 1759 North America Siege of Quebec: French troops were finally driven from their North American capital following a daring night attack and a battle on the Plains of Abraham (September 13) in which commanders on both sides were killed. Aug. 1, 1759 Europe Battle of Minden: This battle resulted in a victory for combined British, Hanoverian, Hessian, and Prussian troops over the French army, ending the French threat to Hanover. Oct. 5, 1759-Nov. 19, 1761 North America Cherokee War: The colonies of South Carolina and Virginia waged war against the Cherokee Indians, utterly destroying several Cherokee communities. The war ended in an expansion of South Carolina’s territory at the Cherokees’ expense, and it presaged the Cherokee alliance with the British in the Revolutionary War. Nov. 20-21, 1759 Europe Battle of Quiberon Bay: The British fleet under Edward Hawke destroyed most the French fleet off the southern coast of Brittany, ending French plans to invade Scotland. 1760’s Europe Beginning of Selective Livestock Breeding: Robert Bakewell, one of the most prominent of the agricultural breeders of the eighteenth century, revolutionized cattle and sheep breeding by using scientific methods to develop new breeds designed to maximize meat production. 1760-1776 Caribbean Caribbean Slave Rebellions: The ambiguous position of the Maroons (runaway slaves) continued to affect, but not stop, slave rebellions and plots in British Jamaica, as Maroons often worked in alliance with the British. This alliance made clear that the sugar plantations could not function without the help of the Maroons. Nov. 3, 1760 Europe Battle of Torgau: Frederick the Great drove a numerically superior Austrian army from a heavily fortified position near the Elbe River, suffering more than thirteen thousand casualties in the process. 1761 Europe Gainsborough Exhibits at the Society of Artists: One of the most famous portrait and landscape painters of his day, Thomas Gainsborough was among those who founded and exhibited at Britain’s first national arts academy, the Society of Artists, later renamed the Royal Academy of Arts. 1761 Europe Rousseau Publishes The New Héloïse : Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s great epistolary novel Julie: Ou, La Nouvelle Héloïse (1761; Eloise: Or, A Series of Original Letters, 1761; better known as The New Héloïse) heralded the Romantic movement with its shift from pure reason toward a recognition of the vital role of passion and subjective feeling. 1761 Europe Successful Test of an Improved Chronometer: Based on John Harrison’s design of 1736, an improved chronometer is tested on board HMS Deptford on a voyage to Jamaica. Jan. 14, 1761 South Asia Battle of Panipat: Afghans under Aḥmad Shāh Durrānī crushed the Marathas north of Delhi, virtually destroying their military power and weakening the region as the British began to expand. 1762 Europe The Antiquities of Athens Prompts Architectural Neoclassicism: James Stuart and Nicholas Revett’s The Antiquities of Athens shifted the focus of architectural inspiration from ancient Rome to classical Greece and resulted in a uniquely Greek style of neoclassicism often referred to as Greek Revival. The work is considered a landmark in the history of archaeology. 1762 Europe France Expels Jesuits: Suspect both on political and commercial grounds, the Jesuits are expelled from France. 1762 Caribbean Widespread British Naval Victories: British admirals capture Martinique, Grenada, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent, Havana, and Manila during the latter stages of the Seven Years’ War, confirming their naval superiority. Jan., 1762-Nov., 1766 Europe Mozart Tours Europe as a Child Prodigy: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, a musical prodigy, toured Europe as a child, amazing audiences and winning favor in the courts of Europe; these engagements played a large part in Mozart’s later achievements as a world-famous composer.Apr., 1762 Oct. 5, 1762 Europe First Performance of Gluck’s Orfeo and Euridice: Composed when he was already a famous opera composer, Gluck’s work with librettist Calzabigi led him to champion revolutionary reforms in opera that have made him a key figure in the transition from the Baroque to the classical and pre-Romantic styles. 1763 Europe Bayes Advances Probability Theory: Thomas Bayes’s work on the inverse problem in probabilities, which attempted to calculate the probabilities of causes from those of events, helped to advance investigations in the foundations of probability. Bayes’s theorem is a major part of subjectivist approaches to epistemology, statistics, and inductive logic. 1763-1767 Europe Famine in Southern Italy: In the mid-1760’s, food shortages, intensified by insufficient harvests, feudalistic practices, and flawed food distribution systems, resulted in famine conditions, which prompted rural populations to migrate to urban areas. Because charities and governments failed to provide sufficient relief, some famine victims rioted. Several hundred thousand people died either from starvation or diseases exacerbated by unsanitary conditions. Feb. 10, 1763 Europe Peace of Paris: In the Peace of Paris, Great Britain, France, and Spain made peace with one another, ending their participation in the Seven Years’ War and the French and Indian War. The treaty confirmed the supremacy of the British colonial empire and the virtual destruction of the French overseas empire. Beginning Apr., 1763 Europe The North Briton Controversy: The suppression of John Wilkes’s periodical The North Briton for alleged aspersions against the British throne resulted in Wilkes’s arrest, conviction, and imprisonment for seditious libel, sparking a controversy with major implications for the development of a modern free press and the beginnings of modern lobbying groups. May 8, 1763-July 24, 1766 North America Pontiac’s Resistance: A pan-Indian uprising led by Ottawa chief Pontiac presented the greatest threat to British expansion before the American Revolution. Aug., 1763-Apr., 1765 Europe David Garrick’s European Tour: David Garrick, eighteenth century England’s most prominent actor and that country’s premier theater representative, toured Western Europe, establishing the reputation of English theater throughout Europe. The tour proved to be one of the most significant celebrity events of the century. Sept. 10, 1763 Europe Publication of the Freeman’s Journal: The Freeman’s Journal was the first independent Irish newspaper to survive for more than a few issues, evolving into a newspaper that presented a comprehensive, accurate picture of Irish news. It became famous for the letters collectively known as Baratariana and its effective support of the Union Act. Oct. 7, 1763 North America Proclamation of 1763: In an effort to avoid further conflict over territorial sovereignty, the British parliament issued the Proclamation of 1763, drawing a frontier line between the American colonies and Native American lands. Dec. 14 and 27, 1763 North America Paxton Boys’ Massacres: Growing tensions between Pennsylvania backcountry settlers and Native Americans resulted in the massacre of defenseless Susquehannocks. The massacres began a chain of events that resulted in Pennsylvania’s declaration of war against several Native American tribes. 1764 Europe Beccaria Publishes On Crimes and Punishment : Italian economist Cesare Bonesana, marchese di Beccaria’s condemnation of torture and capital punishment becomes a touchstone for modern attitudes toward criminology. 1764 East Asia Cao Xueqin (Ts’ao Chan) Dies: Principal author of the greatest Chinese novel of manners, Ts’ao Chan dies, leaving his masterwork, Honglou meng (Dream of the Red Chamber), incomplete. It would be published twenty-nine years later. 1764 Europe Invention of the Spinning Jenny: The spinning jenny, invented by James Hargreaves in 1764, was the first in a series of inventions that adapted mechanical power to the production of textiles. It laid the foundations for the vast expansion of output achieved by the textile industry in the Industrial Revolution. 1764 North America Rhode Island College Founded: Established in Warren as a Baptist college, this institution would move to Providence and become Brown University in 1804, all the while maintaining nonsectarian principles. 1764 Europe Royal Palace in Madrid Completed: After twenty-eight years of construction, the royal palace is completed for King Charles III. Apr. 19, 1764 Europe British Parliament Passes the Currency Act: The measure forbade the American colonies to print paper money, strengthening royal control. July, 1764 Europe Voltaire Publishes A Philosophical Dictionary for the Pocket: Combining satire and irony with empirical, rational, and moral arguments, Voltaire attacked superstition, sectarian fanaticism, and intolerance, exposing the atrocities committed in the name of religion. Its aggressive anticlericalism and irreverent treatment of Holy Scripture shocked contemporary readers and provoked virulent public debate. 1765 North America First American Medical School Established: The first formal medical school in the English American colonies is founded at the College and Academy of Philadelphia, later the College of Physicians and Surgeons. 1765 Europe Mother Goose Melodies Published: Boston printer Thomas Fleet published songs sung by his mother-in-law, who put tunes to Charles Perrault’s verses, including “Baa Baa Black Sheep,” “Georgie Porgie,” “Hickory Dickory Dock,” “Jack and Jill,” and “Little Bo Peep.” 1765 Europe Walpole Publishes The Castle of Otranto : Usually considered the first Gothic horror novel, Horace Walpole’s work marked an early stage in English Romanticism. 1765-1769 Europe Watt Develops a More Effective Steam Engine: James Watt’s improved steam engine ushered in low-cost, efficient steam power for coal mining and manufacturing and permitted the extraordinary development of the Industrial Revolution. 1765-1803 Middle East Expansion of Saudi Rule: ՙAbd al-Azīz ruled as emir during these years, consolidating and expanding control of the peninsula begun under his father Muḥammad ibn Saՙud. Mar. 22, 1765-Mar. 18, 1766 North America Stamp Act Crisis: During the Stamp Act Crisis, the American colonies responded to the first direct tax levied on the colonists with protests and boycotts. The Stamp Act was soon repealed, but the crisis became the first in a series of events that would culminate in the American Revolution. 1766 Europe Construction Begins on the Grand Trunk Canal: English engineer James Brindley’s canal connected the Trent and Mersey Rivers, opening a clear route from the Irish Sea to the North Sea. 1766 Europe Haller Investigates the Human Nervous System: Swiss biologist Albrecht von Haller suggests that nerves cause muscles to contract, and that all nerves are connected to the spinal column and brain. Feb. 24, 1766 Europe Lorraine Becomes Part of France: In the Treaty of Vienna (1738), which ended the War of the Polish Succession, the deposed king of Poland, Stanisław I, was installed as the sovereign duke of the independent duchy of Lorraine. The treaty stipulated that upon Stanisław’s death the duchy would revert to the French crown. Thus, when he died in 1766, Lorraine lost its independence and was absorbed into France. Nov. 12, 1766 North America First American Theater Opens in Philadelphia: The Southwark Theatre opened in Philadelphia in November of 1766. For the next eight years, it was home to operas, plays, pantomimes, and other performances, including the 1767 debut of the first play by an American author. Works by Americans increased at the Southwark Theatre and at other early theaters after the Revolutionary War, and elegantly designed and better-equipped theaters appeared in greater numbers during the 1790’s. Dec. 5, 1766-Mar., 16, 1769 World Bougainville Circumnavigates the Globe: French scientist and statesman Louis-Antoine de Bougainville organized the first successful French expedition around the world. During the voyage, in which he returned the Falkland Islands to Spanish control, he claimed many of the uncharted islands that he discovered for King Louis XV of France. 1767 North America American Whalers Venture into the Antarctic: A fleet of fifty American whaling ships plied the Antarctic, foreshadowing widespread expansion of the whaling industry. 1767 Europe Cavendish Reports on Hydrogen: English scientist Henry Cavendish, examining the action of acids on metals, reported to the Royal Society of London on the inflammable properties of hydrogen. 1767 North America Dickinson Publishes Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania: Having previously been part of the Stamp Act Congress in 1765, Philadelphia lawyer John Dickinson spoke out on the nonimportation agreements. 1767 North America Mason-Dixon Line Surveyed: Surveyors Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon complete a four-year survey to settle a century-old land dispute between Pennsylvania and Maryland colonies. 1767-1768 Europe Spallanzani Disproves Spontaneous Generation: Lazzaro Spallanzani was among the first to show experimentally that living organisms--such as maggots in rotting meat--could not simply appear out of nowhere. Though his work was not considered conclusive on the subject, it represented the beginnings of a modern view of biology. 1767-1771 Europe Invention of the Water Frame: Richard Arkwright’s invention of the water frame increased the supply of high- quality yarn and significantly accelerated the development of the factory system, which was a key component of the Industrial Revolution. June 29, 1767-Apr. 12, 1770 North America Townshend Crisis: Only one year after the conclusion of the Stamp Act Crisis, British laws designed to tighten the empire’s economic and political controls on the colonies prompted further American resistance. The Townshend Crisis represented another step on the path to the American Revolution. Aug., 1767-May, 1799 South Asia Anglo-Mysore Wars: The Anglo-Mysore Wars destroyed the power of the last state in the south of India, Mysore, to oppose the British East India Company. At the end of the wars Mysore became an ally of the company as part of the subsidiary alliance system, and the city of Bangalore became an important British military base in the south of India. Aug. 10, 1767 Europe Catherine the Great’s Instruction: Catherine the Great issued her Instruction, a series of progressive principles for reforming Russian law and governance. The Instruction was one of the most modern, liberal governmental decrees of the eighteenth century, but it remained a merely theoretical decree, and the reforms Catherine intended never appeared in practice. 1768-May 16, 1771 North America Carolina Regulator Movements: Protesting lack of representation in the Western backcountry, the Regulators inspired vigilante insurrections. The movements highlighted the differences between settled colonies and frontier territories and they contributed to the development of an American vigilante tradition. 1768-1773 Europe Polish Civil War: The Confederation of the Bar, an organization of Catholic nobles, gained the support of both France and Turkey in seeking to resist Russian influence, though their failure led to the partition of Poland beginning in 1772. May 15, 1768 Europe France Purchases Corsica: This Mediterranean island dominated by Genoa from the thirteenth century is now transferred to France. Aug. 25, 1768-Feb. 14, 1779 World Voyages of Captain Cook: Three voyages led by James Cook reliably mapped most of the Pacific Ocean, discovered new island archipelagos, led to the British settlement of Australia and New Zealand, and established Great Britain as a leading trading and maritime nation. Cook was also the first sea captain to use citrus fruits to prevent scurvy among mariners. Oct., 1768-Jan. 9, 1792 Europe/Middle East Ottoman Wars with Russia: In two hard-fought wars between 1768 and 1792, the Ottoman Empire experienced defeats so decisive that it ceased to be a great power. Russia’s rise to power continued, however, as it added vast new territories to its sovereign possessions. Oct. 30, 1768 North America Methodist Church Is Established in Colonial America: The Methodist movement became institutionalized in colonial America with the founding of its first influential congregation and meeting house in New York City, the Wesleyan Chapel. Still standing, the chapel is now called the John Street Methodist Church. Dec., 1768-Jan. 10, 1773 Africa Bruce Explores Ethiopia: Although James Bruce was not appreciated until the end of his life, his explorations in Ethiopia led to a scientific mapping of much of the Blue Nile. Bruce’s numerous naturalistic and scientific observations contributed to the growth of the natural sciences in the eighteenth century. Dec. 10, 1768 Europe Britain’s Royal Academy of Arts Is Founded: Great Britain’s first large-scale public display of contemporary artworks by British-born artists, including painters Thomas Gainsborough and Sir Joshua Reynolds, led to the establishment of the Royal Academy of Arts in London, Britain’s first national arts academy. 1769 Europe Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England Published: English jurist Sir William Blackstone published one of the most influential legal treatises of all time, influencing both Britain and America into the twentieth century. 1769 Pacific Islands Captain Cook Arrives in Tahiti: English Captain James Cook established an observatory in Tahiti and charted the coasts of New Zealand. 1769 North America Discovery of San Francisco Bay: A scouting party under José Ortega claimed this natural harbor north of Monterey for Spain. 1769 Europe Garrick Plays England’s First Shakespeare Festival: David Garrick, England’s most famous actor, participated in the first annual revival of William Shakespeare’s plays, to be repeated widely throughout the world thereafter. 1769 South Asia Great Famine of Bengal: An estimated 10 million Indians died in the world’s worst famine to date. 1769 Europe Pombal Reforms the Inquisition: The Inquisition in Portugal was transformed from an institution of the Church to secular, state control. It continued its repressive practices, applying them to political opponents of the socioeconomic orthodoxy of the marquês de Pombal’s government and its reforms. 1769 Europe Russia Occupies Moldavia: In their campaign against the Ottoman Empire, Russians captured Bucharest. 1769-1776 Middle East Futa Toro Jihad: Muslim Fulbe and Tukolor peoples in what is now Senegal established a theocratic Muslim state, foreshadowing the larger jihadist movements of the nineteenth century. Apr. 20, 1769 North America Pontiac Murdered: The Ottawa chieftan Pontiac was murdered at Cahokia by another native American, though there was widespread suspicion that the British were involved. July 6, 1769 Middle East/Europe Battle of Chesme: Russian Baltic fleet defeated the Ottoman fleet off the coast of Anatolia. July 17, 1769-1824 North America Rise of the California Missions: Twenty-one Catholic missions, four military installations, and several towns established Spain’s claim to Alta, or Upper, California, altering the lives of thousands of American Indians. Sept., 1769-1778 Southeast Asia Siamese-Vietnamese War: Siamese and Vietnamese leaders fought for control over Cambodia, with each seeking to install their own candidate as Cambodia’s new king. The two foreign powers clashed over the issue, until a rebellion in Vietnam forced the Vietnamese army home, leading to a brief peace favoring the Siamese. Oct. 23, 1769 Europe Cugnot Demonstrates His Steam-Powered Road Carriage: Nicolas Joseph Cugnot invented a vehicle powered by steam called the steam dray. This three-wheeled carriage, the first of the so-called horseless carriages, could pull up to four tons at a speed of two and one-half miles per hour. 1770 Australia Cook Claims Australia for Britain: Captain James Cook explored the eastern coast of Australia, then known as New Holland, claiming it for the British crown. 1770 Europe Publication of Holbach’s The System of Nature: Paul-Henri-Dietrich d’Holbach’s Système de la nature: Ou, Des lois du monde physique et du monde moral (The System of Nature) argued that the source of human misery was an ignorance of nature that was both perpetrated and perpetuated by religion and its superstitious beliefs. The treatise was written to provide a framework of true understanding underpinned by the material mechanisms of nature. 1770 Europe Ramsden Invents the Screw-Cutting Lathe: English instrument maker Jesse Ramsden’s early lathe probably influenced Henry Maudslay’s work and had wide implications for the development of industrial machinery. 1770 Europe/Middle East Cretan Rebellion: Encouraged by Russia, Cretan merchant Ioannis Daskalogiannis rebelled against the Ottoman Empire, which ruthlessly suppressed the rebellion, confirming its power over the mainly Christian population. Mar. 5, 1770 North America Boston Massacre: British soldiers in Boston fired into an unruly crowd, killing several colonists. The incident arose out of American colonists’ fear and distrust of British standing armies in their midst and epitomized the growing colonial unrest of the early 1770’s. 1771 Europe Encyclopaedia Britannica First Published in Edinburgh: The first full edition of the work was completed three years after the first volume appeared; though full of inaccuracies, it served as the basis of an ongoing educational institution. 1771 Europe Serfdom Abolished in Savoy: Charles Emmanuel III abolished serfdom as he neared the end of his long reign as king of Sardinia- Piedmont. 1771 North America West Paints Penn’s Treaty with the Indians : American painter Benjamin West moved toward a new style of realism in art. 1771 Europe Woulfe Discovers Picric Acid: Peter Woulfe obtained a solution of picric acid by the action of nitric acid on indigo. The first artificial dye, the substance transformed the textile industry, but its more significant use was as an explosive, adding significant new weapons to the military arsenals of the late eighteenth century. 1771-1802 Southeast Asia Vietnamese Civil Wars: Three brothers who started the Tay Son Rebellion in the south of Vietnam ended a centuries- long system of divided feudal rule of the country, overthrew the Le Dynasty, and defeated a Chinese invasion before their forces were destroyed by a survivor of the southern lords who unified Vietnam as Emperor Gia Long. Aug. 5, 1772-Oct. 24, 1795 Europe Partitioning of Poland: Poland was partitioned, partly annexed, and finally completely absorbed by the more powerful states surrounding it. After the third partition, the nation of Poland no longer existed, as it had become part of the Russian, Prussian, and Austrian empires. Poland would not again become a sovereign state until the twentieth century. Nov. 2, 1772 North America Committees of Correspondence Organized: Patriots Samuel Adams and Joseph Warren organized the first Committee of Correspondence, soon to be copied throughout the American colonies. 1773 North America Boone Leads Settlers into Kentucky: Daniel Boone led a party of settlers into what would become Kentucky, though they were frightened away by Indian attacks. 1773 Central America Destruction of Antigua, Guatemala: The capital of the Spanish captain-generalcy of Guatemala is destroyed by a powerful earthquake, and a new capital established in Guatemala City. 1773 Europe Dissolution of the Society of Jesus: Pope Clement XIV dissolves the controversial Catholic order of the Jesuits after they were expelled from most European countries. 1773 Europe Goethe Inaugurates the Sturm und Drang Movement: In reaction to the dryness of Baroque and Enlightenment literature, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and several of his contemporaries invented an exciting new genre of literature, Sturm und Drang, which proved immensely popular throughout Germany in the 1770’s and laid the groundwork for the evolution of neoclassicism and Romanticism. 1773-1788 North America African American Baptist Church Is Founded: An amalgamation of African and European forms of religious worship developed into the African American Baptist Church. The cosmologies and churches fashioned by blacks in the United States helped them survive and transcend the harsh realities of slavery in the South. Jan. 12, 1773 Antarctic Cook Crosses the Antarctic Circle: The first European explorer to cross the Antarctic Circle, Captain James Cook, demonstrates the legendary fallacy of a large southern continent. Mar. 18, 1773 Europe Goldsmith’s She Stoops to Conquer First Performed: English playwright Oliver Goldsmith’s play is first performed at London’s Theatre Royal in Covent Garden. Sept., 1773-Sept., 1774 Europe Pugachev’s Revolt: A major rebellion in the 1770’s seriously threatened the social fabric and political institutions of Russia during the rule of Empress Catherine the Great. The crisis revealed widespread discontent and anger among the population on the southeastern Russian border. Dec. 16, 1773 North America Boston Tea Party: A small group of protesters rallied against the British taxation of imported tea by dumping tens of thousands of pounds of tea from anchored British vessels into the Boston Harbor. The largely symbolic uprising had ushered in a series of events that led directly to war and, eventually, American independence. 1774 North America Fort Harrod Established in Kentucky Territory: James Harrod established the first English settlement west of the Alleghenies after sailing down the Ohio River and up the Kentucky River. 1774 Europe Hansard Begins Reporting Parliamentary Debates: In 1771, the ban on publishing accounts of British parliamentary debates was effectively lifted. Beginning in 1774, limited accounts of Parliament’s proceedings began to be published and made available to the public in an officially sanctioned format for the first time. These publications increased the freedom of the British press and helped to institute new standards for an informed British electorate. 1774 North America Lee Introduces Shakerism in New York: An English mystic with a Quaker background, Ann Lee preached celibacy and intense spiritual piety in developing a new religious community northeast of Albany, New York. Apr. 27-Oct. 10, 1774 North America Lord Dunmore’s War: American colonists on the frontiers of Virginia and Maryland battled Shawnee Indians for control of their land. The Shawnees were defeated and relocated, as European settlers moved into Kentucky. May 20, 1774 North America Quebec Act: With the passage of the Quebec Act, Great Britain granted limited civil rights to Canadian Catholics and extended the boundaries of Quebec province into the Ohio Valley. Aug. 1, 1774 Europe Priestley Discovers Oxygen: By heating a brick-red compound of mercury, Joseph Priestley produced a gas whose properties of enhanced support of combustion and animal respiration led him to believe that he had discovered an amazing new substance: dephlogisticated air, or oxygen. July 21, 1774 Europe/Middle East Treaty of Kuchuk Kainarji: While the Treaty of Kuchuk Kainarji brought only a temporary peace between Russia and the Ottoman Empire, the concessions gained by Russia were more lasting. In particular, Catherine the Great won a permanent foothold on the Black Sea for her empire. Sept. 5-Oct. 26, 1774 North America First Continental Congress: A meeting of fifty-six delegates from the American colonies marked the beginning of an independent American government, paving the way for separation from Great Britain. Dec., 1774-Feb. 24, 1783 South Asia First Maratha War: This was the first of three major conflicts between the British East India Company and the Marathas in India, wars that were fought intermittently until 1818. Final victory came to the British and led to the disbandment of the Maratha army, the abolition of the peshwaship, and the incorporation of the Marathas into the British subsidiary alliance system. 1775 Europe Cook Rewarded for Conquering Scurvy: Though research into the treatment for scurvy had been conducted for decades, the Royal Society awarded English Captain James Cook its Copley Medal for the practical achievement of having sailed with 118 men for more than three years without losing a single man to the disease. 1775 Europe/Africa Spanish-Algerine War: Responding to a Moorish siege of Spanish Moroccan possessions by Sultan Mohammed III, King Charles III ordered an invasion of Algiers. Led by Alexander O’Reilly, who commanded a combined military and naval expedition of nearly fifty ships and more than twenty thousand troops, the Spaniards experienced a decisive defeat. The campaign proved a humiliating blow to the Spanish military revival, and it further empowered the Moroccan sultanate. 1775-1790 Europe Joseph II’s Reforms: Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II instituted a series of judicial, ecclesiastical, and social reforms designed to strengthen the Habsburg monarchy and improve the lives of his subjects. Joseph’s reforms inspired a liberal tradition that subsequently flowered in the nineteenth century. 1775-1804 Middle East Aleppo Revolts: Ongoing civil conflict and periodic revolts led by the Janissaries demonstrated the growing weakness of central Ottoman control. Mar. 10, 1775 North America Boone Establishes the Wilderness Road: Departing in the employ of the Transylvania Company, Daniel Boone and a party of thirty North Carolina woodsmen began to clear a road that would be used by tens of thousands of pioneers moving into western Tennessee and Kentucky. Apr. 14, 1775 North America Pennsylvania Society for the Abolition of Slavery Is Founded: The first antislavery society in America was formed primarily by members of the Society of Friends, or Quakers. The Quakers had formed an abolitionist philosophy that was in line with the religion’s belief in equality for all individuals. Apr. 19, 1775 North America Battle of Lexington and Concord: The American Revolution began with the Battle of Lexington and Concord, in which the British seriously misjudged the resistance of the American colonists. Apr. 19, 1775-Oct. 19, 1781 North America American Revolutionary War: Disaffected American colonists, deciding to wrest their independence from Great Britain, held their own against numerically superior British forces and were able to garner alliances and assistance from France, Spain, and the Netherlands. After more than six years of fighting, the revolutionaries compelled the British government to negotiate the Treaty of Paris of 1783, recognizing the United States of America as an autonomous nation. Apr. 27-May, 1775 Europe Flour War: Riots swept the provinces surrounding Paris, caused by the lifting of government controls over the price of grain following the poor wheat harvest of 1774. Ultimately, two French armies quelled the riots; however, the event was indicative of the poverty and poor economic management that would bring about the French Revolution at the end of the following decade. May 10-Aug. 2, 1775 North America Second Continental Congress: The second congress of colonial delegates, now a revolutionary body, formed an army, managed the Revolutionary War, began the process of issuing paper money, and took the first steps toward creating a federal government that would bound the individual colony-states in common cause. June 17, 1775 North America Battle of Bunker Hill: In a battle with significant casualties, American troops were driven from Bunker Hill and Breeds Hill outside Boston in the early days of the American Revolutionary War. Dec. 31, 1775 North America Battle of Quebec: A small American force hoped to bring Canadian colonies into opposition against Britain in the American Revolutionary War, but failed. 1776 Europe Development of the Breech-Loading Rifle: British army officer Patrick Ferguson invented the first breech-loading rifle to be adopted by the British army. 1776 Latin America Foundation of the Viceroyalty of La Plata: La Plata was established as a viceroyalty of the Spanish Empire, with its capital at Buenos Aires. The new viceroyalty, including territory that originally was part of the viceroyalty of Peru, was established both to decentralize Spanish South America’s government and to shift significant military resources to the area south of Brazil, which was threatened by Portuguese and British colonial activity. 1776 Europe Potemkin Builds the Russian Black Sea Fleet: Distinguished Russian admiral and court favorite Grigori Aleksandovich Potemkin built Russia’s first modern Black Sea fleet. 1776 Europe Verses to “Rock of Ages” Published: London editor Augustus Toplady published verses to the hymn “Rock of Ages” in The Gospel Magazine. Jan. 10, 1776 North America Paine Publishes Common Sense: Thomas Paine, who argued against monarchy and for American independence from Britain in a pamphlet that sold out its first edition in a matter of days, became the talk of the American colonies. Many of the American revolutionaries credited the persuasiveness and passion of Paine’s arguments for their decision to declare independence. Mar. 9, 1776 Europe Adam Smith Publishes The Wealth of Nations: The Wealth of Nations marked the culmination of Enlightenment political economy and the advent of modern economics. It became one of the most influential works on capitalism, being used variously as a practical guide, a theoretical description, a defense, and a critique of industrialization and the market. Mar. 28, 1776 Europe Founding of Bolshoi Theatre Company: Since it was founded by Catherine the Great, the Bolshoi Theatre Company has been a preeminent opera and ballet, and it has staged significant works by Russian playwrights. Its influence has been global, and its name is familiar to most, if not all, arts enthusiasts. May, 1776-Sept. 3, 1783 Europe/North America France Supports the American Revolution: French military and financial support proved indispensable to the United States during the Revolutionary War, and the French played a vital role in the Battle of Yorktown, at which the British surrendered. French diplomacy, however, was less helpful during peace treaty negotiations. May 24 and June 11, 1776 North America Indian Delegation Meets with Congress: Representatives of the Iroquois Confederacy attempted to secure neutrality during the Revolutionary War. They believed they had succeeded, but secret American plans to recruit Iroquois mercenaries, as well as a British alliance with the Mohawks, led not merely to Iroquois involvement but to warfare between Iroquois tribes, ultimately causing the dissolution of the confederacy. July 2, 1776 North America New Jersey Women Gain the Vote: More than a century before securing national woman suffrage, women in New Jersey briefly exercised the right to vote after being given the right in the state’s new constitution. In 1807, however, the state legislature changed the suffrage clause to include only adult taxpaying white males. July 4, 1776 North America Declaration of Independence: The Declaration of Independence announced the beginning of the United States of America to Great Britain and the world, justifying the colonies’ decision to secede from Britain and setting forth the political philosophy of the new republic. Aug. 27-30, 1776 North America Battle of Long Island: British troops under Howe captured southern Long Island, eventually forcing Washington to abandon New York during the early phase of the American Revolutionary War. Sept. 6-7, 1776 North America First Test of a Submarine in Warfare: The first submarine, called the Turtle, was built in an effort to blow up a British navy ship in the waters of New York Harbor by attaching underwater explosives to the ship’s hull. The test marked not only the first submarine journey but also the first time such a vessel, and underwater explosives, had been used in warfare. Oct. 28, 1776 North America Battle of White Plains: After forcing Washington from Long Island, the British under Howe drive him to winter retreat in Pennsylvania, further demoralizing American troops during the American Revolutionary War. Dec. 5, 1776 North America Phi Beta Kappa Society Founded: The most distinguished honorary scholarly society in America was established at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. Dec. 26, 1776 North America Battle of Trenton: After a string of defeats in the summer and fall, George Washington recrossed the Delaware River and successfully attacked an outpost of Hessian troops in the pay of the British, lifting morale during the American Revolutionary War. 1777 Europe National Library Founded in Prague: A national library was established in Prague, incorporating the Old Carolinum Library, St. Clementinum College Library, the New Carolinum Library, and a number of private collections. 1777-1791 Europe Coulomb’s Research in Torsion: French engineer Charles Coulomb invented the torsion balance and precisely measured electric forces of attraction and repulsion between charged bodies as he explored engineering challenges for the French government. Jan. 1, 1777 Europe France’s First Daily Newspaper Appears: The Journal de Paris, France’s first daily newspaper, was launched on January 1, 1777, and remained in print for sixty-three years. Its pages offered concise information on developments in local and national politics, administrative and police matters, science, health, fashion, art, music, dance, and literature. Jan. 3, 1777 North America Battle of Princeton: Following success at Trenton, New Jersey, George Washington attacked the British encampment at Princeton, leading to a general British withdrawal from New Jersey for the winter. July 2, 1777-1804 North America Northeast States Abolish Slavery: Eight northeastern states emancipated their slaves and ended slavery during and in the wake of the American Revolution. Most of the states chose to phase out slavery gradually, and the slave population of the North decreased during the next few decades until abolition was accomplished. Aug. 6, 1777 North America Battle of Oriskany Creek: At Oriskany Creek, American troops coming to break Britain’s siege of Fort Schuyler were ambushed by a force of Native Americans and Tories. Although ultimately forced to retreat, the Americans inflicted heavy casualties on the Iroquois, weakening their resolve and laying the groundwork for a British retreat from Benedict Arnold’s reinforcements. Sept. 11, 1777 North America Battle of Brandywine: American troops under Washington were unable to stop British forces from advancing on the American capital of Philadelphia, which was taken on September 26. Sept. 19-Oct. 17, 1777 North America Battles of Saratoga: Britain’s defeat at Saratoga marked the end of any realistic prospect of British victory in the Revolutionary War. It represented the failure of Britain’s plan to divide the colonies in half, isolating New England from the rest of America, and it began the series of events that would culminate with the British defeat at Yorktown.Oct. 4, 1777 Nov., 1777-Jan. 1, 1781 Europe Construction of the First Iron Bridge: In England, the area around Coalbrookdale was one of the foremost iron- producing centers of the world in the eighteenth century. The construction of an iron bridge over the River Severn proved just what could be achieved with the material. 1778 Pacific Islands Cook Explores the North Pacific: English explorer Captain James Cook explored the Sandwich (Hawaiian) Islands and the northwest Pacific Coast in America, laying British claims to these regions. Feb. 6, 1778 Europe/North America Franco-American Treaties: In the wake of the American victory at the Battle of Saratoga, which suggested that the rebelling colonies had a substantial chance of victory in the Revolutionary War, France recognized the United States and allied with the emerging nation against Great Britain. June 28, 1778 North America Battle of Monmouth: As British troops retreated in an effort to strengthen their position in the West Indies, George Washington was unable to win a decisive victory, thus enabling the British withdrawal to continue. July, 1778 Europe War of the Bavarian Succession begins: Prussia’s Frederick the Great invaded Bohemia in response to a potential augmentation of Austrian influence in the region. Aug. 3, 1778 Europe Opening of Milan’s La Scala: Crowning the already rich theatrical life of Italy’s most cosmopolitan city, La Scala confirmed Milan as the most important operatic center in Italy. 1779 North America City of Louisville Established: Laid out by Virginia surveyor George Rogers Clark, the town that would become Lousville, Kentucky, named in honor of French king Louis XVI. 1779 Europe Crompton Invents the Spinning Mule: To invent the spinning mule, Crompton drew on the concepts of James Hargreaves and Richard Arkwright in spinning machinery to create a machine that vastly increased the output of yarn relative to its predecessors. 1779 Europe Ingenhousz Discovers Photosynthesis: By studying the relationship between green plants, oxygen, carbon dioxide, and light, Jan Ingenhousz discovered the major, externally observable structures that contribute to the process of photosynthesis. It would remain for later scientists to understand the internal chemical reactions at the heart of the process.1779-1803 Feb. 14, 1779 Pacific Islands Cook Killed in the Sandwich (Hawaiian) Islands: English explorer Captain James Cook is killed by natives on the island of Hawaii. June 21, 1779-Feb. 7, 1783 Europe Siege of Gibraltar: During the American Revolutionary War, Spain and France declared war on Great Britain, and for three and one-half years they laid siege to the British fortress at Gibraltar. However, three convoys loaded with supplies managed to run the blockade, enabling the British on Gibraltar to hold firm, and the “Great Siege” failed. Sept. 16-Oct. 9, 1779 North America Siege of Savannah: A combined American and French force failed to retake Savannah, Georgia, from British and Loyalist forces during the American Revolutionary War. Sept. 23, 1779 North America Bonhomme Richard Captures Royal Navy’s Serapes: In the American revolutionary naval battle in which he uttered the famous phrase, “I have not yet begun to fight!” Captain John Paul Jones of the American navy captured the Serapes, transferring his men to it when their own ship sinks two days later. 1780 North America American Academy of Arts and Sciences Founded in Boston: Proposed by John Adams as a meeting place for the finest minds of each generation, the academy was chartered by the Massachusetts Legislature. It would hold its meeting in the Philosophy Chamber at Harvard College. 1780 Europe Education Reform in Spain: Spain’s education system was reorganized to allow teaching only by members of the teaching guild. The reforms demonstrated the government’s growing interest in education. 1780-1781 Latin America Rebellion of Tupac Amaru II: Motivated by a long tradition of economic and social oppression at the hands of the Spanish, Tupac Amaru II led the last great indigenous uprising in Peru before independence from Spain in 1821. 1780-1802 Middle East Governorship of Süleyman Paşa: His rule marked the peak of Mamlūk power in Baghdad. Apr. 1-May 12, 1780 North America Siege of Charleston: Heartened by Loyalist support in the American South, British troops under Lieutenant General Henry Clinton force the surrender of Charleston, North Carolina, taking fifty-four hundred prisoners and four hundred guns. June 2-10, 1780 Europe Gordon Riots: The Gordon Riots, which were caused by anti-Catholicism and resentment over the state of the British economy, were inadvertently instigated by Lord George Gordon and illustrated the depths of resentment felt by disenfranchised Londoners toward the wealthy. They also demonstrated the need for better means of controlling mobs. Aug. 16, 1780 North America Battle of Camden: An American army seeking to reverse the damage following the loss of Charleston, North Carolina, in May, was routed, enhancing British strength in the southern colonies. Oct. 7, 1780 North America Battle of King’s Mountain: American troops killed or captured an entire column of Loyalist troops supporting Lord Cornwallis’s invasion of North Carolina, thus forcing its postponement. Oct. 10-18, 1780 Caribbean Great Caribbean Hurricane: One of the deadliest storms in history struck the eastern Caribbean Islands, killing tens of thousands of people, mostly black slaves. Many of England’s and France’s lucrative sugar-producing colonies on the islands were severely damaged or destroyed as well. The two European countries had been at war with each other in the Caribbean, and the storm’s aftermath affected naval warfare in the region into the following year. 1781 Europe Kant Publishes Critique of Pure Reason: Immanuel Kant revolutionized philosophy by asking and answering the seemingly simple question, “How is knowledge possible?” His Kritik der reinen Vernunft (Critique of Pure Reason) is among the most important texts in the history of philosophy, the starting point for both the analytic and Continental traditions that followed. 1781 North America Los Angeles Established: The city was established by Spanish settlers and first called El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles de Porciuncula. 1781 East Asia Muslim Revolt Suppressed in China: Gao Cong led imperial troops to put down a massive rebellion in Gansu Province. 1781-1784 Europe Cavendish Discovers the Composition of Water: After discovering “inflammable air,” or hydrogen, Henry Cavendish investigated its properties and found that pure water formed when hydrogen burned in “dephlogisticated air,” or oxygen. Jan. 17, 1781 North America Battle of Cowpens: An American victory resulted when British troops attempted to destroy an American force of about one thousand that had moved into South Carolina. Mar. 1, 1781 North America Ratification of the Articles of Confederation: The Articles of Confederation represented the first attempt of the thirteen American colonies to band together as a single political unit. However, the new states of the Confederation soon discovered that they had retained too much sovereignty for themselves, undermining the unity of the new nation, and they set about creating the Constitution to correct their mistake. Mar. 31, 1781 Europe Herschel Discovers Uranus: English astronomer William Herschel identified the first planet to be discovered in more than three thousand years. Oct. 13, 1781 Europe Joseph II Issues the Edict of Tolerance: After closing more than seven hundred monasteries, Holy Roman Emperor Joseph II prescribes new forms of worship and reorganizes the administration of monasteries, with fewer ties to Rome. Oct. 19, 1781 North America Cornwallis Surrenders at Yorktown: The entire British field army surrendered to combined American and French forces, marking the military end to the Revolutionary War and confirming once and for all American independence. 1782 Middle East Aḥmad ibn Khalīfa Establishes al-Khalīfa Dynasty in Bahrain: Aḥmad ibn Khalīfa of the Banū ՙUtūb Arabs established a dynasty that ruled into the twentieth century. 1782 Europe Newgate Prison Opens in London: Replacing a prison destroyed in the Gordon Riots of 1780, Newgate would become synonymous with prison austerity. 1782-1798 Europe Publication of Rousseau’s Confessions: Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s Les Confessions de J.-J. Rousseau (The Confessions of J.-J. Rousseau) created a new tradition in autobiography, the telling of one’s life from a subjective point of view for the purpose of introspective revelation. It was thus influential on all subsequent works, both fiction and nonfiction, in which the main drama occurs in the mind of the storyteller. 1782-1810 Pacific Islands Wars of Hawaiian Unification: From 1782 to 1810, the rulers of the various Hawaiian Islands clashed in a struggle for power until King Kamehameha I consolidated rule over Hawaii into a single kingdom. As a united kingdom, Hawaii was able to remain independent in the next century, while the other Pacific islands fell to the European imperial powers. Apr. 6, 1782 Southeast Asia Chakri Dynasty Founded in Siam: Rama I became the first ruler of a dynasty that would rule Siam (Thailand) and parts of Burma and Cambodia for almost two hundred years. He ruled until 1809. Apr. 12, 1782 Caribbean Battle of the Saints: British forces under Rodney defeat French fleet under de Grasse in the strait between Guadeloupe and Dominica, restoring British control in the Windward and Leeward Islands. 1783 North America Loyalists Migrate to Nova Scotia: The settling of the Loyalists in Nova Scotia helped to preserve Great Britain’s remaining North American colonies and played a pivotal part in the establishment of Canada as a separate nation. 1783 Europe/Middle East Russia Annexes the Crimean Peninsula: Russia’s conquest marked the first loss of Muslim territory by the Ottoman Empire. 1783 Arctic Skaptur Volcano Erupts in Iceland: In the eruption, 20 percent of the population was killed and the Sun could be seen only when 12 degrees above the horizon. 1783-1784 Europe Cort Improves Iron Processing: Henry Cort developed an economic and quick method for making bar iron (wrought iron) that allowed Britain to go from being an importer to an exporter of this important material needed for industrialization and the military. Sept. 3, 1783 Europe Treaty of Paris: The Treaty of Paris brought the American Revolution to a formal conclusion, as Great Britain officially recognized the United States as an independent, sovereign nation. Nov. 21, 1783 Europe First Manned Balloon Flight: On November 21, 1783, Pilâtre du Rozier and Commandant François Laurent, marquis d’Arlandes, ascended from the Château de la Muette in a hot-air balloon created by the Montgolfier brothers. Their journey over Paris lasted for twenty-six minutes and marked the beginning of human lighter-than-air flight in Europe. 1784 East Asia First American Ship Docks at Canton: Trading ginseng for tea and silks, American investors were richly rewarded and anticipated further development of the China trade. 1784 Europe/North America Franklin Suggests Daylight Savings Time: American scientist, inventor, and diplomat Benjamin Franklin urged France to move clocks ahead one hour in spring in order to maximize hours of daylight, though French farmers resisted. 1784 Europe Legendre Introduces Polynomials: Adrien-Marie Legendre found, in the course of trying to solve a differential equation, a family of polynomials that satisfied the same kind of properties that ordinary polynomials did. This suggested the use of those polynomials to representing all functions that had certain features, and similar families have been studied by mathematicians and physicists ever since. 1784-1791 Europe Herder Publishes His Philosophy of History: Johann Gottfried Herder’s Ideen zur Philosophie der Geschichte der Menschheit (Outlines of a Philosophy of the History of Man) set the stage for the dialectical thinking of Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. Dialectics would become a fundamental aspect of nineteenth century German philosopy, particularly in the thought of Friedrich Engels and later the political theory of Karl Marx. Apr. 27, 1784 Europe First Performance of The Marriage of Figaro: The first performance of Pierre Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais’s The Marriage of Figaro, a work that reflected the ideals of the Enlightenment and of the impending French Revolution, came after years of struggle with the French court and has remained a symbol of the freedom of the human spirit. Aug. 13, 1784 Europe/South Asia British Parliament Passes the India Act: Bringing the East India Company under tighter government control, the British government prohibited interference in local politics and made company directors responsible to a Crown board. Sept. 29, 1784 North America Hall’s Masonic Lodge Is Chartered: Hall’s Masonic Lodge became a pillar organization in the African American middle-class community. Serving many of the same functions that mainstream Freemasonry has served among upper-class white communities, members of the so-called African Lodge have helped one another in countless ways for more than two centuries. Oct. 22, 1784 North America Fort Stanwix Treaty: The Iroquois tribes that had sided with the British in the American Revolutionary War were forced to cede their lands to the United States and move westward. The dismissive negotiating strategy of the American government at Fort Stanwix marked the beginning of its tendency to treat Native Americans as conquered occupants of the United States, rather than as equal, sovereign nations. 1785 Europe Construction of El Prado Museum Begins: On the orders of King Charles III, the renowned neoclassical architect Juan de Villanueva began construction of a building for a museum of natural history. 1785 North America First State Universities Are Established: Increased U.S. governmental support made a college education available to a growing middle class. 1785 East Asia Rites Controversy: Shortly after the introduction of Roman Catholicism to Korea, the government cracked down when Catholics refused to practice traditional Confucian religious rituals. Many of those who persisted in practicing the banned Catholic faith became martyrs. 1785-1788 Europe Hutton Proposes the Geological Theory of Uniformitarianism: James Hutton’s theory that Earth’s formation was the result of a cyclic process of erosion and uplift--which, in turn, was the result of the compounding of the ordinary action of water and heat in deep time--was the intellectual precursor of Charles Lyell’s uniformitarian geology and a fundamental premise of Charles Darwin’s evolutionary theory. Jan. 7, 1785 Europe First Cross-Channel Flight: Jean Blanchard and John Jeffries successfully crossed the English Channel in a balloon, demonstrating that travel by air was practical and opening the door to military and scientific observations using balloons. Apr., 1785 Europe Cartwright Patents the Steam-Powered Loom: The production of a working power-operated loom was a key step in the mechanization of textile manufacture. Although power looms did not come into general us in England until after 1822, Edmund Cartwright’s original model paved the way for future refinements, and the basic design remained unchanged until the middle of the twentieth century. May 20, 1785 North America Ordinance of 1785: The Ordinance of 1785 established a system for surveying and selling the vast lands outside the former colonies that were then the property of the U.S. government. It set out the framework for the creation of new states and territories in the newly independent United States. 1786 Central America Discovery of the Mayan Ruins at Palenque: Spanish colonial officials uncovered the spectacular Mayan ruins at Palenque, which had been abandoned in the tenth century. Historians first believed that the technical and artistic abilities of ancient European travelers had inspired and influenced the building of the complex by local peoples. However, the Mayan origins of the site were revealed after the ruins were found, and the origins themselves have been uncovered and celebrated by the Mexican indigenous movement of the twentieth century. 1786 North America Discovery of the Pribilof Islands: Russian captain Gerasim Pribilof discovered islands in the Bering Sea, home to an estimate 5 million fur seals. 1786 Middle East Ottoman Empire Regains Control of Egypt: After a long period of Mamlūk control in Egypt, the Ottoman government drove the Mamlūks into upper Egypt but lost authority again by 1791. 1786-1787 Europe Lavoisier Devises the Modern System of Chemical Nomenclature: As an important part of the chemical revolution he fathered, Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, collaborating with other French scientists, devised a rational system of chemical nomenclature in which each substance’s name reflected its chemical composition. 1786-1787 East Asia Tenmei Famine: The Tenmei era saw the most devastating famine in early modern Japan, a nationwide disaster that took as many as 130,000 lives. Many farming villages were abandoned, and large areas became depopulated. Shogunate officials provided little assistance, and they aggravated the situation through corruption and incompetence. Popular uprisings forced them out of office, bringing not only greater repression but also needed reforms. Jan. 16, 1786 North America Virginia Statute of Religious Liberty: Virginia was the first state to legislate religious liberty, which influenced the First Amendment’s provision for separation of church and state. Feb. 2, 1786 Europe Jones Postulates a Proto-Indo-European Language: Sir William Jones stunned scholars in Europe and inspired them to review the origin of Western civilization when he suggested that an unknown prehistoric language was the source of classical languages, such as Greek and Latin, as well as Sanskrit. 1787 Europe David Paints The Death of Socrates: In 1787, the celebrated artist Jacques-Louis David painted The Death of Socrates, which epitomized neoclassicism, an artistic movement that grew in reaction to the frivolous and decorative Rococo style. Neoclassical art also reflected the philosophical and moral values of the Enlightenment and the Age of Reason. 1787 Europe Herschel Begins Building His Reflecting Telescope: William Herschel’s 40-foot-long reflecting telescope was used to discover two of Saturn’s moons and to observe nebulae, identified as galaxies such as the Milky Way. The telescope, functional in 1789, remained the largest such instrument for more than fifty years. 1787-1792 Europe/Middle East Ottoman War with Russia and Austria: Hoping the regain the Crimea, the Ottomans failed, lost territory in Georgia, and were forced to accept the Dniester River as the boundary between the Ottomans and the Russian Empire. Apr. 12, 1787 North America Free African Society Is Founded: The Free African Society, the first major secular institution with a mission to aid African Americans, paved the way for later institutions such as the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). The society existed for less than a decade, however, before its membership merged with African American churches and other religious organizations with similar agendas. July 13, 1787 North America Northwest Ordinance: The Northwest Ordinance established the framework for the addition of new states, politically equal to the existing states, to the United States. It marked the rise of federal involvement in the organization of Western lands and the first sectional compromise over the extension of slavery. Sept. 17, 1787 North America U.S. Constitution Is Adopted: The Constitution of the United States of America replaced the failed Articles of Confederation, creating a new, unified nation under a tripartite federal government. Oct. 27, 1787-May, 1788 North America Publication of The Federalist: This series of essays, designed to convince New York State to ratify the new American Constitution, became classic explications of American constitutional law and history. 1788-Sept., 1809 Europe Russo-Swedish Wars: As at the beginning of the eighteenth century, Russia and Sweden battled for supremacy in northern Europe at century’s end. Russia was victorious, preserving and expanding its imperial ambitions. Jan. 1, 1788 Europe The Times Begins Publication in London: Merchant John Walter established England’s journal of record. Jan. 26, 1788 Australia Britain Establishes Penal Colony in Australia: Great Britain established a penal colony in Australia at Sydney Cove not only to overcome inadequate prison facilities at home but also to secure naval resources and create an economic route to Asia. Feb. 14, 1788 Europe Meikle Demonstrates His Drum Thresher: Andrew Meikle improved mechanical threshing methods by creating a machine that enabled farmers to harvest grain crops efficiently. His invention occurred at a time when demand for agricultural goods was increasing dramatically to feed and clothe growing urban populations employed by industry. 1789 Europe Leblanc Develops Soda Production: Instead of using organic sources, Nicolas Leblanc discovered an artificial method of making soda (sodium carbonate) from salt (sodium chloride), and his method led to widespread use of soda in industries making soap, glass, and paper, as well as in the bleaching and dyeing industries. 1789 Europe Proust Heads Spanish Royal Laboratory: French chemist Joseph-Louis Proust moved to Madrid to head the Royal Laboratory of Charles IV. Apr. 30, 1789 North America Washington’s Inauguration: As the first president of the United States, George Washington set lasting precedents for future leaders, helping to define both the qualities befitting a president and the appropriate conduct of presidents while in office. May 5, 1789 Europe Louis XVI Calls the Estates-General: King Louis XVI called the Estates-General, the supreme French legislative body, to meet for the first time in more than 150 years. The disastrous fiscal condition of the French government required new taxes that only the Estates-General could authorize, but those same fiscal problems had caused significant unrest among the bourgeois members of the Third Estate, who were poised to take control of the government. May 5, 1789-1796 Europe French Revolution: The calling together of the Estates-General on May 5, 1789, set in motion an expanding chain of radical reforms that shattered the ancien régime in France. Many reforms were kept, but the new constitution of 1795 was decidedly reactionary, ending the most radical phase of the upheaval. June 20, 1789 Europe Oath of the Tennis Court: The representatives of the French Third Estate swore to accomplish major governmental reform and not to separate--or to allow themselves to be separated--until their goals were achieved. Their oath forced King Louis XVI to accept a truly national assembly, thereby precipitating the French Revolution. July 14, 1789 Europe Fall of the Bastille: In the first overt violent act of the French Revolution, a crowd stormed the Parisian prison known as the Bastille, freeing its prisoners and seizing the armaments stored there as well. The Bastille’s fall signaled the emergence of the Parisian crowd as a potent political force. July 28-Oct. 16, 1789 North America Episcopal Church Is Established: In the wake of the American Revolution, a group of former Anglicans created a church based on Anglicanism but no longer associated with Great Britain. The general convention of the Protestant Episcopal Church adopted a church constitution, canons, and liturgy that shaped a uniquely American Episcopal church, independent of its mother Church of England. Sept. 24, 1789 North America Judiciary Act: The Judiciary Act created a federal court system independent of the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. government. Beyond filling a practical need, the act created the third branch of the American three-branch system and began to apportion power to the judiciary, providing it with a role in the day to day conducting of the national government. Oct., 1789-Apr. 25, 1792 Europe France Adopts the Guillotine: The invention of the guillotine made decapitation more humane and gave equality of punishment to all classes. It also made decapitation easier and faster, facilitating the mass executions of the Reign of Terror. 1790’s North America First U.S. Political Parties: Philosophical and practical differences led leaders of the United States to form the first political parties--the Federalists, who generally opposed the Constitution, and the Republicans, who for the most part supported the Constitution--to advance their interests and ideals. 1790’s-1830’s North America Second Great Awakening: Beginning in the 1790’s, the United States witnessed a spiritual reawakening that gave expression to the new social, political, and economic realities of the late eighteenth century. The Second Great Awakening, coinciding with the first decades of the new nation’s existence, established a long-standing American tradition of charity and humanitarianism. 1790 Europe Burke Lays the Foundations of Modern Conservatism: The first year of the French Revolution provoked a scathing denunciation in England by the Whig politician Edmund Burke. Although his lengthy Reflections on the Revolution in France, published in this year, was not aimed at establishing a systematic political philosophy, Burke nevertheless produced what is widely thought to be the manifesto of modern political conservatism. 1790 Europe First Steam Rolling Mill: By the late eighteenth century, steam began to replace waterwheels as the source of power for English mills. Applicable to ironworks, textile mills, and grains processing, the steam-powered rolling mills would transform result in larger mills, greater efficiency, higher production rates at lower cost, and more flexibility in transportation than small-scale cottage industries could achieve. Jan., 1790 North America Hamilton’s Report on Public Credit: Alexander Hamilton’s report to the U.S. Congress on public credit--which gave high priority to paying interest and principal on the securities constituting the national debt--became the basis for the federal government’s economic policy. Oct., 1790 North America Nootka Sound Convention: After a prolonged dispute over competing Spanish and British claims to the Canadian Northwest, Spain abandoned all settlements there, ceding the region to the British Empire. Oct. 18, 1790-July, 1794 North America Little Turtle’s War: A coalition of Native Americans in the Ohio Country fought the United States to retain control of their territory. The coalition inflicted the worst battlefield defeat on U.S. Army troops of any Native American force in history, and it prevented the United States from controlling or developing Ohio for four years.Dec. 20, 1790 1791 Europe Ball Bearings Patented: English inventor Philip Vaughan, working on carriage axles, obtained the first patent on modern ball bearings. 1791 Europe Brandenburg Gate Completed in Berlin: Prussian architect Carl Gotthard Langhaus designed the entrance gate to stand for peace, constructing it nearly a mile from the emperor’s palace. 1791 North America Canada’s Constitutional Act: One of a series of acts that created a constitution for Canada, the Constitutional Act of 1791 divided the territory into Lower Canada and Upper Canada and created a system that attempted to appease the very different political desires and expectations of British and French Canadians. Feb. 22, 1791-Feb. 16, 1792 North America Thomas Paine Publishes Rights of Man: Thomas Paine’s Rights of Man was a response to Edmund Burke’s Reflections on the Revolution in France, in which Burke had heavily criticized the French Revolution and revolutionary causes. Paine gave a theoretical defense of democracy and republican principles and advocated a remarkably modern welfare-state program whose fundamental function was to abolish poverty. Aug. 22, 1791-Jan. 1, 1804 Caribbean Haitian Independence: Toussain Louverture led a massive slave revolt that resulted in the first black republic in modern times and the second successful revolution for independence in the Western Hemisphere. Dec. 15, 1791 North America U.S. Bill of Rights Is Ratified: With the ratification of the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution, significant limitations were placed upon the powers of the federal government and specific rights and freedoms were granted to individuals and to the states. 1792 North America U.S. Mint Begins Decimal Coinage: The United States begins regular decimal coinage of gold, silver, and copper at a mint in Philadelphia. 1792 Europe Wollstonecraft Publishes A Vindication of the Rights of Woman: English writer and feminist Mary Wollstonecraft wrote and published the first recognized political work advocating gender equality, especially in education. 1792-1793 Europe Fichte Advocates Free Speech: Swept up in the ideals of the French Revolution, Johann Gottlieb Fichte and several other young German philosophers argued in the 1790’s for increases in individual liberty, including relaxations of censorship. Jan. 4, 1792-1797 Europe The Northern Star Calls for Irish Independence: The Northern Star became the mouthpiece of Protestant Irish discontent, fanning the flames of nationalism in the years leading up to the Irish Rebellion. Mar. 16, 1792 Europe Denmark Abolishes the Slave Trade: Denmark was the first European nation to outlaw the trade in slaves. Other nations soon followed suit, but neither Denmark nor the other nations outlawed slavery itself at this time. They merely put an end to their colonies’ importation of slaves from Africa and elsewhere. Apr. 20, 1792-Oct., 1797 Europe Early Wars of the French Revolution: During the French Revolutionary Wars, the French government, which was committed to spreading antiaristocratic principles, fought against conservative European powers that supported traditional social inequalities and royalist institutions. Sept. 20, 1792 Europe Battle of Valmy: This first battle of the Wars of the French Revolution might have also been the last had a hastily assembled French Army succumbed to a large Prussian-led invading force. Though a minor skirmish, Valmy is considered an important political turning point, since a French defeat might have ended the French Revolution. Oct. 2, 1792-Apr. 12, 1799 Europe/South Asia Christian Missionary Societies Are Founded: The evangelical effects of the First Great Awakening and its revival in the Second Great Awakeing of the 1790’s were widely felt in the establishment of organizations committed to the “conversion of the heathen,” most notably the Baptist Mission Society, the London Missionary Society, and the Church Missionary Society. Nov. 6, 1792 Europe Battle of Jemappes: In the early days of the French Revolutionary Wars, forty thousand French recruits drive Austrian forces from strong positions, reinforcing nationalist morale. 1793 North America Whitney Invents the Cotton Gin: Eli Whitney invented a machine to separate the useful portion of the cotton plant from its seeds and other extraneous materials. The gin revolutionized methods of agricultural production and increased the demand for slave labor in the American South. 1793-Jan., 1794 Europe/East Asia Macartney Mission to China: Great Britain sent George Macartney to the court of the Qianlong emperor, who regarded Britain as a vassal state and its people as barbarians. Macartney was to establish diplomatic relations with mainland China and to open new trade opportunities. Although negotiations led to promises, none of them were put into effect, and historians deemed Macartney’s mission a failure. Jan. 21, 1793 Europe Execution of Louis XVI: The trial and execution of Louis XVI placed the Jacobin faction in ascendancy in the French revolutionary government. It helped discredit the revolution among moderate and conservative Frenchmen and stiffened resistance to the revolution abroad. Feb. 12, 1793 North America First Fugitive Slave Law: The U.S. Congress passed a law establishing a procedure for southern slave owners to recover slaves who fled north, aggravating the sectional conflict between free states and slave states. Mar. 4-Dec. 23, 1793 Europe War in the Vendée: Angered by the execution of Louis XVI, the sale of confiscated Church and émigré lands to the middle classes, the deportation of village priests who did not support the revolution, and the institution of a national draft, the peasantry in Western France revolted. A counterrevolution developed, threatening to topple the First French Republic during the first year of its existence. July 22, 1793 North America Mackenzie Reaches the Arctic Ocean: Alexander Mackenzie, searching for an inland water route to the Pacific Ocean, instead found a river that took him to the Arctic coast of North America. This journey, as well as a subsequent trek across the Rocky Mountains, convinced Mackenzie that there was no commercially viable overland route from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean. Sept. 7-Dec. 19, 1793 Europe Siege of Toulon: French military under Jacques Dugommier, with Napoleon Bonaparte serving as artillery adviser, forced British, Spanish, and Royalist troops to evacuate, recapturing half of the French fleet that had been taken earlier. c. 1794-1799 Europe Proust Establishes the Law of Definite Proportions: Through a series of meticulous experiments, Joseph Louis Proust proved that all chemical compounds, whether found in nature or prepared in the laboratory, consist of elements in definite ratios by weight. June 1, 1794 Europe Allgemeines Landrecht Recodifies Prussian Law: The Allgemeines Landrecht, which codified Prussian civil and criminal laws on the basis of traditional social stratification, contributed to the unification of the various Prussian regions under absolute monarchy. It was thus an important aspect of the growth of Prussia as the central German power and the establishment in the nineteenth century of a German Empire. July-Nov., 1794 North America Whiskey Rebellion: A group of dissidents in western Pennsylvania, unwilling to pay a tax on whiskey, engaged in violent protests and attacks upon tax collectors. The response of the federal government demonstrated its willingness and ability to use military force to enforce unpopular laws. July 27-28, 1794 Europe Fall of Robespierre: The fall of French revolutionary leader Robespierre ended the Reign of Terror and allowed the army, now used against the populace, to become the primary force of the French Revolution. Aug. 20, 1794 North America Battle of Fallen Timbers: In the Battle of Fallen Timbers, the U.S. Army decisively defeated the Native Americans of the Ohio Territory. The resulting Treaty of Greenville secured U.S. control over much of Ohio, and the indigenous peoples of the area were forced to abandon the area. Nov. 19, 1794 North America/Europe Jay’s Treaty: Jay’s Treaty resolved outstanding financial, territorial, and commercial conflicts between Britain and the United States. The treaty led to large-scale settlement of the Northwest Territory, but it opened a rift with France. 1795 North America/Europe Invention of the Flax Spinner: While visiting Great Britain, Robert Fulton invented a flax-spinning machine that would significantly advance the American textile industry. 1795 North America/Europe Murray Develops a Modern English Grammar Book: Lindley Murray produced a simple-format English grammar book that was widely adopted by schools in both England and the United States. 1795 Middle East Wahabis Conquer Al-Hasa on the Persian Gulf: Continuing their conquest of central and eastern Arabia, the Wahabis positioned themselves to challenge ruling dynasties for control of the peninsula. 1795-1797 Europe Paganini’s Early Violin Performances: The violin prodigy Niccolò Paganini, who undertook his first concert tour at the age of fifteen, amazed audiences with his feats of agility as well as his passionate stage presence, becoming one of the Romantic era’s most famous examples of the emotionally absorbed artist. May 6, 1795 Europe Speenhamland System: The county magistrates of Berkshire, England, modified an existing system to help poor farmworkers. They linked the amount of money given to the poor to the price of bread, so workers would automatically be given more money as bread become more expensive. Such early indexing schemes became widely adopted and remained in place until a new poor law was enacted in 1834. July, 1795-Mar., 1796 Caribbean Second Maroon War: Jamaica’s largest community of Maroons (rebellious and escaped slaves) battled British forces for nine months in an uprising prompted by local grievances. The conflict ended when the Maroons agreed to a peace treaty, the terms of which were violated when Jamaica’s British governor deported the Maroons to Nova Scotia in Canada. The war marked the last significant Maroon rebellion in Jamaican history. Oct. 27, 1795 North America/Europe Pinckney’s Treaty: Wars in Europe prompted Spain to sign Pinckney’s Treaty, recognizing the United States’ western boundary claims and ensuring free navigation of the Mississippi River. 1796 Europe Laplace Articulates His Nebular Hypothesis: Pierre-Simon Laplace published Exposition du système du monde (The System of the World), in which he demonstrated mathematically that Sir Isaac Newton’s laws of motion and gravity could result in a simple cloud of dust transforming over time into the Sun and planets. 1796-1798 Europe Jenner Develops Smallpox Vaccination: English physician Edward Jenner was the first person to establish the scientific legitimacy of smallpox vaccinations through his experiments and research publications. His campaign to popularize the procedure led to its worldwide use and eventually protected millions from an often fatal disease. Mar., 1796-Oct. 17, 1797 Europe Napoleon’s Italian Campaigns: Napoleon’s lightning strike into Italy secured the region for France; provided a source of revenue, manpower, and resources for the French armies; and further reduced the Austrian forces’ ability to stand against the French hegemony in Europe. May 10, 1796 Europe Battle of Lodi: In pursuit of Austrian troops, Napoleon forced the Austrian rear guard to give up control of a bridge across the Adda River, thus paving the way for the conquest of Milan five days later. Sept. 19, 1796 North America Washington’s Farewell Address: George Washington published his final address as the first president of the United States, articulating foreign and domestic policy for the young nation. Nov., 1796 Europe Catherine II’s Art Collection Is Installed at the Hermitage: Constructed as an annex to the Winter Palace where the empress of Russia could obtain privacy, the Hermitage in St. Petersburg evolved, because of Catherine the Great’s concerted purchasing efforts, to be a world-renowned museum housing many of Europe’s great artistic masterpieces. 1797 Europe Wollaston Begins His Work on Metallurgy: William Hyde Wollaston and Smithson Tennant experimented on platinum ore, discovering the new elements and developing techniques for producing powdered platinum and a malleable, purified platinum metal. Jan. 14, 1797 Europe Battle of Rivoli: Austrian armies attempting to recover their losses in northern Italy were defeated by Napoleon. leading to the invasion of Austria in March. Oct. 4, 1797-Sept. 30, 1800 North America/Europe XYZ Affair: Disagreements between the United States and France over the import of Jay’s Treaty and an attempt by French agents to extort a bribe from American negotiators led to an undeclared war between France and the United States. Oct. 11, 1797 Europe Battle of Camperdown: An English fleet under Admiral Adam Duncan intercepted a Dutch fleet seeking to join the French in an attack on Ireland, capturing eight ships and ending hopes of a major Irish landing. 1798 Europe Invention of Lithography: In 1798, aspiring German playwright Alois Senefelder invented a new printmaking technique based on applying ink to an image created by a greasy medium on a porous stone. The unmarked or non-image areas holding water repelled the ink. This new “chemical printing,” later known as lithography (stone writing) transformed both commercial printing and the visual arts. 1798 Europe Malthus Arouses Controversy with His Population Theory: Thomas Robert Malthus published An Essay on the Principle of Population, developing theories about population explosion, food supply, and environmental concerns that laid the foundation for modern socioeconomic theory. Apr. 12, 1798-Sept. 2, 1801 Middle East Napoleon’s Egyptian Campaign: Napoleon Bonaparte invaded Egypt with the two goals of disrupting British trade with India and establishing a permanent French colony. Although the campaign was a failure, he successfully manipulated public opinion to enhance his popularity in France. May-Nov., 1798 Europe Irish Rebellion: Motivated by the example of the French and the American Revolution, Irish nationalists planned rebellion against British control. However, all did not go as anticipated, and the uprisings were mainly uncoordinated and short-lived. Nevertheless, the revolt acted as an inspiration for subsequent generations of Irish nationalists and, more immediately, set into motion the union between England and Ireland. June 25-July 14, 1798 North America Alien and Sedition Acts: The Alien and Sedition Acts were enacted by a Federalist-controlled Congress in the hope of not only suppressing the immigrant vote, which had been aligning most often with the Republican Party, but also deporting noncitizens during wartime and noncitizens who were considered a threat to public safety. The Sedition Act, passed in hope of limiting the power of the Republican press especially, made it a crime to write or publish criticisms of the federal government. July 21, 1798 Middle East Battle of the Pyramids: Napoleon’s defeat of the Mamlūk army enabled him to occupy Cairo, but his plans for strategic control were upset by British control of the sea, secured in the Battle of the Nile on August 1-2. Aug. 1-2, 1798 Middle East Battle of the Nile: The Battle of the Nile destroyed the French fleet, isolated more than thirty-five thousand French soldiers in Egypt, and ended Napoleon’s attempt to march eastward to India. 1799 North America Code of Handsome Lake: The Seneca religious leader Handsome Lake founded the Longhouse religion, which merged Native American and Christian traditions. Both successful and controversial, the Longhouse religion was an attempt to revive indigenous cultures within the context of the contemporary experience of Native Americans. 1799 Europe Discovery of the Earliest Anesthetics: The study of inhalant vapors at the Pneumatic Medical Institute led to Sir Humphry Davy’s discovery that nitrous oxide, or laughing gas, could be used to alleviate pain. The gas was the first inhalant used as an anesthetic. 1799 Europe Founding of the Royal Institution of London: Scientist Benjamin Thompson, who first proposed that heat was a form of motion, drew up a proposal for the founding of a new scientific institution and helped run it in its early years. 1799 Europe/Africa Park Publishes Travels in the Interior of Africa: Following nineteen months of travel, Scottish explorer Mungo Park published his account to great acclaim before embarking on a second expedition in 1805. July 16, 1799-July 9, 1804 Latin America Humboldt and Bonpland’s Expedition: Alexander von Humboldt and Aimé Bonpland’s six- thousand-mile expedition through Central and South America was the first major scientific exploration of the region. July 19, 1799 Middle East Discovery of the Rosetta Stone: The discovery of the Rosetta Stone provided the key to deciphering hieroglyphics, the ancient Egyptian system of writing, and so recaptured and revealed the rich culture and history of the forgotten civilization. July 25, 1799 Middle East Battle of Aboukir: Napoleon routed a Turkish army brought from Rhodes by the British, enabling him to return to France to gain direct political power. Nov. 9-10, 1799 Europe Napoleon Rises to Power in France: Napoleon rose to power in France through the coup d’état of 18-19 Brumaire, effectively ending France’s revolutionary experiment and initiating nearly sixteen years of Napoleonic domination of Europe. 1800 Europe Volta Invents the Battery: Alessandro Volta designed a battery that used positive and negative poles to charge a wire placed in a wet cell. He refined his design three times before 1800, the officially recognized date of his invention. Jan. 24, 1800 Middle East Convention of El Arish: After returning to France, Napoleon concluded the Egyptian campaigns by seeking to withdraw French troops. June 14, 1800 Europe Battle of Marengo: French troops under General Louis-Charles-Antoine Desaix de Veygoux and Napoleon routed an Austrian force under General Michael Friedrich von Melas, thus ending the Italian campaign. July 2-Aug. 1, 1800 Europe Act of Union Forms the United Kingdom: The English and Irish parliaments passed the Act of Union, creating the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. The act dissolved Ireland’s parliament and unified the Church of England and the Church of Ireland. The act would lead to a history of movements for Irish nationhood and for Catholic emancipation. Dec. 3, 1800 Europe Battle of Hohenlinden: Following victory in Italy, French forces under General Jean Victor Moreau marched into Germany, decisively defeating the Austrians, who soon leave the war.

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