|At A Glance|
Keyword List of Contents
List of Maps, Tables, and
Quotations from Primary
Chronological List of Entries
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|Great Events from History|
"Bottom Line This impressive, perusable set
will strengthen any reference collection and is
strongly recommended for academic and
public libraries, especially those that can
afford other titles in the series." - Booklist
Editor: Edited by John Powell,
Oklahoma Baptist University
Great Events from History:
The 18th Century
Unique resource - nothing comparable, in this much depth or numbers, covers events spanning the entire 18th century.
In The 18th Century, the new content constitutes more than two-thirds of the set. Commissioned especially for the new series and appearing here for the first time, essays cover the world's most important events and developments - from 1701 through 1800 - in the century that witnessed the world's transition to a modern industrial and scientific society.
Great Events from History: The 18th Century begins with 105 core essays from Salem's acclaimed Chronology of European History (1997) and Great Events from History: North American Series (1997). The set adds 238 new essays.
Scope and Coverage
The century receives worldwide coverage with a priority for meeting the needs of history students at the high school and undergraduate levels. Events covered include the obligatory geopolitical events of the era - from the War of the Spanish Succession through the American and French Revolutions, from the collapse of the South Sea Bubble to the rise of Napoleon. Also, however, the essays address key social and cultural developments in daily life: the expansion of the Atlantic slave trade; the "Enlightenment" in Europe; the excavation of Pompeii; the beginnings of the abolitionist movement in North America; the seeds of the woman suffrage movement; and the opening of Japan to foreign commerce and publications.
Scientific achievements boomed in this post-Newtonian age. Hence major advancements in astronomy, chemistry, geology, mathematics, physics, biology, and genetics are thoroughly covered here - as are many of their practical applications. The 18th century gave rise to a wealth of inventions that would lay the groundwork for the Industrial Revolution: from Jethro Tull's seed drill to Kay's flying shuttle, Whitney's cotton gin, and Volta's battery. The first Arab printing press emerged during the 18th century. Watt's steam engine opened the door to the cross-continental railroad transportation. The earliest piloted balloon flights carried human beings across land and sea a century before the Wright brothers' excursion at Kitty Hawk. The practice of medicine began to take modern shape, as Edward Jenner developed a reliable smallpox vaccine (replacing the risky practice of variolation) and early anesthetics made dentistry and surgery more practicable. Neoclassicism flourished in the arts, architecture, and music from Bach to Mozart; theater began to be regarded a profession worthy of permanent institutions such as Covent Garden and La Scala, both of which opened in this era.
The emphasis of this collection, therefore, is on those turning points that redirected contemporary affairs and shaped the modern world - not only geopolitically but also in the experience of everyday life from its practical exigencies to its highest achievements.
Organization and Format
Each chronologically ordered essay lists the event's most precise date of occurrence; a capsule summary of the event's importance; the category or categories of the event (from arts to wars); the geographical locale (both contemporary and modern place-names); a list of Key Figures including name, birth and death years, regnal dates and terms of office, and brief descriptors of their roles; a chronological Summary of Event; an assessment of the event's historical Significance; a fully annotated Further Reading section listing sources for additional study; and cross-references to other essays of interest.
The essays have an average length of 1,600 words (2-3 pages) and adhere to a uniform format, making it easy to locate key data points.
Finding Aids and Special Features
Bibliographies for the old essays have been expanded and updated. All essays are cross-referenced internally, to each other, and externally, to the companion essays in Great Lives from History: The 18th Century(simultaneous publication, 2006). A section containing maps of world regions in the18th century, new appendices, plus numerous sidebars, quotations from primary source documents, lists, maps and illustrations have been included.
A section of historical maps appears in the front matter of both volumes, displaying world regions in the 18th century to assist in placing the events' locales. Accompanying many of the essays are maps, quotations from primary source documents, lists, and time lines - as well as approximately 150 illustrations: images of artworks, battles, buildings, people, and other icons of the period.
Because the set is ordered chronologically, a Keyword List of Contents appears in the front matter to both volumes and alphabetically lists all essays, permuted by all keywords in the essay's title, to assist in locating events by name.
Also of Interest
Great Lives from History: The Eighteenth Century, 1701-1800, Great Lives and Great Events series: The Ancient World, The Middle Ages, 477-1453, The Renaissance & Early Modern Era, 1454-1600, The 17th Century, 1601-1700, Magill's Guide to Military History and Weapons and Warfare.