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ESP Timelines

Comparative Timelines

The ESP Timeline (one of the site's most popular features) has been completely updated to allow the user to select (using the timeline controls above each column) different topics for the left and right sides of the display.

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Hernando de Alarcón sets sail to explore the Baja California peninsula; on September 26 he enters the Colorado River.

image Georg Joachim Rheticus publishes De Libris Revolutionum Copernici Narratio Prima in Danzig, an abstract of Copernicus' as yet unpublished De revolutionibus orbium coelestium and the first printed publication of Copernican heliocentrism.

Valerius Cordus discovers and describes a method of synthesizing ether ("oleum dulci vitrioli") by adding sulfuric acid to ethyl alcohol.

Publication in London of the first printed book in English on obstetrics, The Byrth of Mankynde, a translation attributed to Richard Jonas from Rösslin's De partu hominis. It will continue to be issued in new editions for more than a century.

1540

image Painting by Agnolo Bronzino: Portrait of a Young Man with a Book The Portrait of a Young Man with a Book is a c.1530s oil on board painting by Agnolo Bronzino. It likely depicts a literary friend of the artist holding open a collection of poetry. It entered the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 1929, where it is still held.

image Painting by Parmigianino: Madonna with the Long Neck an Italian Mannerist oil painting depicting Madonna and Child with angels. The painting was begun in 1534 for the funerary chapel of Francesco Tagliaferri in Parma, but remained incomplete on Parmigianino's death in 1540. Ferdinando de' Medici, Grand Prince of Tuscany purchased it in 1698 and it has been on display at the Uffizi since 1948. The painting depicts the Virgin Mary seated on a high pedestal in luxurious robes, holding a rather large baby Jesus on her lap. Six angels crowd together on the Madonna's right, adore the Christ-child. In the lower right-hand corner of the painting is an enigmatic scene, with a row of marble columns and the emaciated figure of St. Jerome. A depiction of St. Jerome was required by the commissioner because of the saint's connection with the adoration of the Virgin Mary. The painting is popularly called "Madonna of the Long Neck" because "the painter, in his eagerness to make the Holy Virgin look graceful and elegant, has given her a neck like that of a swan."

The western headwaters of the Amazon River are encountered and explored by Francisco de Orellana.

Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto reaches the Mississippi River, naming it Rio de Espiritu Santo.

image Gerardus Mercator makes his first terrestrial globe, for Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor.

1541

(no entry for this year)

Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo explores the coast of California.

War resumes between Francis I of France and Emperor Charles V. This time Henry VIII is allied with the Emperor, while James V of Scotland and Sultan Suleiman I are allied with the French.

image Leonhart Fuchs publishes his new herbal De historia stirpium commentarii insignes in Basel. It was illustrated by: Albrecht Meyer, who made drawings based on the actual plants; Heinrich Füllmaurer, who transferred the drawings to woodblock; and Vitus Rudolph Speckle, who cut the blocks and printed the drawings.[1] It covers about 497 plants and has over 500 woodcut illustrations. Over 100 of the plants in the book were first descriptions.[2][3] The University of Glasgow states that it is considered a landmark work in its field.[3] Stanford University Press considers it one of the best illustrated books of all time and a masterpiece of the German Renaissance.[4] It set a new standard for accuracy and quality, as well as being the first known publication of plants from the Americas, such as pumpkin, maize, marigold, potato, and tobacco. Plants were identified in German, Greek, and Latin, and sometimes English.[5] The book was initially published in Latin and Greek and quickly translated into German.[6] Just during Fuchs' lifetime the book went through 39 printings in Dutch, French, German, Latin, and Spanish and 20 years after his death was translated into English.[3]

image Jean Fernel publishes De naturali parte medicinae, presenting human physiology as integral to the study of medicine.

In a brief work titled On Meteorology, Fausto da Longiano argues that Noah's flood "cannot have been universal, according to natural reasons," and endorses a 36,000-year cycle of Earth history accepted by some other scholars.

1542

image Painting by Agnolo Bronzino: Portrait of Bia de' Medici The Portrait of Bia de' Medici is an oil-tempera on wood painting by Agnolo Bronzino, dating to around 1542 and now in the Uffizi in Florence. Some art historians once identified the child as a young Cosimo I de' Medici, but it is now generally accepted to be Giulia.

image Painting by Hans Holbein the Younger: Self Portrait The Self-portrait is a small drawing by the German Renaissance artist and printmaker Hans Holbein the Younger, completed around 1542-1543, and housed in the Uffizi, Florence. The gold background was added later by a different artist. According to art historian John Rowlands, "Although this drawing has been enlarged on all sides and heavily reworked, enough of it still shows to allow the assumption that the original work was executed by Holbein.

image De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres) by the Renaissance astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus is published. The book presents the notion that the Earth revolves around the sun (a heliocentric theory) as opposed to Ptolemy's geocentric system (the Earth at the center of the universe), which had been widely accepted since ancient times.

image Andreas Vesalius (Andries van Wesel) publishes the anatomy treatise De humani corporis fabrica (On the Workings of the Human Body).

Niccolò Fontana Tartaglia publishes a translation of Euclid's Elements into Italian, the first into any modern European language.

image Robert Recorde publishes The Grounde of Artes, teaching the Worke and Practise of Arithmeticke, both in whole numbers and fractions, one of the first printed elementary arithmetic textbooks in English and the first to cover algebra. It will go through around forty-five editions in the following century and a half. In this work, the use of the equal sign ("=") is introduced.

1543

image Painting by Titian: Portrait of the Vendramin Family a painting executed around 1543–1547. It presently hangs in the National Gallery in London. The canvas was commissioned by the noble Vendramin family, and portrays, as dictated by Venetian custom, only male members of the dynasty. It includes the brothers Andrea and Gabriele Vendramin, and Andrea's seven sons. Titian's painting has been described as, "one of the greatest group portraits in history". It balances youth and wisdom as well as demonstrating the power of this family and their public commitments to the Republic.

image Orto botanico di Pisa botanical garden established by Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, under the direction of Luca Ghini, who also creates the first herbarium.

William Turner's Avium praecipuarum, quarum apud Plinium et Aristotelem mentio est, brevis et succincta historia is published in Cologne, the first printed book devoted entirely to ornithology.

Georgius Agricola publishes De ortu et causis subterraneorum, laying the foundations of modern physical geology.

1544

(no entry for this year)

Thomas Phaer publishes The Boke of Chyldren, the first book on paediatrics written in English.

image Gerolamo Cardano publishes his algebra text Ars Magna, including the first published solutions to cubic and quartic equations.

1545

image Painting by Agnolo Bronzino: Portrait of Eleanor of Toledo One of his most famous works, it is housed in the Uffizi Gallery of Florence, Italy and is considered one of the preeminent examples of Mannerist portraiture. The painting depicts Eleanor of Toledo, the wife of Cosimo I de' Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, sitting with her hand resting on the shoulder of one of her sons. This gesture, as well as the pomegranate motif on her dress, referred to her role as mother. Eleanor wears a heavily brocaded dress with black arabesques. In this pose, she is depicted as the ideal woman of the Renaissance.

image Painting by Agnolo Bronzino: Venus, Cupid, Folly and Time (also called An Allegory of Venus and Cupid and A Triumph of Venus) is an allegorical painting by the Florentine artist Agnolo Bronzino. About 1546, Bronzino was commissioned to create a painting that has come to be known as Venus, Cupid, Folly, and Time. It displays the ambivalence, eroticism, and obscure imagery that are characteristic of the Mannerist period, and of Bronzino's master Pontormo.

image Painting by Titian: Pope Paul III and His Grandsons was commissioned by the Farnese family and painted during Titian's visit to Rome between autumn 1545 and June 1546. It depicts the thorny relationship between Pope Paul III, born Alessandro Farnese, and two of his grandsons, Ottavio and Alessandro. Ottavio is shown in the act of kneeling, to his left; Alessandro, wearing a cardinal's dress, stands behind him to his right. The painting explores the effects of ageing and the manoeuvring behind succession; Paul was at the time in his late seventies and operating within an uncertain political climate as Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor, came into ascendancy. Paul was not a religious man; he viewed the papacy as a means to consolidate his family's position. He appointed Alessandro as cardinal against accusations of nepotism, fathered a number of illegitimate children, and spent large sums of church money collecting art and antiquities.

German minerologist Georgius Agricola publishes De Natura Fossilium (On the Nature of Fossils), the first published paleontological treatise.

image Girolamo Fracastoro, in his De Contagione et Contagiosis Morbis (published in Venice), discusses the transmission of infectious diseases and gives the first description of typhus.

1546

image Michelangelo Buonarroti is made chief architect of St. Peter's Basilica.

image Painting by Lucas Cranach the Elder : The Fountain of Youth The image is an oil painting on a lime wood board, executed in landscape format with the dimensions 186.1 x 120.6 centimeters. It shows on the bottom center, a winged serpent in flight from Cranach's workshop and the year 1546. It shows a fountain where older women but not men bathe, are rejuvenated and finally indulge in music, dance and good food. Cranach presents in this fairy tale image, in many details the real bathing culture of the Middle Ages, that based on the belief that certain baths might heal and rejuvenate. Sensual pleasures belonged to the bathroom now.

image Edward VI becomes King of England and Ireland on 28 January and is crowned on 20 February at the age of 9. The son of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour, Edward was England's first monarch to be raised as a Protestant. During his reign, the realm was governed by a Regency Council because he never reached his majority.

image Grand Prince Ivan the Terrible is crowned tsar of (All)Russia, thenceforth becoming the first Russian tsar.

1547

(no entry for this year)

Battle of Uedahara: Firearms are used for the first time on the battlefield in Japan.

1548

image Painting by Caterina van Hemessen: Self Portrait a small painting executed in oil on oak in 1548 by the Flemish Renaissance artist Caterina van Hemessen when she was 20 years old. The painting earned her a considerable reputation during her lifetime and is significant not only for being an early modern female portrait but also for representing an artist in the act of painting. This was very unusual for the time; although self-portraits were common, only a few, like those of Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528), showed the artist's social position and everyday life. Artists of the time rarely directly referred to, much less showed the tools of their profession. Hemessen's portrait is one of the earliest in the Northern European tradition to show a painter not only with a brush but also a palette and easel. She inscribed it with the words: "I Caterina van Hemessen have painted myself / 1548 / Her aged 20".

(no entry for this year)

1549

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1550

image Painting by unknown artist from the school of Fontainbleau: Diana the Huntress This may be an allegorical portrait of Diane de Poitiers, mistress of the French King Henry II. It reveals the profound impact of Italian Mannerist painters on French court art.

Publication of Erasmus Reinhold's ephemeris (collection of astronomical tables), the Tabulae Prutenicae, helping to disseminate Copernican methods of astronomical calculation.

1551

image Painting by Pieter Aertsen: A Meat Stall with the Holy Family Giving Alms A large painting, it depicts a peasant market scene, with an abundance of meats and other foods. In the background, it shows a scene from the biblical theme of the flight into Egypt, where the Virgin Mary is seen stopped on the road, giving alms to the poor. Thus, although the painting seems to be at first sight an ordinary still life concentrating on foodstuffs, it is rich with symbolism; it in fact hides a symbolic religious meaning, and embodies a visual metaphor encouraging spiritual life. Aertsen made a name for himself during the 1550s painting scenes from everyday life in a naturalistic manner.

image Cornelius Gemma publishes the first illustration of a human tapeworm.

Thierry de Héry publishes La Méthode Curatoire de la maladie vénérienne vulgairement appelée grosse Vérole et de la diversité de ses symptômes, the first work in French on syphilis.

1552

(no entry for this year)

image Mary Tudor becomes the first queen regnant of England and restores the Church of England under Papal authority.

Publication in Spain of Libro del Exercicio, considered the first book on the benefits of physical exercise for health.

1553

(no entry for this year)

image Completion of the Church of Sant'Andrea in Via Flaminia, Rome, designed by Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola, the first church of the Italian Renaissance to have an elliptical dome.

image Guillaume Rondelet publishes a volume on Mediterranean fish — De Piscibus — and includes the assertion that glossopetrae, or tongue stones, resemble shark teeth. The hypothesis attracts little attention.

Roman naturalist Ippolito Salviani publishes History of Aquatic Animals.

Venetian mathematician Giambattista Benedetti publishes two editions of Demonstratio proportionum motuum localium, developing his new doctrine of the speed of bodies in free fall.

1554

(no entry for this year)

image Pierre Belon publishes L'Histoire de la nature des oyseaux, a pioneering work in the comparative anatomy of birds.

image The first edition of Alessio Piemontese's Secreti is published, listing about 350 medical recipes along with observations of nature. The publisher, Girolamo Ruscelli, will later claim authorship. Enormously popular, the book will total 104 editions through 1699.

1555

image Painting by Titian: Venus with a Mirror The pose of the Venus resembles the classical statues of the Venus de' Medici in Florence or the Capitoline Venus in Rome, which Titian may have seen when he wrote that was "learning from the marvelous ancient stones." The painting is said to celebrate the ideal beauty of the female form, or to be a critique of vanity, or perhaps both. It was copied by several later artists, including Peter Paul Rubens and Anthony van Dyck. Titian made a number of paintings of the same subject, but this is the believed to be the earliest and the only version to be entirely by the hand of Titian, without additions by his assistants. it remained in his house until his death in 1576. X-rays of the painting have revealed that Titian painted it over a double portrait which he had abandoned.

Pomponio Algerio, 25-year-old radical theologian, is executed by boiling in oil as part of the Roman inquisition. After refusing to conform to Church doctrine, he was sentenced to prison and asked to reconsider his Lutheran beliefs. After a year behind bars, he still refused to reconsider. Because Venetian authorities would not consent to an execution, Pope Paul IV sent officials to extradite Pomponio to Rome. In Rome, on 21 August 1555, a monk from the brotherhood of St John the Beheaded visited Pomponio in his cell urging him to repent. If he repented, he would be strangled before burning. The 24-year-old student refused. One year later, on 22 August 1556, he was executed by civil authorities in the Piazza Navona, Rome. Maintaining his composure while he was boiled in oil, he stayed alive for 15 minutes before dying.

The Shaanxi earthquake in China, during the Ming Dynasty, is history's deadliest known earthquake, killing approximately 830,000 people.

image Great Comet of 1556 becomes visible in Europe. The comet, known as C/1556 D1 in modern nomenclature, appears to have been seen in some places before the end of February; but it was not generally observed until the middle of the first week in March. Its apparent diameter was equal to half that of the Moon, and the tail resembled " the flame of a torch agitated by the wind," — an expression doubtless referring to the coruscations which are sometimes visible in the tails of comets

1556

(no entry for this year)

German adventurer Hans Staden publishes an account of his detention by the Tupí people of Brazil, Warhaftige Historia und beschreibung eyner Landtschafft der Wilden Nacketen, Grimmigen Menschfresser-Leuthen in der Newenwelt America gelegen ("True Story and Description of a Country of Wild, Naked, Grim, Man-eating People in the New World, America"), in Marburg.

French surgeon Ambroise Paré, at the Battle of St. Quentin, notes that certain maggots assist the healing of wounds.

1557

(no entry for this year)

image Elizabeth Tudor becomes Queen Elizabeth I at age 25. Sometimes called The Virgin Queen, Gloriana or Good Queen Bess, the childless Elizabeth was the last monarch of the Tudor dynasty. Elizabeth was the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, his second wife, who was executed two-and-a-half years after Elizabeth's birth. Anne's marriage to Henry VIII was annulled, and Elizabeth was declared illegitimate. Elizabeth's reign is known as the Elizabethan era. The period is famous for the flourishing of English drama, led by playwrights such as William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe, and for the seafaring prowess of English adventurers such as Francis Drake.

image Thomas Gresham states Gresham's Law — a monetary principle stating that "bad money drives out good". For example, if there are two forms of commodity money in circulation, which are accepted by law as having similar face value, the more valuable commodity will disappear from circulation. When silver was removed from US coins as a result of the Coinage Act of 1965, the effect of Gresham's Law was immediately obvious, as many retail clerks kept silver coins for themselves, replacing them in the till with newer, non-silver versions. In a short period of time, silver coins virtually disappeared from circulation.

1558

(no entry for this year)

Led by Don Tristán de Luna y Arellano, a Spanish missionary colony of 1500 men on thirteen ships arrives from Vera Cruz at Pensacola Bay, founding the first European settlement on the mainland United States. On September 19, the colony is decimated by a hurricane.

image Jean Nicot, French ambassador to Portugal 1559–61, describes the medicinal properties of tobacco which he introduces in the form of snuff to the French court. The plant was also an instant success and soon many of the fashionable people of Paris began to use the plant, making Nicot a celebrity. The tobacco plant, Nicotiana, also a flowering garden plant, was named after him by Carl Linnaeus, as was nicotine.

1559

image Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Netherlandish Proverbs a 1559 oil-on-oak-panel painting that depicts a scene in which humans and, to a lesser extent, animals and objects, offer literal illustrations of Dutch language proverbs and idioms. Running themes in Bruegel's paintings are the absurdity, wickedness and foolishness of humans, and this is no exception. The painting's original title, The Blue Cloak or The Folly of the World, indicates that Bruegel's intent was not just to illustrate proverbs, but rather to catalog human folly. Many of the people depicted show the characteristic blank features that Bruegel used to portray fools.

image By winning the Battle of Okehazama, Oda Nobunaga becomes one of the pre-eminent warlords of Japan.

A total solar eclipse visible in Europe occurred on August 21. The prediction of this solar eclipse helped to inspire Tycho Brahe's (1546–1601) interest in astronomy at the age of 13. The announcement of this forthcoming eclipse in France caused many Frenchmen to panic, fighting one another to be next in line at the confessional. One beleaguered parish priest tried to calm the populace by announcing that since there were so many waiting to confess, a decision had been made to postpone the eclipse for two weeks.

1560

image Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder: Children's Games The children, who range in age from toddlers to adolescents, roll hoops, walk on stilts, spin hoops, ride hobby-horses, stage mock tournaments, play leap-frog and blind man's bluff, perform handstands, inflate pigs' bladders and play with dolls and other toys. They have also taken over the large building that dominates the square: it may be a town hall or some other important civic building, in this way emphasizing the moral that the adults who direct civic affairs are as children in the sight of God. This crowded scene is to some extent relieved by the landscape in the top left-hand corner; but even here children are bathing in the river and playing on its banks. The artist's intention for this work is more serious than simply to compile an illustrated encyclopaedia of children's games, though some eighty particular games have been identified. Bruegel shows the children absorbed in their games with the seriousness displayed by adults in their apparently more important pursuits. His moral is that in the mind of God children's games possess as much significance as the activities of their parents.

(no entry for this year)

1561

(no entry for this year)

Britain Joins Slave Trade. John Hawkins, the first Briton to take part in the slave trade, makes a huge profit hauling human cargo from Africa to Hispaniola.

image Diego Gutiérrez and Hieronymus Cock published the map Americae Sive Quartae Orbis Partis Nova Et Exactissima Descriptio (A New and Most Exact Description of America or The Fourth Part of the World). The map (an ornate geographical map of the Americas) encompasses the eastern coast of North America, the entire Central and South America and parts of the western coasts of Europe and Africa. Americae Sive Quartae Orbis Partis Nova Et Exactissima Descriptio is the earliest scale wall map of the New World and the first to use the name "California".

1562

image Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder: The Fall of the Rebel Angels The depiction of this subject is taken from a passage from the Book of Revelation (12, 2-9) and reveals the artist's profound debt to Hieronymous Bosch, especially in the grotesque figures of the fallen angels, shown as half-human, half-animal monsters. Together with Dulle Griet and The Triumph of Death, which have similar dimensions, it was probably painted for the same collector and destined to become part of a series.

image Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder: The Triumph of Death The painting shows a panorama of an army of skeletons wreaking havoc across a blackened, desolate landscape. Fires burn in the distance, and the sea is littered with shipwrecks. A few leafless trees stud hills otherwise bare of vegetation; fish lie rotting on the shores of a corpse-choked pond.

Outbreak of bubonic plague — The Black Death — in London kills over 20,000. Plague epidemics ravaged London in 1563, 1593, 1603, 1625, 1636, and 1665, reducing its population by 10 to 30% during those years.

1563

(no entry for this year)

Galileo Galilei is born born in Pisa (then part of the Duchy of Florence), Italy, on 15 February 1564.

1564

(no entry for this year)

Roger Taverner writes his Arte of Surveyinge.

image Conrad Gessner publishes De Omni Rerum Fossilium ("A Book of Fossil Objects").

Antwerp doctor Samuel Quiccheberg publishes a description of the curiosity cabinet of Hans Jakob Fugger, including items from the animal, vegetable and mineral world.

College of Physicians of London empowered to carry out human dissections.

1565

image Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder: The Hunters in the Snow (Dutch: Jagers in de Sneeuw), also known as The Return of the Hunters, is a 1565 oil-on-wood painting by Flemish artist Pieter Bruegel the Elder. The Northern Renaissance work is one of a series of works, five of which still survive, that depict different times of the year. The Hunters in the Snow, and the series to which it belongs, are in the medieval and early Renaissance tradition of the Labours of the Months: depictions of various rural activities and work understood by a spectator in Breugel's time as representing the different months or times of the year.

image Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe, while studying at the University of Rostock in Mecklenburg, loses part of his nose in a duel with fellow nobleman and relation Manderup Parsberg over a mathematical formula.

1566

image Painting by Giuseppe Arcimboldo: The Four Elements a series of paintings that were commissioned by Maximilian II, Holy Roman Emperor. The portraits display figures in profile formed by different animals or objects. Earth is represented by land animals, Air by birds, Water by marine creatures and Fire by burning wood and cannons. This series attempts to express harmony out of chaos with wild animals forming distinct faces. It also praises Maximilian, suggesting that he is a ruler who controls even the four primal elements.

image Painting by Pieter Bruegel the Elder: The Wedding Dance The painting depicts 125 wedding guests. As was customary in the Renaissance period, the brides wore black and men wore codpieces. Voyeurism is depicted throughout the entire art work; dancing was disapproved of by the authorities and the church, and the painting can be seen as both a critique and comic depiction of a stereotypical oversexed, overindulgent, peasant class of the times.

image Mary, Queen of Scots, is imprisoned by Elizabeth I. Mary, the only surviving legitimate child of James V of Scotland, was six days old when her father died and she acceded to the throne. Mary had previously claimed Elizabeth's throne as her own and was considered the legitimate sovereign of England by many English Catholics, including participants in a rebellion known as the Rising of the North. Perceiving her as a threat, Elizabeth had her confined in various castles and manor houses in the interior of England. After eighteen and a half years in custody, Mary was found guilty of plotting to assassinate Elizabeth in 1586. She was beheaded the following year.

image Paracelsus (Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim) publishes On the Miners' Sickness and Other Diseases of Miners, a pioneering example of occupational medicine.

Fabrizio Mordente publishes a single sheet treatise in Venice showing illustrations of his "proportional eight-pointed compass" which has two arms with cursors that allow the solution of problems in measuring the circumference, area and angles of a circle.

1567

(no entry for this year)

The Transylvanian Diet, under the patronage of the prince John Sigismund Zápolya, the former King of Hungary, inspired by the teachings of Ferenc Dávid, the founder of the Unitarian Church of Transylvania, promulgates the Edict of Torda, the first law of Freedom of religion and of conscience in the World.

1568

(no entry for this year)

image The Mercator projection is first used in Gerardus Mercator's world map Nova et Aucta Orbis Terrae Descriptio ad Usum Navigantium Emendata.

1569

(no entry for this year)

Giovanni Padovani publishes a detailed treatise on the construction of sundials, Opus de compositione et usu multiformium horologiorum solarium, in Venice.

image Pope Pius V issues Regnans in Excelsis, a papal bull excommunicating all who obeyed Elizabeth I and calling on all Roman Catholics to rebel against her.

image London haberdasher Henry Billingsley makes the first translation of Euclid's Elements into English (from the Greek).

1570

image Painting by Giuseppe Arcimboldo: Self Portrait

(no entry for this year)

1571

image Painting by François Clouet: A Lady in Her Bath The picture is in the National Gallery of Art, Washington DC. It is one of only three paintings signed by Clouet. The bather is unknown. It is possible that she is Diane de Poitiers, mistress of King Henry II of France. Scholar Roger Trinquet suggested in 1966 that the lady is Mary Queen of Scots. The lady's face resembles other portraits of Mary, especially a drawing by Clouet depicting Mary in mourning. Trinquet believes the painting was intended as a satire for a Huguenot patron. The painting set a fashion for portraits of bathers.

image The last Inca leader Tupak Amaru apprehended by Spanish conquistadores at Vilcabamba, Peru, and executed in Cuzco.

image A supernova, now designated as SN 1572, is first observed in the constellation Cassiopeia by Cornelius Gemma. Tycho Brahe, who notes it two days later, will use it to challenge the prevailing view that stars do not change.

image Girolamo Mercuriale of Forlì (Italy) writes the work De morbis cutaneis ("On the diseases of the skin"), the first scientific tract on dermatology.

1572

(no entry for this year)

French surgeon Ambroise Paré publishes the first edition of Des Monstres et Prodiges. At this time, surgeons are not regarded as real doctors, and Paré is roundly criticized for discussing larger issues of medicine and philosophy, considered well beyond his purview.

1573

image Painting by Paolo Veronese: The Feast in the House of Levi is one of the largest canvases of the 16th century, measuring 555 cm × 1,280 cm (18.21 ft × 41.99 ft). It is now in the Gallerie dell'Accademia in Venice. It was painted by Veronese for the rear wall of the refectory of the Basilica di Santi Giovanni e Paolo, a Dominican friary, as a Last Supper, to replace an earlier work by Titian destroyed in the fire of 1571. However, the painting led to an investigation by the Roman Catholic Inquisition. Veronese was called to answer for irreverence and indecorum, and the serious offence of heresy was mentioned. He was asked to explain why the painting contained "buffoons, drunken Germans, dwarfs and other such scurrilities" as well as extravagant costumes and settings, in what is indeed a fantasy version of a Venetian patrician feast. Veronese was told that he must change his painting within a three-month period; instead, he simply changed the title to The Feast in the House of Levi, still an episode from the Gospels, but less doctrinally central, and one in which the Gospels specified "sinners" as present. After this, no more was said.

In Rome (Italy), in the river Tiber between the two bridges, the monument base is discovered for a statue of Simon Paeter (or Simon the Sorcerer, the "Magus of Samaria"), with inscription "Simoni Deo Sancto" (translation: "To Simon the Holy God").

1574

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1575

(no entry for this year)

English navigator Martin Frobisher sights Greenland.

1576

(no entry for this year)

image The Great Comet of 1577 (official designation: C/1577 V1) was a comet that passed close to Earth during the year 1577 AD. It was viewed by people all over Europe, including the famous Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe and Turkish astronomer Taqi ad-Din. From his observations of the comet, Brahe was able to discover that comets and similar objects travel above the Earth's atmosphere. The best fit using JPL Horizons suggests that the comet is currently about 320 AU from the Sun (based on 24 of Brahe's observations spanning 74 days from 13 November 1577 to 26 January 1578).

1577

(no entry for this year)

English seaman William Bourne publishes a manual, Inventions or Devises, Very Necessary for all Generalles and Captaines, as wel by Sea as by Land, including an early theoretical description of a submarine.

Li Shizhen completes the first draft of the materia medica Bencao Gangmu.

1578

image Painting by El Greco: Lady in a Fur Wrap against a dark background a young woman gazes at the viewer, dressed in a fur robe covering the rest of her dress. A fine transparent veil covers her head, and vaguely a neckace can be seen that she is wearing underneath it. The robe falls into darkness behind its fur lining, that may be ermine or lynx. The painting is unsigned but has traditionally been attributed to El Greco since it was in the collection of French king Louis Philippe I and hung at the Louvre.

Francis Drake, during his circumnavigation of the world, lands in what is now California, which he claims for Queen Elizabeth I of England as Nova Albion.

image Hieronymus Fabricius discovers the membranous folds that serve as valves in the veins.

1579

(no entry for this year)

Francis Drake in the Golden Hind sails into Plymouth having completed the second circumnavigation of the world, westabout, begun in 1577.

Spain unifies with Portugal under Philip II. The struggle for the throne of Portugal ends the Portuguese Empire. The Spanish and Portuguese crowns are united for 60 years, i.e. until 1640.

1580

(no entry for this year)

Slaves in Florida Spanish residents in St. Augustine, the first permanent settlement in Florida, import African slaves.

1581

(no entry for this year)

image Pope Gregory XIII issues papal bull Inter Gravissimas, thereby establishing the The Gregorian Calendar. The last day of the Julian calendar was Thursday, 4 October 1582 and this was followed by the first day of the Gregorian calendar, Friday, 15 October 1582.

1582

(no entry for this year)

image Andrea Cesalpino publishes De Plantis, ordering plants in families. In his works he classified plants according to their fruits and seeds, rather than alphabetically or by medicinal properties. In 1555, he succeeded Luca Ghini as director of the botanical garden in Pisa.

Agostino Michele publishes On the Magnitude of the Water and of the Earth, calling himself "determined to follow Aristotle and Plato only as much as Moses and Christ allow," and arguing that huge subterranean reservoirs made the universal deluge of Noah's flood possible.

image Thomas Fincke's Geometria rotundi is published, introducing the terms tangent and secant for trigonometric functions.

1583

(no entry for this year)

Walter Ralegh sends Philip Amadas and Arthur Barlowe to explore the Outer Banks of Virginia (now North Carolina), with a view to establishing an English colony; they locate Roanoke Island.

1584

(no entry for this year)

image Michele Mercati establishes one of the first mineralogical curiosity cabinets in Europe. Mercati was a physician who was superintendent of the Vatican Botanical Garden under Popes Pius V, Gregory XIII, Sixtus V, and Clement VIII. He was one of the first scholars to recognise prehistoric stone tools as human-made rather than natural or mythologically created thunderstones.

Giordano Bruno uses Fabrizio Mordente's "proportional eight-pointed compass" to refute Aristotle's hypothesis on the incommensurability of infinitesimals, thus confirming the existence of the "minimum" which lays the basis of his own atomic theory. Bruno publishes his proofs as Figuratio Aristotelici Physici auditus.

Simon Stevin publishes De Thiende, introducing a form of decimal fraction.

1585

(no entry for this year)

Jacques Daléchamps publishes Historia generalis plantarum in Lyon, describing 2,731 plants, a record number for this time.

Galileo publishes La Billancetta, describing an accurate balance to weigh objects in air or water.

1586

(no entry for this year)

Mary, Queen of Scots is executed by Elizabeth I.

1587

(no entry for this year)

Ferdinando I de Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany, appoints Galileo to the professorship of mathematics at the University of Pisa.

Pietro Cataldi discovers the sixth and seventh Mersenne primes by this year.

1588

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1589

(no entry for this year)

At the Siege of Odawara the Go-Hojo clan surrendered to Toyotomi Hideyoshi, unifying Japan.

José de Acosta publishes Natural and Moral History of the Indies describing such weird creatures as iguanas.

Glass lenses are developed in the Netherlands and used for the first time in microscopes and telescopes.

1590

(no entry for this year)

Girolamo Porro produces a plan for a botanical garden at Padua, arguably expecting to assemble all the world's plants. Over the next century, well-traveled naturalists will abandon such goals as unrealistic.

image François Viète publishes In Artem Analyticien Isagoge, introducing the new algebra with innovative use of letters as parameters in equations.

1591

image Painting by Giuseppe Arcimboldo: Vertumnus The painting is Arcimboldo's most famous work and is a portrait of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II re-imagined as Vertumnus, the Roman god of metamorphoses in nature and life; the fruits and vegetables symbolize the abundance of the Golden Age that has returned under the Emperor's rule. Looking from the distance, Arcimboldo's whimsical portraits might look like portraits, but they are assembled using vegetables, books, plants, kitchen utensils, oils, fruits, sea creatures, animals and tree roots, each individual object chosen to give the impression of anatomical trait of a human face. The portrait of the emperor is created out of plants — flowers and fruits from all seasons: gourds, pears, apples, cherries, grapes, wheat, artichokes, peapods, corns, onions, artichoke, cabbage foils, cherries, chestnuts, figs, mulberries, grapes, plums, pomegranates, various pumpkins and olives. Rudolf's portrait is composed of fruit, vegetables and flowers were to symbolize the perfect balance and harmony with nature that his reign represented. These portraits were an expression of the Renaissance mind's fascination with riddles, puzzles, and the bizarre.

(no entry for this year)

1592

image Painting by Caravaggio: Boy Peeling Fruit This is the earliest known work by Caravaggio, painted soon after his arrival in Rome from his native Milan in mid 1592. The fruit being peeled by the boy is something of a mystery. Sources indicate it may be a pear, which is probably correct but has been questioned; it may be a nectarine or plum, several of which lie on the table, but these are not usually peeled; some have suggested a bergamot, a pear-shaped citrus fruit grown in Italy, but others object that the bergamot is sour and practically inedible. Seen as a simple genre painting, it differs from most in that the boy is not 'rusticated,' that is, he is depicted as clean and well-dressed instead of as a 'cute' ragamuffin. An allegoric meaning behind the painting is plausible, given the complex Renaissance symbology of fruit. Caravaggio scholar John T. Spike has recently suggested that the boy demonstrates resistance to temptation by ignoring the sweeter fruits (fruits of sin) in favour of the bergamot, but no specific reading is widely accepted.

(no entry for this year)

1593

(no entry for this year)

Bevis Bulmer sets up a system at Blackfriars, London, for pumping a public water supply.

The tulip bulbs planted by Carolus Clusius in the Hortus Botanicus Leiden, Holland, first flower.

Francis Bacon pens Gesta Grayorum, a staged debate related to science.

1594

image Painting by Caravaggio: Cardsharps The work represents an important milestone for Caravaggio. He painted it when he was attempting an independent career after leaving the workshop of the Cavaliere Giuseppe Cesari d'Arpino, for whom he had been painting "flowers and fruit", finishing the details for the Cavaliere's mass-produced (and massive) output. Caravaggio left Arpino's workshop in January 1594 and began selling works through the dealer Costantino, with the assistance of Prospero Orsi, an established painter of Mannerist grotesques (masks, monsters, etc.). Orsi introduced Caravaggio to his extensive network of contacts in the world of collectors and patrons. Composition The painting shows an expensively-dressed but unworldly boy playing cards with another boy. The second boy, a cardsharp, has extra cards tucked in his belt behind his back, out of sight of the mark but not the viewer, and a sinister older man is peering over the dupe's shoulder and signaling to his young accomplice. The second boy has a dagger handy at his side, and violence is not far away.

image Painting by unknown artist: Gabrielle d'Estrées et une de soeurs The painting now hangs at the Louvre in Paris and is usually thought to be the work of a painter from the Fontainebleau School. The painting portrays Gabrielle d'Estrées, mistress of King Henry IV of France, sitting nude in a bath, holding a ring. Her sister sits nude beside her and pinches her right nipple. The nipple-pinching gesture is often interpreted as a symbolic announcement that Gabrielle is pregnant with Henry's child, César de Bourbon. According to the Louvre's website: "The oddly affectionate way in which the sister is pinching Gabrielle d'Estrées' right breast has often been taken as symbolizing the latter's pregnancy with the illegitimate child of Henry IV. This interpretation would seem to be confirmed by the scene of the young woman sewing — perhaps preparing a layette for the coming child — in the background." The ring that Gabrielle holds is said to be Henry's coronation ring, which he supposedly gave to her as a token of his love shortly before she died.

A Spanish expedition led by Álvaro de Mendaña de Neira makes the first European landing in Polynesia, on the Marquesas Islands.

image Bartholomaeus Pitiscus publishes Trigonometria: sive de solutione triangulorum tractatus brevis et perspicuus in Heidelberg, introducing the term trigonometry to Western European languages.

1595

(no entry for this year)

image Johannes Kepler's Mysterium Cosmographicum is the first published defense of the Copernican (heliocentric) system of planetary motion. This book explains Kepler's cosmological theory, based on the Copernican system, in which the five Pythagorean regular polyhedra dictate the structure of the universe and reflect God's plan through geometry. This was the first attempt since Copernicus to say that the theory of heliocentrism is physically true.

image Abraham Ortelius, in the last edition of his Thesaurus geographicus, considers the possibility of continental drift.

1596

image Painting by El Greco: View of Toledo is one of the two surviving landscapes painted by El Greco. The other, View and Plan of Toledo lies at Museo Del Greco, Toledo, Spain. View of Toledo is among the best known depictions of the sky in Western art, along with Vincent van Gogh's The Starry Night and the landscapes of William Turner and Monet, among others. Most notable is the distinct color contrast between the dark and somber skies above and the glowing green hills below. While influenced by the Mannerist style, El Greco's expressive handling of color and form is without parallel in the history of art. In this painting, he takes liberties with the actual layout of Toledo insofar as certain building locations are re-arranged. However, the location of the Castle of San Servando, on the right, is accurately depicted. El Greco's signature appears in the lower-right corner.

image Andreas Libavius's chemistry textbook Alchemia published. Libavius was a staunch believer in chrysopoeia, or the ability to transmute a base metal into gold. This viewpoint was a matter of much debate for alchemists of the time and he defended it in several of his writings. Though he did discover several new chemical processes, he tended to be more of a theoretician and he leaned toward traditional Aristotelianism rather than Paracelsian alchemy.

1597

image Painting by Caravaggio: Medusa Caravaggio painted two versions of Medusa, the first in 1596 and the other presumably in 1597. The first version is also known as Murtula, by the name of the poet who wrote about it, Gaspare Murtola (d. 1624): "Flee, for if your eyes are petrified in amazement, she will turn you to stone." It measures 48 by 55 cm and is signed Michel A F (Latin: Michel Angelo Fecit), "Michel Angelo made [this]", Michelangelo being Caravaggio's first name. This work is privately owned. The second version, shown here, is slightly bigger (60×55 cm) and is not signed; it is held in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.

image Painting by Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio: Jupiter, Neptune and Pluto According to an early biographer, one of Caravaggio's aims was to discredit critics who claimed that he had no grasp of perspective. The three figures demonstrate the most dramatic foreshortening imaginable. They contradict claims that Caravaggio always painted from live models. The artist seems to have used his own face for all three gods. The painting was done for Caravaggio's patron Cardinal Francesco Maria Del Monte and painted on the ceiling of the cardinal's garden casino of his country estate, which later became known as the Villa Ludovisi. The cardinal had a keen interest alchemy. Caravaggio has painted an allegory of the alchemical triad of Paracelsus: Jupiter stands for sulphur and air, Neptune for mercury and water, and Pluto for salt and earth. Each figure is identified by his beast: Jupiter by the eagle, Neptune by the hippocamp, and Pluto by the three-headed dog Cerberus. Jupiter is reaching out to move the celestial sphere in which the Sun revolves around the Earth. Galileo was a friend of Del Monte but had yet to make his mark on cosmology.

image Tycho Brahe's star catalogue Astronomiae instauratae mechanica, listing the positions of 1,004 stars, is published.

Jean Bauhin, a former student of Conrad Gesner's, publishes a monograph of the medicinal waters and surrounding environment of the German fountains at Boll, the first publication of a complete set of fossils from a specific location.

image After being separated from the main Second Dutch Expedition to Indonesia fleet of Admiral Wybrand Van Warwyck, three ships under Jacob Cornelisz. van Neck land on the island which they name Mauritius and sight the dodo bird (Raphus cucullatus); it will become extinct around 1681.

1598

(no entry for this year)

image Lawyer Carlo Ruini's Anatomia del cavallo is published posthumously in Venice. This anatomy of the horse is the first published of any non-human animal.

image Ferrante Imperato publishes Dell'Historia Naturale (Natural History) attempting to catalog all of nature's animal, vegetable and mineral forms. He illustrated the book with his own cabinet of curiosities displayed at Palazzo Gravina in Naples. The engraving became the first pictorial representation of a Renaissance humanist's displayed natural history research collection.

1599

image Painting by Caravaggio: Basket of Fruit a still life painting which hangs in the Biblioteca Ambrosiana (Ambrosian Library), Milan. It shows a wicker basket perched on the edge of a ledge. The basket contains a selection of summer fruit. Much has been made of the worm-eaten, insect-predated, and generally less than perfect condition of the fruit. In line with the culture of the age, the general theme appears to revolve about the fading beauty, and the natural decaying of all things. Scholars also describe the basket of fruit as a metaphor of the Church. A recent X-ray study revealed that it was painted on an already used canvas painted with grotesques in the style of Caravaggio’s friend Prospero Orsi, who helped the artist in his first breakthrough into the circles of collectors such as his first patron, Cardinal Francesco Maria Del Monte, around 1594/1595, and who remained close to him for many years thereafter.

image Painting by Caravaggio: David and Goliath The David and Goliath in the Prado was painted in the early part of the artist's career, while he was a member of the household of Cardinal Francesco Maria Del Monte. It shows the Biblical David as a young boy (in accordance with the Bible story) fastening the head of the champion of the Philistines, the giant Goliath, by the hair. The light catches on David's leg, arm and flank, on the massive shoulders from which Goliath's head has been severed, and on the head itself, but everything else is dark. Even David's face is almost invisible in the shadows. A wound on Goliath's forehead shows where he has been felled by the stone from David's sling. The overwhelming impression is of some action intensely personal and private — no triumph, no armies, no victory.

image Painting by Caravaggio: Judith Beheading Holofernes The widow Judith first charms the Assyrian general Holofernes, then decapitates him in his tent. The painting was rediscovered in 1950 and is part of the collection of the Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica in Rome. The deutero-canonical Book of Judith tells how Judith served her people by seducing and pleasuring Holofernes, the Assyrian general. Judith gets Holofernes drunk, then seizes her sword and slays him: "Approaching to his bed, she took hold of the hair of his head." (Judith, 13:7-8). Caravaggio's approach was, typically, to choose the moment of greatest dramatic impact, the moment of the decapitation itself. The figures are set out in a shallow stage, theatrically lit from the side, isolated against the inky, black background. Judith and her maid Abra stand to the right, partially over Holofernes, who is vulnerable on his back. X-rays have revealed that Caravaggio adjusted the placement of Holofernes' head as he proceeded, separating it slightly from the torso and moving it slightly to the right. The faces of the three characters demonstrate his mastery of emotion, Judith in particular showing in her face a mix of determination and repulsion. Artemisia Gentileschi and others were deeply influenced by this work, and even surpassed Caravaggio's physical realism, but it has been argued that none matched his capture of Judith's psychological ambivalence.

image Battle of Sekigahara in Japan. End of the Warring States period and beginning of the Edo period.

William Gilbert, court physician to Elizabeth I, describes the Earth's magnetism in De Magnete.

1600

(no entry for this year)

1601

image Painting by Caravaggio: Crucifixion of Saint Peter was painted for the Cerasi Chapel of Santa Maria del Popolo in Rome. Across the chapel is a second Caravaggio work depicting the Conversion of Saint Paul on the Road to Damascus (1601). On the altar between the two is an Assumption of the Virgin Mary by Annibale Carracci. The painting depicts the martyrdom of St. Peter by crucifixion—Peter asked that his cross be inverted so as not to imitate his God, Jesus Christ, hence he is depicted upside down. The large canvas shows Ancient Romans, their faces shielded, struggling to erect the cross of the elderly but muscular apostle. Peter is heavier than his aged body would suggest, and his lifting requires the efforts of three men, as if the crime they perpetrate already weighs on them.

image Painting by Caravaggio: The Conversion of St. Paul records the moment when Saul of Tarsus, on his way to Damascus to annihilate the Christian community there, is struck blind by a brilliant light and hears the voice of Christ saying, "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?...And they that were with me saw indeed the light, and were afraid, but they heard not the voice..." (Acts 22:6-11). Elsewhere Paul claims to have seen Christ during the vision, and it is on this basis that he grounds his claim be recognised as an Apostle: "Have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord?" (I Corinthians 9:1). Caravaggio biographer Helen Langdon describes style of Conversion as "an odd blend of Raphael and clumsy rustic realism," but notes how the composition, with its jagged shapes and irrational light which licks out details for their dramatic impact, creates "a sense of crisis and dislocation [in which] Christ disrupts the mundane world."

The Dutch East India Company (VOC) is established by merging competing Dutch trading companies.[4] Its success contributes to the Dutch Golden Age.

Ulisse Aldrovandi publishes De Animalibus Insectis.

1602

(no entry for this year)

image Tokugawa Ieyasu takes the title of Shogun, establishing the Tokugawa Shogunate. This begins the Edo period, which will last until 1869.

Prince Federico Cesi establishes the Lincean, or Lyncean, Academy in Rome, perhaps the first scientific academy of the modern era.

1603

image Painting by Caravaggio: Sacrifice of Isaac The Sacrifice of Isaac is the title of two paintings from c. 1598 - 1603 depicting the sacrifice of Isaac. The paintings could be painted by the Italian master Caravaggio (1571–1610) but there is also strong evidence that they may have been the work of Bartolomeo Cavarozzi, a talented early member of the Caravaggio following who is known to have been in Spain about 1617-1619. The second Sacrifice of Isaac is housed in the Uffizi Gallery, Florence. According to the early biographer Giovanni Bellori, Caravaggio painted a version of this subject for Cardinal Maffeo Barberini, the future Pope Urban VIII, and a series of payments totalling one hundred scudi were made to the artist by Barberini between May 1603 and January 1604. Caravaggio had previously painted a Portrait of Maffeo Barberini, which presumably pleased the cardinal enough for him to commission this second painting. Isaac has been identified as Cecco Boneri, who appeared as Caravaggio's model in several other pictures. Recent X-ray analysis showed that Caravaggio used Cecco also for the angel, and later modified the profile and the hair to hide the resemblance.

image Painting by Peter Paul Rubens: The Duke of Lerma on Horseback. When he visited the Spanish Court for the first time, Rubens (still in his twenties) used this picture to display his talents and to make his mark. It has already many elements of his mature Baroque style, which would have been novel and striking to his viewers. The way in which the horse seems to surge forward towards the spectator - an effect engineered by the low viewpoint and lack of balancing elements in the foreground, and recalling the techniques of Caravaggio - was spectacular, and broke with the traditional profile of equestrian portraits. Other devices used to enhance the spectacle were the eccentric colouring, the tempestuous lighting, and the rather disquieting energy of the horse's hair and the trees' foliage.

(no entry for this year)

1604

image Painting by Caravaggio: The Entombment of Christ, one of the artist's most admired altarpieces, was created for the second chapel on the right in Santa Maria in Vallicella (the Chiesa Nuova), a church built for the Oratory of Saint Philip Neri. A copy of the painting is now in the chapel, and the original is in the Vatican Pinacoteca. The painting has been copied by artists as diverse as Rubens, Fragonard, Géricault and Cézanne.

Johann Carolus of Germany publishes the 'Relation', the first newspaper.

Tokugawa Ieyasu passes the title of Shogun to his son, Tokugawa Hidetada, and "retires" to Sunpu.

The German mathematician and astronomer Johannes Kepler establishes his three Laws of Planetary Motion, mathematical laws that describe the motion of planets in the Solar System, including the ground-breaking idea that the planets follow elliptical, not circular, paths around the Sun. Newton later used them to deduce his own Laws of Motion and his Law of Universal Gravitation.

1605

(no entry for this year)

Captain Willem Janszoon and his crew aboard the Dutch East India Company ship Duyfken becomes the first recorded Europeans to sight and make landfall in Australia.

1606

(no entry for this year)

Jamestown, Virginia, is settled as what would become the first permanent English colony in North America.

1607

(no entry for this year)

Quebec City founded by Samuel de Champlain in New France (present-day Canada).

1608

(no entry for this year)

image Galileo constructs the first telescope.

1609

(no entry for this year)

image The Italian mathematician and physicist Galileo Galilei develops an astronomical telescope powerful enough to indentify moons orbiting Jupiter, sunspots on the Sun and the different phases of Venus, all of which are instrumental in convincing the scientific community of the day that the heliocentric Copernican model of the Solar System is superior to the geocentric Ptolemiac model.

1610

(no entry for this year)

image King James Bible is first published. The KJV is an English translation of the Christian Bible for the Church of England begun in 1604 and completed in 1611. The books of the King James Version include the 39 books of the Old Testament, an intertestamental section containing 14 books of the Apocrypha (most of which correspond to books in the Vulgate Deuterocanon adhered to by Roman Catholics), and the 27 books of the New Testament. It was first printed by the King's Printer Robert Barker and was the third translation into English approved by the English Church authorities.

1611

(no entry for this year)

The first commercial tobacco crop is raised in Jamestown, Virginia.

The first flintlock musket likely created for Louis XIII of France by gunsmith Marin Bourgeois.

1612

(no entry for this year)

Shakespeare's last play, Henry VIII, is published.

Richard Braithwaite coined the phrase ‘computer’.

1613

image Painting by Juan Bautista Maíno: The Adoration of the Shepherds

image Logarithms presented by John Napier in his book Mirifici Logarithmorum Canonis Descriptio (A Description of the Wonderful Law of Logarithms), which contained fifty-seven pages of explanatory matter and ninety pages of tables of numbers related to natural logarithms (see Napierian logarithm). The book also has an excellent discussion of theorems in spherical trigonometry, usually known as Napier's Rules of Circular Parts.

1614

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1615

(no entry for this year)

Death of retired Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu.

Fabio Colonna publishes "Dissertation on Tongue Stones" arguing that "nobody is so stupid" that he or she will not agree that tongue stones are really shark teeth. Like Rondelet several decades earlier, he attracts little attention.

Italian philosopher Lucilio Vanini suggests that humans descended from apes. In 1618 Vanini is arrested and, after a prolonged trial, condemned to have his tongue cut out, to be strangled at the stake and to have his body burned to ashes. The sentence was executed on 9 February 1619.

1616

image Painting by Frans Hals: Banquet of the Officers of the St. George Civic Guard Company of Haarlem is considered one of the main attractions of the Frans Hals Museum. Hals was in his thirties when he painted this piece, and was far from established as a portrait painter. To be safe, he based most of his design on the painting of his predecessor, Cornelis Cornelisz van Haarlem, who painted the same militia company in 1599. Given a nearly impossible task, namely to complete his assignment but to add theatrical elements at the same time, Hals must have spent lots of time judging the politics of the group. He knew these men well as he served in the St. Joris militia himself from 1612-1615. In his painting, he indicates the political position of each man in the group as well as managing to give each a characteristic portrait. In Cornelis van Haarlem's piece the figures seem crammed into a tight space, and each face seems to have a similar expression. In Hals' group, an illusion of space and relaxed conversation is given. Officers were selected by the council of Haarlem to serve for three years, and this group had just finished their tenure and celebrated their end of service with a portrait. The man with the orange sash heads the table and the second in command is on his right. The three ensigns stand and the servant is carrying a plate.

image Nikko Tosho-gu Shrine, dedicated to Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa shogunate, is built. Ieyasu is enshrined there, where his remains are also entombed. During the Edo period, the Tokugawa shogunate carried out stately processions from Edo to the Nikko Tosho-gu. The shrine's annual spring and autumn festivals reenact these occasions, and are known as processions of a thousand warriors. Five structures at Nikko Tosho-gu are categorized as National Treasures of Japan, and three more as Important Cultural Properties. The stable of the shrine's sacred horses bears a carving of the three wise monkeys, who hear, speak and see no evil, a traditional symbol in Chinese and Japanese culture.

1617

(no entry for this year)

Beginning of the Thirty Years War..

The Manchus start invading China. Their conquest eventually topples the Ming Dynasty.

1618

(no entry for this year)

Twenty slaves in Virginia Africans brought to Jamestown are the first slaves imported into Britain’s North American colonies. Like indentured servants, they were probably freed after a fixed period of service.

1619

(no entry for this year)

The Mayflower arrives at Cape Cod bearing Brownist Pilgrims.

image English philosopher Francis Bacon publishes Novum Organum (New Instrument), which seeks to add inductive reasoning to the tools of deductive inquiry that had been outlined in Aristotle's treatises of logic known as the Organum.

1620

image Painting by Artemesia Gentileschi: Judith Beheading Holofernes shows the scene of Judith beheading Holofernes, common in art since the early Renaissance. The subject represents an episode (from the apocryphal Book of Judith in the Old Testament) which recounts the assassination of the Assyrian general Holofernes by the Israelite heroine Judith. The painting shows the moment when Judith, helped by her maidservant, beheads the general after he has fallen asleep drunk. The painting is relentlessly physical, from the wide spurts of blood to the energy of the two women as they perform the act. Although the painting depicts a classic scene from the Bible, Gentileschi drew herself as Judith and her mentor Agostino Tassi, who was tried in court for her rape, as Holofernes. Gentileschi's biographer Mary Garrard famously proposed an autobiographical reading of the painting, stating that it functions as "a cathartic expression of the artist's private, and perhaps repressed, rage."

(no entry for this year)

1621

(no entry for this year)

image Slide Rule invented by William Oughtred

image Jamestown massacre: Algonquian natives kill 347 English settlers outside Jamestown, Virginia (one-third of the colony's population) and burn the Henricus settlement.

1622

(no entry for this year)

The third English dictionary, English Dictionarie, and the first to be called a dictionary is published by Henry Cockeram, listing difficult words with definitions.

Francis Bacon develops a method of steganography that used an underlying binary code for the letters of the alphabet.

image Wilhelm Schickard designs a calculating machine.

image Gaspard Bauhin publishes Pinax Theatri Botanici describing some 6,000 plants.

1623

(no entry for this year)

Galileo presents to Cesi, founder of the Lincean Academy, a "little eyeglass" (a microscope). The invention will enable the Linceans to study natural objects with unprecedented precision. They will start with bees, then move on to flies and dust mites.

1624

image Painting by Frans Hals: The Laughing Cavalier has been described as "one of the most brilliant of all Baroque portraits". The title is an invention of the Victorian public and press, dating from its exhibition in the opening display at the Bethnal Green Museum in 1872–75, just after its arrival in England, after which it was regularly reproduced as a print, and became among of the best known old master paintings in Britain. The unknown subject is in fact not laughing, but can be said to have an enigmatic smile, much amplified by his upturned moustache.

English settlers occupy the islands of Barbados and St. Kitts.

1625

(no entry for this year)

image Pieter Jansz Schaghen writes to the States General of the Dutch Republic announcing the purchase of Manhattan from the Native Americans.

The Dutch West India Company imports 11 black male slaves into the New Netherlands.

1626

(no entry for this year)

image Aurochs go extinct.

1627

(no entry for this year)

image William Harvey publishes Exercitatio Anatomica de Motu Cordis et Sanguinis in Animalibus (Latin for "An Anatomical Exercise on the Motion of the Heart and Blood in Living Beings"). The book established the circulation of the blood and was a landmark in the history of physiology. Just as important as its substance was its method. Harvey combined observations, experiments, measurements, and hypotheses in extraordinary fashion to arrive at his doctrine. His work is a model of its kind. It had an immediate and far-reaching influence on Harvey's contemporaries. In the book, Harvey investigated the effect of ligatures on blood flow. The book also argued that blood was pumped around the body in a "double circulation", where after being returned to the heart, it is recirculated in a closed system to the lungs and back to the heart, where it is returned to the main circulation.

1628

image Painting by Nicolas Poussin: The Martyrdom of St. Erasmus

English troops capture Québec.

1629

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1630

image Painting by José de Ribera: Martyrdom of St. Bartholomew

Mount Vesuvius erupts.

1631

(no entry for this year)

Charles I of England grants a charter to Cecilius Calvert, second Lord Baltimore, for colony in Maryland

image Galileo Galilei first describes the Principle of Relativity, the idea that the fundamental laws of physics are the same in all inertial frames and that, purely by observing the outcome of mechanical experiments, one cannot distinguish a state of rest from a state of constant velocity.

1632

image Painting by Rembrandt: The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp shows Dr. Tulp explaining the musculature of the arm to medical professionals. Some of the spectators are various doctors who paid commissions to be included in the painting. The painting is signed in the top-left hand corner Rembrandt. f[ecit] 1632. This may be the first instance of Rembrandt signing a painting with his forename (in its original form) as opposed to the monogramme RHL (Rembrandt Harmenszoon of Leiden), and is thus a sign of his growing artistic confidence.

image Under compulsion, Galileo rejects the Copernican system.

image The French philosopher René Descartes outlines a model of a static, infinite universe made up of tiny “corpuscles” of matter, a viewpoint not dissimilar to ancient Greek atomism. Descartes’ universe shares many elements of Sir Isaac Newton’s later model, although Descartes’ vacuum of space is not empty but composed of huge swirling whirlpools of ethereal or fine matter, producing what would later be called gravitational effects.

1633

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1634

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1635

image Painting by Adriaen Brouwer: Tavern Scene. Brouwer left a small body of work amounting to about 60 works. Just a few of his works are signed, while none is dated. As Brouwer was widely copied, imitated and followed in his time, attributions of work to Brouwer are sometimes uncertain or contested. For instance, the The smoker (Louvre) showing a man exhaling smoke while holding a bottle of liquor was attributed for a long time to Brouwer, but is now given to Brouwer's follower and, possibly, pupil Joos van Craesbeeck. The principal subject matter of Brouwer are genre scenes with peasants, soldiers and other 'lower class' individuals engaging in drinking, smoking, card or dice playing, fights etc. often set in taverns or rural settings. Brouwer also contributed to the development of the genre of tronies, i.e. head or facial studies, which investigate varieties of expression.

image Painting by Diego Velázquez: The Surrender of Breda was inspired by Velázquez's visit to Italy with Ambrogio Spinola, the Genoese general who conquered Breda on June 5, 1625. It is considered one of Velázquez's best works. Jan Morris has called it "one of the most Spanish of all pictures".

image Painting by Frans Hals: Lucas de Clercq, a Dutch cloth merchant known today for his and his wife's pendant marriage portraits painted by Frans Hals.

image Painting by Guido Reni: The Archangel Michael vanquishing Satan

Harvard College is established.

Colonial North America's slave trade begins when the first American slave carrier, Desire, is built and launched in Massachusetts.

Harvard University is founded in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

1636

image Painting by Justus Sustermans: Portrait of Galileo Galilei. Justus Sustermans was a Flemish painter working in the Baroque style. He was born in Antwerp and died in Florence. Sustermans is chiefly notable for his portraits of members of the Medici family as he was their court painter. His work can be found in both the Palatina Gallery and the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, and in many other galleries around the globe. During his lifetime he was fêted as the finest portrait painter in Italy.

image Painting by Peter Paul Rubens: A View of Het Steen in the Early Morning is a landscape painting now in the National Gallery in London. A rare example of a work painted for the artist's own pleasure rather than for a commission, it shows a view of the Het Steen estate near Brussels, which he had acquired in 1635, set in an early-morning autumn landscape. He had initially intended a much smaller painting focussing on the house, using three small oak planks, probably spares from his studio – as the concept developed, seventeen more panels were added. It has influenced artists including John Constable, during his period working for Sir George Beaumont, who then owned the painting and later donated it to the National Gallery in 1823. The painting features the first convincing depiction of a mackerel sky.

image Painting by Rembrandt: The Blinding of Samson is now in the Städel. The painting is the first of its kind in pictorial tradition. No other artist at the time had painted this specific narrative moment. This painting was a gift to the House of Orange, Rembrandt's current patron of a few commissioned paintings.

Francesco Stelluti publishes a summary of research on fossil wood conducted by himself and fellow Lincean Academy member Federico Cesi. Though resulting from meticulous research, the work reaches the wrong conclusion, describing the origin of fossil wood as inorganic.

image Pierre de Fermat formulates his so-called Last Theorem, unsolved until 1995. In number theory, Fermat's Last Theorem (sometimes called Fermat's conjecture, especially in older texts) states that no three positive integers a, b, and c satisfy the equation an + bn = cn for any integer value of n greater than 2. The cases n = 1 and n = 2 have been known to have infinitely many solutions since antiquity. This theorem was first conjectured by Pierre de Fermat in 1637 in the margin of a copy of Arithmetica where he claimed he had a proof that was too large to fit in the margin.

1637

(no entry for this year)

image Galileo Galilei demonstrates that unequal weights would fall with the same finite speed in a vacuum, and that their time of descent is independent of their mass. Thus, freely falling bodies, heavy or light, have the same constant acceleration, due to the force of gravity.

1638

(no entry for this year)

image Jeremiah Horrox observes the first transit of Venus. Horrox (or Horrocks) was an English astronomer. He was the first person to demonstrate that the Moon moved around the Earth in an elliptical orbit; and he was the only person to predict the transit of Venus of 1639, an event which he and his friend William Crabtree were the only two people to observe and record.

1639

(no entry for this year)

John Punch, a runaway black servant, is sentenced to servitude for life. His two white companions are given extended terms of servitude. Punch is the first documented slave for life.

New Netherlands law forbids residents from harboring or feeding runaway slaves.

Torture is outlawed in England.

1640

image Painting by Georges de La Tour: Magdalene with the Smoking Flame has been allotted the date of 1640, by analogy with the Saint Mary with a Mirror, which has been dated between 1635 and 1645. During the 17th century, great devotion was shown to Mary Magdalene in all Catholic countries. She was the perfect lover of Christ, her beauty made yet more appealing by reason of her repentance, which had a special attraction for a period so passionately interested in problems of mysticism, quietism and asceticism. The theme of the repentance of sinners and trials sent by God is illustrated in such subjects as the Repentance of St. Peter, Mary Magdalene and Job. A number of written works give evidence of the cult of the Magdalene and this cult was the more widespread since Provence owned two great sanctuaries dedicated to her: the grotto of La Sainte-Baume, and the Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer. It has been suggested that Georges de La Tour took a gypsy as his model: at the time, there were many in Lorraine where he painted this picture.

Massachusetts is the first colony to legalize slavery.

The D'Angola marriage is the first recorded marriage between blacks in New Amsterdam.

The Tokugawa Shogunate institutes Sakoku — foreigners are expelled and no one is allowed to enter or leave Japan.

Calvinist lawyer Isaac La Peyrère seeks permission to publish his manuscript claiming that people have existed before Adam, and that Chaldeans can legitimately trace their civilization back 470,000 years. Permission is denied, but he will publish Men Before Adam anonymously 14 years later, inciting both outrage and mild amusement among religious leaders.

Dutch anatomist Nicolaas Tulp produces the first formal description of an ape (a chimp, bonobo or orangutan).

René Descartes publishes Principles of Philosophy arguing that the universe is governed by simple laws and that natural processes could have shaped the Earth.

1641

image Painting by Frans Hals: Regents of the St. Elizabeth Hospital

image Painting by Simon Vouet: Presentation in the Temple

The city of Montréal is founded in what will become Canada.

Pascal's calculator or the Pascaline constructed

image The mezzotint printmaking method was invented by the German amateur artist Ludwig von Siegen. Mezzotint is a printmaking process of the intaglio family, technically a drypoint method. It was the first tonal method to be used, enabling half-tones to be produced without using line- or dot-based techniques like hatching, cross-hatching or stipple. Mezzotint achieves tonality by roughening the plate with thousands of little dots made by a metal tool with small teeth, called a "rocker." In printing, the tiny pits in the plate hold the ink when the face of the plate is wiped clean. A high level of quality and richness in the print can be achieved.

1642

image Painting by José de Ribera: The Clubfooted Boy is housed in the Musée du Louvre in Paris (part of the La Caze bequest of 1869), and was painted in Naples. Art historian Ellis Waterhouse wrote of it as "a touchstone by which we can interpret the whole of Ribera's art". Commissioned by a Flemish dealer, the painting features a Neapolitan beggar boy with a deformed foot. Behind him is a vast and luminous landscape, against which the boy stands with a gap-toothed grin, wearing earth-toned clothes and holding his crutch slung over his left shoulder. Written in Latin on the paper in the boy's hand is the sentence "DA MIHI ELEMOSINAM PROPTER AMOREM DEI" ("Give me alms, for the love of God"). This is one of the painter's last works, and one of the most bitter.

image Painting by Rembrandt: The Night Watch is renowned for three characteristics: its colossal size (363 cm × 437 cm (11.91 ft × 14.34 ft)), the effective use of light and shadow (tenebrism) and the perception of motion in what would have traditionally been a static military portrait. The painting was completed in 1642, at the peak of the Dutch Golden Age. It depicts the eponymous company moving out, led by Captain Frans Banning Cocq (dressed in black, with a red sash) and his lieutenant, Willem van Ruytenburch (dressed in yellow, with a white sash). With effective use of sunlight and shade, Rembrandt leads the eye to the three most important characters among the crowd: the two gentlemen in the centre (from whom the painting gets its original title), and the woman in the centre-left background carrying a chicken. Behind them, the company's colours are carried by the ensign, Jan Visscher Cornelissen.

The New England Confederation of Plymouth, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Haven adopts a fugitive slave law.

Workers dig up a skeleton in Flanders. A court physician to the Danish king observes the excavation, measures the skeleton in "Brabantian cubits," and attributes the skeleton to a giant. It will later be identified as a fossil proboscidian.

image Evangelista Torricelli invents the barometer.

1643

(no entry for this year)

Manchu dynasty established in China; end of the Ming line.

The Manchu conquer China ending the Ming Dynasty. The subsequent Qing Dynasty rules until 1912.

1644

(no entry for this year)

Giacomo Torelli of Venice, Italy invents the first rotating stage.

1645

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1646

(no entry for this year)

Peter Stuyvesant appointed governor of New Amsterdam.

George Fox founds the Society of Friends, or Quakers, in England.

image Christiaan Huygens invents the pendulum and applies its workings to create highly accurate pendulum clocks.

1647

(no entry for this year)

image The Peace of Westphalia ends the Thirty Years' War and the Eighty Years' War and marks the ends of Spain and the Holy Roman Empire as major European powers.

The Peace of Westphalia brings an end to the Thiry Years War.

Franciscus Hackius publishes a lavish book on the natural history and medicines available from Brazil, Historia Naturalis Brasileae.

1648

image Painting by Nicolas Poussin: The Holy Family on the Steps

In France, King Louis XIV establishes The Royal Academy of Painting and Sculpture.

image King Charles I is executed for High treason, the first and only English king to be subjected to legal proceedings in a High Court of Justice and put to death.

George Fox, the founder of the Society of Friends, is imprisoned at Nottingham.

1649

(no entry for this year)

Connecticut legalizes slavery.

Irish archbishop James Ussher calculates the date of creation, based on the ages of biblical prophets. Using his calculations, theologians will identify the date of creation as on October 26, 4004 BC.

1650

image Painting by Diego Velázquez: Portrait of Innocent X is considered by many artists and art critics as the finest portrait ever created. It is housed in the Galleria Doria Pamphilj in Rome. The painting is noted for its realism, in that it is an unflinching portrait of a highly intelligent, shrewd but aging man. He is dressed in linen vestments, and the quality of the work is evident in the rich reds of his upper clothing, head-dress, and the hanging curtains. The pope, born Giovanni Battista Pamphilj, was initially wary of having his portrait taken by Velázquez, but relented after he was given reproductions of examples of Velázquez's portraiture. A contributing factor for this large advancement in the painter's career was that he had already depicted a number of members of Pamphilj's inner court. Yet the pope remained wary and cautious, and the painting was initially displayed to only his immediate family, and was largely lost from public view through the 17th and 18th centuries. The parchment held by the pope contains Velázquez's signature.

William Harvey publishes Exercitationes de generatione animalium (On Animal Generation) explaining that all animal life begins as eggs, whether in birds, amphibians or mammals. According to Joseph Needham, in this work Harvey: (1) presented a doctrine of omne vivum ex ovo (all life comes from the egg), the first definite statement against the idea of spontaneous generation; (2) denied the possibility of generation from excrement and from mud, and pointed out that even worms have eggs; (3) identified the citricula as the point in the yolk from which the embryo develops and the blastoderm surrounding the embryo; (4) destroyed once and for all the Aristotelian (semen-blood) and Epicurean (semen-semen) theories of early embryogeny; and (5) settled the long controversy about which parts of the egg were nutritive and which was formative, by demonstrating the unreality of the distinction.

1651

(no entry for this year)

Massachusetts requires all black and Indian servants to receive military training.

Rhode Island passes laws restricting slavery and forbidding enslavement for more than 10 years.

1652

image Painting by Carel Fabritius: The Goldfinch is an animal painting by Carel Fabritius of a chained goldfinch. The work belongs to the collection of the Mauritshuis in The Hague, Netherlands. The painting is a trompe-l'œil of a European goldfinch (Carduelis carduelis) on top of its feeder that is attached to the wall. The feeder consists of two half rings and a blue container. The bird is sitting on the top ring, to which it is chained by its foot. In the 17th century, goldfinches were popular pets because they could be trained to draw water from a bowl with a miniature bucket. The Dutch title of the painting pertains to the bird's nickname puttertje, which refers to this custom and translates literally as 'little weller'.

Oliver Cromwell dissolves the Rump Parliament and replaces it with the Nominated Assembly (also called the Assembly of Saints or Barebones Parliament.) After three months, the Nominated Assembly passes a motion to dissolve itself and Cromwell establishes the Protectorate.

1653

image Painting by Rembrandt: Aristotle Contemplating a Bust of Homer was painted as a commission from Don Antonio Ruffo, from Messina in Sicily, who did not request a particular subject. Aristotle, world-weary, looks at the bust of blind, humble Homer, on which he rests one of his hands. This has variously been interpreted as the man of sound, methodical science deferring to Art, or as the wealthy and famous philosopher, wearing the jeweled belt given to him by Alexander the Great, envying the life of the poor blind bard. It has also been suggested that this is Rembrandt's commentary on the power of portraiture.

A Virginia court grants blacks the right to hold slaves.

Scotland incorporated with the English Commonwealth.

image Otto von Guericke invents a vacuum pump consisting of a piston and an air gun cylinder with two-way flaps designed to pull air out of whatever vessel it was connected to, and used it to investigate the properties of the vacuum in many experiments. This pump is described in Chapters II and III of Book III of the Experimenta Nova and in the Mechanica Hydraulico-pneumatica. Guericke demonstrated the force of air pressure with dramatic experiments. In 1657, he machined two 20-inch diameter hemispheres and pumped all the air out of them, locking them together with a vacuum seal. The air pressure outside held the halves together so tightly that sixteen horses, eight harnessed to each side of the globe, could not pull the halves apart. It would have required more than 4,000 pounds of force to separate them.

1654

(no entry for this year)

The island of Jamaica is captured from the Spaniards by the English.

Danish scholar Ole Worm publishes Musei Wormiani Historia, a successful book about his cabinet of natural curiosities.

1655

image Painting by Rembrandt: The Polish Rider depicts a young man traveling on horseback through a murky landscape. When the painting was sold by Zdzislaw Tarnowski to Henry Frick in 1910, there was consensus that the work was by the Dutch painter Rembrandt. This attribution has since been contested, though this remains a minority view. There has also been debate over whether the painting was intended as a portrait of a particular person, living or historical, and if so of whom, or if not, what it was intended to represent. Both the quality of the painting and its slight air of mystery are commonly recognized, though parts of the background are very sketchily painted or unfinished.

image Painting by Rembrandt: The Slaughtered Ox is an oil on beech panel painting by Rembrandt. It has been in the collection of the Louvre in Paris since 1857. A similar painting is in Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, possibly by Rembrandt himself but probably by one of his pupils, perhaps Fabritius. Other similar, paintings attributed to Rembrandt or his circle, are held by museums in Budapest and Philadelphia. The work follows in a tradition of showing butchery, for example Pieter Aertsen's A Meat Stall with the Holy Family Giving Alms and Annibale Carracci's Butcher's Shop. Rembrandt made a drawing of a similar scene c.1635. Another, pre-1655, painting of a slaughtered ox (the example in Edinburgh, now attributed to Rembrandt's circle but formerly to Rembrandt) was perhaps inspired by a lost earlier work by Rembrandt himself. In northern Europe, the month of November was traditionally the season slaughtering livestock in northern Europe, before winter made feed difficult to find.

The first persecution of Quakers occurs in Massachusetts.

1656

image Painting by Diego Velásquez: Las Meninas (The Ladies-in-Waiting) has a complex and enigmatic composition that raises questions about reality and illusion, and creates an uncertain relationship between the viewer and the figures depicted. Because of these complexities, Las Meninas has been one of the most widely analyzed works in Western painting. The painting shows a large room in the Royal Alcazar of Madrid during the reign of King Philip IV of Spain, and presents several figures, most identifiable from the Spanish court, captured, according to some commentators, in a particular moment as if in a snapshot. Some look out of the canvas towards the viewer, while others interact among themselves. The young Infanta Margaret Theresa is surrounded by her entourage of maids of honour, chaperone, bodyguard, two dwarfs and a dog. Just behind them, Velázquez portrays himself working at a large canvas. Velázquez looks outwards, beyond the pictorial space to where a viewer of the painting would stand. In the background there is a mirror that reflects the upper bodies of the king and queen. They appear to be placed outside the picture space in a position similar to that of the viewer, although some scholars have speculated that their image is a reflection from the painting Velázquez is shown working on. Las Meninas has long been recognised as one of the most important paintings in Western art history. The Baroque painter Luca Giordano said that it represents the "theology of painting" and in 1827 the president of the Royal Academy of Arts Sir Thomas Lawrence described the work in a letter to his successor David Wilkie as "the true philosophy of the art". More recently, it has been described as "Velázquez's supreme achievement, a highly self-conscious, calculated demonstration of what painting could achieve, and perhaps the most searching comment ever made on the possibilities of the easel painting".

Virginia passes a fugitive slave law.

1657

(no entry for this year)

Cromwell dies and his son Richard becomes Lord Protector.

Jesuit missionary Martino Martini publishes a manuscript explaining that documented Chinese history predates the time generally understood to mark Noah's flood (2,300 BC).

1658

(no entry for this year)

Richard Cromwell is pressured into dissolving the Protectorate; the Rump Parliament is restored.

John Tradescant deeds his family treasures to fellow collector Elias Ashmole. Ashmole will later donate the collection to Oxford University, stipulating that a separate building is to be constructed for it.

1659

(no entry for this year)

For the first time, women began to act in plays in London. Previously men had portrayed both male and female roles.

Charles II, King of England, orders the Council of Foreign Plantations to devise strategies for converting slaves and servants to Christianity.

End of Puritan rule in England; restoration of the Stuarts.

The Commonwealth of England ends and the monarchy is brought back during the English Restoration.

Foundation of the Royal Society, London, for the promotion of mathematical and physical science.

1660

image Painting by Jacob von Ruisdale: The Jewish Cemetery is an oil on canvas painting. It is an example of Dutch Golden Age painting and is now in the collection of the Detroit Institute of Arts. This painting was documented by John Smith in 1835, who wrote: "This grand and affecting picture exhibits the ruins of a church and convent upon the summit of a hill, occupying the whole extent of the view in the second distance, the declivity of which presents a cemetery, interspersed with large stones. On the foreground are a broken tree lying across a rapid stream, a tomb of black marble, with an inscription on it; a row of three sarcophagi extending along the front; and on the left stands a cluster of large umbrageous trees, the verdant hues of whose foliage is contrasted by the leafless trunk of a beech. Three persons in black are seen near a small tomb on the side of the hill, musing amidst the tombs. The grandeur and solemnity of the scene is strikingly enhanced by rolling stormy clouds, in which may be perceived the evanescent colours of a rainbow.

Robert Boyle publishes The Sceptical Chymist helping to transform alchemy into chemistry. Though an alchemist himself with his own cache of secret notebooks, Boyle begins writing up experiments for use by others.

1661

image Painting by Charles Le Brun: The Family of Darius Before Alexander represents the scene when the Queen of Persia is kneeling at the feet of Alexander the Great.

Hereditary slavery is established, when Virginia law decrees that children of black mothers “shall be bond or free according to the condition of the mother.”

Massachusetts reverses a ruling dating back to 1652, which allowed blacks to train in arms. New York, Connecticut, and New Hampshire pass similar laws restricting the bearing of arms.

1662

image Painting by Rembrandt: The Syndics of the Drapers Guild

Charles II, King of England, gives the Carolinas to proprietors. Until the 1680s, most settlers in the region are small landowners from Barbados.

In Gloucester County, Virginia the first documented slave rebellion in the colonies takes place.

Maryland legalizes slavery.

German physician Otto von Guericke pieces together bones from different species to make a fossil "unicorn."

1663

(no entry for this year)

Maryland is the first colony to take legal action against marriages between white women and black men.

New York and New Jersey legalize slavery.

The State of Maryland mandates lifelong servitude for all black slaves. New York, New Jersey, the Carolinas, and Virginia all pass similar laws.

In his private museum in Rome, Virgilio Romano exhibits a Hippopotamus major canine tooth found in Pleistocene gravels along the Via Nomentana.

Thomas Willis publishes The Anatomy of the Brain and Nerves.

image Isaac Newton discovers that white light is composed of different colors.

1664

image Painting by Frans Hals The Governors of the Almshouse is a regents' group portrait of five regents and their servant painted by Frans Hals in 1664 for the Oude Mannenhuis in Haarlem, the Netherlands. It forms a pendant with the Regentesses of the Old Men's Almshouse. Though it is no longer known which name belongs with which face, the regents portrayed were Jonas de Jong, Mattheus Everzwijn, dr. Cornelis Westerloo, Daniel Deinoot and Johannes Walles. Frans Hals painted them in his "loose style", with rough brush strokes. The painting is traditionally dated 1664, though no archival evidence has yet been found to confirm this. The date is chosen as the middle of the term that the sitters served as regents. Though the paintings as pendants seem to belong together, they did not hang together, and as was the case in the St. Elisabeth hospital across the street, they probably each hung in a separate regents' meeting room; the one for the ladies in the ladies' meeting room and the one for the men in the men's meeting room.

Great Plague occurs in London.

image Robert Hooke observes cork under a microscope and uses the word cells to describe the tiny chambers that he sees. He publishes drawings of these cells, of fleas, and of other small creatures, in his book Micrographia.

Le Journal des Savants is first published in France, and Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society is first published in England.

1665

image Painting by Rembrandt The Jewish Bride

Maryland passes a fugitive slave law.

Samuel Morland builds a mechanical calculator that will add and subtract

Gravity is discovered.

1666

image Painting by Jacob von Oost: The Painter's Studio

Milton's Paradise Lost is published.

Virginia declares that Christian baptism will not alter a person's status as a slave.

Treaty of Breda; peace established among England, Holland, France, Denmark.

Niels Stensen (Steno) describes his dissection of the head of a giant white shark and correctly identifies shark teeth, still generally thought (despite arguments to the contrary from Rondelet and Colonna in the preceding century) to be serpent tongues.

1667

image Painting by Jan Vermeer: The Art of Painting is one of Vermeer's most famous. In 1868 Thoré-Bürger, known today for his rediscovery of the work of painter Johannes Vermeer, regarded this painting as his most interesting. Svetlana Alpers describes it as unique and ambitious; Walter Liedtke "as a virtuoso display of the artist's power of invention and execution, staged in an imaginary version of his studio ..." According to Albert Blankert "No other painting so flawlessly integrates naturalistic technique, brightly illuminated space, and a complexly integrated composition." Many art historians think that it is an allegory of painting, hence the alternative title of the painting. Its composition and iconography make it the most complex Vermeer work of all.

The Mission of Sault Ste. Marie, in what will become Michigan, is founded by Father Marquette.

New Jersey passes a fugitive slave law.

Natural historian John Somner finds woolly rhino teeth near Canterbury in Kent, and figures they might be the remains of a sea monster. As he will die before he can publish his conclusions, his brother William will print his article A Brief Relation of Some Strange Bones There Lately Digged Up In Some Grounds of Mr. John Somner.

image Francesco Redi publishes Esperienze Intorno alla Generazione degli Insetti (Experiments on the Generation of Insects), which is regarded as his masterpiece and a milestone in the history of modern science. At the time, prevailing wisdom was that maggots arose spontaneously from rotting meat. Redi took six jars and divided them into two groups of three: In one experiment, in the first jar of each group, he put an unknown object; in the second, a dead fish; in the last, a raw chunk of veal. Redi covered the tops of the first group of jars with fine gauze so that only air could get into it. He left the other group open. After several days, he saw maggots appear on the objects in the open jars, on which flies had been able to land, but not in the gauze-covered jars. In the second experiment, meat was kept in three jars. One of the jars was uncovered, and two of the jars were covered, one with cork and the other one with gauze. Flies could only enter the uncovered jar, and in this, maggots appeared. In the jar that was covered with gauze, maggots appeared on the gauze but did not survive. Knowing full well the terrible fates of out-spoken thinkers such as Giordano Bruno and Galileo Galilei, Redi was careful to express his new views in a manner that would not contradict theological tradition of the Church; hence, his interpretations were always based on biblical passages, such as his famous adage: omne vivum ex vivo ("All life comes from life").

Jan Swammerdam dissects a caterpillar for Cosimo de Medici, demonstrating that the butterfly wings already exist inside the caterpillar's body. A year later, he will publish Historia Insectorum Generalis.

Robert Hooke presents a lecture to the Royal Society claiming that earthquakes, not the biblical flood, have caused fossils to be found on mountaintops and buried in stone.

1668

(no entry for this year)

Niels Stensen (Steno) publishes Forerunner, showing diagrammatic sections of the Tuscany area geology, making the important point that sediments are deposited in horizontal layers.

Brandt discovers phosphorus.

1669

image Painting by Willem Kalf: Still Life with a Chinese Porcelain Jar is a sumptuous still life displaying the sort of costly wares that flowed through the Netherlands during its heyday as a trade center. In Still Life with a Chinese Porcelain Jar, Kalf selected an array of precious objects with which to showcase the wealth and refinement of the Netherlands and his own skills as a painter. Everything is expensive, imported, or both. The citrus fruit, glassware from Venice, and Chinese porcelain jar are evidence of Dutch sailors' enterprise. Local talent is displayed by Dutch silver and a rummer, or wineglass, with a cherub holding a cornucopia at its base. They stand on a marble tabletop with a carelessly crumpled oriental rug. Amid all that luxury is a lesson: a ticking watch on the silver platter reminds the viewer that such earthly riches are fleeting, and worth far less than eternal salvation. The carefully balanced composition, rich colors, and warm tonalities make this painting an object of beauty as well as moral edification.

The Hudson Bay Company is incorporated.

The State of Virginia prohibits free blacks and Indians from keeping Christian (i.e. white) servants.

Agostino Scilla publishes Vain Speculation Undeceived by Sense arguing for the organic origin of fossils.

1670

image Painting by José Antolínez: The Picture Merchant

The Greenwich Observatory is built.

image Isaac Newton completes his book, The Methods of Fluxions and Infinite Series, with its Application to the Geometry of Curve-lines (which was not published until 1736). The book describes Newton's analytic methods, which would now be called calculus.

1671

(no entry for this year)

image Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz invents the Staffelwalze (stepped drum, or stepped reckoner), the first mechanical calculator that could perform all four mathematical operations. Its intricate precision gearwork, however, was somewhat beyond the fabrication technology of the time; mechanical problems, in addition to a design flaw in the carry mechanism, prevented the machines from working reliably. Despite the mechanical flaws, it suggested possibilities to future calculator builders. The operating mechanism, invented by Leibniz, called the stepped cylinder or Leibniz wheel, was used in many calculating machines for 200 years, and into the 1970s with the Curta hand calculator. In discussing his invention, Leibniz wrote Indignum enim est excellentium virorum horas servii calculandi labore perire, qui Machina adhibita vilissimo cuique secure transcribi posset — For it is unworthy of distinguished men to waste their time with slavish calculations, which can be done safely with the use of this machine by anyone else.

1672

(no entry for this year)

The Mississippi River is discovered.

image Apothecary and antiquary John Conyers finds an elephant tusk and a nearby handaxe about 12 feet below ground at Gray's Inn Lane, London. The Gray's Inn Lane handaxe will later be dated at 350,000 years old.

Leeuwenhoek begins corresponding with the Royal Society of London describing his discoveries under the microscope.

1673

(no entry for this year)

New York declares that blacks who convert to Christianity after their enslavement will not be freed.

image Antonie van Leeuwenhoek creates a simple microscope with only one lens. He developed glass-handling techniques that allowed him to create lenses with magnifying power up to 270x — by far the most powerful magnifying lenses available. Although compound microscopes had been invented in the 1590s, nearly forty years before Leeuwenhoek was born, there were technical difficulties in building them, meaning that early compound microscopes (such as used by Robert Hooke) had a maximum magnification of only 20x or 30x. Leeuwenhoek's more powerful lenses allowed him to discover protozoa and other single-celled organisms and to be the first to observe bacteria.

1674

image Painting by Jan Steen: Merrymaking at an Inn combines the Flemish tradition of low-life tavern scenes with the more elegant Dutch merry companies.

King Philip's War (sometimes called the First Indian War, Metacom's War, Metacomet's War, or Metacom's Rebellion) begins in New England. The war was an armed conflict between American Indian inhabitants of present-day New England and English colonists and their Indian allies in 1675–78. The war is named for Metacomet, the Wampanoag chief who adopted the English name Philip due to the friendly relations between his father and the Mayflower Pilgrims. The war continued in the most northern reaches of New England until the signing of the Treaty of Casco Bay in April 1678. The war was the single greatest calamity to occur in seventeenth century Puritan New England and is considered by many to be the deadliest war in the history of European settlement in North America in proportion to the population. In the space of little more than a year, twelve of the region's towns were destroyed and many more damaged, the colony's economy was all but ruined, and its population was decimated, losing one-tenth of all men available for military service. More than half of New England's towns were attacked by Indians. By early July, over 400 had surrendered to the colonists, and Metacomet took refuge in the Assowamset Swamp below Providence, close to where the war had started. The colonists formed raiding parties of militia and Indians. They were allowed to keep the possessions of warring Indians and received a bounty on all captives. Metacomet was killed by one of these teams when he was tracked down by Captain Benjamin Church and Captain Josiah Standish of the Plymouth Colony militia at Mount Hope in Bristol, Rhode Island. He was shot and killed by an Indian named John Alderman on August 12, 1676. After his death, his wife and nine-year-old son were captured and sold as slaves in Bermuda. Philip's head was mounted on a pike at the entrance to Fort Plymouth, where it remained for more than two decades. His body was cut into quarters and hung in trees. Alderman was given Metacomet's right hand as a reward.

Jan Swammerdam publishes a treatise on the mayfly entitled A Figure of Man's Miserable Life.

The English physicist Sir Isaac Newton argues that light is composed of particles, which are refracted by acceleration toward a denser medium, and posits the existence of “aether” to transmit forces between the particles.

1675

(no entry for this year)

In Virginia, black slaves and black and white indentured servants band together to participate in Bacon's Rebellion.

image The first quantitative estimate of the speed of light was made in 1676 by Danish astronomer Ole Rømer. From the observation that the periods of Jupiter's innermost moon Io appeared to be shorter when the Earth was approaching Jupiter than when receding from it, he concluded that light travels at a finite speed, and estimated that it takes light 22 minutes to cross the diameter of Earth's orbit. Christiaan Huygens combined this estimate with an estimate for the diameter of the Earth's orbit to obtain an estimate of speed of light of 220000 km/s, 26% lower than the actual value.

1676

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1677

(no entry for this year)

The Treaty of Nijmegen ends various interconnected wars among France, the Dutch Republic, Spain, Brandenburg, Sweden, Denmark, the Prince-Bishopric of Münster, and the Holy Roman Empire.

1678

(no entry for this year)

The habeas corpus act is passed in England.

1679

(no entry for this year)

The State of Virginia forbids blacks and slaves from bearing arms, prohibits blacks from congregating in large numbers, and mandates harsh punishment for slaves who assault Christians or attempt escape.

The Pueblo Revolt drives the Spanish out of New Mexico until 1692.

1680

(no entry for this year)

Royal Society member Neremiah Grew examines the "sea serpent teeth" found by John Somner in 1668 and recognizes that they are rhino teeth.

Amsterdam physician Gerard Blasius publishes Anatome Animalium examining animals' internal anatomy and skeletal structure.

The first museum of natural history is established in London.

1681

(no entry for this year)

What will become Pennsylvania is colonized by William Penn. Penn founds Philadelphia. Also, with other Friends, Penn purchases East Jersey.

New York makes it illegal for slaves to sell goods.

Virginia declares that all imported black servants are slaves for life.

La Salle (René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle) explores the length of the Mississippi River and claims Louisiana for France.

image Peter the Great becomes joint ruler of Russia (sole tsar in 1696).

Neremiah Grew publishes The Anatomy of Plants with microscopic observations of plant features.

1682

image Painting by Claude Lorraine: Landscape with Ascanius Shooting the Stag of Sylvia was painted in Rome for Prince Lorenzo Onofrio Colonna (1637–1689), Claude's most important patron in his last years, and is now in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford. It is signed, dated with the year, and inscribed with the subject (at centre bottom), as Claude sometimes did with his less common subjects. It was Claude's last painting, and is perhaps not quite finished; it therefore does not appear in the Liber Veritatis, where he made drawings to record his finished works. His date of birth is uncertain, but he was at least in his late seventies when he painted it, perhaps as old as 82.

The Ottoman Empire is defeated in the second Siege of Vienna.

Oxford opens the Ashmolean Museum, the world's first public museum. The museum's practice of allowing entry to anyone who pays the admission fee horrifies scholars from continental Europe.

1683

(no entry for this year)

Dublin doctor Thomas Molyneux shows that a "giant's tooth" from the collection of Ole Worm really belongs to a whale, and a "giant's hand" shown in London is really the fin of a porpoise.

image Filippo Buonanni publishes Ricreatione dell' occhio e della mente. — perhaps the first book devoted entirely to shells, for which he is considered a founder of conchology.

image Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz publishes a description of his invention of the differential calculus.

1684

(no entry for this year)

Edict of Fontainebleau outlaws Protestantism in France. King Charles II dies.

1685

(no entry for this year)

Timothy Nourse anticaptes eugenics with the argument that a gentleman "ought at least to be as careful of his race as he is of that of his horses, where the fairest and most beautiful are made choice of for breed."

Robert Boyle composes Free Inquiry into the Vulgarly Received Notion of Nature criticizing the notion that nature is capable of autonomy from God.

1686

(no entry for this year)

image Sir Isaac Newton publishes his Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica (or just Principia), which describes an infinite, steady state, static, universe, in which matter on the large scale is uniformly distributed. In the work, he establishes the three Laws of Motion (“a body persists its state of rest or of uniform motion unless acted upon by an external unbalanced force”; “force equals mass times acceleration”; and “to every action there is an equal and opposite reaction”) and the Law of Universal Gravitation (that every particle in the universe attracts every other particle according to an inverse-square formula) that were not to be improved upon for more than two hundred years. He is credited with introducing the idea that the motion of objects in the heavens (such as planets, the Sun and the Moon) can be described by the same set of physical laws as the motion of objects on the ground (like cannon balls and falling apples).

1687

(no entry for this year)

The Pennsylvania Quakers pass the first formal antislavery resolution.

Giovanni Ciampini describes remains of the extinct straight-tusked elephant, Elephas antiquus, found in the town of Vitorchiano in the region of Latium.

1688

(no entry for this year)

image John Locke publishes his first Letter Concerning Toleration. Its initial publication was in Latin, though it was immediately translated into other languages. Locke's work appeared amidst a fear that Catholicism might be taking over England, and responds to the problem of religion and government by proposing religious toleration as the answer. This "letter" is addressed to an anonymous "Honored Sir": this was actually Locke's close friend Philipp van Limborch, who published it without Locke's knowledge.

image William III ascends to the throne over England, Scotland, and Ireland.

1689

(no entry for this year)

image John Locke publishes his Essay Concerning Human Understanding.

1690

(no entry for this year)

South Carolina passes the first comprehensive slave codes.

Virginia passes the first anti-miscegenation law, forbidding marriages between whites and blacks or whites and Native Americans.

Virginia prohibits the manumission of slaves within its borders. Manumitted slaves are forced to leave the colony.

1691

(no entry for this year)

The colonies of Plymouth and Massachusetts are united.

Witchcraft mania begins to take over new England.

1692

(no entry for this year)

The College of William and Mary is founded in Williamsburg, Virginia, by a royal charter.

Naturalist John Ray publishes Three Physicotheological Discourses about the Creation, the Deluge and the Conflagration, discussing conflicting theories about the nature of fossils.

1693

(no entry for this year)

Rice cultivation is introduced into Carolina. Slave importation increases dramatically.

The Bank of England is established.

1694

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1695

image Painting by Rachel Ruysch: Flowers on a Ledge. Ruysch's skill lay in the minute observation of each flower in a totally realistic way which is then composed into an elaborate arrangement which would be very difficult to achieve in nature, as the flowers would not support each other so well under such an arrangement. In common with most flower pieces from the last third of the 17th century, the colors of the flowers are much more carefully balanced than in the earlier pictures.

The Royal African Trade Company loses its monopoly and New England colonists enter the slave trade.

1696

(no entry for this year)

Scandinavian historian Olof Rudbeck publishes his attempt to chronologically measure sedimentary deposits, laying the foundations for the field of stratigraphy.

1697

(no entry for this year)

Calcutta is founded by the English.

Edward Lhwyd publishes a description of a "flatfish" in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society. (The flatfish is really a trilobite, an ancient marine arthropod.)

1698

(no entry for this year)

Edward Lhwyd publishes a book devoted to British fossils. In it, he describes ichthyosaur remains as those of a fish.

Based on a dissection he performed the year before, Edward Tyson publishes Orang Outan, sive Homo sylvestris pointing out similarities between chimpanzee and human anatomy. (Although he has dissected an infant chimp, Tyson uses the term "orang-outan.")

1699

image Painting by Alexandre-François Desportes: Autoportrait en chasseur (Self-portrait as hunter). Desportes was born in Champigneulle, Ardennes. He studied in Paris, in the studio of the Flemish painter Nicasius Bernaerts, a pupil of Frans Snyders. During a brief soujourn in Poland, 1695–96, he painted portraits of John III Sobieski and Polish aristocrats; after the king's death Desportes returned to Paris, convinced that he should specialise in animals and flowers. He was received by the Académie de peinture et de sculpture in 1699, with the Self-Portrait in Hunting Dress now in the Musée du Louvre. In 1712–13 he spent six months in England. He received many commissions for decorative panels for the royal châteaux: Versailles, Marly, Meudon, Compiègne and, his last royal commission, for Louis XV at Choisy, 1742. He also did decorative paintings for the duc de Bourbon at Chantilly. Both Louis XIV and Louis XV commissioned portraits of their favorite hunting dogs.

image Samuel Sewall (1652-1730) publishes The Selling of Joseph — the first American protest against slavery.

Pennsylvania legalizes slavery.

1700

(no entry for this year)

The Collegiate School (which will later become Yale) is founded in Saybrook, Connecticut.

The commode becomes a popular piece of furniture.

1701

(no entry for this year)

The Daily Courant — the first daily newspaper — is published in London.

New York passes An Act for Regulating Slaves. Among the prohibitions of this act are meetings of more than three slaves, trading by slaves, and testimony by slaves in court.

1702

(no entry for this year)

Delaware separates from Pennsylvania and becomes an independent colony.

Connecticut assigns the punishment of whipping to any slaves who disturb the peace or assault whites.

Massachusetts requires those masters who liberate slaves to provide a bond of 50 pounds or more in the event that the freedman becomes a public charge.

Rhode Island makes it illegal for blacks and Indians to walk at night without passes.

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz invents the Binary System

image Isaac Newton is elected president of the Royal Society.

1703

(no entry for this year)

image Jonathan Swift publishes "A Tale of a Tub."

1704

(no entry for this year)

Massachusetts makes marriage and sexual relations between blacks and whites illegal.

New York declares that punishment by execution will be applied to certain runaway slaves.

The Virginia Slave Code codifies slave status, declaring all non- Christian servants entering the colony to be slaves. It defines all slaves as real estate, acquits masters who kill slaves during punishment, forbids slaves and free colored peoples from physically assaulting white persons, and denies slaves the right to bear arms or move abroad without written permission.

A giant fossil tooth is found along the banks of the Hudson River. It will initially be identified (by Cotton Mather) as that of a human giant who perished in Noah's flood, then correctly identified (by Georges Cuvier) as that of a mastodon.

Maria Sibylla Merian publishes Metamorphosis Insectorum Surinamensium describing insect species and other animals she has studied in Surinam.

The Ambonese Curiosity Cabinet by G.E. Rumphius is published. It provides detailed descriptions of soft and hard shellfish, minerals, rocks and fossils from Indonesia.

1705

(no entry for this year)

Connecticut requires that Indians, mulattos, and black servants gain permission from their masters to engage in trade.

New York declares blacks, Indians, and slaves who kill white people to be subject to the death penalty.

1706

(no entry for this year)

Hans Sloane publishes the first of two volumes describing the natural wonders of Jamaica. (The second volume will be published in 1725.)

1707

(no entry for this year)

Africans in the colony of South Carolina outnumber Europeans, making it the first English colony with a black majority.

Blacks outnumber whites in South Carolina.

Rhode Island requires that slaves be accompanied by their masters when visiting the homes of free persons.

The Southern colonies require militia captains to enlist and train one slave for every white soldier.

1708

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1709

(no entry for this year)

New York forbids blacks, Indians, and mulattos from walking at night without lighted lanterns.

Jakob Christoph Le Blon, an engraver, invents three-color printing.

image George Berkeley publishes "A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge."

1710

(no entry for this year)

Great Britain's Queen Anne overrules a Pennsylvania colonial law prohibiting slavery.

Pennsylvania prohibits the importation of blacks and Indians.

Rhode Island prohibits the clandestine importation of black and Indian slaves.

Rio de Janeiro is captured by the French.

1711

(no entry for this year)

In Charleston, South Carolina slaves are forbidden from hiring themselves out.

New York declares it illegal for blacks, Indians, and slaves to murder other blacks, Indians, and slaves.

New York forbids freed blacks, Indians, and mulatto slaves from owning real estate and holding property.

Pennsylvania prohibits the importation of slaves.

Slave Revolt: New York Slaves in New York City kill whites during an uprising, later squelched by the militia. Nineteen rebels are executed.

1712

(no entry for this year)

England secures the exclusive right to transport slaves to the Spanish colonies in America.

In Physico-theology, or a demonstration of the being and attributes of God from His works of creation William Derham tries to show that this is the best of all possible worlds.

1713

(no entry for this year)

image Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit constructs a mercury thermometer with a temperature scale.

On the advice of Leibniz, Peter the Great opens a public museum in Saint Petersburg.

1714

(no entry for this year)

Maryland declares all slaves entering the province and their descendants to be slaves for life.

Rhode Island legalizes slavery.

Edmund Halley lectures the Royal Society that the age of the Earth could be calculated by measuring the ocean's salinity since ocean salts result from sediments carried by rivers and streams.

1715

(no entry for this year)

The Collegiate School trustees vote to move to more hospitable New Haven. Citizens of other communities vied to host the fledgling school, but friends in New Haven outbid them, fulfilling the dream of one of New Haven’s founders, the Reverend John Davenport, to establish a college there.

1716

(no entry for this year)

image George Frideric Handel's "Water Music" is first performed on the Thames.

New York enacts a fugitive slave law.

image Johann Heinrich Schulze makes fleeting sun prints of words by using stencils, sunlight, and a bottled mixture of chalk and silver nitrate in nitric acid, simply as an interesting way to demonstrate that the substance inside the bottle darkens where it is exposed to light.

William Stukely publishes An Account of the Almost Entire Sceleton of a Large Animal in a Very Hard Stone. The fossil is a plesiosaur, but is identified as a crocodile.

Dutch pharmacist Albertus Seba inventories his wonder cabinet for the avid collector Peter the Great, including 1,000 European insects and 400 animal specimens. The czar buys the inventory, and Seba begins his second collection, which he will describe in print starting in 1734.

1717

(no entry for this year)

The Collegiate School is renamed Yale College in recognition of Elihu Yale’s donation of books and goods.

image Voltaire is imprisoned in the Bastille; while there, he writes Oedipe.

Porcelain is first manufactured in Vienna.

1718

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1719

(no entry for this year)

René Réaumur submits a report to the Paris Academy of Sciences proposing that a brief Noachian flood cannot account for the thick sedimentary layers (composed largely of broken shells) underlying the region of Tours. He suggests instead that the region was once covered by the sea.

1720

(no entry for this year)

image Johann Sebastian Bach presents "The Brandenburg Concertos", a collection of six instrumental works, to Christian Ludwig, margrave of Brandenburg-Schwedt.

1721

(no entry for this year)

image Johann Sebastian Bach, "Das wohltemperierte Klavier".

Benoît de Maillet anonymously publishes Telliamed, named after an oriental sage who says that the Earth must be at least 2 billion years old, based on measurements of falling sea level. (In fact, no sage exists; the title is really the author's name spelled backward.)

1722

(no entry for this year)

Virginia abolishes manumissions.

Antoine de Jussieu addresses a paper to the Académie des Sciences suggesting that an ancient object, e.g., a stone tool, made of the same material and by the same process as those used by a modern population probably has the same function.

1723

(no entry for this year)

Louisiana's Code Noir is enacted in New Orleans to regulate black slavery and to banish Jews from the colony

French Louisiana prohibits slaves from marrying without the permission of their owners.

1724

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1725

(no entry for this year)

image Jonathan Swift publishes "A Modest Proposal".

image Jonathan Swift publishes Gulliver's Travels.

1726

(no entry for this year)

Johann Heinrich Schulze discovered that silver nitrate darkened upon exposure to light.

Balthasar Ehrhart identifies belemnites as fossil cephalopods.

1727

(no entry for this year)

Hans Sloane publishes two papers on fossils found in Siberia and North America arguing that they are fossil elephants, not giants or monsters.

1728

(no entry for this year)

The Qing Dynasty Emperor Yongzheng prohibits opium smoking in China. British refusal to comply with these anti-narcotics laws will ultimately lead to two wars (the Opium Wars) and the subjugation of China to Britain (and other western powers).

In An Attempt towards a Natural History of England, John Woodward describes three "pinecones" that, upon later examination, will prove to be coprolites.

Louis Bourget's Lettres philosophiques sur la formation des sels et de cristaux et sur la génération et la méchanique organique (Philosophical letters on the formation of salts and crystals and on generation and organic mechanisms) makes the distinction between organic and inorganic growth.

1729

(no entry for this year)

The number of male and female slaves imported to the North American British colonies balances out for the first time.

Otto Müller is among the first to see bacteria since Leeuwenhoek and the first to classify them into types.

1730

(no entry for this year)

The Spanish reverse a 1730 decision and declare that slaves fleeing to Florida from Carolina will not be sold or returned.

image Jethro Tull's Horse-hoeing husbandry advocates the use of manure, pulverization of the soil, growing crops in rows, and hoeing to remove weeds.

Johann Jakob Scheuchzer publishes Sacred Physics, a pictorial account of Earth's history based on the Old Testament. Included is a description of what he believes is a fossilized victim of the biblical flood.

1731

(no entry for this year)

The Reverend George Berkeley establishes the Berkeley Scholarships for graduate study at Yale, the first such scholarships in America.

Benjamin Franklin's "Poor Richard's Almanack" first issued.

Slaves aboard the ship of New Hampshire Captain John Major kill both captain and crew, seizing the vessel and its cargo.

image Nöel-Antoine Pluche publishes the first of eight volumes of Le spectacle de la nature (Spectacle of nature), popularizing "natural theology" in France.

1732

(no entry for this year)

Quaker Elihu Coleman's A Testimony against That Anti-Christian Practice of Maling Slaves of Men is published.

image Stephen Hales' Statical essays, containing haemastatics, etc., two volumes, reports his investigations on blood flow and pressure in animals and the hydrostatics of sap in plants.

1733

(no entry for this year)

The Swedish scientist and philosopher Emanuel Swedenborg proposes a hierarchical universe, still generally based on a Newtonian static universe, but with matter clustered on ever larger scales of hierarchy, endlessly being recycled. This idea of a hierarchical universe and the “nebular hypothesis” were developed further (independently) by Thomas Wright (1750) and Immanuel Kant (1775).

image René de Réamure's Mémaoires pour servir à l'histoire des insects (History of insects) is one of the foundation works in entomology.

1734

(no entry for this year)

Georgia petitions Britain for the legalization of slavery.

Louis XV, King of France, declares that when an enslaved woman gives birth to the child of a free man, neither mother nor child can be sold. Further, after a certain time, mother and child will be freed.

Under an English law Georgia prohibits the importation and use of black slaves.

image Systema Naturae (System of Nature) by Carolus Linnaeus introduces the system of classification for organisms that is still in use today.

1735

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1736

(no entry for this year)

An indentured black servant petitions a Massachusetts court and wins his freedom after the death of his master.

Hermann Boerhaave prints Jan Swammerdam's Biblia naturae (Bible of nature), which was originally published to little notice in 1658. It contains his reports on the dissection of insects under a microscope.

image Linnaeus's Genera Plantorum (Genera of Plants) explains his method of systematic botany and classifies 18,000 species of plants.

1737

(no entry for this year)

Georgia's trustees permit the importation of black slaves.

Spanish Florida promises freedom and land to runaway slaves.

1738

(no entry for this year)

Slaves in Stono, South Carolina rebel, sacking and burning an armory and killing whites. Some 75 slaves in South Carolina steal weapons and flee toward freedom in Florida (then under Spanish rule). Crushed by the South Carolina militia, the revolt results in the deaths of 40 blacks and 20 whiteThe colonial militia puts an end to the rebellion before slaves are able to reach freedom in Florida.

Native Americans traveling with French soldiers find mastodon fossils along the Ohio River. The bones will be shipped back to France and become the first American fossils studied by scientists.

image David Hume publishes A Treatise of Human Nature.

1739

(no entry for this year)

Georgia and Carolina attempt to invade Florida in retaliation for the territory's policy toward runaways.

South Carolina passes the comprehensive Negro Act, making it illegal for slaves to move abroad, assemble in groups, raise food, earn money, and learn to read English. Owners are permitted to kill rebellious slaves if necessary.

1740

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1741

(no entry for this year)

The Microscope Made Easy, by Henry Baker, introduces the construction and use of the microscope to the layman.

Abraham Trembley makes the first permanent graft of animal tissue, using the Hydra.

1742

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1743

(no entry for this year)

First recorded cricket match: Kent versus All England.

Abraham Trembley's Mémoires summarizes his research on the hydra and his discovery of regeneration in polyps.

Scholar and teacher Abraham Trembley publishes Mémoires Concerning the Natural History of a Type of Freshwater Polyp with Arms Shaped Like Horns. After watching them move and eat, he has concluded that the simple creatures (later to be classified as cnidarians) are animals, not plants.

1744

(no entry for this year)

image Traité d'insectologie (Treatise on insect ecology) by Charles Bonnet describes his observations on parthenogenetic reproduction and metamorphosis of aphids.

Bologna physician Vincenzo Menghini roasts the blood of fish, birds and mammals (including humans) then sifts through the residue with a magnetic blade, noting that roasted-blood particles adhere to it. The experiment provides evidence that blood contains iron.

1745

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1746

(no entry for this year)

image Andreas Marggraf discovers sugar in beets, laying the foundation for Europe's sugar-beet industry.

1747

(no entry for this year)

Tobias Smollett publishes The Adventures of Roderick Random.

image L'homme Machine (Man the Machine) by Julien Offray de la Mettrie describes humans as machines, without freedom or will.

1748

(no entry for this year)

Georgia repeals its prohibition and permits the importation of black slaves.

image Georges-Louis Leclerc de Buffon publishes the first volume of Historie Naturelle. Thirty-six volumes came out between 1749 and 1789, followed by eight more after his death. The Histoire Naturelle was meant to address the whole of natural history, but actually covers only minerals, birds, and the quadrupeds among animals. It is accompanied by some discourses and a theory of the earth by way of introduction, and by supplements including an elegantly written account of the epochs of nature. The Histoire Naturelle had a distinctly mixed reception in the eighteenth century. Wealthy homes in both England and France purchased copies, and the first edition was sold out within six weeks. But Buffon was criticised by some priests for suggesting (in the essay Les Epoques de Nature, Volume XXXIV) that the earth was more than 6,000 years old and that mountains had arisen in geological time. The Paris faculty of theology, acting as the official censor, wrote to Buffon with a list of statements in the Histoire Naturelle that were contradictory to Roman Catholic Church teaching. In June, 2017, an antiquarian book deal offered a complete second edition of the Historie Naturelle for 14500 €.

1749

(no entry for this year)

image Construction is started on Connecticut Hall at Yale, now the oldest building in New Haven and a National Historic Landmark.

image Carolus Linnaeus's Philosophia Botanica rejects any notion of evolution and continues his work in classifying plants.

John Needham publishes Nouvelles Observations Microscopiques arguing that decomposing plant and animal matter can spontaneously generate new life. Fifteen years later, Italian polymath Lazzaro Spallanzani will conduct a more careful set of experiments then publish a report rejecting Needham's conclusions.

1750

image Painting by Thomas Gainsborough: Mr and Mrs Andrews is one of his most famous works. However, it remained in the family of the sitters until 1960 and was very little known before it appeared in an exhibition in Ipswich in 1927. The work is an unusual combination of two common types of painting of the period: a double portrait, here of a recently married couple, and a landscape view of the English countryside. Gainsborough's work mainly consisted of these two different genres, but their striking combination side-by-side in this extended horizontal format is unique in Gainsborough's oeuvre, and extremely rare in other painters.

The minuet becomes a fashionable dance in Europe.

Colonial South Carolina prohibits slaves from learning about or practicing medicine.

George II repeals the 1705 act, making slaves real estate in Virginia.

image Linnaeus's Species Plantarum completes his development of the use of binary nomenclature in botany. The work still provides the foundation for the modern classification of species.

image Pierre-Louis de Maupertuis's Système de la Nature provides a theoretical speculation on heredity and the origin of species by chance.

image Étienne Bonnot de Condillac's Traité de sensations claims that knowledge reaches humans only through the senses.

image Benjamin Franklin describes electricity as a single fluid and distinguishes between positive and negative electricity in Experiments and Observations on Electricity. He shows that electricity can magnetize and demagnetize iron needles.

Encyclopedists Diderot and d'Alembert publish the first volume of the Encyclopedia, or Classified Dictionary of Sciences, Arts and Trades emphasizing a dispassionate presentation of factual information rather than reliance on age-old "wisdom."

1751

(no entry for this year)

image The lightning conductor is invented by Benjamin Franklin, whose experiments with lightning include a flying a kite in a thunderstorm. The kite experiment shows that lightning is a form of electricity, similar to the discharge from a Leyden jar.

Stung by satires of its Philosophical Transactions, the Royal Society of London forms a committee that will vote on which papers merit publication.

1752

(no entry for this year)

image Thomas Chippendale begins making furniture in his workshop in London, England.

image English painter and engraver William Hogarth publishes the aesthetic treatise, The Analysis of Beauty.

image Russian scientist Georg Wilhelm Richmann is killed performing a lightning experiment in St. Petersburg. Richmann is electrocuted in while trying to quantify the response of an insulated rod to a nearby storm. The incident, reported worldwide, underscored the dangers inherent in experimenting with insulated rods and in using protective rods with faulty ground connections.

The British Museum opens.

1753

(no entry for this year)

The French and Indian War breaks out on the North American continent between the European powers Britain and France.

1754

(no entry for this year)

image English critic and writer Samuel Johnson publishes A Dictionary of the English Language, a landmark of lexicography that he has compiled by himself over the course of eight years.

image The Great Lisbon Earthquake occurs, killing more than 60,000 people. The huge earthquake (estimated at 9.0 on the modern Richter scale) strikes Lisbon, Portugal, at 9:40 am, on 1 November, during church services for All Saint's Day. Because the earthquake hits on an important church holiday and destroys almost every important church in the city, much anxiety and confusion is generated amongst the citizens of this staunch and devout Roman Catholic city and country, which had been a major patron of the Church. Theologians speculate on the religious cause and message, seeing the earthquake as a manifestation of the anger of God. Some philosophers struggle to reconcile the event with the concept that humanity lives in the best of all possible worlds — a world closely supervised by a benevolent deity.

1755

(no entry for this year)

image English statesman and writer Edmund Burke publishes A Philosophical Inquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful. This work of aesthetics, with its emphasis on the sublime, will have a powerful influence on romantic artists and writers.

image William Cullen observes the cooling effect of evaporating liquids and publishes the results in An Essay on the Cold Produced by Evaporating Fluids and Other Means of Producing Cold.

1756

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1757

(no entry for this year)

The first English manual on guitar playing is published.

Pennsylvania Quakers forbid their members from owning slaves or participating in the slave trade.

Henri-Louis Duhamel du Monceau discovers that when he turns a seedling upside down, its roots and shoots reorient so that the root continues to grow downward while the shoot continues to grow upward.

1758

(no entry for this year)

image Voltaire publishes his great satirical work Candide, inspired in part by the Great Lisbon Earthquake.

The British capture Québec from the French.

image In Theoria Generationis (his MD dissertation), Caspar Friedrich Wolff claims the existence of a vis essentialis — an essential force — that is at the heart of all living matter. He also describes the differentiation of tissues in a developing embryo, refuting the preformation concept — the idea that development consists in the growth of a fully formed, but miniature individual. His views were not well received.

The Kew Botanical Gardens open in London.

1759

(no entry for this year)

Jupiter Hammon of Long Island, New York, publishes a book of poetry. This is believed to be the first volume written and published by an African-American

New Jersey prohibits the enlistment of slaves in the militia without their master's permission.

image King George III ascends the English throne.

image Joseph Gottlieb Kölreuter'S Vorläufige nachricht von einigen das geschlecht der pflantzen betreffende versuche and beobachtungen describes his research in heredity in plants.

Giovanni Arduino proposes a naming system for geologic strata, in order of oldest to youngest: Primary: lacking fossils; Secondary: tilted with fossils; Tertiary: horizontal with fossils; Quaternary: sands and gravels overlying Tertiary strata. Although he does not relate these systems to scripture, many people will interpret them in terms of biblical events.

image Photometria by German physicist Johann Lambert is an investigation of light reflections from planets, introducing the term ALBEDO (whiteness) for the differing reflectivities of planetary bodies.

image In experiments with primitive apparatus, Daniel Bernoulli decides that the electrical force obeys an inverse square law similar to that of gravity.

1760

(no entry for this year)

The Swiss physicist Johann Heinrich Lambert supports Wright and Kant’s hierarchical universe and nebular hypothesis, and also hypothesizes that the stars near the Sun are part of a group which travel together through the Milky Way, and that there are many such groupings or star systems throughout the galaxy.

Jean-Baptiste Robinet's five-volume De la nature claims that organic species form a linear scale of progress, without gaps.

image Between 1761 and 1766, Joseph Gottlieb Kölreuter (Germany) demonstrates that hybrid offspring receive traits from both parents (pollen and ovule transmit genetic information), and are intermediate in most traits. First scientific hybrid produced (tobacco). Demonstrates the identity of reciprocal crosses. Notes hybrid vigor, segregation of offspring (parental and non-parental types) from a hybrid.

image Joseph Black discovers latent heat by finding that ice, when melting, absorbs heat without changing in temperature. Later he measures the latent heat of steam — that is, the heat required to keep water boiling without raising its temperature.

1761

(no entry for this year)

image English poet, playwright, and novelist Oliver Goldsmith's Letters from a Citizen of the World is published, a collection of satirical essays on Britain from the point of view of a fictitious Chinese visitor.

image French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau writes a philosophical treatise on government and the populace, The Social Contract.

image Austrian composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, age 6, tours Europe as a musical prodigy.

Virginia restricts voting rights to white men.

image Catherine the Great becomes Empress of all the Russias after death of her husband.

image Charles Bonnet's Considerations sur les corps organisées gives his theory of "preformation" — the idea that each creature is already preformed in miniature in the egg, and that the egg contains all future generations in even smaller scale, ad infinitum.

George III purchases the Paper Museum of Cassiano Dal Pozzo, a 17th-century patron of arts and sciences. Preserved by the Albani family, this "museum" contains more than 7,000 science illustrations, including highly accurate depictions from the Lincean Academy that will prove invaluable to later science historians.

1762

(no entry for this year)

On May 16, English critic and writer Samuel Johnson meets the young Scotsman James Boswell, who will become his biographer.

Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon begin surveying Mason-Dixon Line between Pennsylvania and Maryland.

image Chief Pontiac leads a Native American rebellion against British settlers in and around Detroit.

The French Indian War ends with the Treaty of Paris surrendering Canada to England.

1763

image Painting by Joseph-Marie Vien: The Cupid Seller depicts a business transaction — the offer for sale of several wriggling cupids. The customers seem unimpressed.

image Austrian composer Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, age eight, writes his first symphony.

image German archaeologist and critic Johann Winckelmann publishes his History of Ancient Art Among the Greeks, the first book to include the phrase "history of art" in the title.

1764

(no entry for this year)

Britain enacts Quartering Act, requiring colonists to provide temporary housing to British soldiers.

Stamp Act passed; this is the first direct British tax on colonists.

image Italian biologist Lazzaro Spallanzani suggests preserving food by sealing it in containers that do not permit air to penetrate.

image Leonhard Euler gives a general treatment of the motion of rigid bodies, including the precession and nutation of earth, in Theoria motus corporum solidorum seu rigidorum (Theory of the motion of solid and rigid bodies).

1765

image Painting by John Singleton Copley: The Boy with a Squirrel, a portrait highly praised when exhibited in London. The subject is Copley's half-brother, Henry Pelham, seated at a table and playing with a pet squirrel. This picture, which made the young Boston painter a Fellow of the Society of Artists of Great Britain, by vote of September 3, 1766, had been painted the preceding year

image Bifocal spectacles are invented by Benjamin Franklin.

First fire escape patented, consisting of a wicker basket on a pulley and chain.

Britain repeals the Stamp Act.

image Albrecht von Haller is the first to show that nerves stimulate muscles to contract and that all nerves lead to the spinal cord and the brain.

image Horace-Bénédict de Saussure invents the electrometer, a device for measuring the electric potential by means of the attraction or repulsion of charged bodies.

1766

(no entry for this year)

Mozart's opera "Apollo et Hyacinthus," premieres in Salzburg.

Britain passes Townshend Revenue Act levying taxes on America.

The Virginia House of Burgess boycotts the British slave trade in protest of the Townsend Acts. Georgia and the Carolinas follow suit.

Benjamin Franklin writes a thank-you letter to a wealthy Irish trader for a box of proboscidian "tusks and grinders." Franklin believes the remains belong to elephants but makes astute observations about how their climate must have differed from the present.

1767

image Painting by Claude Joseph Vernet: A Storm on a Mediterranean Coast. Perhaps no painter of landscapes or sea-pieces has ever made the human figure so completely a part of the scene depicted or so important a factor in his design. In this respect he was heavily influenced by Giovanni Paolo Panini, whom he probably met and worked with in Rome. Vernet's work draws on natural themes, but in a way that is neither sentimental or emotive. The overall effect of his style is wholly decorative.

image Painting by Jean-Honoré Fragonard: The Swing (French: L'Escarpolette), also known as The Happy Accidents of the Swing (French: Les Hasards heureux de l'escarpolette, the original title), is an 18th-century oil painting in the Wallace Collection in London. It is considered to be one of the masterpieces of the rococo era, and is Fragonard's best known work. From a contemporary perspective, it would be hard to imagine a more frilly piece of trivia.

image Britain's Capt. James Cook begins exploring the Pacific, putting ashore in such places as New Zealand and Australia.

image Lazzaro Spallanzani's Prodromo d'un ouvrage sur les reproductions animales (Foreword to a work on animal reproduction) tells of his demonstration that spontaneous generation of animals does not take place in tightly closed bottles that have been boiled for more than 30 minutes.

image Caspar Friedrich Wolff's De formatione intestinarum establishes principles of the formation of organs in embryos.

James Cook sets sail on the Endeavour bound for the South Pacific. Accompanying Cook is naturalist Joseph Banks, who will collect tens of thousands of plant and animal specimens and initiate the exchange of flora and fauna between Europe, the Americas and the South Seas.

1768

image Painting by Alexander Roslin: The Lady with the Veil is one of the Nationalmuseum’s best loved paintings. The woman in the portrait is partially hidden by a black silk veil. Beneath the veil she is dressed for a special occasion in white lace and pink silk. During the 18th century, theatre was an important part of the life of the upper classes. Dressing up, disguising oneself and playing dramatic roles was a common pastime. The Lady with the Veil shows how one could dress up à la bolonaise – in the style of Bologna.

image Father Junipero Serra founds Mission San Diego, first mission in California.

image James Watt patents the modern steam engine, which finds wide use in manufacturing. It is an early milestone of the Industrial Revolution.

image Charles Bonnet's Philosophical palingenesis, or ideas on the past and future states of living beings contains his view that the females of every species contain the germs of all future generations.

image John Robison measures the repulsion between two charged bodies and shows that this force is inversely proportional to the distance between the two bodies.

1769

(no entry for this year)

image Crispus Attucks, an escaped slave, becomes the first colonial resident to die for American independence when he is killed by the British in the Boston massacre.

Around 1770, the European slave trade with Africa reaches its peak, transporting nearly 80,000 enslaved Africans across the Atlantic annually.

Escaped slave, Crispus Attucks, is killed by British forces in Boston, Massachusetts. He is one of the first colonists to die in the war for independence.

Erasmus Darwin has the allegorical motto E conchis omnia or "Everything from shells" painted on his carriage, promoting the idea of common descent. Bowing to social pressure, he removes it shortly thereafter.

1770

image Painting by Jean-Honoré Fragonard: Young Girl Reading, or The Reader (French: La Liseuse), is an 18th-century oil painting, purchased by the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC in 1961 using funds donated by Ailsa Mellon Bruce, the daughter of Andrew W. Mellon, following her father's death. The work is more a genre painting of an everyday scene than a portrait, and the name of the sitter is not known. X-ray photography has revealed that the canvas originally featured a different head looking towards the viewer, which Fragonard painted over.

image Painting by Thomas Gainsborough: The Blue Boy. Perhaps Gainsborough's most famous work, it is thought to be a portrait of Jonathan Buttall (1752–1805), the son of a wealthy hardware merchant, although this has never been proven. It is a historical costume study as well as a portrait: the youth in his 17th-century apparel is regarded as Gainsborough's homage to Anthony van Dyck, and in particular is very close to Van Dyck's portrait of Charles II as a boy.

image The first edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica is published.

In Gailenreuth Cave in Germany, Father Johann Esper finds human bones underlying those of extinct animals. He concludes that the bones got there by accident, an opinion Cuvier will share.

image Italian anatomist Luigi Galvani discovers accidentally the action of electricity on the muscles of the dissected frog: it causes a twitch.

Joseph Priestly discovers that a plant can produce enough breathable air to sustain a mouse and keep a candle burning. Though he describes it in different terms, he has discovered oxygen.

1771

(no entry for this year)

image On June 22, Lord Chief Mansfield rules in the James Somerset case that an enslaved person brought to England becomes free and cannot be returned to slavery. His ruling establishes the legal basis for the freeing of England's fifteen thousand slaves.

James Albert Ukawsaw Gronniosaw's writes the first autobiographical slave narrative.

New Jersey passes bill requiring a license to practice medicine.

Swedish scientist Johan Carl Wilcke calculates the latent heat of ice (the amount of heat absorbed when ice turns into water).

1772

(no entry for this year)

Jean Baptiste Point du Sable is the first settler in the community now known as Chicago. Point du Sable described himself as "a free mulatto man." He was married to a Potawatomi woman named Catherine some time in the 1770s.

image Phillis Wheatley of Boston publishes Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral. This is the first book of poetry published by an African-American woman.

Phillis Wheatley becomes the first published African-American poet when a London publishing company releases a collection of her verse.

Slaves in Massachusetts unsuccessfully petition the government for their freedom.

The first separate black church in America is founded in South Carolina.

The "Boston Tea Party" occurs as a protest against British taxation policies.

1773

(no entry for this year)

image German poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe writes the short novel The Sorrows of Young Werther.

Rhode Island becomes first colony to prohibit importation of slaves.

Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Georgia prohibit the importation of slaves.

The First Continental Congress bans trade with Britain and vows to discontinue the slave trade after the 1st of December.

Virginia takes action against slave importation.

image Joseph Priestley discovers oxygen.

1774

(no entry for this year)

Lord Dunmore, promises freedom to male slaves who join British army.

image General Washington forbids recruiting officers enlisting blacks to fight in defense of American freedom.

image The first Spanish ship, the San Carlos, commanded by Juan Manuel de Ayala, enters San Francisco Bay.

image The Grand Union flag is adopted by the American colonies in rebellion against England.

Abolitionist Society Anthony Benezet of Philadelphia founds the world’s first abolitionist society. Benjamin Franklin becomes its president in 1787.

In April, the first battles of the Revolutionary war are waged between the British and Colonial armies at Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts. Black Minutemen participate in the fighting.

In July, George Washington announces a ban on the enlistment of free blacks and slaves in the colonial army. By the end of the year, he reverses the ban, ordering the Continental Army to accept the service of free blacks.

In November, Virginia Governor John Murray, Lord Dunmore, issues a proclamation announcing that any slave fighting on the side of the British will be liberated.

The slave population in the colonies is nearly 500,000. In Virginia, the ratio of free colonists to slaves is nearly 1:1. In South Carolina it is approximately 1:2. 1775 Georgia takes action against slave importation.

Benjamin Franklin and Benjamin Rush form an anti-slavery group in Philadelphia.

The American Revolution begins with fighting at Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts.

The Continental Congress appoints George Washington head of the Continental Army.

image Franz Anton Mesmer suggests that "animal magnetism" causes attractions between certain persons. Mesmer's name becomes the root of the English verb "mesmerize".

image Johann Christian Fabricius's Systema Entomologiae classifies insects based on the structure of mouth organs rather than wings.

image Alessandro Volta describes his electrofore perpetuo device for producing and storing a charge of static electricity. This device replaces the Leyden jar and eventually leads to modern electrical condensers.

image Grand duke Pietro Leopoldo establishes the Royal Museum of Physics and Natural History (La Specola) in Florence. Unlike many older natural history repositories, this institution will admit any visitor, at least anyone meeting the museum's standards for dress and hygiene. The museum includes a stuffed hippopotamus, that once belonged to Cosimo III, a member of the Medici who had a penchant for exotic animals. The hippo once roamed the Boboli Gardens. After its death, the hippo was inexpertly stuffed, and later displayed in Florence’s Museum of Zoology and Natural History (La Specola), where it can still be seen today.

1775

(no entry for this year)

Presidio of San Francisco forms as a Spanish fort.

Continental Congress approves enlistment of free blacks .

Delaware prohibits the importation of African slaves.

In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, members of the Continental Congress sign the Declaration of Independence.

In Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the Society of Friends, also known as the Quakers, forbids its members from holding slaves.

image Declaration of Independence published. The Declaration of Independence is the statement adopted by the Second Continental Congress meeting at the Pennsylvania State House (Independence Hall) in Philadelphia on July 4, 1776, which announced that the thirteen American colonies, then at war with the Kingdom of Great Britain, regarded themselves as thirteen newly independent sovereign states, and no longer under British rule. Instead they formed a new nation — the United States of America. John Adams was a leader in pushing for independence, which was passed on July 2 with no opposing vote cast. A committee of five had already drafted the formal declaration, to be ready when Congress voted on independence. The term "Declaration of Independence" is not used in the document itself. Although Americans generally regard themselves as having been independent since July 4, 1776, in fact true, legal independence was not achieved until the Treaty of Paris was signed in 1783 and ratified by the Congress of the Confederation on January 14, 1784.

image Adam Smith publishes The Wealth of Nations, which lays the foundation for free-market capitalism.

Abbé Jacques-François Dicquemare describes reptilian fossils in Journal de Physique but refrains from speculating about their sources.

image Pierre-Simon Laplace states that if all of the forces on all objects in any one time are known, then the future can be completely predicted.

image Washington leads the Continental Army in a crossing of the Delaware River, beginning on Christmas Day. The crossing catches the British army unaware, resulting in a victory for the rebel forces.

1776

image Painting by Joseph Wright: Vesuvius in Eruption is the subject of thirty paintings and at least one preliminary sketch by Joseph Wright of Derby, who travelled in Italy in the years 1773-1775. It appears that whilst Wright was in Italy Vesuvius was not erupting.

image The Bass Brewery was founded in 1777 by William Bass in Burton-upon-Trent, England. The main brand was Bass Pale Ale, once the highest-selling beer in the UK. By 1877, Bass had become the largest brewery in the world, with an annual output of one million barrels. Its pale ale was exported throughout the British Empire, and the company's distinctive red triangle became the UK's first registered trademark. Bass was a pioneer in international brand marketing. Very early on, Bass applied a red triangle to casks of its Pale Ale. Bottles of Bass with the Red Triangle logo have occasionally appeared in art and literature, including Édouard Manet's 1882 painting A Bar at the Folies-Bergère. In 2001, 66,500,000 litres of Bass were sold in the United States. However Bass seems to have suffered under the custodianship of InBev and later Anheuser-Busch InBev as it is undergoing heavy decline in American consumption, with 24,200,000 litres sold in the country in 2010.

San Jose, California, is founded on orders from Antonio María de Bucareli y Ursúa, Spanish Viceroy of New Spain, thus providing an answer to the not-yet-asked question, Do you know the way to San Jose?

image Continental Congress adopts the Stars and Stripes replacing the Grand Union flag. The new flag has thirteen stars and thirteen stripes, representing the thirteen original states: Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina, and Rhode Island.

Vermont amends its constitution to ban slavery. Over the next 25 years, other Northern states emancipate their slaves and ban the institution: Pennsylvania, 1780; Massachusetts and New Hampshire, 1783; Connecticut and Rhode Island, 1784; New York, 1799; and New Jersey, 1804. Some of the state laws stipulate gradual emancipation.

New York enfranchises all free propertied men regardless of color or prior servitude.

Vermont is the first of the thirteen colonies to abolish slavery and enfranchise all adult males.

image Charles-Augustin Coulomb invents the torsion balance.

1777

(no entry for this year)

The German composer Ludwig von Beethoven, age eight, is presented by his father as a music prodigy.

Rhode Island forbids the removal of slaves from the state.

Virginia prohibits the importation of slaves.

Buffon publishes Les Epoques de la Nature, asserting that the Earth is a staggering 74,832 years old, and has existed long before the arrival of humans or any other form of life.

1778

image Painting by John Singleton Copley: Watson and the Shark about a shark attack on a swimmer, Brook Watson, that occurred in Havana, Cuba in 1749. Copley had never visited Havana, and it is likely that he had never seen a shark, much less a shark attack. It is probable that he gleaned details of Havana harbor from prints and book illustrations: he includes the real landmark of Morro Castle in the background of the painting. The shark is less convincing; it includes details not found in sharks, such as forward-facing eyes and lips.

image Jan Ingenhousz discovers two distinct respiratory cycles in plants: at night oxygen is absorbed and carbon dioxide is exhaled; during the day carbon dioxide is absorbed and oxygen is exhaled. The exact nature of the exhaled gases becomes clear with the later discoveries by Lavoisier.

Jan Ingenhousz discovers photosynthesis: In Experiments on Vegetables Ingenhousz shows that sunlight is essential for the production of oxygen by leaves.

The first school of the arts is established in the New World, in Mexico City.

image Capt. James Cook dies during a skirmish in Hawaii.

The peculiar inheritance of human color-blindness reported to The Royal Society of London by Michael Lort.

image Lazzaro Spallanzani studies the role of semen in fertilization and learns that the sperm must make physical contact with the egg for fertilization to take place.

1779

(no entry for this year)

Massachusetts abolishes slavery and grants African-American men the right to vote.

A freedom clause in the Massachusetts constitution is interpreted as an abolishment of slavery. Massachusetts enfranchises all men regardless of race.

Delaware makes it illegal to enslave imported Africans.

Pennsylvania begins gradual emancipation.

Great Hurricane of 1780 — the deadliest Atlantic hurricane on record — kills 20,000 to 30,000 in Caribbean.

image William Herschel discovers first binary star, Xi Ursae Majoris.

Abraham Gottlob Werner asserts that all rocks have been deposited by a primordial ocean. This "Neptunian" view is accepted with little question.

1780

(no entry for this year)

image Mozart's opera "Idomeneo" premieres in Munich.

Los Angeles, California, is founded by 54 settlers, including 26 of African ancestry.

image Immanuel Kant publishes Critique of Pure Reason, a fundamental work of modern philosophy.

image Pierre François André Méchain discovers M80 (globular cluster in Scorpio).

image Coloumb's Théorie des machiones simple (Theory of simple machines) is a study of friction.

Johan Carl Wilcke introduces the concept of SPECIFIC HEAT.

1781

image Painting by Henry Fuseli: The Nightmare shows a woman in deep sleep with her arms thrown below her, and with a demonic and apelike incubus crouched on her chest. The painting's dream like and haunting erotic evocation of infatuation and obsession was a huge popular success. After its first exhibition, at the 1782 Royal Academy of London, critics and patrons reacted with horrified fascination and the work became widely popular, to the extent that it was parodied in political satire, and an engraved version was widely distributed. In response, Fuseli produced at least three other versions.

Britain signs agreement recognizing U.S. independence.

Congress approves Great Seal of U.S. and the eagle as its symbol.

1782

(no entry for this year)

American Revolution Ends Britain and the infant United States sign the Peace of Paris treaty.

image Joseph and Jacques Montgolfier make first public balloon flight.

Earthquakes ravage Calabria in Italy, killing 30,000.

The amateur British astronomer John Michell proposes the theoretical idea of an object massive enough that its gravity would prevent even light from escaping (which has since become known as a black hole). He realizes that such an object would not be directly visible, but could be identified by the motions of a companion star if it was part of a binary system. A similar idea was independently proposed by the Frenchman Pierre-Simon Laplace in 1795.

image Horace-Bénédict de Saussure's Essais sur l'hygromé (Essay on measuring humidity) describes how to construct a hygrometer from human hair that can measure relative humidity.

1783

(no entry for this year)

John Jay becomes first U.S. Secretary of State.

Russian trappers established a colony on Kodiak Island, Alaska.

Congress narrowly defeats Thomas Jefferson’s proposal to ban slavery in new territories after 1800.

Treaty of Paris ratified, officially ending the American Revolutionary War

Congress of the Confederation ratifies the Treaty of Paris on January 14, 1784, formally ending the Revolutionary War.

John Wesley charters Methodist Church.

Historian and naturalist Cosimo Alessandro Collini publishes a description of the first known pterosaur.

George Atwood accurately determines the acceleration of a free-falling body.

Charles Willson Peale establishes a natural history museum in Philadelphia, one of the first successful American museums.

1784

image Painting by Jacques-Louis David: Oath of the Horatii (French: Le Serment des Horaces), is now on display in the Louvre in Paris. The painting immediately became a huge success with critics and the public, and remains one of the best known paintings in the Neoclassical style. It depicts a scene from a Roman legend about a dispute between two warring cities, Rome and Alba Longa. Instead of the two cities sending their armies to war, they agree to choose three men from each city; the victor in that fight will be the victorious city. From Rome, three brothers from a Roman family, the Horatii, agree to end the war by fighting three brothers from a family of Alba Longa, the Curiatii. The three brothers, all of whom appear willing to sacrifice their lives for the good of Rome, are shown saluting their father who holds their swords out for them. Aside from the three brothers depicted, David also represents, in the bottom right corner, a woman crying whilst sitting down. She is Camilla, a sister of the Horatii brothers, who is also betrothed to one of the Curiatii fighters, and thus she weeps in the realisation that, in any case, she will lose someone she loves. The painting is considered a paragon of neoclassical art.

New York frees all slaves who served in the Revolutionary Army.

First balloon flight across English Channel (Jean-Pierre Blanchard and John Jeffries).

image French balloonists Jean-François Pilatre de Rozier and Jules Romain are killed when their Royal Balloon crashes near Boulogne, France, June 15, 1785, in what is considered the first aerial disaster.

Napoleon Bonaparte (16) graduates from the military academy in Paris (42nd in a class of 51).

image Lazzaro Spallanzani performs artificial insemination on a dog.

image In his Theory of the Earth, James Hutton explains the principle of uniformitarianism: all geological features can be explained by changes that can be observed now, taking place over very long periods of time.

image Couloumb makes precise measurements of the forces of attraction and repulsion between charged bodies and between magnetic poles, using a torsion balance, demonstrating conclusively that electric charge and magnetism obey inverse-square laws like that of gravity. He also discovers that electrically charged bodies discharge spontaneously. In the 20th century, it is found that cosmic radiation is responsible for this discharge.

1785

(no entry for this year)

image Mozart's opera, The Marriage of Figaro, premieres in Vienna.

image Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, dies.

1786

(no entry for this year)

image Twining's Tea creates a logo that is still in use today, making it the world's oldest, continuous use logo. The founder of Twinings was Thomas Twining from Painswick, Gloucestershire in England. He opened Britain's first known tea room at No. 216 Strand, London, in 1706; it still operates today.

image Federalist Papers published, calls for ratification of Constitution. The Federalist (later known as The Federalist Papers) is a collection of 85 articles and essays written (under the pseudonym Publius) by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay promoting the ratification of the United States Constitution. Seventy-seven were published serially in the Independent Journal and the New York Packet between October 1787 and August 1788. A compilation of these and eight others, called The Federalist: A Collection of Essays, Written in Favour of the New Constitution, as Agreed upon by the Federal Convention, September 17, 1787, was published in two volumes in 1788 by J. and A. McLean. The collection's original title was The Federalist; the title The Federalist Papers did not emerge until the 20th century. This book should be carefully read by anyone with an interest in American democracy.

Constitutional convention opens at Philadelphia, George Washington presiding.

The Northwest Ordinance bans slavery in the Northwest Territory (what becomes the states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Wisconsin). The ordinance together with state emancipation laws create a free North.

Austrian emperor Jozef II bans children under 8 from labor.

image Herschel discovers Enceladus, a moon of Saturn, and Titania and Oberon, moons of Uranus.

image Jacques-Alexandre Charles shows that different gases expand by the same amount for a given rise in temperature (Charles Law).

Thomas Jefferson publishes Notes on the State of Virginia refuting Buffon's claim that America's harsh, moist climate stunts the growth of its inhabitants. He also addresses the issue of race, describing Native Americans favorably, but African slaves unfavorably.

1787

(no entry for this year)

Maryland votes (December 23) to cede a ten-square-mile area for District of Columbia.

New York City becomes first capital of US.

The Massachusetts General Court (legislature), following an incident in which free blacks were kidnapped and transported to the island of Martinique, declares the slave trade illegal and provides monetary damages to victims of kidnappings.

Captain Arthur Phillip forms English colony at Sydney, Botany Bay, New South Wales, Australia.

image Kant publishes Critique of Practical Reason.

Juan-Bautista Bru mounts the first relatively accurate fossil reconstruction of an extinct animal from South America. Georges Cuvier classifies it as a giant sloth.

1788

image Painting by Francisco de Goya: Manuel Osorio Manrique de Zúñiga, also known as Goya's Red Boy. Vicente Joaquin Osorio de Moscoso y Guzmán Fernández de Córdoba (1756–1816), Count of Altamira, had hired Goya for several family portraits. Altamira held many titles and was also a director of the Banco de San Carlos. In 1786, after painting several portraits of the court, Goya was nominated painter to Charles III. This painting, from 1787–88, is of his youngest son, Manuel, who was born in April 1784 and died at age eight on June 12, 1792.

US Congress passes Federal Judiciary Act, creating a six-person Supreme Court.

Bourbon Whiskey is first created by Elijah Craig in Bourbon, Kentucky.

image George Washington becomes the first president of the United States.

image Fletcher Christian leads Mutiny on HMS Bounty and Captain William Bligh. Mutineers from the Bounty settle on Pitcairn Island.

image Former slave Olaudah Equiano publishes his memoirs, and he travels in Britain lecturing against slavery.

The fall of the Bastille marks the beginning of the French Revolution.

image Gilbert White's The Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne, a series of notes about animal and plant life in Selborne, England, is the first recognizable work of ecology. It goes through about 300 different editions and is still in print today.

image Johann Wolfgang Goethe's Versuch, die Metamorphose der Pflanzen zu erklären (Attempt to explain the metamorphosis of plants) claims incorrectly that all plant structures are modified leaves, but clearly espouses evolution.

French polymath Antoine Lavoisier publishes a paper on French geology defining peacefully deposited pelagic sediments and violently deposited littoral sediments. He argues that these sediments illustrate a fluctuating sea level on an ancient planet.

The French chemist Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier definitively states the Law of Conservation of Mass (although others had previously expressed similar ideas, including the ancient Greek Epicurus, the medieval Persian Nasir al-Din al-Tusi and the 18th Century scientists Mikhail Lomonosov, Joseph Black, Henry Cavendish and Jean Rey), and identifies (albeit slightly incorrectly) 23 elements which he claims can not be broken down into simpler substances.

1789

(no entry for this year)

First U.S. census is conducted, showing a population of 3,939,214.

Society of Friends petitions Congress for abolition of slavery.

The first ten amendments to the US Constitution — The Bill of Rights — are ratified.

Washington, D.C., founded as the capitol of the United States.

German poet Johann Wolfgang von Goethe writes The Morphology of Plants stating that all plant organs, flowers included, began as leaves — an assertion that will enjoy some support from 21st-century genetic research.

1790

(no entry for this year)

Vermont admitted as 14th state (first addition to the original thirteen colonies).

Charles Babbage is Born

John Stone, Concord, Massachusetts, patents a pile driver.

image New York City traffic regulation creates first one-way street.

image Luigi Galvani announces that electricity applied to severed frog's legs causes them to twitch and that frogs legs twitch in the presence of two different metals with no electric current present. The latter discovery eventually leads to Alessandro Volta's developing the electric battery.

image Pierre Prévost develops his theory of exchanges of radiation of heat. He correctly shows that cold is merely the absence of heat and that all bodies continually radiate heat. If they seem not to radiate heat, it means that they are in heat equilibrium with their environment.

1791

image Painting by Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun: Lady Hamilton as a Bacchante Emma, Lady Hamilton, model and actress, is best remembered as the mistress of Lord Nelson and as the muse of George Romney. She was born Amy Lyon in Ness near Neston, Cheshire, England, the daughter of Henry Lyon, a blacksmith who died when she was two months old. She was raised by her mother, the former Mary Kidd, at Hawarden, and received no formal education. She later changed her name to Emma Hart.

"La Marseillaise" composed by Claude-Joseph Rouget de Lisle.

U.S. authorizes $10 Eagle, $5 half-Eagle and 2.50 quarter-Eagle gold coins and silver dollar, dollar, quarter, dime and half-dime. (In today's dollars, the $10 coin would be worth $231.00 and the half-dime would be worth $1.16.)

U.S. postal service created; postage 6-12 cents, depending on distance. (In today's dollars, that would be somewhere between $1.40 and $3.00.)

Guillotine first used (to execute highwayman Nicolas J. Pelletier).

Captain George Vancouver claims Puget Sound for Britain.

France declares war on Austria, starting French Revolutionary Wars.

image The dollar is approved as the currency of the United States. The first dollar coin is minted in 1794.

The French Republic is proclaimed.

Twenty-four merchants form New York Stock Exchange at 70 Wall Street.

1792

(no entry for this year)

image Louvre opens in Paris.

To enforce Article IV, Section 2, the U.S. Congress enacts the Fugitive Slave Law. It allows slaveowners to cross state lines to recapture their slaves. They must then prove ownership in a court of law. In reaction, some Northern states pass personal liberty laws, granting the alleged fugitive slaves the rights to habeas corpus, jury trials, and testimony on their own behalf. These Northern state legislatures also pass anti-kidnapping laws to punish slave-catchers who kidnap free blacks, instead of fugitive slaves.

France becomes first country to use the metric system.

image Eli Whitney invents the cotton gin (cotton enGINe), a machine that quickly and easily separates cotton fibers from their seeds, allowing for much greater productivity than manual cotton separation. By reducing the labor of removing seeds, the cotton gin made cotton growing more profitable, thereby raising demand for slave labor. The first federal census of 1790 counted 697,897 slaves; by 1810, there were 1.2 million slaves, a 70 percent increase. Slavery spread from the seaboard to some of the new western territories and states as new cotton fields were planted, and by 1830 it thrived in more than half the continent. Within 10 years after the cotton gin was put into use, the value of the total United States crop leaped from $150,000 to more than $8 million.

image King Louis XVI of France is executed.

Reverend James Douglas publishes Nenia Britannica; or, A Sepulchral History of Great Britain providing perhaps the first record of a fossil (sea urchin) at an archaeological site.

1793

image Painting by Jacques-Louis David: The Death of Marat (French: La Mort de Marat or Marat Assassiné) is one of the most famous images of the French Revolution. David was the leading French painter, as well as a Montagnard and a member of the revolutionary Committee of General Security. The painting shows the radical journalist lying dead in his bath on 13 July 1793 after his murder by Charlotte Corday. Painted in the months after Marat's murder, it has been described by T. J. Clark as the first modernist painting, for "the way it took the stuff of politics as its material, and did not transmute it".

Slavery abolished in the French colonies.

John Frere describes and illustrates handaxes from Hoxne that will turn out to be some 400,000 years old.

image Erasmus Darwin (Charles' grandfather) publishes Zoonomia, or the Laws of Organic Life.

James Hutton publishes An Investigation of the Principles of Knowledge. Buried in the 2,138-page philosophical tome is a chapter about variety in nature in which Hutton anticipates Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection.

image John Dalton's Extraordinary facts relating to the vision of colors gives an early account of red-green color blindness, which he refers to as Daltonism, since he is afflicted with the condition.

image Zoonomia, or the Laws of Organic Life by Erasmus Darwin (grandfather of Charles Darwin) contains his ideas about evolution, which are Lamarckian in that they assume the environment has a direct influence on organisms, causing permanent changes in the germ line.

image Alessandro Volta demonstrates that the electric force observed by Galvani is not connected with living creatures, but can be obtained whenever two different metals are placed in a conducting fluid.

1794

(no entry for this year)

Beethoven (24) debuts as pianist in Vienna.

image The US flag is modified to have fifteen stars and fifteen stripes, reflecting the addition of two new states: Vermont and Kentucky. This is the only US flag to have other than thirteen stripes.

image James Hutton's Theory of the Earth published, interpreting certain geological strata as former sea beds. Hutton proposes geological theory of gradualism.

Johann Friedrich Blumenbach publishes De generis humani varietate nativa liber arguing that humans comprise a single species with five varieties: Caucasian, Mongolian, Ethiopian, (American) Indian and Malayan.

James Hutton overturns the "Neptunian" view of rock formation in his Theory of the Earth, suggesting instead that forces of rock creation are balanced by forces of rock destruction.

1795

(no entry for this year)

George Washington declines a third term as President, gives his Farewell Address.

1796

(no entry for this year)

Napoleon invades Egypt and defeats the Egyptians at the Battle of the Pyramids.

image Publication of Thomas Malthus' Essay on the Principle of Population, a work that Darwin asserted helped him frame the principle of evolution by natural selection.

Henry Cavendish determines the mass of Earth by measuring the gravity between two small masses and two large masses. This gives the gravitational constant G, which was the only unknown in Newton's equations. Solving for G enables Cavendish to establish that Earth is about 5.5 times as dense as water.

image Enquiry concerning the source of heat which is excited by friction by Count Rumford (Benjamin Thompson) describes his experiments with boring cannons that show that the caloric theory of heat cannot be true, and that heat should be considered a kind of motion.

1798

(no entry for this year)

image The Rosetta Stone is discovered in Egypt. The stone is a fragment of an Egyptian stele with the same inscription in three texts: ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, Egyptian demotic script, and Greek. This side-by-side translation allows historians to translate ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs for the first time.

image Napoleon Bonaparte becomes First Consul and seizes power in France.

image The first mammoth fossil fully documented by modern science is discovered near the delta of the Lena River in 1799 by Ossip Schumachov, a Siberian hunter. Schumachov allows it to thaw (a process taking several years) until he can retrieve the tusks for sale to the ivory trade in Yakutsk. He then abandons the specimen, allowing it to decay before its recovery. In 1806, Russian botanist Mikhail Adams rescues what remained of the specimen and brought it to the Zoological Museum of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences in St. Petersburg. The specimen, which became known as the Adams Mammoth, is stuffed and mounted, and continues to be on display at the Zoological Institute.

Charles White publishes An Account of the Regular Gradation in Man, and in Different Animals and Vegetables, a treatise on the great chain of being, showing people of color at the bottom of the human chain.

Faujas publishes a description of the Maastricht animal, a spectacular mosasaur found in chalk quarries in the Netherlands, describing it as a crocodile.

Thomas Jefferson publishes a paper describing Megalonyx, a North American fossil ground sloth similar to the one found in South America.

George Shaw publishes a description of a platypus even though he suspects the odd animal might be a hoax.

Alexander von Humboldt names the Jurassic System, after the Jura Mountains. This time period will later be identified as the "middle period" for the dinosaurs.

William Smith maps rock formations in the vicinity of Bath, England, making perhaps the world's first geologic map. The same year, Smith, Joseph Townsend and Benjamin Richardson recognize rocks containing the Permian and Triassic, though not necessarily by those names. (These periods will later be identified as spanning the Earth's most catastrophic mass extinction.)

The British government purchases the collection of Scottish anatomist John Hunter, forming the Hunterian Museum.

1799

image Painting by Jacques-Louis David: The Intervention of the Sabine Women shows a legendary episode following the abduction of the Sabine women by the founding generation of Rome. The genesis of Les Sabines and the work itself represented a significant departure for the day. Historical depictions had been typically commissioned. David however, conceived, produced and promoted his work for profit. He produced marketing material to accompany the first exhibition. Le Tableau des Sabines, Exposé Publiquement au Palais National des Sciences et des Arts "the Tableau of the Sabines, Public Exhibition at the National Palace of Arts and Science" contained his own account of the episode and anticipated the controversy over his use of nudity with an end-note explaining his rationale. Its 1799 exhibition attracted a large number of paying visitors for several years and in 1819 he sold Les Sabines and his Léonidas at Thermopylae to the Royal Museums for 10,000 francs.

First performance of Ludwig von Beethoven's 1st Symphony in C.

image Thomas Wedgwood conceives of making permanent pictures of camera images by using a durable surface coated with a light-sensitive chemical. He succeeds only in producing silhouettes and other shadow images, and is unable to make them permanent.

image Between 1800 and 1803, naturalist Alexander von Humboldt visits Mexico and writes influential accounts of his observations.

image Karl Friedrich Burdach coins the term BIOLOGY to denote the study of human morphology, physiology and psychology.

Erasmus Darwin publishes Phytologia declaring that leaves breathe air through tiny pores, sugar and starch are the products of plant "digestion," and nitrates and phosphorus promote vegetation.

image Alessandro Volta announces his invention, made in 1799, of the electric battery, also known as the Voltaic pile. It consists of a stack of alternating zinc and silver discs separated by felt soaked in brine. It is the first source of a steady electric current.

image William Herschel's "An investigation of the powers of prismatic colors to heat and illuminate objects" tells of his discovery of infrared radiation. While investigating the power of different parts of the spectrum to heat a thermometer, he finds that invisible light beyond the red produces the most heat.

1800

image Painting by Francisco de Goya: The Nude Maja (Spanish: La Maja Desnuda) portrays a nude woman reclining on a bed of pillows, and was probably commissioned by Manuel de Godoy, to hang in his private collection in a separate cabinet reserved for nude paintings. Goya created a pendant of the same woman identically posed, but clothed, known today as La maja vestida (The Clothed Maja); also in the Prado, it is usually hung next to La maja desnuda. The subject is identified as a maja based on her costume in La maja vestida. The painting is renowned for the straightforward and unashamed gaze of the model towards the viewer. With this work Goya not only upset the ecclesiastical authorities, but also titillated the public and extended the artistic horizon of the day. It has been in the Museo del Prado in Madrid since 1901.

image Thomas Jefferson becomes the third president of the United States.

Ireland and Great Britain, England and Scotland, form United Kingdom.

image Giuseppe Piazzi discovers first asteroid, which is later named Ceres.

image Jean-Baptiste Lamarck's Système de Animaux sans Vertèbres (System for Animals without Vertebrae) includes a classification system for invertebrates and a preliminary view of his ideas of evolution.

image The English scientist Thomas Young demonstrates, in his famous double-slit experiment, the interference of light and concludes that light is a wave, not a particle as Sir Isaac Newton had ruled.

1801

(no entry for this year)

The Ohio Constitution outlaws slavery. It also prohibits free blacks from voting.

In Natural Theology, William Paley uses the analogy of a watch requiring a watchmaker to argue that the universe implies an intelligent designer.

image image Gottfried Treviranus and Jean Baptiste de Lamarck independently broaden the meaning of BIOLOGY to include the study of all living things.

image Considered the father of modern scientific education in America, Benjamin Silliman, Sr., teaches the first modern science course (chemistry at Yale) in the United States. Silliman later becomes a founder in 1818 of the American Journal of Science, one of the oldest scientific journals in the world.

image Thomas Young's On the theory of light and colors is the first of three pivotal papers describing his wave theory of light.

1802

(no entry for this year)

U.S. President Thomas Jefferson appoints Meriwether Lewis and William Clark to explore the uncharted West. Among the marvels Lewis and Clark are expected to find are erupting volcanoes, mountains of salt, unicorns, living mastodons and seven-foot-tall beavers. They will find none of these, but will find fossils.

image US buys large tract of land from France — The Louisiana Purchase.

1803

image Painting by Francisco de Goya: The Clothed Maja (Spanish: La maja vestida) is a clothed version of the earlier La maja desnuda (1797–1800) and is exhibited next to it in the same room at the Prado Museum in Madrid. It was twice in the collection of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts of San Fernando, also in Madrid, being "sequestered" by the Spanish Inquisition between 1814 and 1836, and has been in the Museo del Prado since 1901.

image image Meriwether Lewis and William Clark begin their exploration of the Louisiana territory.

Georges Cuvier suggests that fossils found in the area around Paris are "thousands of centuries" old. This casual observation pushes the age of the Earth well beyond its commonly accepted limits. Cuvier also publishes a paper explaining that the fossil animals he has studied bear no resemblance to anything still living, an unambiguous endorsement of the theory of extinction.

James Parkinson publishes the first of a three-volume work entitled Organic Remains of a Former World. In this volume, he describes fossils as the remains of Noah's Flood. In the next several years, he will recognize fossils as the remains of a world before people, and acknowledge as much in the third volume, published in 1811.

Nicolas-Théodore de Saussure's Recherches chimiques sur la végétation "Chemical researches on vegetation" shows that plants require carbon dioxide from the air and nitrogen from the soil. Earlier researchers had assumed the plants got carbon from the soil instead of from the air.

John Leslie's An experimental inquiry into the nature and propagation of heat establishes that the transmission of heat through radiation has the same properties as the propagation of light.

1804

(no entry for this year)

image Britain's Lord Nelson defeats the Franco-Spanish fleet at the Battle of Trafalgar. Lord Nelson is killed, but his victory ends Napoleons power at sea and makes a French invasion of Britain impossible.

image The field of comparative anatomy begins, with the publications of Baron Georges Cuvier's Lesson in Comparative Anatomy

image Pierre-Simon Laplace measures molecular forces in liquids and announces his theory of capillary forces.

The English chemist John Dalton develops his atomic theory, proposing that each chemical element is composed of atoms of a single unique type, and that, though they are both immutable and indestructible, they can combine to form more complex structures.

1805

(no entry for this year)

(no entry for this year)

1806

(no entry for this year)

The Slave Trade Act 1807 or the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act 1807, was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom passed on 25 March 1807, with the title of "An Act for the Abolition of the Slave Trade". The original act is in the Parliamentary Archives. The act abolished the slave trade in the British Empire, in particular the Atlantic slave trade, and also encouraged British action to press other European states to abolish their slave trades, but it did not abolish slavery itself.

image Robert Fulton develops the first practical steamboat, the Clermont, which sails from New York City to Albany and back.

image Thomas Young introduces the concept of, and is the first to use the word, ENERGY.

1807

(no entry for this year)

United States Bans Slave Trade Importing African slaves is outlawed, but smuggling continues.

The US prohibits the importation of new slaves from Africa (but the holding of existing slaves and their descendents remains legal).

image Étienne-Louis Malus discovers that reflected light is polarized and introduces the term POLARIZATION.

1808

(no entry for this year)

image 12 Feb 1809

Abraham Lincoln is born

image 12 Feb 1809

Charles Darwin is born

image James Madison becomes the fourth president of the United States.

image Jean Baptiste de Lamarck's theory of evolution presented with the publication of his Philosophie Zoologique, which emphasized the fundamental unity of life and the capacity of species to vary.

1809

(no entry for this year)

Mary Anning's brother Joseph discovers the world's first recognized fossil ichthyosaur. Mary Anning will collect the fossil the next year.

1810

(no entry for this year)

"Luddites" destroy industrial machines in North England, in protest over too rapid modernization.

Georges Cuvier identifies the "biblical flood" victim, described by Johann Jakob Scheuchzer in 1731, as a giant salamander.

1811

(no entry for this year)

Between 1812 and 1815, the United States and Great Britain fight the War of 1812.

Napoleon invades Russia; he captures Moscow, but unable to spend the winter there when the city catches fire, he marches his army back to France, experiencing tremendous losses along the way.

US declares war on Britain — War of 1812 begins.

Georges Cuvier correctly identifies pterosaurs as flying reptiles. His conclusions will be largely ignored for many years.

image William Hyde Wollaston invents the camera lucida, a device for projecting an image onto a flat surface, such as drawing paper, on which the object can then be traced.

1812

(no entry for this year)

image Swiss-French botanist Augustin Pyramus de Candolle introduces the word TAXONOMY in his lifelong project of a 21-volume plant encyclopedia. Seven volumes are published during his lifetime, the remainder after his death.

1813

(no entry for this year)

image The British army burns down the White House in Washington DC.

The defeat of the Creeks by Andrew Jackson begins the forced departure of Indian peoples from the South.

1814

image Painting by Francisco de Goya: The Third of May 1808 (also known as El tres de mayo de 1808 en Madrid or Los fusilamientos de la montaña del Príncipe Pío, or Los fusilamientos del tres de mayo) is now in the Museo del Prado, Madrid. In the work, Goya sought to commemorate Spanish resistance to Napoleon's armies during the occupation of 1808 in the Peninsular War. Along with its companion piece of the same size, The Second of May 1808 (or The Charge of the Mamelukes), it was commissioned by the provisional government of Spain at Goya's suggestion. The painting's content, presentation, and emotional force secure its status as a groundbreaking, archetypal image of the horrors of war. Although it draws on many sources from both high and popular art, The Third of May 1808 marks a clear break from convention. Diverging from the traditions of Christian art and traditional depictions of war, it has no distinct precedent, and is acknowledged as one of the first paintings of the modern era. According to the art historian Kenneth Clark, The Third of May 1808 is "the first great picture which can be called revolutionary in every sense of the word, in style, in subject, and in intention".

image Painting by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres: Grande Odalisque, also known as Une Odalisque or La Grande Odalisque depicts an odalisque, or concubine. Ingres' contemporaries considered the work to signify Ingres' break from Neoclassicism, indicating a shift toward exotic Romanticism. Grande Odalisque attracted wide criticism when it was first shown. It has been especially noted for the elongated proportions and lack of anatomical realism. The work is displayed in the Louvre, Paris. The painting was commissioned by Napoleon's sister, Queen Caroline Murat of Naples, and finished in 1814. Ingres drew upon works such as Dresden Venus by Giorgione, and Titian's Venus of Urbino as inspiration for his reclining nude figure, though the actual pose of a reclining figure looking back over her shoulder is directly drawn from the 1809 Portrait of Madame Récamier by Jacques-Louis David. Madame Récamier painted by Jacques-Louis David (1800). Ingres portrays a concubine in languid pose as seen from behind with distorted proportions. The small head, elongated limbs, and cool color scheme all reveal influences from Mannerists such as Parmigianino, whose Madonna with the Long Neck was also famous for anatomical distortion. This eclectic mix of styles, combining classical form with Romantic themes, prompted harsh criticism when it was first shown in 1814. Critics viewed Ingres as a rebel against the contemporary style of form and content

image Three thousand troops of the United States Army, led by General Andrew Jackson, defeat the British at the Battle of New Orleans. Six hundred of the US troops are African-American.

Ada, Lady Lovelace, is Born

image image An Allied army, led by Britain's Duke of Wellington, defeats Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo.

Relying largely on fossils to identify strata, civil engineer William Smith publishes a geologic map of England, Wales and part of Scotland, the largest region so far documented. Four years later, Smith will be arrested and sent to debtors' prison.

1815

(no entry for this year)

image Nicéphore Niépce succeeds in making negative photographs of camera images on paper coated with silver chloride, but cannot adequately "fix" them to stop them from darkening all over when exposed to light for viewing.

Shaka becomes ruler of the Zulu Kingdom; his disciplined and mobile army conquers many peoples of southeastern Africa.

image Augustin Fresnel demonstrates with his mirror experiment the wave nature of light. He also gives an explanation of polarization.

1816

(no entry for this year)

image James Monroe becomes the fifth president of the United States.

Russian biologist Heinz Christian Pander studies the chick embryo and discovers the germ layers (i.e., three distinct regions of the embryo that give rise to the specific organ systems). Because of these findings, he is considered by many to be the "founder of embryology".

image Georges Cuvier's Le règne animal distribué d'après son organisation (The animal kingdom, distributed according to its organization) gives an account of the whole animal kingdom, dividing it into four distinct groups.

image image Thomas Young and Augustin Fresnel demonstrated that light waves must be transverse vibrations.

1817

(no entry for this year)

image The US flag is modified to have twenty stars, reflecting the addition of five new states: Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Ohio, and Tennessee. The number of stripes is returned to thirteen (both to symbolize the original thirteen states and to avoid having the number of stripes get so large that the flag would seem pink). From this point on, the US flag will have the same overall design, with changes in the number of stars used to denote the addition of new states.

1818

image painting by Caspar David Friedrich: Wanderer above the Sea of Fog (German: Der Wanderer über dem Nebelmeer), also known as Wanderer Above the Mist or Mountaineer in a misty Landscape, currently resides in the Kunsthalle Hamburg in Hamburg, Germany. Wanderer above the Sea of Fog is true to the Romantic style and Friedrich's style in particular. Gorra's (2004) analysis was that the message conveyed by the painting is one of Kantian self-reflection, expressed through the wanderer's gazings into the murkiness of the sea of fog.

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-one stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Illinois.

The Canadian government refuses to cooperate with the American government in the apprehension of fugitive slaves living in Canada. Consequently Canada becomes the destination for 40,000 fugitive slaves from United States between 1819 in 1861.

image The SS Savannah was an American hybrid sailing ship/side-wheel steamer built in 1818. She becomes the first steamship to cross the Atlantic Ocean, a feat accomplished during May–June, 1819. The Savannah was converted back into a sailing ship after returning from Europe. She was wrecked of Long Island in 1821.

The United States purchases Florida from Spain.

A baby, who would later become Queen Victoria of England, is born carrying a new genetic mutation. Three generations later, that mutation may have changed the course of history.

1819

image Painting by Théodore Géricault: The Raft of the Medusa (French: Le Radeau de la Méduse) was completed when the artist was 27. The work has become an icon of French Romanticism. At 16' 1" × 23' 6", it is an over-life-size painting that depicts a moment from the aftermath of the wreck of the French naval frigate Méduse, which ran aground off the coast of today's Mauritania on 2 July 1816. On 5 July 1816, at least 147 people were set adrift on a hurriedly constructed raft; all but 15 died in the 13 days before their rescue, and those who survived endured starvation and dehydration and practised cannibalism. Géricault chose to depict this event in order to launch his career with a large-scale uncommissioned work on a subject that had already generated great public interest. The event fascinated him, and before he began work on the final painting, he undertook extensive research and produced many preparatory sketches. He interviewed two of the survivors and constructed a detailed scale model of the raft. He visited hospitals and morgues where he could view, first-hand, the colour and texture of the flesh of the dying and dead. As he had anticipated, the painting proved highly controversial at its first appearance in the 1819 Paris Salon, attracting passionate praise and condemnation in equal measure. However, it established his international reputation, and today is widely seen as seminal in the early history of the Romantic movement in French painting.

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-three stars, reflecting the addition of two new states: Alabama and Maine.

Debate over slavery in the US heats up; The Missouri Compromise admits Maine into the Union as a free state, with Missouri to enter the next year as a slave state. Slavery is banned north of the 36° 30' line of latitude in the Louisiana Territory.

Missouri Compromise Missouri is admitted to the Union as a slave state, Maine as a free state. Slavery is forbidden in any subsequent territories north of latitude .

The Arithmometer was the first commercially successful mechanical calculator patented

The first Christian missionaries arrived in the Hawaiian Islands.

image Christian Friedrich Nasse formulated Nasse's law: hemophilia occurs only in males and is passed on by unaffected females.

Gideon Mantell discovers, in England, a fossil trunk of a tree resembling that of a tropical palm, evidence of a much warmer climate.

image André-Marie Ampère formulates one of the basic laws of electromagnetism, the right-hand rule for the influence of an electric current on the magnet and demonstrates that two wires that are carrying an electric current will attract or repel each other, depending on whether the occurrence are in opposite where the same directions.

image Dominique-François Arago discovers the magnetic effect of electricity passing through a copper wire, demonstrating that iron is not necessary for magnetism.

image Augustin-Jean Fresnel invents the so-called Fresnel lens, a lens used in lighthouses.

image The science of electrodynamics is born with the announcement of Hans Christian Ørsted's discovery of electromagnetism.

1820

(no entry for this year)

image Michael Faraday invents the electric motor and generator.

1821

image Painting by John Constable: The Hay Wain depicts a rural scene on the River Stour between the English counties of Suffolk and Essex. It hangs in the National Gallery in London and is regarded as "Constable's most famous image" and one of the greatest and most popular English paintings. Painted in oils on canvas, the work depicts as its central feature three horses pulling what in fact appears to be a wood wain or large farm cart across the river. Willy Lott's Cottage, also the subject of an eponymous painting by Constable, is visible on the far left. The scene takes place near Flatford Mill in Suffolk, though since the Stour forms the border of two counties, the left bank is in Suffolk and the landscape on the right bank is in Essex.

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-four stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Missouri.

Slave Revolt: South Carolina Freed slave Denmark Vesey attempts a rebellion in Charleston. Thirty-five participants in the ill-fated uprising are hanged.

Charles Babbage takes first steps in the construction of machines that would compute numbers

image Nicéphore Niépce abandons silver halide photography as hopelessly impermanent and tries using thin coatings of Bitumen of Judea on metal and glass. He creates the first fixed, permanent photograph, a copy of an engraving of Pope Pius VII, by contact printing in direct sunlight without a camera or lens. It is later destroyed; the earliest surviving example of his "heliographic process" is from 1825.

Etienne Geoffroy publishes Anatomical Philosophy discussing similarities between skeletal structures — such as bat wings, paws and hands — that support the evolutionary claims of Lamarck. He also argues that arthropods and vertebrates have similar but inverse body plans, an assertion that will ultimately be widely accepted.

image Between 1822-1824, Thomas Andrew Knight, John Goss, and Alexander Seton all independently perform crosses with the pea and observe dominance in the immediate progeny, and segregation of various hereditary characters in the next generation. However, they do not study later generations or determine the numerical ratios in which the characters are transmitted.

William Buckland publishes an account of how ancient hyenas lived and fed in Kirkdale Cave, based on their fossil remains. This is one of the first descriptions of living habits based on fossil evidence.

Omalius d'Halloy names the Cretaceous System, after massive chalk deposits. This time period will later be identified with the last dinosaurs and the first flowering plants.

William Conybeare and William Phillips name the Carboniferous System, a period associated with coal deposits. This time period will also become known as the Mississippian and Pennsylvanian Periods in the United States.

1822

(no entry for this year)

Slavery is abolished in Chile.

image Physicist Michael Faraday (1791-1867) describes the liquification of chlorine in On fluid chlorine. Faraday finds that gasses of certain kinds, when kept under constant pressure, will condense until they cool. This latter discovery ushers in the beginning of mechanical methods of refrigeration.

Small-scale drilling for oil begins at Baku, a Russian port city on the west coast of the Caspian Sea, now the capital of Azerbaijan. The drilling marks the beginning of the modern petroleum industry, and by 1900 nearly half the world's oil will come from the Baku oil fields.

image Thomas Andrew Knight confirms reports of dominance, recessivity, and segregation in peas, but does not detect regularities.

William Buckland finds a skeleton covered in ocher. Called the Red Lady, it will later be identified as Cro-Magnon (and male).

1823

(no entry for this year)

Mexico outlaws slavery. This decision creates the incentive for Anglo Texans to fight for independence in 1835-1836.

image Nicéphore Niépce makes the first durable, light-fast camera photograph, similar to his surviving 1826-1827 photograph on pewter but created on the surface of a lithographic stone. It is destroyed in the course of subsequent experiments.

Mexico becomes a republic, three years after declaring independence from Spain.

William Buckland publishes Notice on the Megalosaurus ("giant lizard"), the first dinosaur fossil to be described and named, although the term "dinosaur" doesn't yet exist. Buckland also announces the discovery of the first fossil mammal from the Mesozoic.

image Réflexions sur la puissance motrice du feu (On the motive power of fire) by Nicolas Léonard Sadi Carnot shows that work is done as heat passes from a high temperature to a low temperature; defines work; hints at the second law of thermodynamics; and suggests internal combustion engines.

1824

(no entry for this year)

image The Diary of Samuel Pepys is published in Britain. Pepys (1633-1703) had been a secretary of the Admiralty, a member of Parliament, and President of the Royal Society, and his Diary presents an important and entertaining picture of London during the Restoration period.

The Erie Canal (from Albany to Buffalo, New York) opens on October 26, connecting the Midwestern U.S. with the Atlantic Ocean, via the Great Lakes, and stimulating the development of Fort Dearborn (know today as Chicago), Cleveland and Columbus Ohio, and upstate New York cities like Rochester, Syracuse and Little Falls.

The first passenger steam railway opens, between Stockton and Darlington, England.

image John Quincy Adams becomes the sixth president of the United States.

Father John MacEnery starts digging in Kent's Cave in Devon. He'll eventually find human remains in the same layer as those of extinct mammals, a finding that will be dismissed by Buckland.

Gideon Mantell publishes Notice on the Iguanodon, the second description of a dinosaur and the first description of an herbivorous fossil reptile.

1825

(no entry for this year)

image The Last of the Mohicans, by James Fenimore Cooper, is published.

image Photograph by Joseph Niépce: View from the Window at Le Gras, the world's first permanent photograph.

image The first photographic images produced by Joseph-Nicéphore Niépce

1826

(no entry for this year)

image Karl Ernst von Baer first demonstrated the mammalian ovum; he regarded the sperm cells as "Entozoa," i.e., parasites, and named them spermatozoa.

image Theory of systems of rays by William Rowan Hamilton is a unification of the study of optics through the principle of "varying action". It contains his correct prediction of conical refraction. When his prediction is verified, he becomes a well-known and is knighted.

image While studying the behavior of fluids under a microscope, botanist Robert Brown (1773-1858) discovers what is today called "Brownian motion".

1827

(no entry for this year)

A year after discovering the mammalian egg cell, Karl Ernst von Baer publishes Entwickelungsgeschichte der Thiere tracing the developmental history of animals.

image Publication of Karl Ernst von Baer's The Embryology of Animals which strongly opposed preformationism.

Adolphe Brongniart publishes Prodrome d'une histoire des Végétaux Fossils, a study of fossil plants. He outlines four distinct phases in plant prehistory: (1) primitive plants from the Coal Measures, (2) the first conifers, (3) domination by cycads and conifers, and (4) flowering plants.

Mary Anning discovers Britain's first recognized pterosaur fossil. (Gideon Mantell has already found pterosaur remains, but has attributed them to a bird).

image Chemist Friedrich Wöhler (1800-1882) synthesizes the organic compound urea, a feat previously thought impossible because of the vital force thought to be a part of organic substances.

1828

(no entry for this year)

image Chemist James Smithson (1765-1829) bequeaths £100,000 to found the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. The Institution will be founded in 1846.

image The first steam locomotive to operate on a U.S. railroad begins service between Carbondale and Honesdale, Pennsylvania. The engine, "The Stourbridge Lion", has been imported from the Stephenson Engine Works in London.

image Andrew Jackson becomes the seventh president of the United States.

Slavery abolished in Mexico.

Philippe-Charles Schmerling discovers a Neanderthal fossil, the partial cranium of a small child. The fossil will not be accurately identified as Neanderthal, however, for a century, though Charles Lyell will illustrate it in Antiquity of Man in 1863.

Jules Desnoyers names the Quaternary System, a time in which humans have lived.

image Gustave-Gaspard Coriolis coins the term KINETIC ENERGY in On the calculation of mechanical action.

image Joseph Henry shows that passing an electric current through a wire wrapped into coils produces a greater magnetic field than is produced when that same current is passed through a straight wire, and that an insulated wire wrapped around an iron core can produce a powerful electromagnet.

1829

(no entry for this year)

image On April 6, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is founded by Joseph Smith Jr. (1805-1844), in Fayette, New York. In Palmyra, New York, The Book of Mormon is published for the first time; Smith has translated it, he says, from golden tablets he found buried near Palmyra.

The first wagon trains to cross the Rocky Mountains arrived in California.

The U.S. Congress passes the Indian Removal Act.

The world's population tops 1,000,000,000 (it had been roughly 750 million only 50 years earlier).

image Charles Lyell's multi-volume Principles of Geology appear (between 1830 amd 1833), advancing the theory of uniformitarianism, i.e., the view that geological formations are explainable in terms of forces and conditions observable at present.

Georg Goldfuss announces that he sees "hairs" on a pterosaur fossil. This outlandish assertion will be supported by later finds.

image The first edition of Birds of America, by the painter and ornithologist John James Audubon (1785-1851), appears.

1830

image Painting by Eugène Delacroix: Liberty Leading the People (French: La Liberté guidant le peuple) commemorates the July Revolution of 1830, which toppled King Charles X of France. A woman personifying the concept and the Goddess of Liberty leads the people forward over a barricade and the bodies of the fallen, holding the flag of the French Revolution — the tricolour flag, which remains France's national flag — in one hand and brandishing a bayonetted musket with the other. The figure of Liberty is also viewed as a symbol of France and the French Republic known as Marianne. By the time Delacroix painted Liberty Leading the People, he was already the acknowledged leader of the Romantic school in French painting.

Nat Turner leads a slave rebellion in Southampton, Virginia, killing at least 57 whites. Hundreds of black slaves are killed in retaliation.

Alabama makes it illegal for enslaved or free blacks to preach.

image In Boston, William Lloyd Garrison founds the abolitionist newspaper, The Liberator, signaling a dramatic shift in the antislavery movement. In the previous decades, it had centered in the South and favored a combination of compensated emancipation and colonization of freed slaves back to Africa. In the 1830s, the abolitionist movement becomes the dominant voice among antislavery advocates. Abolitionists demand the immediate end to slavery, which they consider to be a moral evil, without compensation to slaveowners.

Nat Turner, a literate slave who believes he is chosen to be the Moses of his people, instigates a slave revolt in Virginia. He and his followers kill 57 whites, but the revolt is unsuccessful and up to 200 slaves are killed. After an intense debate, the Virginia legislature narrowly rejects a bill to emancipate Virginia's slaves. The widespread fear of slave revolts, compounded by the rise of abolitionism, leads legislatures across the South to increase the harshness of their slave codes. Also, expressions of anti-slavery sentiment are suppressed throughout the South through state and private censorship.

North Carolina enacts a statute that bans teaching enslaved people to read and write.

Slave Revolt: Virginia Slave preacher Nat Turner leads a two-day uprising against whites, killing about 60. Militiamen crush the revolt then spend two months searching for Turner, who is eventually caught and hanged. Enraged Southerners impose harsher restrictions on their slaves.

image Charles Darwin joins the crew of the HMS Beagle as the ship's naturalist. The Beagle plans a two-year voyage to map the coast of South America. This turns out to be a five-year trip.

Patrick Matthew publishes On Naval Timber and Arboriculture with an appendix describing what Charles Darwin will later name natural selection. After becoming aware of Matthew's hypothesis, Darwin will acknowledge it in a reprint of On the Origin of Species.

image Robert Brown published his observations reporting the discovery and widespread occurrence of nuclei in cells.

Independently, Michael Faraday and Joseph Henry discover that electricity can be induced by changes in a magnetic field (electromagnetic induction), a discovery leading to the first electric generators.

Encouraged by Cambridge professor William Whewell, the Royal Society of London commissions reports of manuscripts received. This move will later be cited as the beginning of the peer-review process.

1831

(no entry for this year)

image In Vienna, kitchen apprentice Franz Sacher, 16, creates what comes to be known as Sachertorte, for a dinner in honor of Austria's Prince Klemens Wenzel von Metternich.

Oberlin College is founded in Ohio. It admits African-Americans. By 1860, one third of its students are black.

image In November, the New York and Harlem Railroad begins service, and heralds the start of rapid mass transit in New York City. Two horse-drawn rail cars operate every 15 minutes between 14th Street and Prince Street, along the Bowery. The fare is 25 cents.

image Electric telegraph invented by Samuel Morse.

Gideon Mantell finds the first fossil Hylaeosaurus, an ankylosaur. He will formally name it the following year, making it the third identified dinosaur species.

1832

(no entry for this year)

The American Anti-Slavery Society is established in Philadelphia.

The British Parliament abolishes slavery in the entire British Empire.

Ada Lovelace Meets Charles Babbage

Solicitor André Brouillet discovers a reindeer bone with an engraved illustration of two female deer in Chaffaud Cave. He assumes the carving was made by the Celts. Later research will show the artwork to be about 13,000 years old.

image The first volume of the five-volume Recherches sur les poissons fossiles (Researches on Fossil Fishes) by Jean-Louis-Rodolphe Agassiz is published.

image The English term SCIENTIST is coined by the philosopher William Whewell (1794-1866 ), during a meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science.

image image In correspondence, Michael Faraday and William Whewell introduce the terms ELECTRODE, ANODE, ION, CATHODE, ANION, CATION, ELECTROLYTE, and ELECTROLYSIS.

1833

(no entry for this year)

South Carolina bans the teaching of blacks, and slave or free, in its borders.

image Hércules Florence, a French-Brazilian painter and the isolate inventor of photography in Brazil, coined the word photographie for his technique, at least four years before John Herschel coined the English word photography.

image Charles Babbage invents the "analytical engine" — the forerunner of the modern computer.

Federal troops are ordered to put down a riot by workers along the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal. It is the first time federal troops have been used to settle a labor battle in the United States.

Based on a vertebrae and other fragments from Alabama, anatomist Richard Harlan identifies Basilosaurus as a fossil reptile. It will later be identified as a fossil whale.

Friedrich von Alberti names the Triassic System. This time period will later by identified with the first dinosaurs.

image Mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855) shows that the origin of the Earth's magnetic field must lie deep inside the Earth. He makes use of the measurements of the magnetic field made by the physicist Paul Erman in 1828.

1834

(no entry for this year)

Texas declares its independence from Mexico. In its constitution as an independent nation, Texas recognizes slavery and makes it difficult for free blacks to remain there.

Southern states expel abolitionists and forbid the mailing of antislavery propaganda.

image Henry Fox Talbot produces durable silver chloride camera negatives on paper and conceives the two-step negative-positive procedure used in most non-electronic photography up to the present.

image The first volume of La Dèmocracie en Amèrique (Democracy in America), by Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859), is published in France. Tocqueville, a historian and politician and member of the French aristocracy, writes about the American people and their institutions, based on his 9 months of travels through the United States and eastern Canada in 1831-1832.

image While serving as scientific officer on the HMS Beagle, Charles Darwin visits the Galapagos Islands. He observes that the many varieties of finches on the islands seem to have developed from a common ancestor found on the mainland of South America.

Adam Sedgwick names the Cambrian System, recognizing the first rich assemblage of fossils in the rock record. Roderick Murchison names the Silurian System. He believes (not entirely accurately) that the Silurian predates the fossils of land plants, and consequently any economically valuable coal seams. Murchison and Sedgwick will later develop a bitter priority dispute over these systems.

image Gustave-Gaspard Coriolis's Mémoire sur les equations du mouvement relatif des sytèms de corps (Memoir on the equations of relative movement of systems of bodies) describes the Coriolis effect: the deflection of a moving body caused by Earth's rotation. The Coriolis effect is important in the study of wind. However, the claim that the Coriolis effect determines the direction water rotates when going down a drain is a myth.

1835

image Painting by Caspar David Friedrich: The Stages of Life (German: Die Lebensstufen) is an allegorical oil painting completed just five years before his death. This picture, like many of his works, forms a meditation both on his own mortality and on the transience of life. The painting is set on a sea shore and shows in the foreground an aged man with his back turned to the viewer, walking towards two adults and two children on a hilltop overlooking a harbour. The figures are echoed by five ships shown in the harbour, each at a different distance from the shore, an allegorical reference to the different stages of human life, to the end of a journey, to the closeness of death. The figures have been identified as Friedrich and his family. The aged man is the artist himself, the small boy is his young son Gustav Adolf, the young girl is his daughter Agnes Adelheid, the older girl is his daughter Emma, and the man in the top hat is his nephew Johann Heinrich.}The Stages of Life (German: Die Lebensstufen) is an allegorical oil painting of 1835 by the German Romantic landscape painter Caspar David Friedrich. Completed just five years before his death, this picture, like many of his works, forms a meditation both on his own mortality and on the transience of life. The painting is set on a sea shore and shows in the foreground an aged man with his back turned to the viewer, walking towards two adults and two children on a hilltop overlooking a harbour. The figures are echoed by five ships shown in the harbour, each at a different distance from the shore, an allegorical reference to the different stages of human life, to the end of a journey, to the closeness of death. The figures have been identified as Friedrich and his family. The aged man is the artist himself, the small boy is his young son Gustav Adolf, the young girl is his daughter Agnes Adelheid, the older girl is his daughter Emma, and the man in the top hat is his nephew Johann Heinrich.

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-five stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Arkansas.

Alonzo D. Phillips, a shoemaker from Springfield, Massachusetts, patents the phosphorous match.

image Davy Crockett killed, as Texans are defeated by the Mexican army at the Alamo.

image In Paris, the Arc de Triomphe is completed. The arch was ordered built by Napoleon in 1806.

image Texas gains independence from Mexico after winning the battle of San Jacinto.

image image Mappa Selenographica, a map of the moon's surface, is produced by the astronomers Wilhelm Beer (1797-1850) and Johann Heinrich von Mädler (1794-1874). The two will also be the first to map Mars.

Henry Riley and Samuel Stutchbury name Thecodontosaurus, the fourth named dinosaur species.

image Elements of Botany, by the naturalist Asa Gray (1810-1888), is published. It is the first botanical textbook.

image German biologist Theodor Schwann discovers the enzyme pepsin — the first known animal enzyme. He reports the discovery in Über das Wesen der Verdauungsprozesses (On the essence of digestion).

image John Frederic Danielle invents the Daniell cell, the first reliable source of electric current, based on the interactions of copper and zinc.

1836

image Painting by : View from Mount Holyoke, Northampton, Massachusetts, after a Thunderstorm, commonly known as The Oxbow, is a seminal landscape painting by Thomas Cole, founder of the Hudson River School. The painting depicts a Romantic panorama of the Connecticut River Valley just after a thunderstorm. It has been interpreted as a confrontation between wilderness and civilization.

image Twice-told Tales, by Nathaniel Hawthorne, is published and is an immediate best-seller.

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-six stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Michigan.

Charles Babbage published a paper describing a mechanical computer that is now known as the Analytical Engine

image Samuel F. B. Morse sends his first message by electric telegraph — "What hath God wrought!" — on an experimental line between Washington DC and Baltimore, Maryland.

image Martin Van Buren becomes eighth president of the United States.

image William IV, King of Great Britain, dies.

Charles Darwin formulates the theory of natural selection to explain evolution. Fearful of the reaction his theory will cause, he delays publishing.

Hermann von Meyer names Plateosaurus, the fifth named dinosaur species.

Louis Agassiz presents the theory of the Ice Age at a meeting of the Swiss Society of Natural Sciences. The shocked audience reacts with hostility.

image Mathematician Semèon Denis Poisson (1781-1840) publishes Recherches sur la Probabilitè des Jugements. Poisson's book described what is now known as the Poisson Distribution, for the first time.

1837

image Daguerreotype by Louis Daguerre: Still life with plaster casts is the earliest, reliably dated daguerreotype.

image The Seraphim and Other Poems, by Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861), is published.

The S.S. Sirius and the S. S. Great Western are the first ships powered entirely by steam to cross the Atlantic. Both ships are designed by engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806-1859).

image Coronation of Victoria as queen of Great Britain.

image image M. J. Schleiden and T. Schwann develop the cell theory. Schleiden notes nucleoli within nuclei.

image Chemist Jöns Jakob Berzelius (1779-1848) shows that the presence of iron is what enables blood to absorb as much oxygen as it does.

image image The word PROTEIN first appears in the chemical literature in a paper by G. J. Mulder. The term, however, was invented by J. J. Berzelius.

1838

image Daguerreotype by Louis Daguerre: The earliest reliably dated photograph of people, taken one spring morning in 1838 from the window of the Diorama, where Daguerre lived and worked. It bears the caption huit heure du matin (8 a.m.). Though it shows the busy Boulevard du Temple, the long exposure time (about ten or twelve minutes) meant that moving traffic cannot be seen; however, the bootblack and his customer at lower left remained still long enough to be distinctly visible. The building signage at the upper left shows that the image is laterally (left-right) reversed, as were most daguerreotypes.

image Voices of the Night, the first book of poems by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882), is published.

image La Amistad was a 19th-century two-masted schooner, owned by a Spaniard living in Cuba. It became renowned in July 1839 for a slave revolt by Mende captives, who had been enslaved in Sierra Leone, and were being transported from Havana, Cuba to their purchasers' plantations. The African captives took control of the ship, killing some of the crew and ordering the survivors to sail the ship to Africa. The Spanish survivors secretly maneuvered the ship north, and La Amistad was captured off the coast of Long Island by the brig USS Washington. The Mende and La Amistad were interned in Connecticut while federal court proceedings were undertaken for their disposition. The owners of the ship and Spanish government claimed the slaves as property; but the US had banned the African trade and argued that the Mende were legally free. Because of issues of ownership and jurisdiction, the case gained international attention. Former president John Quincy Adams argued on behalf of the slaves when the appeal was brought before the U.S. Supreme Court, which eventually determined the Africans to be free men. The case became a symbol in the United States in the movement to abolish slavery.

image Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre perfects and presents the daguerreotype process as the first publicly available photographic process (which for nearly twenty years was also the one most commonly used). To make the image, a daguerreotypist would polish a sheet of silver-plated copper to a mirror finish, treat it with fumes that made its surface light sensitive, expose it in a camera for as long as was judged to be necessary, which could be as little as a few seconds for brightly sunlit subjects or much longer with less intense lighting; make the resulting latent image on it visible by fuming it with mercury vapor; remove its sensitivity to light by liquid chemical treatment, rinse and dry it, then seal the easily marred result behind glass in a protective enclosure.

image Henry Fox Talbot publicly introduces the paper-based process he worked out in 1835, calling it "photogenic drawing", but it requires much longer exposures than the daguerreotype and the results are not as clear and detailed.

image John Herschel introduces hyposulfite of soda (now known as sodium thiosulfate but still nicknamed "hypo") as a highly effective fixer for all silver-based processes. He also makes the first glass negative.

image Sarah Anne Bright creates a series of photograms, six of which are known to still exist. These are the earliest surviving photographic images created by a woman.

image Although a bicycle consisting of a frame and wheels has existed for years, blacksmith Kirkpatrick MacMillan (1813-1878), introduces the first bicycle in its modern form, with brakes and pedals. The bike has iron tires and weighs nearly 60 pounds.

image Inventor Erastus Brigham Bigelow (1814-1879) introduces the power loom in Massachusetts.

image The first electric clock is built by physicist Carl August Steinheil (1801-1870).

image image In response to the British opium trade, Lin Zexu wrote a letter to Queen Victoria, urging her to end the opium trade: We find that your country is sixty or seventy thousand li from China. Yet there are barbarian ships that strive to come here for trade for the purpose of making a great profit. The wealth of China is used to profit the barbarians. That is to say, the great profit made by barbarians is all taken from the rightful share of China. By what right do they then in return use the poisonous drug to injure the Chinese people? Even though the barbarians may not necessarily intend to do us harm, yet in coveting profit to an extreme, they have no regard for injuring others. Let us ask, where is your conscience? The letter to the Queen never reached her. Belatedly, it was delivered and published in The Times of London.

image Lin Zexu was a Chinese scholar-official of the Qing dynasty best known for his role in the First Opium War of 1839–42. In March 1839, Lin arrived in Guangdong Province to take measures that would eliminate the opium trade. He was a formidable bureaucrat known for his competence and high moral standards, with an imperial commission from the Daoguang Emperor to halt the illegal importation of opium by the British. Upon arrival, he made changes within a matter of months. He arrested more than 1,700 Chinese opium dealers and confiscated over 70,000 opium pipes. He initially attempted to get foreign companies to forfeit their opium stores in exchange for tea, but this ultimately failed. Lin resorted to using force in the western merchants' enclave. A month and a half later, the merchants gave up nearly 1.2 million kg (2.6 million pounds) of opium. Beginning 3 June 1839, 500 workers laboured for 23 days to destroy it, mixing the opium with lime and salt and throwing it into the sea outside of Humen Town. Lin composed an elegy apologising to the gods of the sea for polluting their realm.

The First Opium War between Britain and China occurs between 1839 and 1842, triggered when Chinese officials attempt to prevent the sale of narcotics (opium) to the Chinese people by the British East India trading Company. The British respond by bringing in gunboats and shelling Chinese coastal cities.

image The process of vulcanization, developed by Charles Goodyear, makes possible the commercial use of rubber.

image Czech scientist Jan Evangelista Purkyně (also written Johannes Evangelist Purkinje) coins the word PROTOPLASM to describe the contents of a cell.

Roderick Murchison and Adam Sedgwick name the Devonian System.

The English scientist Michael Faraday concludes from his work on electromagnetism that, contrary to scientific opinion of the time, the divisions between the various kinds of electricity are illusory. He also establishes that magnetism can affect rays of light, and that there is an underlying relationship between the two phenomena.

1839

(no entry for this year)

image Anna, the Duchess of Bedford (1788-1861), introduces the ritual of afternoon tea in Britain, although tea has been available in England since the late 1600s.

image The polka makes its U.S. debut, introduced by the ballerina Fanny Elssler (1810-1884), who had brought the dance to Paris in 1834.

image The saxophone is invented in Belgium, by the 26-year old instrument maker Antoine Joseph Sax (1814-1894).

image First American patent issued in photography to Alexander Wolcott for his camera.

image The first postage stamp, called the "Penny Black" and bearing the image of Queen Victoria, is issued in England.

image The oil-immersion microscope is invented by Giovanni Battista Amici (1786-1863), a former professor of mathematics who is now the director of the observatory at the Royal Museum in Florence, and an astronomer to the Grand Duke of Tuscany. The objective lens of this microscope is immersed in a drop of oil which sits on top of the object under study; this helps to minimize aberrations caused by the light source.

image Charles Darwin's Zoology of the Voyage of the Beagle appears.

Martin Barry expressed the belief that the spermatozoon enters the egg.

image Alexandre-Edmond Becquerel shows that light can initiate chemical reactions that produce an electric current.

1840

(no entry for this year)

image William Henry Harrison becomes ninth president of the United States; dies one month after inauguration.

The Berlin Zoo opens, when Friedrich Wilhelm IV, the King of Prussia, donates his pheasant gardens and exotic animal colection to the citizens of Berlin.

The New York State Fair is held for the first time, in Syracuse, New York. The Fair is the first in the tradition of U.S. state fairs with agricultural and domestic themes.

image Self-Reliance, by Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) [essay II in Essays: First Series] is published.

image The first novel in the series called "Leatherstocking Tales", The Deerslayer, by James Fennimore Cooper (1789-1851), is published

In London, the periodical Punch begins publication.

The U.S.S. Creole, a ship carrying slaves from Virginia to Louisiana, is seized by the slaves on board and taken to Nassau, where they are free.

image William Henry Talbot patents the Calotype process, the first negative-positive process making possible the first multiple copies.

image Henry Fox Talbot introduces his patented calotype (or "talbotype") paper negative process, an improved version of his earlier process that greatly reduces the required exposure time.

In Paris, street lights made from arc lamps are demonstrated.

image John Tyler becomes tenth president of the United States.

image The first centralized government bureau of statistics is founded in Belgium by the mathematician Lambert Adolphe Jacques Quetelet (1781-1840).

Roderick Murchison names the Permian System.

William Smith's nephew John Phillips formally proposes the geologic eras Paleozoic, Mesozoic and Cainozoic (Cenozoic).

image Charles Thomas Jackson (1805-1880) discovers the anesthetic properties of ether.

1841

(no entry for this year)

image In May, Edgar Allan Poe's (1809-1849) story "The Masque of the Red Death" appears in Graham's Magazine.

image Frederick Douglass leads a successful campaign against Rhode Island's proposed Dorr Constitution, which would have continued the prohibition on black male voting rights.

In Prigg v. Pennsylvania, the U.S. Supreme Court upholds the Fugitive Slave Law of 1793, stating that slaveowners have a right to retrievetheir "property." In so doing, the court rules that Pennsylvania's anti-kidnapping law is unconstitutional. At the same time, the Supreme Court declares that enforcement of the Fugitive Slave Lawis a federal responsibility in which states are not compelled to participate. Between 1842 and 1850, nine Northern states pass new personal liberty laws which forbid state officials from cooperating in the return of alleged fugitive slaves and bar the use of state facilities for that purpose.

Slavery is abolished in Uruguay.

The Virginia Legislature votes against abolishing slavery.

In Commonwealth v. Hunt, a case involving the Boston Journeyman Bootmakers Society, the Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Court ruled that trade unions are legal. The ruling revises the common law that treated such unions as criminal conspiracies.

The Massachusetts State Legislature enacts a child labor law that limits the working hours of children under 12 years-old to 10 hours per day.

P. T. Barnum lures crowds of thousands to see his "Feejee Mermaid."

image Charles Darwin's book The Structure and Distribution of Coral Reefs being the first part of the geology of the voyage of the Beagle, is published. During the year Darwin composes an abstract of his theory of species evolution.

image Carl Wilhelm von Nägeli (1817-1891) publishes Zur Entwicklungsgeschichte des Pollens. His paper describes cell division in plants with remarkable accuracy, and discusses seed formation in flowering plants.

Richard Owen names Cetiosaurus, the sixth named dinosaur species.

image Die Thierchemie, by chemist Baron Justus von Liebig (1803-1873), is published, and the science of biochemistry begins.

image The term DINOSAUR is coined by Richard Owen (1804-1892) to describe a class of animals that we now believe were dominant on the Earth for approximately 175 million years.

Based on Agassiz's Ice Age theory, self-taught science enthusiast Charles MacLaren publishes a newspaper article explaining that substantial ice sheets in the northern hemisphere would have lowered global sea level.

image German physician and physicist Julius Robert Mayer is the first to state the law of conservation of energy, noting specifically that heat and mechanical energy are two aspects of the same thing.

image On the uniform motion of heat in homogeneous solid bodies, by William Thomson, aka Lord Kelvin (1824-1907), is published. Thomson's concern with the physics of cooling bodies will draw him into debates concerning the age of the Earth. In 1846 he calculates that the Earth can be no more than 100 million years old.

image The change in the observed frequency of waves emitted from a source, moving relative to the observer, is described by Christian Johann Doppler (1803-1853). This phenomenon is now known as the Doppler Effect.

1842

(no entry for this year)

In London, The Economist and Sunday News of the World begin publication.

image In Dresden, Richard Wagner's opera Der fliegende Holländer is premiered.

image Jerome Increase Case, a 24 year-old farmer from Oswego County, New York, introduces the J. I. Case Threshing Machine. The J. I. Case Company will manufacture farm equipment and will become the largest thresher producer in the world.

image The first tunnel under the Thames opens on March 25, built by Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806-1859). {a]The Thames Tunnel{/a} connects Rotherhithe and Wapping, London. Although it was a triumph of civil engineering, the Thames Tunnel was not a financial success. It had cost a fortune to build — £454,000 to dig and another £180,000 to fit out — far exceeding its initial cost estimates. Proposals to extend the entrance to accommodate wheeled vehicles failed owing to cost, and it was only used by pedestrians. It became a major tourist attraction, attracting about two million people a year, each paying a penny to pass through.

image Sequoyah, Cherokee Indian leader, creates Cherokee syllabary and develops the first written form of a native North American language.

image Congress grants S. F. B. Morse $30,000 to build the first telegraph line (Washington to Baltimore).

Louis Agassiz completes Les Poissons Fossiles describing fossil fish of the world. This single monograph increases tenfold the formally described vertebrates known to science.

image That the nervous system uses electricity in communicating between different parts of the body is demonstrated by Emil Heinrich du Bois-Reymond (1818-1896). He founds the field of electrophysiology.

image John Stuart Mill publishes Logic.

image James Prescott Joule determines the mechanical equivalent of heat by measuring the rise in temperature produced in water by stirring it.

1843

(no entry for this year)

In England, the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) is founded by George Williams (1821-1905).

image In Hartford, Connecticut, dentist Horace Wells (1815-1848) uses nitrous oxide as an anesthetic; he is the first to do so.

image Charles Darwin first outlines his thoughts on natural selection in an unpublished essay.

image Robert Chambers, a Scottish journalist, publishes (anonymously) his Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation, an early book outlining an evolutionary view of the natural world.

image The second part of the Geology of the Beagle, Charles Darwin's Geological Observations on Volcanic Islands Visited During the Voyage of H.M.S. Beagle, is published. Darwin's book claims to supply evidence for the geological theories of Charles Lyell (1797-1875), from areas that Lyell himself had never seen.

image That all the cells in an organism are generated from successive divisions of the egg cell is described by Rudolf Albert von Kölliker (1817-1905). Kölliker shows that the egg is itself a cell.

1844

image The Open Door is an early calotype, included in The Pencil of Nature, the first commercially published book to be illustrated with photographs.

image The Pencil of Nature, published in six installments between 1844 and 1846, was the "first photographically illustrated book to be commercially published" or "the first commercially published book illustrated with photographs". It was wholly executed by the new art of Photogenic Drawing, without any aid whatever from the artist's pencil and regarded as an important and influential work in the history of photography. Written by William Henry Fox Talbot and published by Longman, Brown, Green & Longmans in London, the book detailed Talbot's development of the calotype process and included 24 calotype prints, each one pasted in by hand, illustrating some of the possible applications of the new technology. Since photography was still very much a novelty and many people remained unfamiliar with the concept, Talbot felt compelled to insert the following notice into his book: The plates of the present work are impressed by the agency of Light alone, without any aid whatever from the artist's pencil. They are the sun-pictures themselves, and not, as some persons have imagined, engravings in imitation.

Scientific American is founded by Alfred Beach (1826-1896). The first issue is published on August 28. The publication, in newspaper format, presents science for the general reader.

image Edgar Allan Poe's "The Raven" appears in the New York Evening Mirror. Poe's collection The Raven and Other Poems is published.

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-seven stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Florida.

image Frederick Douglass publishes his autobiography, The Life and Times of Frederick Douglass.

image Francis Ronalds invents the first successful camera for continuous recording (the first "movie camera") of the variations in meteorological and geomagnetic parameters over time. A copy of Ronalds' paper describing describing his device maybe obtained HERE.

image The bridge spanning the Allegheny River, at Pittsburgh, designed by engineer John Augustus Roebling (1806-1869), opens in May. It is the first wire cable suspension aqueduct bridge in the world.

image James K. Polk becomes eleventh president of the United States.

Texas is annexed by the United States.

The Irish potato famine begins, one of the century's worst natural disasters. One million citizens starve to death, and one million others emigrate, mostly to the United States

The School of Medicine in Paris creates a gallery of comparative anatomy.

image Michael Faraday relates magnetism to light after finding the magnetic field effects the polarization of light in crystals. He proposes that light may be waves of electromagnetism. He also describes the phenomena of diamagnetism and paramagnetism, which he explains in terms of his concept of a magnetic field.

1845

(no entry for this year)

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-eight stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Texas.

Mexican-American War Defeated, Mexico yields an enormous amount of territory to the United States. Americans then wrestle with a controversial topic: Is slavery permitted in the new lands?

image Nitroglycerine is discovered by chemist Ascanio Sobrero (1811-1870), although he uses to term "pyroglycerine". Because of the risks involved in its production, it will not be manufactured commercially for more than a decade.

image The lock-stitch sewing machine is patented by Elias Howe (1819-1867).

The first professional baseball game is played, in Hoboken, New Jersey.

The Mexican War (1846-48) between the United States and Mexico results in the United States taking possession of California and much of the Southwest, which had been Mexican territory.

The Oregon Treaty delineates border between the United States and Canada.

image Karl Wilhelm Von Nägeli shows that plant cells are not formed as buds from the surfaces of existing cells, as was proposed by Theodore Schwann.

Joseph Leidy identifies in pork the parasite that causes trichinosis, a potentially fatal human disease.

image James Prescott Joule discovers that the length of an iron bar changes slightly when the bar is magnetized.

1846

(no entry for this year)

image The US flag is modified to have twenty-nine stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Iowa.

image The North Star, an abolitionist newspaper, begins publication in Rochester, New York. The paper is founded by escaped slave Frederick Douglass (1817-1895), with money he earned as a result of his autobiography.

Liberia is formed as a home for released American slaves.

Missouri bans the education of free blacks.

The Istanbul slave market is abolished.

image The rotary, or "lightning" printing press is patented by Richard March Hoe (1812-1886). It is used first by the Philadelphia Public Ledger.

The Factory Act is passed in Britain. It forbids women and children between the ages of 13 and 18 to work more than 10 hours per day.

image The first United States postage stamps are issued

Jakob Mathias Schleiden and Theodor Schwann announce that cells are the basic units of all living structures.

image In his Account of a New Anesthetic Agent, obstetrician Sir James Simpson (1811-1870) argues that chloroform, a substance he discovered, is a better anesthetic than nitrous oxide or ether. Simpson has begun to use chloroform as an anesthetic in childbirth.

image Über die Erhaltung der Kraft ("On the Conservation of Force"), by Hermann Ludwig von Helmholtz (1821-1894), is published. It articulates what later becomes known as the Conservation of Energy.

1847

(no entry for this year)

image The US flag is modified to have thirty stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Wisconsin.

Slavery is abolished in old French and Danish colonies.

image Edmond Becquerel makes the first full-color photographs, but they are only laboratory curiosities: an exposure lasting hours or days is required and the colors are so light-sensitive that they sometimes fade right before the viewer's eyes while being examined.

image Karl Marx publishes The Communist Manifesto, which asserts that revolution by the working classes will ultimately destroy capitalism.

Revolution breaks out across much of Europe; the Second Republic is proclaimed in France.

image On the archetype and homologies of the vertebrate skeleton, by Richard Owen (1804-1892), is published. In the book Owen argues that the skull, and other parts of the body, are formed by the modification of the vertebra of different animals.

Richard Owen describes "homologies" — similarities of design in bird wings, fish fins and human hands.

A Neanderthal skull is excavated from Forbes Quarry on the northern side of the Rock of Gibraltar. Over the next few decades, the skull will be stashed in a library cabinet in Gibraltar, dusted off and sent to London, accurately likened to the ancient skullcap from Neander Valley in Germany, nearly named Homo calpicus, and finally stored and largely forgotten in the Royal College of Surgeons.

The American Medical Association is founded in Philadelphia, with a mission "to promote the science and art of medicine and the betterment of public health."

image An absolute scale of temperatures is proposed by William Thomson (1824-1907). Thomson will become Baron Kelvin of Largs, in 1892, and the scale will come to bear his name.

image Armand Hippolyte Louis Fizeau suggests that light from a source of moving away from the observer will be shifted toward the red end of the spectrum, a phenomenon known as redshift. This is closely related to, but not exactly the same as, the Doppler effect.

image The American Association for the Advancement of Science is founded. Joseph Henry (1797-1898), who had been appointed the first secretary of the Smithsonian in 1846, is the first secretary of the AAAS, which is modeled after The British Association for the Advancement of Science. The British Association has been in existence for 17 years.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science is established.

1848

(no entry for this year)

image Henry David Thoreau's A week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers and "Resistance to Civil Government" (often referred to as "Civil Disobedience") are published.

image Charles Lewis Reason becomes the first African-American college instructor when he is hired at predominantly white Free Mission College (later New York Central College) to teach Greek, Latin, French, and mathematics.

image Harriet Tubman escapes from slavery and goes on to lead more than 300 slaves to freedom on the underground railroad.

image A unmanned Montgolfier balloon is used to drop bombs on Venice. This is the first time a bombing has been conducted from the air.

image Zachary Taylor becomes twelfth president of the United States.

The California gold rush begins as more than 100,000 people swarm to California to make their fortunes after gold is found there in 1848.

Showmen Moses Kimball and P. T. Barnum purchase the contents of the Peale Museum (established in 1784).

image Botanist Carl Friedrich von Gärtner (1772-1850) publishes Versuche und Beobachtungen über die Bastarderzeugung im Pflanzenreiche. The book describes thousands of experiments, many involving the production of hybrids, on more than 500 species of plants. Mendel will study this book in detail when he attends the University of Vienna in the early 1850s, and will cite the book in the opening of his paper of 1865.

Based on a humerus 58 inches in circumference, Mantell names a new dinosaur species: Pelorosaurus, the first recognized sauropod.

image Armand Hippolyte Louis Fizeau measures the velocity of light in error by measuring the time it takes for a beam of light to pass between the teeth of a rotating gear. The light is reflected by a mirror and stopped by the next tooth of the gear. The result, 315,000 km/se4c (196,000 miles/sec), is within 5% of today's accepted value.

image In describing Sadi Carnot's theory of heat, published in 1824, William Thomson (1824-1907) uses the term THERMODYNAMICS.

image The speed of light is measured by physicist Armand Hippolyte Louis Fizeau (1819-1896) to be approximately 186,000 miles per second.

1849

image Painting by Gustave Courbet: The Stone Breakers (French: Les Casseurs de pierres) is a work of social realism, depicting two peasants, a young man and an old man, breaking rocks. The painting was first exhibited at the Paris Salon of 1850. It was destroyed during World War II, along with 154 other pictures, when a transport vehicle moving the pictures to the castle of Königstein, near Dresden, was bombed by Allied forces in February 1945.

The Compromise of 1850 is introduced into Congress by Henry Clay as an omnibus bill designed to settle disputes arising from the conclusion of the Mexican War. It passes after Stephen Douglas divides the bill into several parts: California enters the Union as a free state; the slave trade (but not slavery) is abolished in Washington D.C.; the fugitive slave law is strengthened; and the Utah and New Mexico Territories are opened to slavery on the basis of popular sovereignty (allowing territorial voters to decide the issue without federa linterference).

image "Bibless overalls" made of canvas are sold by the 20 year-old Levi Strauss in San Francisco. Within three years he will switch to denim and dye his pants indigo blue.

image Millard Fillmore becomes the thirteenth president of the United States, when Zachary Taylor dies in office.

image German physicist Gustav Theodor Fechner discovers that an increase in the intensity of a stimulus does not produce a one-to-one increase in the intensity of sensation. Instead, the sensation seems to increase as the logarithm of the excitation.

image Mathematician Bernard Bolzano's Paradoxien des Unendlichen is published, two years after the Bolzano's death. It is the first work to use the word "set" in a modern mathematical sense, and also treats infinite sets.

image In Über die bewegende Kraft der Wärme, mathematical physicist Rudolf Julius Emanuel Clausius articulates what comes to be known as the Second Law of Thermodynamics. The law states that heat can only be transferred from a warmer body to a colder body. In 1865, he'll restate the Law, saying that in the closed system entropy always increases.

1850

image Painting by Gustave Courbet: A Burial At Ornans (French: Un enterrement à Ornans, also known as A Funeral At Ornans) represents one of the major turning points of 19th-century French art. The painting records the funeral in September 1848 of his great-uncle in the painter's birthplace, the small town of Ornans. It treats an ordinary provincial funeral with unflattering realism, and on the giant scale traditionally reserved for the heroic or religious scenes of history painting. Its exhibition at the 1850–51 Paris Salon created an "explosive reaction" and brought Courbet instant fame. It is currently displayed at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris, France.

image The New York Times begins daily publication. The editor of the Times is Henry J. Raymond.

image The Great Exhibition opens in London, housed at the Hyde Park Pavilion (the "Crystal Palace" designed by Joseph Paxton), on the First of May. It is the first world's fair, and is attended by more than 6 million people. London is the world's largest city, with a population of nearly 2.4 million people.

image Nathaniel Hawthorne's The House of the Seven Gables and The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales both appear.

image Moby Dick, by Herman Melville, is published.

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-one stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: California.

Arithmometer: first commercially successful mechanical calculator launched

image The fast-acting Collodion process invented by Frederick Scott Archer. Images require only two or three seconds of light exposure. Collodion process, mostly synonymous with the "collodion wet plate process", requires the photographic material to be coated, sensitized, exposed and developed within the span of about fifteen minutes, necessitating a portable darkroom for use in the field. Collodion is normally used in its wet form, but can also be used in humid ("preserved") or dry form, at the cost of greatly increased exposure time. The latter made the dry form unsuitable for the usual portraiture work of most professional photographers of the 19th century. The use of the dry form was therefore mostly confined to landscape photography and other special applications where minutes-long exposure times were tolerable.

image Isaac Singer patents the continuous-stitch sewing machine.

The Erie Railroad, now controlled by Daniel Drew, becomes the first rail line connecting the Great Lakes with New York City, and begins to compete with the Erie Canal as a transportation route.

image Mathematician Joseph Liouville demonstrates the existence of transcendental numbers (transcendentals are numbers that are not the solution to any algebraic equation).

image Léon Foucault demonstrates that the Earth rotates using a pendulum, suspended from the ceiling of a church.

image Physicist William Thomson proposes a concept of "absolute zero", at which the energy of molecules is zero. He draws on Charles' Law to show that such a condition would hold at -273 degrees Celsius.

1851

image Daguerreotype by John Adams Whipple: Daguerreoype of the moon. Whipple was an American inventor and early photographer. He was the first in the United States to manufacture the chemicals used for daguerreotypes; he pioneered astronomical and night photography; he was a prize-winner for his extraordinary early photographs of the moon; and he was the first to produce images of stars other than the sun — the star Vega and the Mizar-Alcor stellar sextuple system, which was thought to be a double star until 2009.

image Harriet Beecher Stowe publishes her anti-slavery novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin.

image Peter Mark Roget publishes his Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases. Roget, a 73 year-old physician and English scholar, will publish 28 editions of the Thesaurus during his lifetime (he dies at age 90).

In South Bend, Indiana, Clement and Henry Studebaker found Studebaker Brothers. Joined by a third brother, John, in 1858, the company will become the world's largest maker of wagons and carriages.

image In Sweden, safety matches are patented by J. E. Lundstrom.

image The brown paper bag is invented.

The elevator is invented, facilitating the future development of skyscrapers.

The U.S. state of Pennsylvania adopts a non-standard railroad gauge in order to prevent New York's Erie Railroad from establishing a route, through Pennsylvania, to Ohio.

image The French Republic falls; Louis Napoleon (Napoleon III) is crowned Emperor.

The U.S. state of Massachusetts adopts a compulsory school-attendance law, the first effective example of such a law in the nation.

image Albrecht von Kölliker publishes the first textbook of histology, Handbuch der Gewebelehre.

image Hermann Ludwig von Helmholtz becomes the first to discover how fast a message travels along a nerve, measuring the speed of transmission in a frog nerve cell.

image image James Prescott Joule and William Thompson, later Lord Kelvin, establish that an expanding gas becomes cooler. This is now known as the Joule-Thompson effect.

1852

image Daguerreotype by John Adams Whipple: Henry Winthrop Sargent and His Family. Whipple kept several distinctive pieces of furniture in his studio that he used to solidify his compositions by disposing them within an image in characteristic ways without having the sitter use them. In fact, it is this unique posing style that identifies Whipple as the artist of the portrait of Henry Winthrop Sargent and his family, taken in Boston in the early 1850s. Here, Whipple’s composition is complex and masterful. The empty armchair at the lower left faces the viewer and draws the eye in. The covered table at the far right connects an occupied chair to the edge of the plate and suggests a vanishing point while giving diagonal movement to what is basically a horizontal composition. The corner of a plain backdrop, barely perceptible at the right, aids the illusion of movement and space. The empty armchair acts as a backrest for young Francis Sargent, who is actually supported by a posing stand, the base of which can be seen between his feet and his mother’s skirts. Caroline Olmsted Sargent appears to be reading a letter to her assembled family. Her oldest son, Winthrop Henry Sargent, sits facing her, and their profiles echo across the space as he leans toward her. Henry Winthrop Sargent, at the apex of the composition, leans dynamically into the gathering, supporting his weight on the back of a carved side chair. The division of the family into two pairs of linked figures creates powerful parallel diagonals; but despite this calculated arrangement, all of the sitters appear to be at ease and engaged with one another.

image Potato chips are invented.

image Commodore Matthew Perry sails into Japan's Edo Bay with his black ships (four modern, steam-powered warships), urging Japan to open trade policies with the United States.

image Franklin Pierce becomes fourteenth president of the United States.

image Rudolph Albert von Kölliker discovers the cellular origin of spermatozoa, which were believed by some to originate from a fermentation process.

In Britain, vaccination against small pox is made compulsory.

image Léon Foucault demonstrates that the velocity of light is lesson water than in air, tending to confirm the wave theory of light.

image William John Macquorn Rankine introduces the concept of potential energy, or energy of position.

1853

image Daguerreotype by John Adams Whipple: Cornelius Conway Felton with His Hat and Coat. Felton was Eliot Professor of Greek Literature at Harvard University, reaching for his felt hat and duster. The first son of a poverty-stricken furniture maker, Felton became one of the most renowned classical scholars in the country and, in 1860, Harvard's president. This witty photograph lampoons the rigid formality of the portrait process through narrative gesture (the implied reach across two separate images) and nuance (the delicate crush of the soft hat's crown). As opposed to the inflexible silk top hat worn by dandies and professors alike, the broad-brimmed felt hat was worn by outdoorsmen and was practical, casual, and fundamentally democratic.

image Henry David Thoreau's Walden, or Life in the Woods is published.

Kansas-Nebraska Act: In an attempt to spur population growth in the western territories in advance of a transcontinental railroad, Stephen Douglas introduces a bill to establish the territories of Kansas and Nebraska. In order to gain Southern support, the bill stipulates that slavery in the territories will be decided by popular sovereignty. Thus the Kansas-Nebraska Act repeals the Missouri Compromise ban on slavery north of 36° 30' in the lands of the Louisiana Purchase.

Ostend Manifesto: The U.S. ministers to Britain, France, and Spain meet in Ostend, Belgium. They draft a policy recommendation to President Pierce, urging him to attempt again to purchase Cuba from Spain and, if Spain refuses, to take the island by force. When the secret proposal, called the Ostend Manifesto, is leaked to the press, it creates an uproar since Cuba would likely become another slave state.

image On May 24, Virginia fugitive slave Anthony Burns is captured in Boston and returned to slavery under the provisions of the Fugitive Slave Act. Fifty thousand Boston residents watch his transport through the streets of the city in shackles. A Boston church raises $1500 to purchase his freedom and Burns returns to the city in 1855, a free man.

On May 30, the Kansas-Nebraska act is passed by Congress. The act repeals the Missouri Compromise and permits the admission of Kansas and Nebraska territories to the Union after their white male voters decide the fate of slavery in those territories.

Slavery is abolished in Peru and Venezuela.

The Republican Party is formed in the summer in opposition to the extension of slavery into the western territories.

image André-Adolphe-Eugène Disdéri credited with introduction of the carte de visite (English: visiting card or calling card) format for portraiture. Disdéri uses a camera with multiple lenses that can photograph eight different poses on one large negative. After printing on albumen paper, the images are cut apart and glued to calling-card-size mounts. Photographs had previously served as calling cards, but Disdéri's invention of the paper carte de visite (i.e. "visiting card") enabled the mass production of photographs. On 27 November 1854 he patented the system of printing ten photographs on a single sheet (although there is no evidence that a system printing more than eight actually materialized). Disdéri's's cartes de visite were 6×9 cm, about the size of conventional (nonphotographic) visiting cards of the time, and were made by a camera with four lenses and a sliding plate holder; a design inspired by the stereoscopic cameras. The novelty quickly spread throughout the world. According to a German visitor, Disdéri's studio became "really the Temple of Photography - a place unique in its luxury and elegance. Daily he sells three to four thousand francs worth of portraits". The fact that these photos could be reproduced inexpensively and in great quantity brought about the decline of the daguerreotype and ushered in a carte de visite craze as they became enormously popular throughout Europe and the United States. Disdéri also invented the twin-lens reflex camera.

image Mathematician George Boole, whose "Calculus of Logic," appeared in 1848, publishes An Investigation of the Laws of Thought, on Which are Founded the Mathematical Theories of Logic and Probabilities, which articulates a system of "symbolic logic".

1854

image Painting by Gustave Courbet: The Meeting (French: La rencontre) is traditionally interpreted as Courbet greeted by his patron Alfred Bruyas, his servant Calas, and his dog while traveling to Montpellier. The composition is based on the Wandering Jew. The Meeting was exhibited in Paris at the 1855 Exhibition Universelle, where critics ridiculed it as "Bonjour, Monsieur Courbet". Bruyas did not exhibit The Meeting until he donated it to the Musée Fabre in Montpellier in 1868.

image In Watertown, Wisconsin, the first kindergarten in the U.S. is opened by Mrs. Carl Schurz (Margarethe Meyer Schurz).

image Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's "Song of Hiawatha" appears.

image Poet Walt Whitman publishes a volume of twelve poems, Leaves of Grass, at his own expense, and meets with no commercial success.

The Massachusetts Legislature outlaws racially segregated schools.

image image A mercury pump is developed by inventor Heinrich Geissler, to produce vacuum tubes. The first cathode rays will be observed in these tubes, after they are modified and improved by Sir William Crookes.

image Engineer Frederick Taylor carries out "time-motion" studies of workers with the idea of making their labor more efficient. He will pioneer the "scientific management" of the workplace.

image Alfred Russel Wallace publishes "On the Law which has Regulated the Introduction of New Species," anticipating Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection.

image Rudolf Virchow states the principle that new cells come into being only by division of previously existing cells: Omnis cellula e cellula.

image Recherches sur la putréfaction, by Louis Pasteur, is published. The book describes how fermentation is caused by microorganisms.

1855

(no entry for this year)

image The Caning of Charles Sumner: Senator Charles Sumner delivers a stinging speech in the U.S. Senate, "The Crime against Kansas," in which he attacks slavery, the South, and singles out his Senate colleague, Andrew Butler of South Carolina, for criticism. In retaliation, Butler's nephew, Congressman Preston Brooks of South Carolina, attacks Sumner with a cane while the Massachusetts senator is seated at his desk on the floor of the Senate. The injuries he sustains cause Sumner to be absent from the Senate for four years. The episode revealed the polarization in America, as Sumner became a martyr in the North and Brooks a hero in the South. Northerners were outraged. Southerners sent Brooks hundreds of new canes in endorsement of his assault. One was inscribed "Hit him again." Brooks claimed that he had not intended to kill Sumner, or else he would have used a different weapon. In a speech to the House defending his actions, Brooks stated that he "meant no disrespect to the Senate of the United States" or the House by his attack on Sumner. He was tried in a District of Columbia court, convicted for assault, and fined $300 ($8,000 in today's dollars), but received no prison sentence.

image A railway bridge spanning the Mississippi opens between Rockville, Illinois, and Davenport, Iowa. Abraham Lincoln, a lawyer, will defend the legality of the bridge before the Supreme Court, in response to a "right of way" suit brought by a steamship company.

image During Easter vacation from London's Royal College of Chemistry, 18-year-old William Henry Perkin synthesized mauve, or aniline purple — the first synthetic dyestuff — from chemicals derived from coal tar. Mauve was enthusiastically adopted by the fashion industry in England and synthetic dyes quickly destroyed the market for natural substances derived from plants like indigo and madder. Perkin's creation was an accident — he was trying to synthesize quinine.

image The "Bessemer process" for making inexpensive steel, which involves using blasts of cold air to decarbonize melted pig iron, is developed by inventor Henry Bessemer.

The 458-mile Wabash and Erie Canal opens after 24 years, and is the largest canal ever dug in the U.S. By 1860, however, sections will begin to be close, and, unable to compete for railroads, the entire Canal will be closed by 1874.

In South Africa, Boers establish the South African Republic (Transvaal), with Pretoria as its capital. Marthinus Wessels Pretorius, 37, is named the first president.

The Second Opium War (1856-1860) between Britain and China leads to further erosion of Chinese sovereignty.

image The remains of the first known example of what come to be known as the "Neanderthals" is found in a cave near Düsseldorf, in the Neander Valley. The discovery was made by limestone quarry miners and consists of a skullcap, two femora, the three right arm bones, two of the left arm bones, ilium, and fragments of a scapula and ribs. The fossils were given to Johann Carl Fuhlrott, a local teacher and amateur naturalist. The first description of the remains was made by anatomist Hermann Schaaffhausen and the find was announced jointly in 1857.In 1997, the specimen was the first to yield Neanderthal mitochondrial DNA fragments. The description of this discovery represents the beginning of paleoanthropology as a scientific discipline.

Louis Agassiz publishes Essay on Classification advocating a theory of multiple creations and contradicting both evolution and Noah's ark.

image Gregor Mendel, a monk at the Augustinian monastery of St. Thomas in Brünn, Austria (now Brno, Czechoslovakia), begins breeding experiments with the garden pea, Pisum sativum.

Heinz Christian Pander describes conodonts — toothy microfossils that will puzzle paleontologists for many years.

1856

image Painting by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres: The Source (French: La Source), was begun in Florence around 1820 and not completed until 1856, in Paris. When Ingres completed The Source, he was seventy-six years old, already famous, and president of the École des Beaux-Arts. The pose of the nude may be compared with that of another by Ingres, the Venus Anadyomene (1848), and is a reimagination of the Aphrodite of Cnidus or Venus Pudica. Two of Ingres' students, painters Paul Balze and Alexandre Desgoffe, helped to create the background and water jar. The first exhibition of The Source was in 1856, the year it was completed. The painting was received enthusiastically. Duchâtel acquired the painting in 1857 for a sum of 25,000 francs. The state assumed title to the painting in 1878 and it passed to the Musée du Louvre. In 1986 it was transferred to the Musée d'Orsay. The painting has been frequently exhibited and widely published. Haldane Macfall in A History of Painting: The French Genius describes The Source as Ingres' "superb nude by which he is chiefly known". Kenneth Clark in his book Feminine Beauty observed how The Source has been described as "the most beautiful figure in French painting."

image Madame Bovery, by Gustave Flaubert, is published

image Farmer Hinton Rowan Helper publishes The Impending Crisis of the South, and How to Meet It, in which he argues that slavery in economically unwise, and particularly devastating to small farmers who do not own slaves. He writes that slavery is "the root of all the shame, poverty, ignorance, tyranny and imbecility" in the South. He also argues that slavery foolishly ties up economic resources in human beings when it might be spent on labor-saving improvements.

The African slave trade is prohibited in the Ottoman Empire

image The Dred Scott Decision makes the Missouri Compromise unconstitutional and increases tension between North and South over slavery in the United States. Writing for the majority, Chief Justice Roger B. Taney asserted that blacks were "beings of an inferior order, and altogether unfit to associate with the white race, either in social or political relations, and so far inferior that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect." This embarrassing decision represents a low point in the history of the United States Supreme Court.

image In Burrville, Connecticut, commercial production of Gail Borden's patented "condensed milk" begins. The product is made from skim milk, without any fat and without a number of nutrients found in cow's milk.

In California, Tokay, Zinfandel, and Shiraz grapes (all from Hungary) are first planted, and Italian honeybees are introduced. This is the beginning of the U.S. wine and honey industries. In North America, honey bees are an artificially introduced and invasive species.

image Robert Wilhelm von Bunsen (along with Henry Roscoe) publish a design for a laboratory burner in Poggendorff's Annalen der Physik und Chemie, 100:84-85.

image James Buchanan becomes fifteenth president of the United States.

image Giuseppe Garibaldi, who returned to Italy in 1854 after several years working at Staten Island, New York, founds the Italian National Association. The organization is designed to promote the unification of Italy.

image Über die Art der Bewegung, welche wir Wäe nennen (On the type of motion turned heat) by Rudolf Clausius is establishes his kinetic theory of heat of the mathematical basis. It also explains how evaporation occurs.

1857

image Photograph by Gustave Le Gray: Lighthouse and Jetty, le Havre, an albumen print.

image Photograph by Gustave Le Gray: The Great Wave. The dramatic effects of sunlight, clouds, and water in Le Gray's seascapes stunned his contemporaries and immediately brought him international recognition. At a time when photographic emulsions were not equally sensitive to all colors of the spectrum, most photographers found it impossible to achieve proper exposure of both landscape and sky in a single picture. Le Gray solved this problem by printing two negatives on a single sheet of paper: one exposed for the sea, the other for the sky, and sometimes made on separate occasions or in different locations. Le Gray's marine pictures caused a sensation not only because their simultaneous depiction of sea and heavens represented a technical tour de force, but also because the resulting poetic effect was without precedent in photography.

image Painting by Jean-François Millet: The Gleaners (Des glaneuses) depicts three peasant women gleaning a field of stray grains of wheat after the harvest. The painting is famous for featuring in a sympathetic way what were then the lowest ranks of rural society; this was received poorly by the French upper classes. The painting immediately drew negative criticism from the middle and upper classes, who viewed the topic with suspicion: one art critic, speaking for other Parisians, perceived in it an alarming intimation of "the scaffolds of 1793." Its size (33×44 inches) was also considered offensive, as it was too large for an image depicting mere labor.

Central Park, in New York City, is opened to the public.

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-two stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Minnesota.

J. Schweppe & Co. Ltd. patents a quinine tonic water that they will begin selling in 1880.

image John Landis Mason patents a reusable glass jar.

image Abraham Lincoln, running for the United States Senate, declares "A house divided against itself cannot stand." He loses the race to Stephen Douglas, but his performance in there now-legendary debates leads to his nomination as the Republican candidate for president in 1860.

In Ireland, the group Sein Fein is founded.

Rudolf Virchow finalizes the cell theory originally announced by Schleiden and Schwann 11 years earlier by declaring that cells are the basic units of all living things, and all cells are formed by the division of existing cells.

image Alfred Russel Wallace sends to Darwin a manuscript — "On the Tendency of Varieties to Depart Indefinitely from the Original Type" — that shows clearly that Wallace has independently formulated a model of evolution by natural selection.

image image Darwin's and Wallace's ideas are jointly presented to the Linnaean Society of London.

The first relatively complete dinosaur skeleton, of Hadrosaurus foulkii, is found in New Jersey.

image Physician Henry Gray publishes Anatomy of the Human Body, Descriptive and Surgical. Gray's Anatomy will be a standard textbook of anatomy for more than a century.

image The concept of "bonds" is introduced by chemist Archibald Scott Couper, who believes that carbon atoms are the fundamental building blocks of organic compounds.

image Julius Plücker shows that cathode rays bend under the influence of a magnet, suggesting they are connected in some way with charge. This is an early step along the path that will lead in 1897 to the discovery that cathode rays are composed of electrons.

1858

(no entry for this year)

In Manchester, England, the first "playgrounds" for children are opened, complete with swings and horizontal bars for climbing and hanging.

image Jules Léotard performs the first flying trapeze circus act, with the Cirque Napoléon in Paris. Léotard's standard performance costume — a skin-tight one-piece garment that covers the torso but leaves the legs free — later becomes known generically as a "leotard." Léotard also becomes the subject of a popular song: "The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapeze."

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-three stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Oregon.

Harriet Wilson of Milford, New Hampshire, publishes Our Nig; or Sketches from the Life of a Free Black, the first novel by an African-American woman.

image On October 16, John Brown leads 20 men, including five African-Americans, in an unsuccessful attempt to seize the Federal Armory at Harper's ferry, Virginia, with the goal of inspiring a slave insurrection. He was captured by US troops under the command of Colonel Robert E. Lee, tried, and hanged on December 2.

image In Titusville, Pennsylvania, commercial production of petroleum begins, with drilling of the first well by Edwin Laurentine Drake. The well will produce approximately 400 gallons/day.

image The first internal combustion engine is developed by Jean-Joseph-Etienne Lenoir. The engine uses coal gas.

image Charles Darwin publishes On the Origin of Species.

An exceptionally well-preserved skeleton is discovered in Bavaria. Two years later, this bird-like, bipedal dinosaur will be named Compsognathus, meaning "dainty jaw."

Catholic priest Jean-Jacques Pouech describes fossil eggshell fragments. They will eventually prove to be the first described dinosaur eggs.

image Matrix algebra begins, as mathematician Arthur Cayley discusses the matrix in the context of a theory of invariant transformations.

image Gustav Kirchoff recognizes that sodium is found on the sun and discovers his black-body radiation law.

image image Physicist Gustav Robert Kirchhoff and chemist R. W. Bunsen explain that when light passes through a gas, or heated material, only certain wavelengths of the light are absorbed. Therefore, an analysis of the spectrum of the light can reveal the chemical makeup of the gas or material.

1859

image Photograph by Gustave Le Gray: The Pont du Carrousel Seen from the Pont Royal, an albumen print.

On December 20, South Carolina secedes from the union, setting in motion the forces leading to the US Civil war.

Southern Secession South Carolina secedes in December. More states follow the next year.

Herman Hollerith was born 29th February 1860

image Emil Erlenmeyer invents the flask.

The Pony Express begins cross-country mail delivery.

image Louis Agassiz attacks Darwin's the origin of species, rejecting the idea of evolution of the species and arguing that each species was created separately.

image Thomas Henry Huxley (sometimes known as Darwin's bulldog) clashes with Bishop "Soapy Sam" Wilberforce about evolution at the annual meeting of The British Association for the Advancement of Science, in what has come to be known as the Huxley-Wilberforce debate.

Bishop Wilberforce is supposed to have asked Huxley sarcastically whether "it was through his grandfather or his grandmother that he claimed descent from a monkey." Huxley responded, "If then the question is put to me whether I would rather have a miserable ape for a grandfather or a man highly endowed by nature and possessed of great means of influence and yet employs these faculties and that influence for the mere purpose of introducing ridicule into a grave scientific discussion, I unhesitatingly affirm my preference for the ape." Or words to that effect.

John Phillips diagrams the progressive but fluctuating diversity of life on Earth based on the fossil record. His work evidences massive extinctions at the end of the Paleozoic and Mesozoic, and increased diversity in each subsequent age.

image Louis Pasteur becomes significantly involved in biological research with the publication of "Mémoir sur la fermentation alcoolique" in which he showed that alcoholic fermentation seemed to be carried out by yeast, which were themselves living organisms.

1860

image "A Veteran with his Wife", taken by an anonymous photographer, shows a British veteran of the Napoleonic era Peninsular Wars. It is a hand-tinted ambrotype using the set collodion positive process, made circa 1860.

image Daguerreotype by Unknown Photographer: Portrait of a Woman with a Mandolin. Collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum.

image Abraham Lincoln becomes sixteenth president of the United States.

Fort Sumter shelled, American Civil War begins.

The First Battle of Bull Run, also known as the First Battle of Manassas (the name used by Confederate forces and still often used in the Southern United States), is fought on July 21, 1861, near Manassas, Virginia. It is the first major land battle of the American Civil War. Neither Confederate nor Union troops were ready for battle. Union troops advanced on Confederate troops, almost breaking through, but at the last moment, Confederate reinforcements arrived on the battlefield and carried the day. Union troops were routed. Union civilian spectators, who had come to watch the expected Confederate defeat as entertainment, were forced to run for their lives.

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-four stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Kansas.

United States Civil War Four years of brutal conflict claim 623,000 lives.

image Oliver Wendell Holmes invents stereoscope viewer

image James Clerk Maxwell presents a projected additive color image of a multicolored ribbon, the first demonstration of color photography by the three-color method he suggested in 1855. It uses three separate black-and-white photographs taken and projected through red, green and blue color filters. The projected image is temporary but the set of three "color separations" is the first durable color photograph.

image image Between 1861 and 1862, Max Johann Sigismund Schultze (Germany) and Heinrich Anton de Bary (Germany) establish the essential unity of protoplasm in all living cells.

image First recognized fossil Archaeopteryx lithographica skeleton is found in the stone quarries of Solnhofen.

image In "Mémoires sur les corpuscles organisés qui existent dans l'atmosphère," Pasteur applies heat to bent-neck flasks to show unequivocally that the "organized bodies" (microbes) which drive fermentation originate from "organized bodies" that exist in the atmosphere. In this elegant series of experiments, Pasteur laid to rest the long-held belief in spontaneous generation."

In his presidential address to the Geological Society of London, Leonard Horner proposes removing the world's "creation" date of 4004 BC from the English Bible, citing geological evidence of a much older planet.

Congress passes the First Confiscation Act, which prevents Confederate slave owners from re-enslaving runaways.

1861

image Painting by Edgar Degas: The Bellelli Family, also known as Family Portrait, is housed in the Musée d'Orsay. A masterwork of Degas' youth, the painting is a portrait of his aunt, her husband, and their two young daughters. While finishing his artistic training in Italy, Degas drew and painted his aunt Laura, her husband the baron Gennaro Bellelli, and their daughters Giulia and Giovanna. Although it is not known for certain when or where Degas executed the painting, it is believed that he utilized studies done in Italy to complete the work after his return to Paris. Laura, his father's sister, is depicted in a dress which symbolizes mourning for her father, who had recently died and appears in the framed portrait behind her. Laura Bellelli's countenance is dignified and austere, her gesture connected with those of her daughters. Her husband, by contrast, appears to be separated from his family. His association with business and the outside world is implied by his position at his desk. Giulia holds a livelier pose than that of her sister Giovanna, whose restraint appears to underscore the familial tensions.

On April 16, Congress abolishes slavery in the District of Columbia.

image Otto von Bismarck is appointed Prime Minister of Prussia.

image The Battle of Fort Donelson (11-16 Feb) is an early Union victory in the American Civil War, which opened the Cumberland River as an avenue for the invasion of the South. The success elevated Brig. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant from an obscure and largely unproven leader to the rank of major general.

The Battle of Shiloh (6-7 Apr). Although the Confederates swept the field on the first day, Union troops under U. S. Grant retook the field on the second day. Combined Union and Confederate casualties (23,746 killed, wounded, or missing) represented more than the total American battle-related casualties of the American Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, and the Mexican-American War combined.

Lord Kelvin asserts that the Earth and sun are cooling from their initial formation, between 20 and 400 million years ago. He will later adopt the smaller number.

1862

image Photograph by Alexander Gardner: President Abraham Lincoln, Headquarters, Army of the Potomac, near Antietam, an albumen silver print. Allan Pinkerton stands to Lincoln's right, General John A. McClernand to Lincoln's left.

image Painting by Gustave Courbet: The Source shows a nude in an unflinchingly naturalistic style and is devoid of the trappings of academic allegory to which the painting’s title alludes. Courbet is thought to have intended it as a response to Ingres’s own La Source (1856, Musée d’Orsay, Paris), which was exhibited at the Galerie Martinet, Paris, in 1861. The picture by Ingres depicts an idealized nude holding a jar from which water pours, an allusion to a spring or river source, and symbolizing poetic inspiration.

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-five stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: West Virginia. This new state was created when Union sympathizers in the western portion of Virginia seceded from Virginia (then in secession from the US) and rejoined the Union.

Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation takes effect on January 1, legally freeing slaves in areas of the South still in rebellion against the United States.

image The Battle of Gettysburg (1-3 Jul) was the battle with the largest number of casualties in the American Civil War. Union Maj. Gen. George Gordon Meade's Army of the Potomac defeated attacks by Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia, ending Lee's invasion of the North.

image image The Siege of Vicksburg was the final major military action in the Vicksburg Campaign of the American Civil War. Union Maj. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant crossed the Mississippi River and drove the Confederate army of Lt. Gen. John C. Pemberton into the fortress city of Vicksburg, Mississippi, and placed the city under siege. After more than forty days, with no re-enforcement and supplies nearly gone, the garrison surrendered on July 4. This surrender, combined with Lee's defeat at Gettysburg the previous day, represents the turning point of the war. From then on, military victory for the Confederacy was impossible.

Anti-evolutionist James Hunt, founder of the Anthropological Society of London, gives a presidential address to the society stating that human races were created separately. He further argues that the African species is closer in ability to apes than to Europeans.

Alfred Russel Wallace describes the "Wallace line," the dividing line between Indo-Malayan and Austro-Malayan fauna, in Proceedings of the Royal Geographical Society of London.

image image Dominique Alexandre Godron and Charles Victor Naudin (France) independently report experiments in plant hybridization. Naudin confirmed Sageret's work, in general discussed work of the early hybridizers, and reported dominance and segregation in Datura (jimsonweed) hybrids. He did not deal with single characters and reported no statistical observations on the second generation. His theoretical explanation of his facts was a forerunner of Mendel's ideas, but inferred rather than deduced.

T. H. Huxley publishes Man's Place in Nature discussing human and primate paleontology, and showing similarities between humans and other animals.

image Father-and-son glassworkers Leopold and Rudolf Blaschka begin making glass models of marine invertebrates. Marine biologists will refer to their exquisitely detailed, accurate models 150 years later while trying to see how many of the depicted species can still be found in the wild.

Abraham Lincoln forms the National Academy of Sciences.

1863

image Photograph by John Adams Whipple: Asa Gray, an albumen print. Gray was considered the most important American botanist of the 19th century. His Darwiniana was considered an important explanation of how religion and science were not necessarily mutually exclusive. As a professor of botany at Harvard University for several decades, Gray regularly visited, and corresponded with, many of the leading natural scientists of the era, including Charles Darwin, who held great regard for him. Gray made several trips to Europe to collaborate with leading European scientists of the era, as well as trips to the southern and western United States. He also built an extensive network of specimen collectors.

image Painting by Édouard Manet: Olympia shocked the art world with its style (strong brush strokes, considered childish and unskilled) and its subject matter, a nude white woman ("Olympia"), presumably a courtesan, lying on a bed being brought flowers by a black servant. When hung in the Salon of Paris in 1865, it was met with jeers, laughter, criticism, and disdain, and was attacked by the public, the critics, the newspapers. Guards were stationed to protect it, until it was moved to a spot high above a doorway, out of reach.

image Painting by Édouard Manet: Le Déjeuner sur l'herbe (English: The Luncheon on the Grass) is a large oil on canvas painting depicting a female nude and a scantily dressed female bather on a picnic with two fully dressed men in a rural setting. Rejected by the Salon jury of 1863, Manet seized the opportunity to exhibit this and two other paintings in the 1863 Salon des Refusés where the painting sparked public notoriety and controversy. The piece is now in the Musée d'Orsay in Paris. A smaller, earlier version can be seen at the Courtauld Gallery, London. The painting features a nude woman casually lunching with two fully dressed men. Her body is starkly lit and she stares directly at the viewer. The two men, dressed as young dandies, seem to be engaged in conversation, ignoring the woman. In front of them, the woman's clothes, a basket of fruit, and a round loaf of bread are displayed, as in a still life. In the background, a lightly clad woman bathes in a stream. Too large in comparison with the figures in the foreground, she seems to float above them. The roughly painted background lacks depth — giving the viewer the impression that the scene is not taking place outdoors, but in a studio. This impression is reinforced by the use of broad "studio" light, which casts almost no shadows. The man on the right wears a flat hat with a tassel, of a kind normally worn indoors. Despite the mundane subject, Manet deliberately chose a large canvas size, measuring 81.9 by 104.1 inches, normally reserved for historical, religious, and mythological subjects. The style of the painting breaks with the academic traditions of the time. He did not try to hide the brush strokes; the painting even looks unfinished in some parts of the scene.

image Painting by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres: The Turkish Bath (Le Bain Turc) depicts a group of nude women in the bath of a harem, and is painted in a highly erotic style that evokes both the near east and earlier western styles associated with mythological subject matter. Painted on canvas laid down on wood, it measures 108 x 108 cm. The work is signed and dated 1862, when Ingres was around 82 years old, and was completed in 1863. In that year Ingres altered the painting's original rectangular format, and cut the painting to its present tondo form. Photographs of the painting in its original format survive. It seems based on an April 1717 written description of a Turkish harem by Lady Mary Montagu, where she mentions having viewed some two hundred nude women. The painting develops and elaborates a number of motifs Ingres had explored in earlier paintings, in particular his 1808 The Valpinçon Bather and Grande Odalisque of 1814. Its erotic content did not provoke a scandal, since for much its existence it has remained in private collections. It is now in the Louvre, Paris.

image After the Confederate defeat at Chattanooga, President Lincoln promoted Grant to a special regular army rank, Lieutenant General, authorized by Congress on March 2, 1864. This rank had previously been awarded two other times, a full rank to George Washington and a Brevet rank to Winfield Scott. Lincoln then places Grant in charges of all Union forces.

image image image Sherman captures Atlanta, marches to Savannah. Through a series of bloody battles, Grant forces Lee back to Petersburg, Virginia, and then lays siege to the city. Lincoln is reelected, destroying the South's hope for a political settlement to the war.

image Ernst Haeckel (Häckel) outlines the essential elements of modern zoological classification.

image James Clerk Maxwell's A dynamical theory of the electromagnetic field is the first of his publications to use Michael Faraday's concept of a field as the basis of the mathematical treatment of electricity and magnetism. It introduces Maxwell's equations to describe electromagnetism.

1864

(no entry for this year)

On February 1, Abraham Lincoln signs the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution outlawing slavery throughout the United States.

The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution officially abolished slavery and involuntary servitude, except as punishment for a crime. It was passed by the Senate on April 8, 1864, passed by the House on January 21, 1865, and adopted on December 6, 1865.

Lee surrenders, US Civil war ends, Lincoln assassinated.

image Andrew Johnson becomes seventeenth president of the United States.

image Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (commonly shortened to Alice in Wonderland) first published. The novel was written by English author Charles Lutwidge Dodgson under the pseudonym Lewis Carroll.

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-six stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Nevada.

image The Ku Klux Klan is formed on December 24 in Polanski, Tennessee, by six Confederate veterans. Nathan Bedford Forrest, a former Confederate cavalry general and slave trader, serves as the Klan's first grand wizard or leader-in-chief.

John Lubbock publishes Prehistoric Times dividing what has previously been understood to be the Stone Age into two parts: the older Paleolithic and the newer Neolithic. In the same book, he also argues that modern Tasmanians and Fuegians are throwbacks to archaic humans.

Franz Schweigger-Seidel and A. von la Valette St. George (Germany) independently prove that a spermatozoon is a single cell and contains nucleus and cytoplasm

image Gregor Mendel presents his work on inheritance in peas to the Brünn Natural History Society. The results are published the following year.

Sir John William Dawson of McGill University identifies "shells" of huge foraminiferal protozoans. Known as Eozoön or "dawn animal," this find is used as an argument against evolution because it shows a relatively "modern" animal early in the fossil record. It will prove, however, to be a geologically young pseudofossil formed by heat and pressure on limestone.

Paolo Mantegazza publishes Degli Innesti Animali e della Produzione Artificiale delle Cellule (On Animal Grafts and Artificial Cell Production) describing the results of a series of interspecies animal grafts, such as the transplant of a cockspur onto a cow ear. Grafts described include transplants between dogs, frogs and rodents. Mantegazza reports that some grafts decomposed while others became "pathological tumours."

image Rudolf Clausius invents the term ENTROPY to describe the degradation of energy in the closed system.

1865

image Painting by Ford Madox Brown: Work is generally considered to be his most important achievement. It exists in two versions. The painting attempts to portray, both literally and analytically, the totality of the Victorian social system and the transition from a rural to an urban economy. Brown began the painting in 1852 and completed it in 1865, when he set up a special exhibition to show it along with several of his other works. He wrote a detailed catalogue explaining the significance of the picture. The picture depicts a group of so-called "navvies" digging up the road to build an underground tunnel. It is typically assumed that this was part of the extensions of London's sewerage system, which were being undertaken to deal with the threat of typhus and cholera. The workers are in the centre of the painting. On either side of them are individuals who are either unemployed or represent the leisured classes. Behind the workers are two wealthy figures on horseback, whose progress along the road has been halted by the excavations. The painting also portrays an election campaign, evidenced by posters and people carrying sandwich boards with the name of the candidate "Bobus". A poster also draws attention to the potential presence of a burglar. The setting is an accurate depiction of The Mount on Heath Street in Hampstead, London, where a side road rises up above the main road and runs alongside it. Brown made a detailed study of the location in 1852.

image Blue Danube Waltz Presented Johann Strauss the younger first presents his Blue Danube Waltz, which later became one of the most popular and familiar works of European music.

On June 13, Congress approves the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, guaranteeing due process and equal protection under the law to all citizens. The amendment also grants citizenship to African-Americans.

German zoologist Ernst Haeckel publishes General Morphology of Organisms, the first detailed genealogical tree relating all known organisms, incorporating the principles of Darwinian evolution.

image Ernst Heinrich Haeckel (Häckel) hypothesizes that the nucleus of a cell transmits its hereditary information.

image Mendel publishes his work on heredity, Versuche über Pflanzen Hybriden.

image Ernst Heinrich Haeckel (Häckel) first used the term ECOLOGY to describe the study of living organisms and their interactions with other organisms and with their environment.

1866

(no entry for this year)

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-seven stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Nebraska.

The Alaska Purchase resulted in the transfer of Alaska to the United States from the Russian Empire for a total price of $ 7,000,000. The purchase, made at the initiative of United States Secretary of State William H. Seward, gained 586,412 square miles of new United States territory.

Orléans Railway Company employee Peccadeau de l'Isle presents a paper to the French Academy of Sciences on his recent discoveries at Montastruc, including a mammoth carved from a reindeer antler, and two reindeer (found in separate pieces) carved from a mammoth tusk. The finds will eventually be dated at about 13,000 years old.

H. S. Bidwell (United States) reports controlled pollination in maize.

1867

(no entry for this year)

image Louisa May Alcott publishes Little Women.

image Louis Ducos du Hauron patents his numerous ideas for color photography based on the three-color principle, including procedures for making subtractive color prints on paper. They are published the following year. Their implementation is not technologically practical at that time, but they anticipate most of the color processes that are later introduced.

Wallace Clement Ware Sabine becomes the first acoustical engineer and uses acoustic principles to design Boston's Symphony Hall.

The Meiji Restoration in Japan (led by samurai from the western clans of Satsuma, Choshu, Tosa, and Hizen) overthrows the feudal shogunate system and initiates Japan's participation in the modern world.

The Impeachment of Andrew Johnson, 17th President of the United States, was one of the most dramatic events in the political life of the United States during Reconstruction, and the first impeachment in history of a sitting United States president.

image Charles Darwin publishes The Variation of Animals and Plants under Domestication, in which he offers his own theory of heredity, which he called the "Provisional Hypothesis of Pangenesis."

Ernst Haeckel publishes Natürliche Schöpfungsgeschichte, subdividing humanity into 12 separate species. He also asserts that evolution consists of 22 phases, the 21st being the "missing link" between apes and humans.

Thomas Henry Huxley publishes "On the Animals which are Most Nearly Intermediate between Birds and Reptiles," arguing that birds are descendants of dinosaurs. This suggestion will not be taken very seriously for another century.

Three human skulls and other skeletal remains, roughly 30,000 years old, are discovered at a rock shelter called Cro-Magnon (old French for "big hole").

1868

(no entry for this year)

On February 26, Congress sends the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution to the states for approval. The amendment guarantees African-American males the right to vote.

Transcontinental Rail Service Begun in the United States On May 10th, at Promontory Point, Utah, a golden rail spike was struck, completing the first transcontinental railroad line.

image Ulysses S. Grant becomes eighteenth president of the United States.

image Japan colonizes Hokkaido as part of its new nation state.

image The Suez Canal opened to traffic on 17 November. The canal linked the Mediterranean and the Red Sea. It was 103 miles long and it brought Oriental ports 5,000 miles closer to Europe. Work had begun on the canal in 1859, financed primarily by French investors. The canal increased the strategic importance of Egypt to European powers.

image Francis Galton publishes Hereditary Genius. In it he describes a scientific study of human pedigrees from which he concludes that intelligence has a genetic basis.

Huxley, Norman Lockyer and others found Nature Magazine, which becomes one of the world's two most important scientific journals. (The other journal is Science.)

1869

image Painting by : At the Races in the Countryside. This painting was one of the first works that Degas sold (in 1872) to Paul Durand-Ruel, the dealer who became the early champion of the Impressionists. It is not only a landscape but also a scene from everyday life and - most of all - a family portrait. The driver of the carriage is Degas’s friend Paul Valpinçon, who is shown with his wife, a wet nurse, and in the nurse’s lap, the couple’s son, Henri.

image Standard Oil Formed On January 10th, 1870, John D Rockefeller and four partners incorporate the Standard Oil Company. The company gains control of nearly 95% of the oil refining industry in the United States.

The First Vatican Council of the Roman Catholic Church proclaims the dogma of the infallibility of the Pope.

The Franco-Prussian war (1870-71) leads to the formation of the German Empire.

O. C. Marsh discovers the first North American pterosaur, from chalk deposits in Kansas. He calculates the wingspan at 20 feet. The following year, he will collect more fossils that confirm this calculation.

Quarry workers in the Valley Forge area discover the Port Kennedy Bone Cave, under roughly the same site where the Continental Army wintered over a century earlier. The site proves rich in Pleistocene plant and animal fossils, but will be accidentally flooded decades later. The site will be lost to science until its rediscovery after the turn of the 21st century.

The rivalry between fossil collectors O. C. Marsh and E. D. Cope turns ugly when Marsh publicly points out Cope's error in reconstructing a fossil marine reptile (putting its head on the tip of its tail). Their rivalry is the public's gain as they try to outdo each other in identifying new dinosaur species — over 130.

1870

(no entry for this year)

image On October 8th, a fire broke out in the west side of Chicago. The Great Chicago Fire lasted two days, killing 300 people, and destroying most of Chicago. Property damages were estimated at 200 million dollars.

On October 8th, a fire broke out in the village of Peshtigo, Wisconsin. The Peshtigo Fire caused more deaths than any other fire in the history of the United States. By the time it was over, 1,875 square miles (1.2 million acres) of forest had been consumed, an area approximately twice the size of the state of Rhode Island. Some sources list as much as 1.5 million acres burned. Twelve communities were destroyed. An accurate death toll has never been determined since local population records were destroyed in the fire. Between 1,200 and 2,500 people are thought to have lost their lives.

The occurrence of this fire, and several other smaller fires, on the same day as the Great Chicago fire has lead some to speculate that all of the fires may have had a common cause: multiple impacts from fragments of a disintegrating comet.

Richard Leach Maddox invents the gelatin dry plate silver bromide process. Negatives no longer had to be developed immediately. Long before his discovery of the dry gelatin photographic emulsion, Maddox was prominent in what was called photomicrography - photographing minute organisms under the microscope. The eminent photomicrographer of the day, Lionel S. Beale, included as a frontispiece images made by Maddox in his manual 'How to work with the Microscope'.

image image Henry Morton Stanley finds David Livingstone in Africa, greeting the Scotsman with the famous words, "Dr. Livingstone, I presume."

The Second Reich proclaimed With the German victory in France complete, the German Reichstag(parliament) proclaimed the creation of the Second Reich. The Reichstag approved with minor modification the constitution of the Northern German Federation. William I became King of Germany with Otto Bismarck the first chancellor.

image Publication of Charles Darwin's Descent of Man, in which the role of sexual selection in evolution is described for the first time.

Lord Kelvin suggests that "the germs of life might have been brought to the Earth by some meteorite," an idea that will enjoy support a century later.

image Johann Friedrich Miescher isolates a substance which he calls NUCLEIN from the nuclei of white blood cells. The substance was soluble in alkalis but not in acids and came to be known as nucleic acid.

image Lambert Adolphe Jacques Quetelet showed the importance of statistical analysis for biologists and laid the foundation of biometry.

image George Johnstone Stoney notes that the wavelengths of three lines in the hydrogen spectrum are found to have simple ratios, and anticipation of Balmer's formula, an important step towards understanding the structure of the atom.

image James Clerk Maxwell explains how his statistical theory of heat works by inventing MAXWELL'S DEMON, a mythical creature that can see and handle individual molecules. By opening a gate between two vessels containing a gas only one of fast molecules passing into one, the demon would make heat flow from cold to hot.

1871

image Painting by Ilia Efimovich Repin: Barge Haulers on the Volga or Burlaki (Russian: Burlaki na Volge) is an 1870–73 oil-on-canvas painting depicting laboring men dragging a barge on the Volga River. The men seem to almost collapse forward in exhaustion under the burden of hauling a large boat upstream in heavy, hot weather. The work is both a celebration of the men's dignity and fortitude, and a highly emotional condemnation of those who sanctioned such inhumane labor. Although they are presented as stoical and accepting, the men are largely defeated; only one stands out: in the center of both the row and canvas, a brightly colored youth fights against his leather binds and takes on a heroic pose.

image Painting by James McNeill Whistler: Arrangement in Grey and Black No.1, best known under its colloquial name Whistler's Mother, depicts Whistler's mother, Anna McNeill Whistler. The painting is 56.81 by 63.94 inches, displayed in a frame of Whistler's own design. It is exhibited in and held by the Musée d'Orsay in Paris, having been bought by the French state in 1891. It is one of the most famous works by an American artist outside the United States. It has been variously described as an American icon and a Victorian Mona Lisa.

image Ferdinand Julius Cohn coined the term BACTERIUM and founded the study of bacteriology.

1872

image Painting by Claude Monet: Impression, Sunrise (French: Impression, soleil levant) was shown at what would later be known as the "Exhibition of the Impressionists" in April 1874. The painting depicts the port of Le Havre, Monet's hometown, and is his most famous painting of the harbor. Monet claimed that he titled the painting Impression, Sunrise due to his hazy painting style in his depiction of the subject: "They asked me for a title for the catalogue, it couldn't really be taken for a view of Le Havre, and I said: 'Put Impression.'" In addition to this explanation for the title of the work, art historian Paul Smith claims that Monet might have named the painting Impression to excuse his painting from accusations of being unfinished or lacking descriptive detail, but Monet received these criticisms regardless of the title

Slavery is abolished in Puerto Rico.

Spain decrees the end of slavery in Cuba, still a Spanish colony.

QWERTY keyboard invented

image Hermann Wilhelm Vogel discovers dye sensitization, allowing the blue-sensitive but otherwise color-blind photographic emulsions then in use to be made sensitive to green, yellow and red light. Technical problems delay the first use of dye sensitization in a commercial product until the mid-1880s; fully panchromatic emulsions are not in common use until the mid-20th century.

image Anton Schneider observed and described the behavior of nuclear filaments (chromosomes) during cell division in his study of the platyhelminth Mesostoma. His account was the first accurate description of the process of mitosis in animal cells.

Francis Galton publishes a paper entitled "Hereditary Improvement" arguing that people "of really good breed" should be encouraged to reproduce while their inferiors should be discouraged from doing so. This, he argues, will improve humanity the way selective breeding improves livestock.

image James Clerk Maxwell's Electricity and Magnetism contains the basic laws of electromagnetism and predicts, in great detail, such phenomena as radio waves and pressure caused by light rays.

1873

image Painting by Claud Monet: Boulevard des Capucines. From the late 1860s, Monet and other like-minded artists, met with rejection from the conservative Académie des Beaux-Arts which held its annual exhibition at the Salon de Paris. During the latter part of 1873, Monet, Renoir, Pissarro, and Sisley organized the Société anonyme des artistes peintres, sculpteurs et graveurs to exhibit their artworks independently. At their first exhibition, held in April 1874, Monet exhibited the work that was to give the group its lasting name, Impression, Sunrise. Among the works Monet included in the first Impressionist exhibition was The Luncheon, 1868, which features Camille Doncieux and Jean Monet. The painting was rejected by the Paris Salon of 1870. Also in this exhibition was a painting titled Boulevard des Capucines, a painting of the boulevard done from the from the studio of Monet's friend, the photographer Felix Nadar.

image Painting by Edgar Degas: A Cotton Office in New Orleans depicts the artist's uncle Michel Musson's cotton brokerage business (which several years later went bankrupt in an economic crash, according to Michael McMahon of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette when the firm was swamped by the postwar growth of the much larger Cotton Exchange). In the painting, Musson is seen examining raw cotton for its quality while Degas' brother René reads The Daily Picayune. Another brother, Achille, rests against a window wall at left while others, including Musson's partners, go about their business. A Cotton Office in New Orleans was the first painting by Degas to be purchased by a museum, and the first by an Impressionist. Degas' sale of the piece marked a turning point in his career as he moved from being a struggling, unrecognized artist to a recognized and financially stable artist, according to Marilyn Brown in her book Degas and the Business of Art: A Cotton Office in New Orleans. Degas traveled from Europe to New Orleans in late 1872 with his brother, René, to visit his mother's brother, Michael Musson. After the American Civil War, René had joined his uncle's cotton business in New Orleans. Degas was to return to Europe in January 1873, but when his return trip was delayed, he was asked by his relatives to paint their portraits, and decided to show them as a group, at work in the family office.

Thomas J. Watson Sr. is born

The first electric tram operates in New York City.

The Hamburg Tierpark features an "anthropological-zoological" display of Lapps acting out "daily life" with reindeer. The show draws enthusiastic crowds.

The Mütter Museum buys 139 human skulls from Viennese anatomist Joseph Hyrtl. Hyrtl has compiled the collection to show the remarkable variation within European populations, and to debunk the claims of phrenologists. The collection is unusual for the time, when most skull assemblages are aimed at emphasizing differences between ethnic groups.

image Irish physicist George J. Stoney estimates the charge of the then unknown electron to be about 10-20 coulomb, close to the modern value of 1.6021892 x 10-19. He also introduces the term ELECTRON.

image The Cavendish laboratory at Cambridge is completed. Although widely believed to have been named after the 18th-century physicist Henry Cavendish, it is, in fact, named after the entire Cavendish family, because the 19th century steel-making descendent of Henry, William Cavendish, financed the laboratory. The structure of DNA was worked out at the Cavendish many years later by Watson and Crick.

1874

image Painting by Edgar Degas: The Ballet Class (French: La Classe de danse) is in the collection of the Musée d'Orsay, Paris, France. It was commissioned by Jean-Baptiste Faure. Degas temporarily abandoned work on this painting, and delivered a work of a similar name to Faure. The painting depicts dancers at the end of a lesson under ballet master Jules Perrot. Perrot and Degas were friends, and Perrot allowed Degas access to dance classes.

image Painting by Pierre-Auguste Renoir: La Loge (The Theatre Box) depicts an elegant-looking couple sitting in an elevated theater box. This tribute to Parisian modern life was also the artist's principal contribution to the very first Impressionist exhibition of the same year, and it was met with much acclaim. It is now part of the collection at Courtauld Institute of Art in London.

image Eduard Strasburger accurately described the processes of mitotic cell division in plants.

image Francis Galton demonstrates the usefulness of twin studies for elucidating the relative influence of nature (heredity) and nurture (environment) upon behavioral traits.

image Oscar Hertwig concludes from a study on sea urchins that fertilization in both animals and plants consists of the physical union of the two nuclei contributed by the male and female parents.

Paleontologist Roberto Lawley collects a badly eroded Pliocene whale bone near Pisa, Italy, and donates it to the paleontology museum of Florence. In the 21st century, close examination will indicate boreholes of Osedax, mouthless, gutless marine worms (nicknamed zombie worms) that extract nutrients by drilling into bones.

1875

image Painting by Claude Monet: Woman with a Parasol - Madame Monet and Her Son, sometimes known as The Stroll (French: La Promenade) depicts his wife Camille Monet and their son Jean Monet in the period from 1871 to 1877 while they were living in Argenteuil, capturing a moment on a stroll on a windy summer's day. The work is a genre painting of an everyday family scene, not a formal portrait. The work was painted outdoors, en plein air, and quickly, probably in a single period of a few hours. It measures 100 × 81 centimetres (39 × 32 in), his largest work in the 1870s, and is signed "Monet 75" in the lower right corner.

image Painting by Thomas Eakins: The Gross Clinic, or, The Clinic of Dr. Gross, is large painting, measuring 8 feet (240 cm) by 6.5 feet (200 cm). Dr. Samuel D. Gross, a seventy-year-old professor dressed in a black frock coat, lectures a group of Jefferson Medical College students. Admired for its uncompromising realism, The Gross Clinic has an important place documenting the history of medicine—both because it honors the emergence of surgery as a healing profession (previously, surgery was associated primarily with amputation), and because it shows us what the surgical theater looked like in the nineteenth century. In 1875, anesthesia was used, but sterile procedures were not.

image Mark Twain publishes Tom Sawyer.

image image Ferdinand Hurter and Vero Charles Driffield begin systematic evaluation of sensitivity characteristics of photographic emulsions — the science of sensitometry. They also invent a photographic exposure estimation device known as an actinograph. In 1920, William Bates Ferguson edits a memorial volume: The Photographic Researches of Ferdinand Hurter & Vero C. Driffield: Being a Reprint of Their Published Papers, Together With a History of Their Early Work & a Bibliography of Later Work on the Same Subject.

image Custer Killed at Little Bighorn On June 25th, in Dakota territory, at the Little Big Horn, General George Armstrong Custer (who graduated from West Point in 1861, last in his class) and all 256 troops were killed. The defeat of Custer in the Battle of the Little Big Horn was the last Indian victory.

image Alexander Graham Bell patents the telephone.

Charles Doolittle Walcott becomes the first to successfully find and describe elusive trilobite legs, ending speculation about how the animals moved.

image Eugen Goldstein shows that the radiation in a vacuum tube produced when an electric current is forced through the tube starts at the cathode. Goldstein introduces the term CATHODE RAY to describe the light emitted.

1876

image Painting by Pierre-Auguste Renoir: Bal du moulin de la Galette (commonly known as Dance at Le moulin de la Galette) is housed at the Musée d'Orsay in Paris and is one of Impressionism's most celebrated masterpieces. The painting depicts a typical Sunday afternoon at Moulin de la Galette in the district of Montmartre in Paris. In the late 19th century, working class Parisians would dress up and spend time there dancing, drinking, and eating galettes into the evening. Like other works of Renoir's early maturity, Bal du moulin de la Galette is a typically Impressionist snapshot of real life. It shows a richness of form, a fluidity of brush stroke, and a flickering light.

The Compromise of 1877 ends Reconstruction and gives the Presidency to Rutherford B. Hayes. Although Democratic presidential candidate Samuel Tilden won the popular vote, Southern Democratic leaders agreed to support Rutherford Hayes' efforts to obtain the disputed electoral votes of Florida, Louisiana, and South Carolina in exchange for the withdrawal of the last federal troops from the South and the end of federal efforts to protect the civil rights of African Americans.

image Rutherford B. Hayes becomes nineteenth president of the United States.

image The US flag is modified to have thirty-eight stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Colorado.

Frederick Douglass becomes US Marshal for the District of Columbia.

image Phonograph Invented by Edison On December 15th, Thomas Edison applied for a patent for his phonograph. Edison initially believed it would be used to record business sessions, or family voices. Edison became famous with this invention and was invited to the White House for a demonstration.

image Hermann Fol reports watching the spermatozoan of a starfish penetrate the egg. He was able to see the transfer of the intact nucleus of the sperm into the egg, where it became the male pronucleus.

image A new Archaeopteryx fossil is discovered in Solnhofen, complete with a toothy jaw. This well-preserved fossil, which will become known as the Berlin Archaeopteryx, supports Huxley's previous observations about its reptilian affinities.

Comparative anatomy professor François Louis Paul Gervais undertakes thin-section microscopy studies of fossil eggs. His work will be largely forgotten until Roy Chapman Andrews discovers dinosaur eggs in Mongolia in the 1920s.

image Germ Theory of Disease: Louis Pasteur presented his Germ Theory of disease. Joseph Lister went on to initiate the practice of insuring that surgeons were clean before they conducted surgery.

1877

image Early color photo of Agen, France, by Louis Ducos du Hauron, 1877. The cathedral in the scene is the Cathédrale Saint-Caprais d'Agen.

image Painting by Claude Monet: The Gare Saint-Lazare: Arrival of a Train. The Gare Saint-Lazare has been represented in a number of artworks. It attracted artists during the Impressionist period and many of them lived very close to the Gare St-Lazare during the 1870s and 1880s. In 1877, painter Claude Monet rented a studio near the Gare Saint Lazare. That same year he exhibited seven paintings of the railway station in an impressionist painting exhibition. He completed several paintings of this subject. The Gare Saint-Lazare is far different than Monet's previous paintings of harbors, boats and oceans that viewers had seen before. The Gare Saint-Lazare series of paintings lead the viewers through a tour of the train station in different points of the day. “Monet exemplifies the modern life, in all its chaos and instability,” The steam coming from the trains creates a way of dissolving the train and showing the impressionistic style of blending colors and light. Everything dissipates with the steam of the train and turns into a flurry of blended colors. As said by Émile Zola, “Monet is able to turn a normally dirty and gritty place into a peaceful and beautiful scene…You can hear the trains rumbling in, see the smoke billow up under the huge roofs…that is where painting is today…our artists have to find the poetry in train station, the way their fathers found the poetry in forests and rivers.” “Monet’s work on the Gare Saint-Lazare is unparalleled in its evocation of steamm and the smoke-filled station. In spite of the impressionist style, the work reproduces accurately the topography of the area, even allowing one to deduce the precise point where the artist was standing while painting. This is the first time an artist had showed a single theme through a series of variations”

image Painting by Claude Monet: The Gare Saint-Lazare. The Gare Saint-Lazare has been represented in a number of artworks. It attracted artists during the Impressionist period and many of them lived very close to the Gare St-Lazare during the 1870s and 1880s. In 1877, painter Claude Monet rented a studio near the Gare Saint Lazare. That same year he exhibited seven paintings of the railway station in an impressionist painting exhibition. He completed several paintings of this subject. The Gare Saint-Lazare is far different than Monet's previous paintings of harbors, boats and oceans that viewers had seen before. The Gare Saint-Lazare series of paintings lead the viewers through a tour of the train station in different points of the day. “Monet exemplifies the modern life, in all its chaos and instability,” The steam coming from the trains creates a way of dissolving the train and showing the impressionistic style of blending colors and light. Everything dissipates with the steam of the train and turns into a flurry of blended colors. As said by Émile Zola, “Monet is able to turn a normally dirty and gritty place into a peaceful and beautiful scene…You can hear the trains rumbling in, see the smoke billow up under the huge roofs…that is where painting is today…our artists have to find the poetry in train station, the way their fathers found the poetry in forests and rivers.” “Monet’s work on the Gare Saint-Lazare is unparalleled in its evocation of steamm and the smoke-filled station. In spite of the impressionist style, the work reproduces accurately the topography of the area, even allowing one to deduce the precise point where the artist was standing while painting. This is the first time an artist had showed a single theme through a series of variations”

image Painting by Gustave Caillebotte: Paris Street; Rainy Day (French Rue de Paris, temps de pluie) is his best known work. It shows a number of individuals walking through the Place de Dublin, in 1877 known as the Carrefour de Moscou, at an intersection to the east of the Gare Saint-Lazare in north Paris. Although Caillebotte was a friend and patron of many of the impressionist painters, and this work is part of that school, it differs in its realism and reliance on line rather than broad brush strokes. Caillebotte's interest in photography is evident. The figures in the foreground appear "out of focus", those in the mid-distance (the carriage and the pedestrians in the intersection) have sharp edges, while the features in the background become progressively indistinct. The severe cropping of some figures — particularly the man to the far right — further suggests the influence.

image image Thomas Edison and Joseph Wilson Swan produce first successful incandescent electric light.

Willgodt T. Odhner granted a patent for a calculating machine

image Eadweard Muybridge uses a row of cameras with trip-wires to make a high-speed photographic analysis of a galloping horse. Each picture is taken in less than the two-thousandth part of a second, and they are taken in sufficiently rapid sequence (about 25 per second) that they constitute a brief real-time "movie" that can be viewed by using a device such as a zoetrope, a photographic "first".

Heat ripening of gelatin emulsions is discovered. This greatly increases sensitivity and makes possible very short "snapshot" exposures.

image The world's first oil tanker — the Zoroaster — is launched, in the Caspian Sea. The ship was designed by Ludvig Nobel, the brother of Alfred Nobel.

image Wilhelm Friedrich Kühne proposed the term ENZYME (meaning "in yeast") and distinguished enzymes from the micro-organisms that produce them.

Charlotte Hill collects a well-preserved fossil butterfly, later named Prodryas persephone, from the Florissant Formation in Colorado. The fossil is about 35 million years old.

Entire skeletons of Iguanodon are discovered in Belgium, enabling a more accurate reconstruction of this dinosaur than those of Owen and Waterhouse Hawkins in the 1850s. Engineer-turned-paleontologist Louis Dollo will publish the first of several papers on these fossils in 1882.

The first electric street lighting appears, in London.

1878

image Photograph by Eadweard Muybridge: Sallie Gardner at a Gallop, also known as The Horse in Motion, is a series of photographs consisting of a galloping horse, the result of a photographic experiment on June 15, 1878. Sometimes cited as an early silent film, the series and later experiments like it were precursors to the development of motion pictures. The series consists of 24 photographs shot in rapid succession that were shown on a zoopraxiscope. Muybridge was commissioned by Leland Stanford, the industrialist and horseman, who was interested in gait analysis. The purpose of the shoot was to determine whether a galloping horse ever lifts all four feet completely off the ground during the gait; at this speed, the human eye cannot break down the action. Muybridge arranged 24 cameras, 27 inches apart, along a track parallel to the horse's path, with their shutters controlled by trip wires triggered by the horse's legs. The stop-action photographs showed the mare lifted all four legs off the ground at certain points during the gallop. Run together, the photographs produced the effect of the horse in motion, or a film.

image F. W. Woolworth opens his first "five and dime store".

image From 1879 through 1882, Walther Flemming describes and names CHROMATIN, MITOSIS, and the SPIREME. He makes the first accurate counts of chromosome numbers and accurately drew the "longitudinal splitting" of chromosomes.

Eight-year-old Maria de Sautuola finds a Paleolithic cave drawing of bison on her father's property in Spain. It is the oldest artwork yet discovered, but it will be dismissed as a forgery for years, considered too beautiful to be the work of prehistoric savages.

Charles Lapworth resolves a priority dispute between Adam Sedgwick and Roderick Murchison by assigning older rocks to the Cambrian (named by Sedgwick), younger rocks to the Silurian (named by Murchison), and naming the Ordivician System in between.

The United States Geological Survey is formed.

1879

(no entry for this year)

image image image Throughout the decade of 1880-1890, Walther Flemming, Eduard Strasburger, Edouard van Beneden, and others elucidate the essential facts of cell division and stressed the importance of the qualitative and quantitative equality of chromosome distribution to daughter cells.

Charles Darwin and his son Francis publish the results of their studies on plant responses to light, explaining that phototropism (bending toward the light) results from light reaching the top of a plant's shoot.

image Pierre Curie discovers the piezoelectric effect: certain substances produce an electric current when they are physically distorted, and conversely they are physically distorted when an electric current is applied to them. This effect has many applications, including, in the 21st century, the construction of high-end tweeters in stereo systems.

1880

(no entry for this year)

image James A Garfield becomes twentieth president of the United States.

Six months after taking office, Garfield becomes the second US President to be assassinated, when he was shot by Charles J. Guiteau — a disgruntled and impoverished would-be office holder. When he purchased the pistol used in the assassination, he chose to buy one with an ivory handle because he thought it would look good as a museum exhibit after the assassination.

In January, the Tennessee State Legislature votes to segregate railroad passenger cars.

image On the Fourth of July, Booker T. Washington opens Tuskegee Institute in central Alabama.

image Chester A. Arthur becomes twenty-first president of the United States.

image Clara Barton founds the American Red Cross.

image Hermann Ludwig von Helmholtz shows that the electrical charges in atoms are divided into definite integral portions, suggesting the idea that there is a smallest unit of electricity.

1881

image Painting by Pierre-Auguste Renoir: The Umbrellas (French: Les Parapluies) is an oil-on-canvas painting, painted in two phases in the 1880s. It is owned by the National Gallery in London as part of the Lane Bequest, but is displayed alternately in London and at the Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane. In May 2013, it returned to Dublin for a six-year period. Renoir began the painting in about 1880-81, using the loose brushwork with dark and bright tones typical of the Impressionist movement. In about 1885-6, after losing his attachment to Impressionism and drawing inspiration from classical art he had seen in Italy and the works of Ingres and Cézanne, he reworked parts of the painting, particularly the principal female figure to the left of the frame, in a more classical linear style using more muted colours, and added the background and the umbrellas themselves. X-ray photography has shown that the clothing of the female figure was originally different: she wore a hat and her dress had horizontal rows of frills, with white lace at its cuffs and collar, suggesting that she was middle class, whereas the simpler clothes in the revised painting mark her out as a member of the working class, a grisette not a bourgeoise. The x-ray analysis and then the changing fashions allow the periods of work to be dated with reasonable accuracy.

The first hydro-electric plant opens, in Wisconsin.

Britain Invades Egypt The British invaded Egypt in response to anti foreign riots. The British defeated the army of Arabi Pasha at Al Tell. On September 15th they captured Cairo. Arabi pasha the nationalist leader was deported to Ceylon.

Walther Flemming publishes accurate depictions of cell division (mitosis) in Zellsubstanz, Kern und Zelltheilung.

image Eduard Strasburger coins the terms CYTOPLASM and NUCLEOPLASM.

image W. Flemming discovers lampbrush chromosomes and coins the term MITOSIS.

Karl Alfred von Zittel describes an exceptionally well-preserved pterosaur wing showing flight membranes in detail.

Charles Darwin publishes his final letter to Nature, on the dispersal of freshwater bivalves. His obituary appears the same month. In this paper, Darwin acknowledges the assistance of W. D. Crick or Northampton. Later, Crick's grandson — Francis Crick — will be one of the co-discoverers of the structure of DNA.

image John William Strutt, Lord Rayleigh, discovers that the ratio of the atomic mass of oxygen to that of hydrogen is not 16 exactly, as had been assumed, but 15.882.

1882

image Painting by Édouard Manet: A Bar at the Folies-Bergère (French: Un bar aux Folies Bergère), is considered Manet's last major work. It depicts a scene in the Folies Bergère nightclub in Paris. It originally belonged to the composer Emmanuel Chabrier, who was Manet's neighbor, and hung over his piano. The painting exemplifies Manet's commitment to Realism in its detailed representation of a contemporary scene. Many features have puzzled critics but almost all of them have been shown to have a rationale, and the painting has been the subject of numerous popular and scholarly articles. The central figure stands before a mirror, although critics — accusing Manet of ignorance of perspective and alleging various impossibilities in the painting — have debated this point since the earliest reviews were published. In 2000, however, a photograph taken from a suitable point of view of a staged reconstruction was shown to reproduce the scene as painted by Manet.

image Painting by John Singer Sargent: Lady with the Rose (Charlotte Louise Burckhardt). The subject of this portrait was the twenty-year-old daughter of a Swiss merchant and his American wife, members of the artist’s cosmopolitan circle in Paris. Did she enjoy the experience? Look at her expression.

image Sculpture by Auguste Rodin: The sculpture, The Kiss, was originally titled Francesca da Rimini, as it depicts the 13th-century Italian noblewoman immortalised in Dante's Inferno (Circle 2, Canto 5) who falls in love with her husband Giovanni Malatesta's younger brother Paolo. Having fallen in love while reading the story of Lancelot and Guinevere, the couple are discovered and killed by Francesca's husband. In the sculpture, the book can be seen in Paolo's hand. The lovers' lips do not actually touch in the sculpture, suggesting that they were interrupted and met their demise without their lips ever having touched. When critics first saw the sculpture in 1887, they suggested the less specific title Le Baiser (The Kiss).

On October 16, the United States Supreme Court declares invalid the Civil Rights Act of 1875, stating that the federal government cannot bar corporations or individuals from discriminating on the basis of race.

Scheutz invents the first printing calculator

image German engineer Gottlieb Daimler creates a portable engine that leads to the age of the automobile.

image On May 25, the New York boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn were linked with the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge. The bridge was the first steel suspension bridge erected in the United States. It was built at a cost of $16 million and 26 lives. When it opened, the Brooklyn Bridge was the longest suspension bridge in the world.

image August Weismann points out the distinction in animals between the somatic cell line and the germ cells, stressing that only changes in germ cells are transmitted to further generations.

image Edouard van Beneden announced the principles of genetic continuity of chromosomes and reported the occurrence of chromosome reduction at germ cell formation. The sperm and egg are haploid and fertilization restores the diploid chromosome number.

image Wilhelm Roux offers a possible explanation for the function of mitosis.

image William Keith Brooks, a professor at The Johns Hopkins University, publishes The Law of Heredity: A Study of the Cause of Variation and the Origin of Living Organisms. Although this speculative work did not significantly advance the understanding of heredity, brooks' thinking is important because during his career he provided instruction to and supervised the early research of Thomas H. Morgan, Edmund Beecher Wilson, and William Bateson — ultimately some of the most important contributors to the new science of genetics.

image Pierre Émile Duclaux introduces the custom of designating an enzyme by the by the name of the substrate on which its action was first reported and adding the suffix -ase.

Geologist James Hall names Cryptozoon, based on cabbagelike rocks up to meter across. Although Hall's biologic interpretation of these structures will be heavily criticized, it will ultimately prove correct.

1883

(no entry for this year)

image George Eastman invents flexible, paper-based photographic film.

image image image image During 1884-88, identification of the cell nucleus as the basis for inheritance was independently reported by Oscar Hertwig, Eduard Strasburger, Albrecht von Kölliker, and August Weismann.

image Gregor Mendel dies on January 6th, without ever knowing that his work on peas would lead to the transformation of biological research.

image image image Walther Flemming, Eduard Strasburger and Edouard van Beneden demonstrate that chromosome doubling occurs by a process of longitudinal splitting. Strasburger describes and names the PROPHASE, METAPHASE, and ANAPHASEstages of chromosomal division.

1884

(no entry for this year)

image James Dewar invents a thermos bottle in which heat is prevented from leaking via vacuum between two glass walls. The model becomes known as the Dewar Flask.

image The world's first skyscraper, the Home Insurance Company Building, is erected in Chicago.

image Grover Cleveland becomes twenty-second president of the United States.

image August Weismann formulates the germ-plasm theory which held that the germ plasm was separate from the somatoplasm and was continuous from generation to generation.

image Carl Rabl theorized the individuality of chromosomes in all stages of the cell cycle.

image Walther Flemming observed sister chromatids passing to opposite poles of the cell during mitosis.

Johann Jakob Balmer discovers the formula for the hydrogen spectrum that will later inspire Niels Bohr to develop his model of the atom.

1885

image Painting by Vincent van Gogh: The Potato Eaters (Dutch: De Aardappeleters). Van Gogh said he wanted to depict peasants as they really were. He deliberately chose coarse and ugly models, thinking that they would be natural and unspoiled in his finished work: "You see, I really have wanted to make it so that people get the idea that these folk, who are eating their potatoes by the light of their little lamp, have tilled the earth themselves with these hands they are putting in the dish, and so it speaks of manual labor and — that they have thus honestly earned their food. I wanted it to give the idea of a wholly different way of life from ours — civilized people. So I certainly don't want everyone just to admire it or approve of it without knowing why."

Slavery is abolished in Cuba.

Daimler produces his first car.

image Francis Galton devised a new useful statistical tool, the correlation table.

image Hugo de Vries (Holland) discovers aberrant evening primrose plants at Hilversum, Holland. Experiments with these extending over 15 years formed the basis for his mutation theory of evolution.

image A. Ficatier publishes an account of the discovery of a trilobite perforated with two holes (perhaps to hang on a thread) at a Magdalenian-age site in France. The fossil lends the site its name of La Grotte du Trilobite.

John Bell Hatcher develops the "ant hill method of collecting minute fossils," collecting hundreds of tiny fossil teeth and jaws pushed to the surface by ants. He even carries shovelfuls of ants and sediment to other fossil localities in need of excavation by the arthropods.

image William Crookes proposes that atomic weights measured by chemists are averages of the weights of different kinds of atoms of the same element (although it will not be until 1910 that Frederick Soddy identifies these different kinds of atoms as isotopes).

1886

image Painting by Georges Seurat: A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte (French: Un dimanche après-midi à l'Île de la Grande Jatte) is one of the artist's most famous works. It is a leading example of pointillism technique, executed on a large canvas. Seurat's composition includes a number of Parisians at a park on the banks of the River Seine. Inspired by optical effects and perception inherent in the color theories of Michel Eugène Chevreul, Ogden Rood and others, Seurat adapted this scientific research to his painting. Seurat contrasted miniature dots or small brushstrokes of colors that when unified optically in the human eye were perceived as a single shade or hue. He believed that this form of painting, called divisionism at the time but now known as pointillism, would make the colors more brilliant and powerful than standard brushstrokes.

African-American players are banned from major league baseball.

Slavery is abolished in Brazil

Dorr E. Felt was granted a patent for the Comptometer.

Introduction of the Comptometer by Felt & Tarrant Co

Celluloid film base introduced.

Interstate Commerce Act Passed On February 4, President Cleveland signed into law the first bill regulating the railroads. The act, which called for just and equal rates, also limited pooling (secret pacts between railroads). This measure received broad support in the Congress.

The United States acquires Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as a coaling station and future naval base.

Worthington George Smith excavates a Bronze Age grave of a mother and child, surrounded by at least 200 fossil sea urchins, on Dunstable Downs. He nicknames the mother Maud.

image August Weismann elaborated an all-encompassing theory of chromosome behavior during cell division and fertilization and predicted the occurrence of a reduction division (meiosis) in all sexual organisms.

image Edouard van Beneden demonstrated chromosome reduction in gamete maturation, thereby confirming August Weismann's predictions.

image Wilhelm Roux put forth the suggestion that the linearly arranged qualities of the chromosomes were equally transmitted to both daughter cells at meiosis.

image Harry Govier Seeley determines that dinosaurs consist of "lizard-hipped" (saurischian) and "bird-hipped" (ornithischian) branches.

image image Albert Michelson and Edward Morley measure the velocity of light in two directions, attempting to detect the proper motion of Earth through the ether (a hypothesized fluid that was assumed to fill all space, providing a medium for the transport of electromagnetic waves). The Michelson Morley experiment reveals no evidence of motion.

image Ernst Mach notes that airflow becomes disturbed at the speed of sound.

1887

(no entry for this year)

Babbage's Analytical Engine Operates For The First Time

Burroughs Receives Patent for Calculating Machine

Introduction of its adder-lister by William Seward Burroughs

image Eastman patents Kodak roll-film camera.

Louis Le Prince makes Roundhay Garden Scene. It is believed to be the first-ever motion picture on film.

image John Boyd Dunlop, trained as a veterinary surgeon, devises the first practical pneumatic tire in response to a request from his son for a more comfortable tricycle. His first effort involved an inflated section of garden hose, fitted to the rear wheels of the tricycle. Although born in Scotland, Dunlop spent most of his life in Northern Ireland, where his image occurs on the current £10 note, issued by the Northern Bank.

image George Eastman Patents Camera George Eastman patents the hand held camera.

Slavery is abolished in Brazil, bringing to an end of the legal sanction of slavery in the Americas.

German anatomist W. von Waldeyer names chromosomes.

image Heinrich Wilhelm Gottfried von Waldeyer names the CHROMOSOME.

image Theodor Boveri verifies August Weismann's predictions of chromosome reduction by direct observation in Ascaris.

image Heinrich Rudolf Hertz produces and detects radio waves for the first time. Radio waves will be called Hertzian waves until renamed by Marconi, who calls them radiotelegraphy waves.

1888

image Painting by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema: The Roses of Heliogabalus shows a group of Roman diners at a banquet, being swamped by drifts of pink rose petals falling from a false ceiling above. The Roman emperor Elagabalus reclines on a platform behind them, wearing a golden robe and a tiara, watching the spectacle with other garlanded guests. A woman plays the double pipes beside a marble pillar in the background, wearing the leopard skin of a maenad, with a bronze statue of Dionysus, based on the Ludovisi Dionysus, in front of a view of distant hills. The painting depicts a (probably invented) episode in the life of the Roman emperor Elagabalus, also known as Heliogabalus, (204–222), taken from the Augustan History. Although the Latin refers to "violets and other flowers", Alma-Tadema depicts Elagabalus smothering his unsuspecting guests with rose petals released from a false ceiling.

image Painting by Vincent van Gogh: Sunflowers (original title, in French: Tournesols). Sunflowers are the subject of two series of still life paintings by the Dutch painter . The earlier series, executed in Paris in 1887, depicts the flowers lying on the ground, while the second set, executed a year later in Arles, shows bouquets of sunflowers in a vase. In the artist's mind both sets were linked by the name of his friend Paul Gauguin, who acquired two of the Paris versions. About eight months later van Gogh hoped to welcome and to impress Gauguin again with Sunflowers, now part of the painted Décoration for the Yellow House that he prepared for the guestroom of his home in Arles, where Gauguin was supposed to stay. After Gauguin's departure, van Gogh imagined the two major versions as wings of the Berceuse Triptych, and finally he included them in his Les XX in Bruxelles exhibit

Florida becomes the first state to use the poll tax to disenfranchise black voters.

image Frederick Douglass is appointed minister to Haiti.

Herman Hollerith lodges patent for Punch Card technology

Nintendo is founded

The first commercially available transparent celluloid roll film is introduced by the Eastman Company, later renamed the Eastman Kodak Company and commonly known as Kodak.

image Benjamin Harrison becomes twenty-third president of the United States.

Oklahoma Land Rush The last major unsettled territory in the United States (which had been exclusively Indian) is opened for settlement. Over 200,000 settlers gather at the borders of the territory awaiting the opportunity to seize land. On the first day the territory was opened, 12,000 settlers arrived in Guthrie, Oklahoma.

image Francis Galton publishes Natural Inheritance. In it he describes the quantitative measurement of metric traits in populations. He thus founds biometry and the statistical study of variation. Ultimately, he formulates the Law of Ancestral Inheritance, a statistical description of the relative contributions to heredity made by one's ancestors.

image George Francis Fitzgerald formulates the principle that objects shrink slightly in the direction they are traveling, now known as the Fitzgerald-Lorenz contraction, since Hendrik Antoon Lorentz reaches the same conclusion a few years later.

1889

image Painting by Vincent van Gogh: The Starry Night depicts the view from the east-facing window of his asylum room at Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, just before sunrise, with the addition of an idealized village. It is regarded as among Van Gogh's finest works, and is one of the most recognized paintings in the history of Western culture. In the aftermath of the 23 December 1888 breakdown that resulted in the self-mutilation of his left ear, Van Gogh voluntarily admitted himself to the Saint-Paul-de-Mausole lunatic asylum on 8 May 1889. Housed in a former monastery, Saint-Paul-de-Mausole catered to the wealthy and was less than half full when Van Gogh arrived, allowing him to occupy not only a second-story bedroom but also a ground-floor room for use as a painting studio.

image About 60 common starlings are released into New York's Central Park by Eugene Schieffelin, as part of an effort to introduce every bird species mentioned in the works of William Shakespeare into North America. The original 60 birds have since swelled in number to 150 million, occupying an area extending from southern Canada and Alaska to Central America.

image The US flag is modified to have forty-three stars, reflecting the addition of five new states: Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Washington.

Herman Hollerith designs tabulating machines for 1890 U.S. Census

Hypertext Pioneer Vannevar Bush Is Born

US Census Bureau announces results using Herman Hollerith's machine

The United States Army massacres 200 Indians at Wounded Knee in South Dakota, ending the Indian wars of resistance.

image The numerical equality of paternal and maternal chromosomes at fertilization was established by Theodor Boveri and Jean-Louis-Léon Guignard.

1890

(no entry for this year)

image The US flag is modified to have forty-four stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Wyoming.

Gabriel Lippmann announces a "method of reproducing colors photographically based on the phenomenon of interference".

William Kennedy Laurie Dickson develops the "kinetoscopic" motion picture camera while working for Thomas Edison.

The first basketball game is played, in Springfield, Massachusetts.

1891

(no entry for this year)

A record 230 people are lynched in the United States this year; 161 are black and 69 white.

image Publication of August Weismann's book Das Keimplasma (The Germ Plasm) emphasized meiosis as an exact mechanism of chromosome distribution.

Joseph Whiteaves describes Anomalocaris, meaning "anomalous shrimp," from the Cambrian. The fossil that Whiteaves identifies as a shrimp will later prove to be part of a much larger animal.

1892

image Painting by Paul Gauguin: Spirit of the Dead Watching (Manao tupapau) is an oil on burlap canvas depicting a naked Tahitian girl lying on her stomach. An old woman is seated behind her. Gauguin said the title may refer to either the girl imagining the ghost, or the ghost imagining her. The subject of the painting is Gauguin's young native wife Teha'amana (called Tehura in his letters), who one night, according to Gauguin, was lying in fear when he arrived home late: " ... motionless, naked, belly down on the bed: she stared up at me, her eyes wide with fear, '... Perhaps she took me, with my anguished face, for one of those legendary demons or specters, the Tupapaus that filled the sleepless nights of her people."

image Grover Cleveland becomes twenty-fourth president of the United States.

Entomologist E.B. Poulton studies caterpillars from the species Gastropacha quercifolia, noting how siblings look different depending on where they live and what they eat. His discovery will become known as phenotypic plasticity.

image Wilhelm Wien discovers that the maximum wavelength emitted by hot body varies inversely with its absolute temperature. Wien's law becomes useful in establishing the temperature of stars. The problems he has with deriving an equation to describe black-body radiation lead to Max Planck's introduction of the quantum in 1900.

1893

image Painting by Edvard Munch: The Scream (Norwegian: Skrik). The same title — The Scream — is the popular name given to each of four versions of a composition, created as both paintings and pastels, by Norwegian Expressionist artist between 1893 and 1910. The German title Munch gave these works is Der Schrei der Natur (The Scream of Nature). The works show a figure with an agonized expression against a landscape with a tumultuous orange sky. Arthur Lubow has described The Scream as "an icon of modern art, a Mona Lisa for our time." Edvard Munch created the four versions in various media. The National Gallery in Oslo, Norway, holds one of two painted versions (1893, shown here). The Munch Museum holds the other painted version and a pastel version from 1893. The fourth version (pastel, 1895) was sold for $119,922,600 at Sotheby's Impressionist and Modern Art auction on 2 May 2012 to financier Leon Black, the fourth highest nominal price paid for a painting at auction. The painting was on display in the Museum of Modern Art in New York from October 2012 to April 2013.

image Painting by Franz Stuck: The Sin (German: Die Sünde) depicts the nude Eve with a big serpent wrapped around her body. In the upper right corner is a bright field, while the rest of the surroundings are dark. The motif was conceived as a development of Stuck's 1889 painting Sensuality (Die Sinnlichkeit). The Sin was first exhibited in 1893, at the inaugural exhibition of the Munich Secession, where it caused a sensation. It was bought by the Neue Pinakothek in Munich and became a critical and commercial breakthrough for Stuck. It has since become an emblematic painting for the symbolist movement. Stuck made twelve known versions of the painting. Some of these can be viewed at the Neue Pinakothek in Munich, the National Gallery in Berlin, the Galleria di arte Moderna in Palermo, the Frye Art Museum in Seattle, and at the Villa Stuck in Munich, where it is enshrined in the artist's Künstleraltar.

image Hans Driesch expounded the view that all nuclei of an organism were equipotential but varied in their activity in accordance with the differentiation of tissues.

image Karl Pearson published the first in a long series of contributions to the mathematical theory of evolution. Methods for analyzing statistical frequency distributions were developed in detail.

image William Bateson's Materials for the Study of Variation emphasized the importance of discontinuous variations, foreshadowing the rediscovery of Mendel's work.

Eugène Dubois publishes his monograph of Pithecanthropus erectus, or Java Man, a missing link between humans and apes.

French paleontologist Charles Brongniart describes a fossil dragonfly from the Carboniferous with a 2-foot (63-centimeter) wingspan. The find implies a higher oxygen content in the Earth's ancient atmosphere.

image The intricately carved mammoth ivory figurine known as the Lady (or Venus) of Brassempouy is discovered in France. At roughly 25,000 years old, it ranks among the earliest known depictions of a human face.

image Joseph John (J.J.) Thomson announces that he has found that the velocity of cathode rays is much lower than that of light.

1894

image Painting by Claude Monet: The Rouen Cathedral, Full Sunlight was one of a series, with each painting in the series intended to capture the facade of the Rouen Cathedral at different times of the day and year, reflecting changes in its appearance under different lighting conditions. The Rouen Cathedral paintings, more than thirty in all, were made in 1892 and 1893, then reworked in Monet's studio in 1894. Monet rented spaces across the street from the cathedral, where he set up temporary studios for the purpose. In 1895, he selected what he considered to be the twenty best paintings from the series for display at his Paris dealer's gallery, and of these he sold eight before the exhibition was over. Pissarro and Cézanne visited the exhibition and praised the series highly. When Monet painted the Rouen Cathedral series, he had long since been impressed with the way light imparts to a subject a distinctly different character at different times of the day and the year, and as atmospheric conditions change. For Monet, the effects of light on a subject became as important as the subject itself.

Auguste and Louis Lumière invent the cinématographe.

image Cornflakes are invented in Battle Creek, Michigan, by John Harvey Kellogg — the chief medical officer of the Battle Creek sanitarium.

The Lumiere Brothers introduce moving pictures.

The Sino-Japanese War ends and Japan gains dominance over Korea and Taiwan.

A team of paleontologists, including Samuel Williston, Elmer Riggs and Barnum Brown, successfully excavates a Triceratops fossil in Wyoming.

image Charles Thomson Rees Wilson develops the CLOUD CHAMBER, a box containing a gas that is saturated. When a charged particle passes through the gas, small droplets are formed that make the track of the particle visible. The cloud chamber becomes a powerful tool in particle physics.

image Pierre Curie shows that as the temperature of the magnet is increased, there is a level at which the magnetism is disrupted and ceases to exist. This temperature is still called the Curie point.

image Wilhelm Konrad Röntgen (Roentgen) discovers X-rays, which will soon be applied in the visualization of bodily structures and in the induction of genetic mutations (both intentionally and accidentally).

1895

(no entry for this year)

The first Sunday newspaper comics appear.

image The US flag is modified to have forty-five stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Utah.

In Plessy vs. Ferguson, the United States Supreme Court declares legalized segregation in the United States to be constitutional.

image The will of Alfred Nobel establishes annual prizes for peace, science, and literature.

image E. B. Wilson publishes The Cell in Development and Heredity. This influential treatise (ultimately reprinted in several editions) distills the information compiled concerning cytology in the half-century since Schleiden and Schwann put forth the cell theory.

Dublin anatomist Daniel Cunningham concludes that Neanderthals represent an intermediate step between Pithecanthropus erectus and modern humans.

J. de Morgan describes nine pierced fossil urchins found in a Chalcolithic tomb at Toukh.

image Less than three months after the discovery of x-rays, Dartmouth College Professor of Physics Edwin Frost and his brother, the then physician in chief of Mary Hitchcock Hospital, Gilman Frost, MD, take the first clinical X-ray in the US — an image of Eddie McCarthy's fractured left wrist.

image Antoine-Henri Becquerel discovers rays produced by uranium — the first observation of natural radioactivity.

1896

(no entry for this year)

America's first subway opens, in Boston.

Russian physicist Alexander Popov uses an antenna to transmit radio waves over a distance of 5 km.

image William McKinley becomes twenty-fifth president of the United States. McKinley was the last veteran of the Civil war to serve as President. He enlisted as a private in the 23rd Ohio Infantry, and by the end of the war he had been promoted several times, finally leaving the service with the rank of Captain.

image Zionist activity begins in the Middle East, under the World Zionist Congress called by Theodore Herzl.

image Gabriel Bertrand coined the term COENZYME to designate inorganic substances which were necessary to activate certain enzymes.

Renowned physicist Lord Kelvin gives a lecture at London's Victoria Institute claiming that the sun, which is cooling from its initial formation, can be no more than 20 million years old.

image Joseph John Thomson discovers the electron, the first known particle that is smaller than an atom, in part because he has better vacuum pumps that were previously available. He, and independently, Emil Wiechert, determine the ratio of mass to charge of the particles by deflecting them by electric and magnetic fields.

Marie Curie begins research of "uranium rays" that will lead to the discovery of radioactivity.

1897

image Painting by : The Boulevard Montmartre on a Winter Morning. In the late 1890s, Pissarro painted a series of works depicting the boulevards, as seen from his windows, at various times of year.

image Painting by Paul Gauguin: Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?. Gauguin inscribed the original French title in the upper left corner: D'où Venons Nous / Que Sommes Nous / Où Allons Nous. The inscription the artist wrote on his canvas has no question mark, no dash, and all words are capitalized. In the upper right corner he signed and dated the painting: P. Gauguin / 1897. The painting was created in Tahiti, and is in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. Gauguin had been a student at the Petit Séminaire de La Chapelle-Saint-Mesmin, just outside Orléans, from the age of eleven to the age of sixteen. His subjects there included a class in Catholic liturgy; the teacher for this class was the Bishop of Orléans, Félix-Antoine-Philibert Dupanloup. Dupanloup had devised his own catechism to be lodged in the minds of the young schoolboys, and to lead them towards proper spiritual reflections on the nature of life. The three fundamental questions in this catechism were: "Where does humanity come from?" "Where is it going to?", "How does humanity proceed?". Although in later life Gauguin was vociferously anticlerical, these questions from Dupanloup's catechism obviously had lodged in his mind, and "where?" became the key question that Gauguin asked in his art.

The United States Supreme Court, in Williams vs. Mississippi, rules that poll taxes and literacy tests do not violate the Constitution.

Kodak introduces the Folding Pocket Kodak.

United States invades Cuba and defeats Spain in the Spanish-American War.

image image Marie and Pierre Curie discovered that thorium, gives off "uranium rays", which Marie renames RADIOACTIVITY.

1898

(no entry for this year)

image British physicist Ernest Rutherford discovers the radioactivity from uranium has at least two different forms, which he calls alpha and beta rays.

image image image Fritz Geisel, Antoine-Henri Becquerel, and Marie Curie proved the beta rays consist of high-speed electrons.

The Boer war breaks out between Afrikaners and the British in southern Africa.

image image L. Cuénot (France) working with animals, and Strasburger (Germany) working with plants, advance theory that sex is controlled within the germ cell, not by environment.

Richard Altmann renames "nuclein" as NUCLEIC ACID.

The First International Congress of Genetics held in London.

image William Bateson writes a paper on hybridisation and cross-breeding as a method of scientific investigation that anticipates Mendel's rediscovery.

1899

(no entry for this year)

image Booker T. Washington publishes Up from Slavery, his autobiography.

Kodak introduces their first Brownie, a very inexpensive user-reloadable point-and-shoot box camera.

image image image H. de Vries, C. Correns, and E. Tschermak independently rediscover Mendel's paper. Using several plant species, de Vries and Correns had performed breeding experiments that paralleled Mendel's earlier studies and had independently arrived at similar interpretations of their results. Therefore, upon reading Mendel's publication they immediately recognized its significance. W. Bateson also stresses the importance of Mendel's contribution in an address to the Royal Society of London.

image K. Landsteiner discovers the blood-agglutination phenomenon in man.

image Karl Pearson develops the chi-square test.

image Paul Karl Ludwig Drude shows that moving electrons conduct electricity in metals.

image Paul Ulrich Villard is the first to observe a radiation that is more penetrating than X-rays, now called gamma rays.

image On December 14, Max Planck announces the first step toward quantum theory. He states that substances can emit light only at certain energies, which implies that some physical processes are not continuous, but occur only in specified amounts called quanta.

1900

image Photograph by Alfred Stieglitz: Spring Showers, The Street Cleaner.

Sully Prudhomme awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in special recognition of his poetic composition, which gives evidence of lofty idealism, artistic perfection and a rare combination of the qualities of both heart and intellect".

Herman Hollerith patents Apperatus For Punching Record Cards

image Kodak introduces the 120 film format.

image The Metro subway opens in Paris.

image Theodore Roosevelt becomes twenty-sixth president of the United States.

image Queen Victoria dies and is succeeded by her son, Edward VII.

image H. de Vries adopts the term MUTATION to describe sudden, spontaneous, drastic alterations in the hereditary material of Oenothera.

T. H. Montgomery studies spermatogenesis in various species of Hemiptera. He concludes that maternal chromosomes only pair with paternal chromosomes during meiosis.

image Harry Govier Seeley publishes Dragons of the Air, the first popular book on pterosaurs, arguing that they were warm-blooded and should be classified parallel to birds, in between reptiles and mammals. This is in direct opposition to Richard Owen's classification of pterosaurs as cold-blooded and poor flyers.

1901

image Eugène Atget: Marchand d'Abat-Jours, an albumen silver print, now in the J. Paul Getty Museum.

image Painting by Gustav Klimt: Judith and the Head of Holofernes (also known as Judith I) depicts the biblical character of Judith holding the severed head of Holofernes. Judith I reveals a curious symbolic and compositional consonance with The Sin by Franz Stuck: the temptation illustrated by the German painter becomes the model for Klimt's femme fatale by suggesting the posture of the disrobed and evanescent body as focal piece of the canvas, as well as the facial set. Judith's force originates from the close-up and the solidity of posture, rendered by the orthogonal projection of lines: to the body's verticality (and that of Holofernes') corresponds to the horizontal parallels in the lower margin: those of the arm, the shoulders joined by the collier, and finally the hair base.

Christian Matthias Theodor Mommsen awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature for being "the greatest living master of the art of historical writing, with special reference to his monumental work, A history of Rome".

Arthur Korn devises practical telephotography technology (reduction of photographic images to signals that can be transmitted by wire to other locations).Wire-Photos are in wide use in Europe by 1910, and transmitted to other continents by 1922.

image Archibald Garrod, a British physician, reports that alkaptonuria (a human disease) seems to be inherited as a Mendelian recessive.

image C. E. McClung argues that particular chromosomes determine the sex of the individual carrying them, not just in insects, but perhaps in other species (including man).

image Walter Sutton concludes that (a) chromosomes have individuality, (b) that they occur in pairs, with one member of each pair contributed by each parent, and (c) that the paired chromosomes separate from each other during meiosis.

image T. Boveri studies sea urchin embryos and finds that in order to develop normally, the organism must have a full set of chromosomes, and from this he concludes that the individual chromosomes must carry different essential hereditary determinants.

image William Bateson coins terms that will become essential to describing findings in the new science of heredity: GENETICS, F1, F2, ALLELOMORPH (later shortened to ALLELE), HOMOZYGOTE, HETEROZYGOTE, and EPISTASIS.

Barnum Brown of the American Museum of Natural History discovers Tyrannosaurus rex.

1902

(no entry for this year)

image Richard Steiff designs the first teddy bears, named after Pres. Teddy Roosevelt.

Bjørnstjerne Martinus Bjørnson awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "as a tribute to his noble, magnificent and versatile poetry, which has always been distinguished by both the freshness of its inspiration and the rare purity of its spirit".

image W. E. B. Du Bois' The Souls of Black Folk is published on April 27. Du Bois rejects the gradualism of Booker T. Washington and calls for agitation on behalf of African-American rights.

The first motor taxis appear in London

image Orville and Wilbur Wright succeed with the first controlled flight in a heavier-than-air machine.

image Cheddar Man, a human male fossil, is discovered at Gough's Cave in Cheddar Gorge, England. Sometimes referred to as the earliest Englishman, Cheddar Man turns out to be only about 15,000 years old. it appears that he died a violent death. A large crater-like lesion just above the skull's right orbit suggests that the man may have also been suffering from a bone infection at the time. It is Britain’s oldest complete human skeleton.

image The concepts of PHENOTYPE, GENOTYPE, and SELECTION were introduced and clearly defined by Wilhelm Ludwig Johannsen.

L. de Vesly describes first- to third-century remains at Gallo Roman temples and wells near Rouen, France. Finds there include a cache of Neolithic axes and fossil sea urchins — evidence of association of axes and urchins over thousands of years.

image Carl Neuberg first used the term BIOCHEMISTRY.

Physicist Ernest Rutherford lectures the British Association that radioactivity could power the sun and maintain its heat, meaning the sun and Earth could be much older than Lord Kelvin's estimate.

1903

image Painting by Pablo Picasso: The Old Guitarist depicts an old, blind, haggard man with threadbare clothing weakly hunched over his guitar, playing in the streets of Barcelona, Spain. It is currently on display in the Art Institute of Chicago as part of the Helen Birch Bartlett Memorial Collection. At the time of The Old Guitarist's creation, Modernism, Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, and Symbolism had merged and created an overall movement called Expressionism which greatly influenced Picasso's style. Furthermore, El Greco, Picasso's poor standard of living, and the suicide of a dear friend influenced Picasso's style at the time which came to be known as his Blue Period. In the early 1960s, nearly forty percent of all college dorm rooms had a poster of this painting on the wall.

Frédéric Mistral awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of the fresh originality and true inspiration of his poetic production, which faithfully reflects the natural scenery and native spirit of his people, and, in addition, his significant work as a Provençal philologist".

José Echegaray y Eizaguirre awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of the numerous and brilliant compositions which, in an individual and original manner, have revived the great traditions of the Spanish drama".

image Ota Benga, a young Mbuti man from the Belgian Congo, is exhibited at the St. Louis world's fair and with the primate collection at the Bronx zoo.

The Rolls-Royce company is founded in Britain.

The Russo-Japanese war begins with a surprise attack by the Imperial Japanese Navy against the Russian far East Fleet, while it was at anchor at Port Arthur.

image Entomologist George Willis Kirkaldy publishes species descriptions of a series of insects whose names all end in "-chisme" (pronounced "kiss me"), such as Ohchisme, Dolichisme, Elachisme, Florichisme, Isachisme, Marichisme, Nanichisme, Peggichisme, and Polychisme. Kirkaldy's proposed names preface -chisme with the names of various women from alleged romantic conquests. In 1912 a letter to the International Entomological Congress from Lord Walsingham sought to make these names invalid on the basis of their being non-classical in their derivation. Kirkaldy himself had been a firm adherent to the principle of priority and was against any form of orthographic emendation to the spelling proposed by the original authors.

1904

image Photograph by Edward Steichen: The Flatiron Building.

image Painting by Henri Matisse: Luxe, Calme et Volupté is an oil painting by the French artist Henri Matisse. Both foundational in the oeuvre of Matisse and a pivotal work in the history of art, Luxe, Calme et Volupté is considered the starting point of Fauvism. Luxe, Calme et Volupté was painted by artist called Matisse in 1904, after a summer spent working in St. Tropez on the French Riviera alongside the neo-Impressionist painters Paul Signac and Henri-Edmond Cross. The painting is Matisse's most important work in which he used the Divisionist technique advocated by Signac.

image Painting by Maxfield Parrish: The Dinky Bird, an illustration from Poems of Childhood exemplifies Parrish's characteristic use of androgynous figures. To a modern eye, Parrish's early work — characterized by himself as "girls on rocks" — may bring to mind the words kitsch or schlock or schmaltz or maudlin, but to many who were enduring the Great Depression or World War II, his images, like Busby Berkeley musicals, inspired a bit of hope — an imagining that things did not always have to be this bad. During those hard times, many a lower middle class American living room had one or more cheap Parrish prints, sometimes just a page from a magazine, adorning the wall.

Henryk Sienkiewicz awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "because of his outstanding merits as an epic writer".

The first motorized buses operate in London.

image The first neon signs appear.

image An obscure Swiss patent clerk, Albert Einstein, formulates the special theory of relativity and ushers in the atomic age.

The National Forest Service is established in the United States by Gifford Pinchot.

K. S. Merezhkovsky suggests that chloroplasts originated as a cyanobacterium swallowed by a protozoan, i.e., algal and plant cells result from two independent organisms that became symbionts. The idea will be largely forgotten until it is suggested again in the 1960s.

image Lucien Claude Cuénot performs crosses between mice carrying a gene that gives them yellow fur. Since they always produce yellow furred and agouti offspring in a 2:1 ratio, he concludes they are heterozygous. (In 1910, W. E. Castle and C. C. Little will show that yellow homozygotes die in utero. This dominant allele is thus the first gene shown to behave as a homozygous lethal.)

image The Swimming Reindeer — the largest ivory carving from the late Ice Age yet found — is pieced together by Abbé Henri Breuil from two reindeer carved from mammoth ivory found decades earlier by Peccadeau de l'Isle.

Albert Einstein proposes the special theory of relativity (E=mc2).

1905

image Painting by Gustav Klimt: Margaret "Gretl" Stonborough-Wittgenstein. Stonborough-Wittgenstein, a member of the prominent and wealthy Viennese Wittgenstein family, was a sister of the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein and the pianist Paul Wittgenstein. She was the subject of a portrait painted for her wedding by the artist Gustav Klimt (Stonborough-Wittgenstein and other members of the Wittgenstein family were among Klimt's most important patrons), which was sold in 1960 by her son Thomas and may now be seen in the Neue Pinakothek gallery in Munich. Aside: The painting appears briefly behind Ava, an AI robot, in the film Ex Machina (a film that is an excellent exploration of artificial intelligence, the nature of consciousness, and passing a Turing Test).

image Painting by Henri Matisse: Woman with a Hat (La femme au chapeau) depicts Matisse's wife, Amelie. It was painted in 1905 and exhibited at the Salon d'Automne during the fall of the same year, along with works by André Derain, Maurice de Vlaminck and several other artists known as "Fauves". Woman with a Hat was at the center of the controversy that led to the term Fauvism. It was also a painting that marked a stylistic shift in the work of Matisse from the Divisionist brushstrokes of his earlier work to a more expressive style. Its loose brushwork and "unfinished" quality shocking viewers as much as its vivid, non-naturalistic colors. Although the Fauve works on display were condemned by many — "A pot of paint has been flung in the face of the public", declared the critic Camille Mauclair — they also gained some favorable attention. The painting that was singled out for attacks was Matisse's Woman with a Hat.

image Upton Sinclair publishes The Jungle.

Giosuè Carducci awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "not only in consideration of his deep learning and critical research, but above all as a tribute to the creative energy, freshness of style, and lyrical force which characterize his poetic masterpieces".

Computer Pioneer Grace Hopper is Born

image An All-India Muslim League is founded by Sultan Mahommed Shah, Aga Khan III.

image Mount Vesuvius erupts, devastating the town of Ottaiano, Italy

The Great San Francisco Earthquake kills seven hundred people and causes more than $400 million in property losses.

The world's largest battleship — the Satsuma — is launched in Japan.

image image William Bateson and Reginald Crundall Punnett report the discovery of two new genetic principles: LINKAGE and GENE INTERACTION.

In his presidential address to the Geological Society of America, Raphael Pumpelly claims that the end of the Pleistocene started the Neolithic Revolution.

1906

image painting by Henri Matisse: Le bonheur de vivre (The Joy of Life) is (along with Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignon) regarded as one of the pillars of early modernism. The monumental canvas was first exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants of 1906, where its cadmium colors and spatial distortions caused a public expression of protest and outrage. "The work is known to have invigorated fellow artists, especially Pablo Picasso, who, in an effort to outdo Matisse in terms of shock value, immediately began work on his watershed Les Demoiselles D'Avignon," writes Martha Lucy, associate curator at the Barnes Foundation.

Kenneth Grahame publishes The Wind in the Willows.

Rudyard Kipling awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in consideration of the power of observation, originality of imagination, virility of ideas and remarkable talent for narration which characterize the creations of this world-famous author".

image Alain Locke of Philadelphia, a Harvard graduate, becomes the first African-American Rhodes scholar to study at Oxford University in England.

The Autochrome plate is introduced. It becomes the first commercially successful color photography product.

Robert Baden-Powell founds the Boy Scout movement, in Britain.

Chemist Bertram Boltwood measures the ratio of isotopes of uranium and lead in a mineral from Connecticut. He concludes the mineral formed 410 million years ago. His estimate will later be changed to 265 million, but this experiment lays the groundwork for radiometric dating techniques.

P. Raymond describes a Neolithic deposit in Saône-et-Loire in France containing an axe with three fossil sea urchins.

image The Mauer jaw is discovered in Germany. On October 21, 1907, Daniel Hartmann, a worker at a sand mine in the Grafenrain open field system of the Mauer community unearthed a mandible at a depth of 24.63 m (80.81 ft), which he recognized as of human origin.[4] He was aware of the likelihood of finds, as for 20 years the Heidelberg scholar Otto Schoetensack had asked that the workers at the sand mine be encouraged to look out for fossils, after the well-preserved skull of a straight-tusked elephant had come to light there in 1887. Schoetensack had the workers taught the characteristics of human bones based on recent examples on his regular visits to the sand mine in search for "traces of mankind". The mandible will become the type specimen for Homo heidelbergensis (Archaic Homo sapiens, precursors to Neanderthals).

1907

image Painting by Gustav Klimt : The Kiss (Lovers) was painted by the Austrian Symbolist painter Gustav Klimt between 1907 and 1908, the highpoint of his "Golden Period", when he painted a number of works in a similar gilded style. A perfect square, the canvas depicts a couple embracing, their bodies entwined in elaborate robes decorated in a style influenced by both linear constructs of the contemporary Art Nouveau style and the organic forms of the earlier Arts and Crafts movement. The work is composed of oil paint with applied layers of gold leaf, an aspect that gives it its strikingly modern, yet evocative appearance. The painting is now in the Österreichische Galerie Belvedere museum in the Belvedere palace, Vienna, and is widely considered a masterpiece of the early modern period. It is a symbol of Vienna Jugendstil—Viennese Art Nouveau—and is considered Klimt's most popular work

image Painting by Gustav Klimt: Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I (also called The Lady in Gold or The Woman in Gold) was completed between 1903 and 1907. The portrait was commissioned by the sitter's husband, Ferdinand Bloch-Bauer, a Jewish banker and sugar producer. It is the final and most fully representative work of Klimt's golden phase. The portrait was the first of two depictions of Adele by Klimt — the second was completed in 1912; these were two of several works by the artist that the family owned. Adele died in 1925; her will asked that the artworks by Klimt were to be left to the Österreichische Galerie Belvedere, although these belonged to Ferdinand, not her.

image Painting by Ivan Grohar: The Sower (Slovene: Sejalec), is an image of a peasant sowing seeds on a ploughed field in an early and foggy morning. A hayrack, typical of the Slovene landscape, stands in the back, and even farther, the rocks of the small hill Kamnitnik near Škofja Loka. It has been a metaphor for the 19th-century myth of Slovenes as a vigorous nation in front of an unclear destiny, a symbol for the Slovene nation that sows in order that it could harvest, and a depiction of human interrelatedness with the nature. It is also a reflection of the context of Slovene transition from a rural to an urban culture. It has become one of the most characteristic and established Slovene creations in visual arts.

image Painting by Pablo Picasso: Les Demoiselles d'Avignon (The Young Ladies of Avignon, and originally titled The Brothel of Avignon) portrays five nude female prostitutes from a brothel on Carrer d'Avinyó (Avinyó Street) in Barcelona. Each figure is depicted in a disconcerting confrontational manner and none are conventionally feminine. In this adaptation of Primitivism and abandonment of perspective in favor of a flat, two-dimensional picture plane, Picasso makes a radical departure from traditional European painting. This proto-Cubist work is widely considered to be seminal in the early development of both Cubism and Modern art. Les Demoiselles was revolutionary and controversial, and led to widespread anger and disagreement, even amongst the painter's closest associates and friends. Matisse considered the work something of a bad joke, yet indirectly reacted to it in his 1908 Bathers with a Turtle. Braque too initially disliked the painting, yet perhaps more than anyone else, studied the work in great detail. And effectively, his subsequent friendship and collaboration with Picasso led to the Cubist revolution

Henri Matisse coins the term "Cubism" — the first Cubist exhibition opens in Paris.

image Sculpture by Constantin Brâncusi: The Kissis an early example of his proto-cubist style of non-literal representation. This plaster was exhibited at the 1913 Armory Show and published in the Chicago Tribune, 25 March 1913. This early plaster sculpture is one of six casts that Brancusi made of the 1907–08 The Kiss. The original stone carving is in the Muzeul de Arta at Craiova, Romania. Brâncusi created many versions of The Kiss, further simplifying geometric forms and sparse objects in each version, tending each time further toward abstraction. His abstract style emphasizes simple geometrical lines that balance forms inherent in his materials with the symbolic allusions of representational art. Here, the shape of the original block of material is maintained.

Rudolf Christoph Eucken awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of his earnest search for truth, his penetrating power of thought, his wide range of vision, and the warmth and strength in presentation with which in his numerous works he has vindicated and developed an idealistic philosophy of life".

image The US flag is modified to have forty-six stars, reflecting the addition of one new state: Oklahoma.

Kinemacolor, a two-color process known as the first commercial "natural color" system for movies, is introduced.

General Motors Corporation is formed.

image The Ford Motor Company produces the first Model T. Ultimately, more than 15 million will be produced.

The Young Turk revolution restores the Constitution and parliamentary government in the Ottoman Empire.

image Godfrey Harold Hardy, a Cambridge mathematician, writes a letter to the editor of Science, suggesting that Mendelian mechanisms acting alone have no effect on allele frequencies. The letter begins, I am reluctant to intrude in a discussion concerning matters of which I have no expert knowledge, and I should have expected the very simple point which I wish to make to have been familiar to biologists. However,... This short (less than one page) letter constitutes Hardy's entire lifetime contribution to the field of biology, yet still forms the mathematical basis for population genetics.

Amadee and Jean Bouyssonie find a Neanderthal skeleton in a pit at La Chapelle-aux-Saints. The find spurs hypotheses of intentional Neanderthal burial of the dead, although some anthropologists will dispute this interpretation several decades later.

Charles and George Sternberg discover a dinosaur mummy, a duckbill dinosaur with skin, tendons and bits of flesh all fossilized.

1908

image Painting by Georges Braque: Houses at l'Estaque (French: Maisons à l'Estaque) is considered either an important Proto-Cubist landscape or the first Cubist landscape. The painting prompted art critic Louis Vauxcelles to mock it as being composed of cubes which led to the name of the movement. This painting by Braque was refused at the Salon d'Automne in 1908. Louis Vauxcelles recounted how Matisse told him at the time, "Braque has just sent in [to the 1908 Salon d'Automne] a painting made of little cubes". The critic Charles Morice relayed Matisse's words and spoke of Braque's little cubes. The motif of the viaduct at l'Estaque had inspired Braque to produce three paintings marked by the simplification of form and deconstruction of perspective. Six landscapes painted at L'Estaque signed Georges Braque were presented to the Jury of the Salon d'Automne: Guérin, Marquet, Rouault and Matisse rejected Braque's entire submission. Guérin and Marquet elected to keep two in play. Braque withdrew the two in protest, placing the blame on Matisse.

Selma Ottilia Lovisa Lagerlöf awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in appreciation of the lofty idealism, vivid imagination and spiritual perception that characterize her writings".

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is formed on February 12 in New York City.

Kodak announces a 35 mm "safety" motion picture film on an acetate base as an alternative to the highly flammable nitrate base. The motion picture industry discontinues its use after 1911 due to technical imperfections.

The plastic age begins with the first commercial manufacture of Bakelite.

image William Howard Taft becomes twenty-seventh president of the United States.

Tel Aviv, the first Jewish town in modern Palestine, is founded.

image United States explorer Commander Robert E. Peary, accompanied by Matthew Henson, is the first person to reach North Pole.

image T. H. Morgan, later to become the first recipient of the Nobel Prize for work in genetics, writes a paper expressing doubts about the profusion of Mendelian explanations for inherited properties.

image A. E. Garrod publishes Inborn Errors of Metabolism, the earliest discussion of the biochemical genetics of man (or any other species).

image George H. Shull advocates the use of self-fertilized lines in production of commercial seed corn. The hybrid corn program that resulted, created an abundance of foodstuffs worth billions of dollars.

H. Nilsson Ehle puts forward the multiple-factor hypothesis to explain the quantitative inheritance of seed-coat color in wheat.

image W. Johannsen's studies of the inheritance of seed size in self-fertilized lines of beans leads him to realize the necessity of distinguishing between the appearance of an organism and its genetic constitution. He invents the terms PHENOTYOPE and GENOTYPE to serve this purpose, and he also coins the word GENE.

Abbé Breuil depicts a presumed Neanderthal burial at La Ferrassie.

Arthur Smith Woodward lectures the British Association for the Advancement of Science on "excess growth" and tooth loss in dinosaurs, citing these things as evidence of "racial senility" that doomed the dinosaurs to extinction.

Charles Doolittle Walcott starts digging fossils of soft-bodied animals in the Burgess Shale in the Canadian Rockies. He proceeds to publish several papers in which he describes these animals, which lived over 500 million years ago, as primitive ancestors of modern groups.

1909

image Painting by Henri Matisse: Dance (La Danse). The title refers to either of two related paintings made between 1909 and 1910. The first, preliminary version is Matisse's study for the second version. The composition or arrangement of dancing figures is reminiscent of Blake's watercolour "Oberon, Titania and Puck with fairies dancing" from 1786.

Paul Johann Ludwig Heyse awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "as a tribute to the consummate artistry, permeated with idealism, which he has demonstrated during his long productive career as a lyric poet, dramatist, novelist and writer of world-renowned short stories".

image On July 4, boxer Jack Johnson defeats Jim Jeffries in Reno, Nevada, to become the first African-American world heavyweight champion.

Three companies merge to become C-T-R

image T. H. Morgan discovers white eye and consequently sex linkage in Drosophila. Drosophila genetics begins.

image A few years after the find of some isolated teeth from the same species, British paleontologist Clive Forster Cooper finds better specimens of what will later be identified as Paraceratherium in an area that will later be part of Pakistan. A century later, Paraceratherium will still hold the title of the biggest land mammal yet discovered.

While digging the foundation for an imposing home, two laborers, Mercer and Crittenden, discover the remains of a cremation from the Iron Age, including a Neolithic axe and a fossil echinoid.

1910

image Painting by Henri Rousseau: The Dream (French: Le Rêve, occasionally also known as Le Songe or Rêve exotique) is a large oil-on-canvas painting, one of more than 25 Rousseau paintings with a jungle theme. His last completed work, it was first exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants from 18 March to 1 May 1910, a few months before his death on 2 September 1910. Rousseau's earlier works had received a negative reception, but poet and critic Guillaume Apollinaire remarked on its debut: "The picture radiates beauty, that is indisputable. I believe nobody will laugh this year." The Dream is the largest of the jungle paintings, measuring 6' 8.5" × 9' 9.5". It features an almost surreal portrait of Yadwigha (Jadwiga), Rousseau's Polish mistress from his youth, lying naked on a divan to the left of the painting, gazing over a landscape of lush jungle foliage, including lotus flowers, and animals including birds, monkeys, an elephant, a lion and lioness, and a snake. French art dealer Ambroise Vollard (the same Vollard who purchased 250 paintings from Cézanne for 50 francs each) bought the painting from Rousseau in February 1910

image Painting by Pablo Picasso: Girl with a Mandolin is an early example of the artist's analytic cubist style. By the winter of 1909/10 Picasso's pictorial language had already become increasingly hard to decipher. He was steadily divesting his paintings of mere likeness, not that this was synonymous with a progressive elimination of the subject: his paintings were becoming more abstract but not entirely so.

Count Maurice (Mooris) Polidore Marie Bernhard Maeterlinck awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in appreciation of his many-sided literary activities, and especially of his dramatic works, which are distinguished by a wealth of imagination and by a poetic fancy, which reveals, sometimes in the guise of a fairy tale, a deep inspiration, while in a mysterious way they appeal to the readers' own feelings and stimulate their imaginations".

image A fire inside the Triangle Shirtwaist Company factory in New York City's garment district kills 146 workers, mostly immigrant Jewish and Italian women in their teens and early 20s. Most women could not escape the burning building because the doors to the stairwells and exits were locked to keep the workers from stealing linen from the factory. It is the deadliest workplace incident in the city's history until 9/11.

Winston Churchill is appointed First Lord of the Admiralty.

image A chance discovery turns up the astonishingly well-preserved Clacton Spear. Made of yew and over 400,000 years old, it's one of the world's oldest wooden artifacts.

image T. H. Morgan proposes that the genes for white eyes, yellow body, and miniature wings in Drosophila are linked together on the X chromosome.

image A hand axe, possibly 200,000 years old and of Neanderthal design, is found in Norfolk, England. The axe has been fashioned to give prominence to a fossil bivalve.

Charles Dawson discovers the Piltdown skull in southern England. Excavations of faked fossils will continue for years.

1911

image Painting by Georges Braque: The Portuguese

image painting by Wassily Kandinsky: Composition IV is the fourth of a series of paintings that explore the artist's attempts to represent the structure and form of music through the medium of painting. The painting measures 62 7/8 × 98 5/8 inches, and it is in the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia. It was made using oil paints on canvas.

Gerhart Johann Robert Hauptmann awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "primarily in recognition of his fruitful, varied and outstanding production in the realm of dramatic art".

image The US flag is modified to have forty-eight stars, reflecting the addition of two new states: Arizona and New Mexico.

Thomas Edison introduces a short-lived 22 mm home motion picture format using acetate "safety" film manufactured by Kodak.

Vest Pocket Kodak using 127 film.

image On April 10, the RMS Titanic — the largest, most advanced, and most luxurious passenger ship in the world — set off on her maiden voyage from Southampton, England to New York City. Four days later, this unsinkable marvel of modern engineering rammed an iceberg and sank in the North Atlantic, resulting in the deaths of 1,517 people.

image image The Republic of China is a nationally proclaimed with Sun Yat-sen as president. He appoints Chiang Kai-shek as his military advisor.

Alfred Wegener proposes the theory of continental drift. His ideas will be almost completely ignored until the late 1960s.

1912

image Painting by Giacomo Balla: Dynamism of a Dog on a Leash (Italian: Dinamismo di un cane al guinzaglio), sometimes called Dog on a Leash or Leash in Motion, depicts a dachshund on a leash and the feet of a lady walking it, both in rapid motion as indicated by the blurring and multiplication of their parts. It is considered one of his best-known works, and one of the most important works, in Futurism. Chronophotograpic studies of animals in motion, created by scientist Étienne–Jules Marey beginning in the 1880s, led to the introduction in painting of techniques to show motion, such as blurring, multiplication, and superimposition of body parts — perhaps in an effort to imitate these mechanical images. Such multiplication can be see in Marcel Duchamp's Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2, painted the same year as Balla's painting. Balla's interest in capturing a single moment in a series of planes was inspired by his fascination with chronophotography. In later, more abstract works created during World War I, Balla used planes of color to suggest movement.

image Painting by Marcel Duchamp: Nude Descending a Staircase causes an uproar at the 1913 Armory show in New York City. In interviews, Duchamp suggested that he had been influenced by seeing stop-motion images and that his aim was to achieve " a static representation of movement, a static composition of indications of various positions taken by a form in movement." In a New York Times review, an art critic described the painting as resembling "an explosion in a shingle factory."

image Woodrow Wilson becomes twenty-eighth president of the United States.

On April 11, President Woodrow Wilson initiates the racial segregation of workplaces, restaurants, and lunchrooms and all federal offices across the nation.

image Thomas Mann publishes Death in Venice.

Rabindranath Tagore awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "because of his profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse, by which, with consummate skill, he has made his poetic thought, expressed in his own English words, a part of the literature of the West".

image Roland Garros, a French aviator, becomes the first person to fly across the Mediterranean. Garros' original plan was to fly from St. Raphael in France to Bizerta, Tunisia, with the possibility of a fueling stop on Sardinia. En route, the trip seemed to be going well, so he skipped the refueling stop and flew directly to Bizerta, where he arrived at 1:45pm, with about five liters of fuel left in his tank.

image Oskar Barnack develops a prototype camera for testing 35mm movie film. This device, now often referred to as an UR-Leica, was quickly recognized as a miniature camera for producing still images. A dozen years later, the first commercially available 35mm still camera was marketed as the Leica I.

Kodak makes 35 mm panchromatic motion picture film available on a bulk special order basis.

image Hans Geiger unveils his radiation detector.

The federal income tax is introduced in the United States with the 16th amendment.

image A. H. Sturtevant, an undergraduate working with Morgan at Columbia, provides the experimental basis for the linkage concept in Drosophila and produces the first GENETIC MAP.

Geologist-physicist Arthur Holmes concludes that the breakdown of radioactive isotopes in igneous rocks can be used to determine when the rocks solidified. The ability to determine the absolute ages of rocks will enable scientists to better date fossils.

1913

image Painting by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner: Street, Berlin shows Berlin in 1913,` before the outbreak of World War 1. At this time, Kirchner painted several different street scenes that illustrated the chaos of city life and the relationship between men and women. The mass of men in the background do not have any identifying features, but instead appear as a copy of each other. Their clothes flow into one another and their non-distinct facial features cause you to connect with the women because they are the only two with a sense of identity. Kirchner uses some anti-naturalistic color in this piece including the skin of the figures which varies between shades of pink and orange as well as the blue and pink shades in the scenery. The anti-naturalistic tones are common in the German Expressionism and his other work during this time period.

image Painting by Georges Braque: Woman with a Guitar. A relatively large painting it is 130 cm by 73 cm, and utilised both oil paint and charcoal. While the painting is abstracted the basic subject can still be seen towards the top in the feminine mouth and eye, as well as the brown trapezoid shape containing the strings of a guitar.

image Painting by Umberto Boccioni: Dynamism of a Cyclist (Dinamismo di un Ciclista) demonstrates the Futurist preoccupation with speed, modern methods of transport, and the depiction of the dynamic sensation of movement. Futurism was an early twentieth-century movement in Italy that sought to free the country from what the Futurists saw as the dead weight of its classical past. The Futurists were preoccupied with the technology and dynamism of modern life. The movement found its expression primarily in literature and art.

image Sculpture by Umberto Boccioni: Unique Forms of Continuity in Space (Italian: Forme uniche della continuità nello spazio) is seen as an expression of movement and fluidity. The sculpture is depicted on the obverse of the Italian-issue 20 cent euro coin. The Futurist movement was striving to portray speed and forceful dynamism in their art. Boccioni, though trained as a painter, began sculpting in 1912. He exclaimed that "these days I am obsessed by sculpture! I believe I have glimpsed a complete renovation of that mummified art." The following year Boccioni completed the sculpture. His goal for the work was to depict a "synthetic continuity" of motion instead of an "analytical discontinuity" that he saw in artists like František Kupka and Marcel Duchamp.

Thomas J. Watson Sr. joins C-T-R

Kodak introduces the Autographic film system.

The World, the Flesh and the Devil, made in Kinemacolor, is the first dramatic feature film in color released.

World War I begins after Archduke Francis Ferdinand, heir to the Austrian throne, and his wife are assassinated in Sarajevo, Bosnia, on June 28 by a Serbian nationalist.

image Calvin Blackman Bridges reports nondisjunction of sex chromosomes as PROOF of the chromosome theory of heredity.

Charles Doolittle Walcott identifies fossil bacteria in Cryptozoon-like structures (stromatolites).

Peyrony finds the remains of Neanderthal baby in southwestern France. Because no one knows the bones are Neanderthal, they are not examined closely and are later believed lost. They will be rediscovered and described nearly 90 years later.

1914

image Photograph by Alvin Langdon Coburn: Vortograph — a kaleidoscopic effect — created by placing mirrors in triangular arrangements around a lens.

image Painting by Giorgio de Chirico: The Song of Love (also known as Le chant d'amour or Love Song; 1914) is one of the most famous works by de Chirico and an early example of the surrealist style, though it was painted ten years before the movement was "founded" by André Breton in 1924. It depicts an outdoor architectural setting similar to other works by de Chirico at this time. This time however, the main focus is a small wall on which is mounted a Greek sculpted head and a surgeon's glove. Below it is a green ball. On the horizon is the outline of a locomotive, an image that recurs several times during this period of de Chirico's career.

image Painting by Piet Mondrian: The Ocean 5 is basically an abstracted pier that is composed of vertical lines that touch the base of the oval, which stretches into the ocean and short crosses that give the impression of light flickering on the water surface.

Romain Rolland awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "as a tribute to the lofty idealism of his literary production and to the sympathy and love of truth with which he has described different types of human beings".

image Calvin Bridges identifies strains of mutant fruit flies with extra pairs of wings. Decades later, these strains will help biologists understand Hox genes that control the head-to-toe anatomy of widely varying animals.

image Frederick Twort discovers a virus capable of infecting and destroying bacteria.

image image image image Thomas Hunt Morgan, Alfred Henry Sturtevant, Calvin Blackman Bridges, and Hermann Joseph Muller publish The Mechanism of Mendelian Heredity. This monograph provides the first systematic description of the actual mechanisms that control inheritance as evidenced in the Mendelian model. Here, for the first time, the gene is made real.

1915

image Photograph by Alfred Stieglitz: The Steerage has been hailed as one of the greatest photographs of all time because it captures in a single image both a formative document of its time and one of the first works of artistic modernism. Stieglitz first published The Steerage in the October 1911 issue of Camera Work, which he had devoted to his own photography. It appeared the following year on the cover of the magazine section of the Saturday Evening Mail (20 April 1912), a New York weekly magazine. It was first exhibited in a show of Stieglitz's photographs at "291" in 1913. In 1915 Stieglitz devoted the entire No 7-8 issue of 291 to The Steerage. The only text in the issue were comments on the photo by Paul Haviland and Marius de Zayas.

image Work by Francis Picabia: Ici, C'est Ici Stieglitz Foi et Amour (Here, this is Stieglitz. Faith and Love) was published in 1915 as the cover of the avant-garde American journal 291. The work was one of a series of witty "machine portraits" by French artist Francis Picabia, soon to become a leading figure in the developing Dada art movement in New York City. The journal's title, named after Alfred Stieglitz's 291 Gallery on Fifth Avenue, pays tribute to the photographer's role in promoting modern art. But the symbolic portrait suggests that he has lost his momentum: it portrays its subject as a limp and broken camera striving toward, but not reaching, the "Ideal," with an automobile gearshift lodged in neutral and a hand brake engaged.

Carl Gustaf Verner von Heidenstam awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of his significance as the leading representative of a new era in our literature".

image image The Sykes–Picot Agreement (a secret agreement between the governments of the UK and France defining their respective spheres of influence and control in the Middle East after the expected downfall of the Ottoman Empire during World War I) is drawn up and signed by Sir Mark Sykes and François Georges-Picot.

Two duckbill dinosaur fossils, with extremely rare skin impressions, sink to the bottom of the Atlantic when the ship carrying them to London — the SS Mount Temple — is stopped by the German military vessel, the SMS Möwe. The German ship takes the passengers prisoner and then sinks the Mount Temple.

1916

image Photograph by Paul Strand:: Blind, taken as part of a series of street portraits. He used a camera outfitted with a special false lens that allowed him to point the camera in one direction while actually taking a photograph ninety degrees to the side. The result was a collection of remarkably natural and unposed photographs.

Henrik Pontoppidan awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his authentic descriptions of present-day life in Denmark".

Karl Adolph Gjellerup awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his varied and rich poetry, which is inspired by lofty ideals".

image Lucy Diggs Slowe wins the championship in the first national tennis tournament sponsored by the American Tennis Association. With her victory she becomes the first African-American woman to win a major sports title.

image The Balfour Declaration (dated 2 November 1917) — a formal statement of policy by the British government, written by Arthur Balfour, stating that "His Majesty's government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object" — is issued. The anniversary of the declaration, 2 November, is widely commemorated in Israel and among Jews in the Jewish diaspora as Balfour Day. This day is also observed as a day of mourning in Arab countries still today.

The October Revolution occurs in Russia, followed by the Russian Civil War.

image The United States enters World War I; Gen. Pershing goes to Paris to lead American forces.

Stone tools discovered at Bir el Ater in eastern Algeria include triangular objects that might have been arrowheads or spear points. The tools will be dubbed Aterian, but their age will be underestimated for decades.

image British polymath D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson publishes On Growth and Form arguing that the forms Darwinian natural selection can produce through evolution are constrained by physical and mathematical laws, and that organic structures often emulate inorganic natural structures. His analysis led the way for the scientific explanation of morphogenesis, the process by which patterns and body structures are formed in plants and animals. Thompson's description of the mathematical beauty of nature and the mathematical basis of the forms of animals stimulated thinkers as diverse as Julian Huxley, Conrad Hal Waddington, Alan Turing, Claude Lévi-Strauss, Eduardo Paolozzi, Le Corbusier, and Mies van der Rohe.

image C. B. Bridges discovers the first chromosome deficiency in Drosophila.

image Felix Hubert D'Herelle, independently of Frederick Twort, discovers a virus capable of infecting and destroying bacteria, which he calls a BACTERIOPHAGE.

1917

image Painting by Egon Schiele: Portrait of the Composer Arnold Schönberg (German: Bildnis des Komponisten Arnold Schönberg)

image "Sculpture" by Marcel Duchamp: Fountain. Duchamp submits this work to the exhibition of the Society of Independent Artists. The piece is actually a porcelain urinal, signed R. Mutt, 1917. The work (originally conceived as a prank) is regarded by art historians as a major landmark in 20th-century art.

Core memory inventor Jay Forrester is born

image A worldwide influenza epidemic strikes. By 1920, 50 to 100 millions are dead, including Mark Sykes, the author of the British half of the Sykes-Picot Treaty.

1918

image Painting by Marcel Duchamp: Tu m'. This was Duchamp's last painting and was commissioned by Katherine Dreier to be hung over a bookcase in her library, hence the unusual length and frieze-like shape of the work. Executed in 1918, it is Marcel Duchamp's last painting on canvas and sums up his previous artistic concerns. Ranging across the canvas from left to right are cast shadows that refer to three "ready-mades": a bicycle wheel, a corkscrew, and a hat rack. Several objects are rendered illusionistically, such as a painted hand with a pointed finger in the lower center. Providing counterpoints to these trompe l'oeil elements are real objects: a bottle brush, a bolt, and safety pins. Duchamp summarizes different ways in which a work of art can suggest reality: as shadow, imitation, or actual object. The title lends a sarcastic tone to the work, for the words, perhaps short for the French "tu m'emmerdes" (you annoy me) or "tu m'ennuies" (you bore me), seem to express his attitude toward painting as he was casting it aside.

image Joan Miró first exhibits his works.

Carl Friedrich Georg Spitteler awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in special appreciation of his epic, Olympian Spring".

By the beginning of 1919, the Ku Klux Klan (revived in 1915 at Stone Mountain, Georgia) operates in 27 states. Eighty-three African Americans are lynched during the year, among them a number of returning soldiers still in uniform.

ENIAC Designer Presper Eckert Is Born

image Thomas Hunt Morgan and coworkers publish The Physical Basis of Heredity, a book-length summary of the rapidly growing findings in genetics.

image C. B. Bridges discovers chromosomal duplications in Drosophila.

image T. H. Morgan calls attention to the equality in Drosophila melanogaster between the number of linkage groups and the haploid number of chromosomes.

Swedish geologist Johann Andersson discovers a major "dragon bone works" in northern China. Otto Zdansky also examines the works several years later, discovering that the fossils are referred to as dragons even though the workers recognize them as more pedestrian species such as horses and deer.

1919

image Painting by John Singer Sargent: Gassed is a very large (7.5 × 20 feet) oil painting completed in March 1919 by John Singer Sargent. It depicts the aftermath of a mustard gas attack during the First World War, with a line of wounded soldiers walking towards a dressing station. Sargent was commissioned by the British War Memorials Committee to document the war and visited the Western Front in July 1918 spending time with the Guards Division near Arras, and then with the American Expeditionary Forces near Ypres. The painting was finished in March 1919 and voted picture of the year by the Royal Academy of Arts in 1919. It is now held by the Imperial War Museum.

image Work by Marcel Duchamp: L.H.O.O.Q., was one of what Duchamp referred to as a readymade, or more specifically a rectified ready-made. The readymade involves taking mundane, often utilitarian objects not generally considered to be art and transforming them, by adding to them, changing them, or (as in the case of his most famous work Fountain) simply renaming them and placing them in a gallery setting. In L.H.O.O.Q. the objet trouvé ("found object") is a cheap postcard reproduction of Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa onto which Duchamp drew a moustache and beard in pencil and appended the title. The name of the piece, L.H.O.O.Q., is a pun; the letters pronounced in French sound like "Elle a chaud au cul", "She is hot in the arse"; "avoir chaud au cul" is a vulgar expression implying that a woman has sexual restlessness. In a late interview, Duchamp gives a loose translation of L.H.O.O.Q. as "there is fire down below". As was the case with a number of his readymades, Duchamp made multiple versions of L.H.O.O.Q. of differing sizes and in different media throughout his career, one of which, an unmodified black and white reproduction of the Mona Lisa mounted on card, is called L.H.O.O.Q. Shaved.

Knut Pedersen Hamsun awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his monumental work, Growth of the Soil".

Women gain the right to vote in the United States.

The Russian Civil War ends in victory for the Bolsheviks.

1920

image Sculpture by Raoul Hausmann: Mechanischer Kopf (Der Geist Unserer Zeit) — "The Mechanical Head (The Spirit of Our Time)" is the only surviving assemblage that Hausmann produced around 1919-20. Constructed from a hairdresser's wig-making dummy, the piece has various measuring devices attached including a ruler, a pocket watch mechanism, a typewriter, some camera segments and a crocodile wallet. "Der Geist Unserer Zeit — Mechanischer Kopf specifically evokes the philosopher George Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. For Hegel...everything is mind. Among Hegel's disciples and critics was Karl Marx. Hausmann's sculpture might be seen as an aggressively Marxist reversal of Hegel: this is a head whose "thoughts" are materially determined by objects literally fixed to it. However, there are deeper targets in western culture that give this modern masterpiece its force. Hausmann turns inside out the notion of the head as seat of reason, an assumption that lies behind the European fascination with the portrait. He reveals a head that is penetrated and governed by brute external forces.

image Warren Harding becomes twenty-ninth president of the United States.

Anatole France awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of his brilliant literary achievements, characterized as they are by a nobility of style, a profound human sympathy, grace, and a true Gallic temperament".

Fossil mammal expert William Diller Matthew suggests dinosaurs were driven extinct by mountain building, continental uplift and replacement by mammals.

Miners at Broken Hill in the British colony of Northern Rhodesia, Africa, find leg bones and a skull that will later be classified as Homo heidelbergensis.

1921

image Assemblage by Kurt Schwitters: Merzpicture 46A. The Skittle Picture — an early example of Schitters' assemblages in which two and three dimensional objects are combined. The word "Merz," which Schwitters used to describe his art practice as well as his individual pieces, is a nonsensical word, like Dada, that Schwitters culled from the word "commerz", the meaning of which he described as follows: "In the war, things were in terrible turmoil. What I had learned at the academy was of no use to me.... Everything had broken down and new things had to be made out of the fragments; and this is Merz". In his Merzpictures, which have been called "psychological collages," he arranged found objects — usually detritus — in simple compositions that transformed trash into beautiful works of art. Whether the materials were string, a ticket stub, or a chess piece, Schwitters considered them to be equal with any traditional art material. Merz, however, is not ideological, dogmatic, hostile, or political as is much of Dada art.

image Painting by Max Ernst: The Elephant Celebes (or short Celebes) is among the most famous of Ernst's early surrealist works and "undoubtedly the first masterpiece of Surrealist painting in the de Chirico tradition." It combines the vivid dreamlike atmosphere of Surrealism with the collage aspects of Dada. The painting attempts to apply Dada's collage effects to simulate different materials. Ernst's realistic portrayal of the constituent elements produces a hallucinatory effect that he associated with collage, and was trying to achieve in this painting. Regarding the art of collage, Ernst said, "It is the systematic exploitation of the coincidental or artificially provoked encounter of two of more unrelated realities on an apparently inappropriate plane and the spark of poetry created by the proximity of these realities."

image image James Joyce publishes Ulysses and T. S. Eliot publishes The Wasteland, two significant works in the new literary movement called modernism.

Jacinto Benavente awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for the happy manner in which he has continued the illustrious traditions of the Spanish drama".

image The Dyer Anti-Lynching Bill (first introduced by St. Louis congressman Leonidas Dyer in 1918), making lynching a federal offense, passes the US House of Representatives but fails in the US Senate.

Kodak makes 35 mm panchromatic motion picture film available as a regular stock.

Lillian V. Morgan discovers attached-X chromosomes in Drosophila.

The American Museum of Natural History begins a series of excavations in central Mongolia, led by Roy Chapman Andrews. Hoping to find fossil human remains, Chapman's team instead finds dinosaurs.

1922

image Painting by Paul Klee: Twittering Machine (Die Zwitscher-Maschine). Like other artworks by Klee, it blends biology and machinery, depicting a loosely sketched group of birds on a wire or branch connected to a hand-crank. Interpretations of the work vary widely: it has been perceived as a nightmarish lure for the viewer or a depiction of the helplessness of the artist, but also as a triumph of nature over mechanical pursuits. It has been seen as a visual representation of the mechanics of sound. Originally displayed in Germany, the image was declared "degenerate art" by Adolf Hitler in 1933 and sold by the Nazi Party to an art dealer in 1939, whence it made its way to New York. One of the better known of more than 9,000 works produced by Klee, it is among the more famous images of the New York Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). It has inspired several musical compositions and, according to a 1987 magazine profile in New York Magazine, has been a popular piece to hang in children's bedrooms.

Harding dies in office.

image Calvin Coolidge becomes thirtieth president of the United States.

William Butler Yeats awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his always inspired poetry, which in a highly artistic form gives expression to the spirit of a whole nation".

Integrated Circuit Co-Inventor Jack Kilby is Born

Harold Edgerton invents the xenon flash lamp for strobe photography.

The 16 mm amateur motion picture format is introduced by Kodak. Their Cine-Kodak camera uses reversal film and all 16 mm is on an acetate (safety) base.

Adolf Hitler's attempted coup d'état (the Beer Hall Putsch) in Munich fails. Hitler is imprisoned for eight months

A. E. Boycott and C. Diver describe "delayed" Mendelian inheritance controlling the direction of the coiling of the shell in the snail Limnea peregra. A. H. Sturtevant suggests that the direction of coiling of the Limnea shell is determined by the character of the ooplasm, which is in turn controlled by the mother's genotype.

image C. B. Bridges discovers chromosomal translocations in Drosophila.

Jesuit priests Émile Lincent and Pierre Teilhard de Chardin discover ancient stone tools at Shuidonggou, China. Their discoveries resemble those of the Middle Paleolithic industry in Europe.

1923

(no entry for this year)

Wladyslaw Stanislaw Reymont awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his great national epic, The Peasants".

C-T-R becomes IBM

image Gandhi undertakes his 21-day fast to protest feuds between Hindus and Muslims in India.

Winifred Goldring publishes a description of a fossil forest discovered during excavations for the Gilboa Dam. Dating from the Devonian Period, the site will become known as the world's oldest fossil forest.

1924

image Photograph by Man Ray: Le Violon d'Ingres, a surrealistic photograph inspired by La Baigneuse Valpinçon, an 1808 painting by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. The model is Alice Ernestine Prin (nicknamed Queen of Montparnasse, and often known as Kiki de Montparnasse), a French artist's model, nightclub singer, actress, memoirist, and painter. She flourished in, and helped define, the liberated culture of Paris in the 1920s. As an artist's model and Parisian sophisticate, she appeared often as the subject of paintings and sculpture.

image Painting by Joan Miró: The Harlequin's Carnival (Spanish: Carnaval de Arlequín) is an oil painting rendered by Joan Miró between 1924 and 1925. It is one of the most outstanding surrealist paintings of the artist, and it is preserved in the Albright–Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo. Created between 1924 and 1925, Harlequin’s Carnival is one of Miró’s best-known pieces. Harlequin is the name of an Italian comic theater character, generally identified by his checkered costume. The ‘carnival’ in the title of the painting may refer to Mardi Gras, the celebration that occurs before the fasting of Lent begins.

image The film adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's dinosaurs-and-cavemen fantasy The Lost World premieres.

George Bernard Shaw awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his work which is marked by both idealism and humanity, its stimulating satire often being infused with a singular poetic beauty".

image On September 9, Ossian Sweet, a Detroit physician, is arrested for murder after he and his family kill a member of a white mob while defending their home. The Sweet family is represented by Clarence Darrow and they are acquitted of the charge.

First patent for a transistor in Canada lodged

January 1925 Douglas Engelbart is Born

Supercomputer Pioneer Seymour Cray is Born

image The Leica I 35mm still camera was introduced at the Leipzig Spring Fair in Germany, thereby launching the 35mm format for portable photography.

Hitler reorganizes the Nazi party and publishes volume one of Mein Kampf.

Ibn Saud of Najd conquers Hijaz and forms Saudi Arabia.

Tennessee schoolteacher John Thomas Scopes is tried for teaching evolution in the famous "Scopes Monkey Trial." Two-time presidential candidate William Jennings Bryan leads the prosecution. Labor lawyer Clarence Darrow leads the defense and goads Bryan into declaring that humans are not mammals. The conviction will be overturned on a technicality, and the anti-evolution law will remain on the books for decades.

image A. H. Sturtevant analyzes the Bar-eye phenomenon in Drosophila and discovers position effect.

Francis Turville-Petre finds Galilee Man, the first fossil hominid discovered in Western Asia. The fossil will later be dated to more than 250,000 years old, and classified as neither modern Homo sapiens nor Neanderthal.

Raymond Dart publishes a description of the "Taung Child," a hominid child's skull from Africa. He classifies it as Australopithecus africanus and concludes that it's the missing link between humans and apes.

1925

image Painting by Joan JMiró: The Birth of the World depicts "a sort of genesis" — the amorphous beginnings of life. To make this work, Miró poured, brushed, and flung paint on an unevenly primed canvas so that the paint soaked in some areas and rested on top in others. Atop this relatively uncontrolled application of paint, he added lines and shapes he had previously planned in studies. The bird or kite, shooting star, balloon, and figure with white head may all seem somehow familiar, yet their association is illogical. Describing his method, Miró said, "Rather than setting out to paint something I began painting and as I paint the picture begins to assert itself, or suggest itself under my brush.... The first stage is free, unconscious." — like other Surrealists, Miró derived much inspiration from psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud's theories on dreams and the workings of the subconscious mind.

Grazia Deledda awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for her idealistically inspired writings which with plastic clarity picture the life on her native island and with depth and sympathy deal with human problems in general".

Kodak introduces its 35 mm Motion Picture Duplicating Film for duplicate negatives. Previously, motion picture studios used a second camera alongside the primary camera to create a duplicate negative.

Hirohito takes over the Japanese throne upon the death of his father, Yoshihito.

image Mussolini takes total control in Italy, banning all opposition.

A. H. Sturtevant finds the first inversion in Drosophila.

Harvard geology professor William Morris Davis publishes a paper entitled The Value of Outrageous Geological Hypotheses warning against quick dismissal of new ideas. The paper will become famous.

1926

image Painting by Otto Dix: "Bildnis der Journalistin Sylvia von Harden" (Portrait of the Journalist Sylvia von Harden, 1926). Sylvia von Harden was a German journalist and poet. During her career as a journalist, she wrote for many newspapers in Germany and England. An ambivalent image of the New Woman, it depicts von Harden with bobbed hair and monocle, seated at a cafe table with a cigarette in her hand and a cocktail in front of her. This painting is recreated in an opening scene of the 1972 film Cabaret. In 1959, von Harden wrote an article, "Erinnerungen an Otto Dix" ("Memories of Otto Dix"), in which she described the genesis of the portrait. Dix had met her on the street, and declared: 'I must paint you! I simply must! ... You are representative of an entire epoch!' 'So, you want to paint my lacklustre eyes, my ornate ears, my long nose, my thin lips; you want to paint my long hands, my short legs, my big feet — things which can only scare people off and delight no-one?' 'You have brilliantly characterized yourself, and all that will lead to a portrait representative of an epoch concerned not with the outward beauty of a woman but rather with her psychological condition.' The painting, an important example of the New Objectivity movement, is now in the Musée National d'Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.

Henri Bergson awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of his rich and vitalizing ideas and the brilliant skill with which they have been presented".

image Bernard O. Dodge initiates genetic studies on Neurospora.

image H. J. Muller reports the artificial induction of mutations in Drosophila by x-rays.

image J. B. S. Haldane suggests that the genes known to control certain coat colors in various rodents and carnivores may be evolutionarily homologous.

Excavations in Kent's Cavern in southern England turn up a fragment of a human upper jaw, roughly 43,000 years old. Arthur Keith will provisionally identify it as anatomically modern human, and this finding will be confirmed in a 2011 study.

Johns Hopkins University biologist Raymond Pearl publishes an article entitled "Why Lazy People Live the Longest." He will expand on this rate-of-living hypothesis in a book the next year, arguing that a faster rate of biochemical reactions leads to a shorter lifespan. This hypothesis is quickly dismissed and generally considered buncombe. Later, however, Donald Trump, the 45th president of the United States will be discovered to hold similar views.

1927

image Painting by Paul Klee: Prestidigitator (Conjuring Trick). Klee's highly individual style was influenced by movements in art that included Expressionism, Cubism, and Surrealism. Klee was a natural draftsman who experimented with and eventually deeply explored color theory, writing about it extensively; his lectures Writings on Form and Design Theory (Schriften zur Form und Gestaltungslehre), published in English as the Paul Klee Notebooks, are held to be as important for modern art as Leonardo da Vinci's A Treatise on Painting for the Renaissance.

Sigrid Undset awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "principally for her powerful descriptions of Northern life during the Middle Ages".

Introduction of 80-columns card format

image Frederick Griffith discovers type-transformation of pneumococci. This lays the foundation for the work of Avery, MacLeod, and McCarthy (1944).

image L. J. Stadler reports the artificial induction of mutations in maize, and demonstrates that the dose-frequency curve is linear.

In a letter to Science, Louise Sudbury states that fossil plants, Cycadeoidea Etrusca, were collected by Etruscans over 4,000 years ago.

In trying to piece together a Burgess Shale organism over 500 million years old, Danish zoologist K. L. Henriksen glues an Anomalocaris appendage to a Tuzoia carapace to make what he thinks is a reasonable looking shrimp-like animal. This mistaken interpretation will persist for years.

John Henry Pull, a postman and amateur archaeologist, finds fossil urchins in two separate Neolithic burial sites. His efforts to publish on his findings, however, will be thwarted due to his pedestrian background.

image Wings wins Academy Award for best picture. The silent film about World War I soldiers and their girls back home provided intimacy and spectacle, including aviation sequences that are still impressive. For the first six ceremonies, the Academy did not use the calendar year, which is why the dates are a little confusing.

1928

(no entry for this year)

image Surrealism goes to the movies, with Un Chien Andalou (An Andalusian Dog), a 1929 silent surrealist short film by the Spanish director Luis Buñuel and artist Salvador Dalí. It was Buñuel's first film and was initially released in 1929 with a limited showing at Studio des Ursulines in Paris, but became popular and ran for eight months. Un Chien Andalou has no plot in the conventional sense of the word. The chronology of the film is disjointed, jumping from the initial "once upon a time" to "eight years later" without the events or characters changing very much. It uses dream logic in narrative flow that can be described in terms of then-popular Freudian free association, presenting a series of tenuously related scenes. The idea for the film began when Buñuel was working as an assistant director for Jean Epstein in France. Buñuel told Dalí at a restaurant one day about a dream in which a cloud sliced the moon in half "like a razor blade slicing through an eye". Dalí responded that he'd dreamed about a hand crawling with ants. Excitedly, Buñuel declared: "There's the film, let's go and make it.'" They were fascinated by what the psyche could create, and decided to write a script based on the concept of suppressed human emotions. In deliberate contrast to the approach taken by Jean Epstein and his peers, which was to never leave anything in their work to chance, with every aesthetic decision having a rational explanation and fitting clearly into the whole, Buñuel made clear throughout his writings that, between Dalí and himself, the only rule for the writing of the script was: "No idea or image that might lend itself to a rational explanation of any kind would be accepted." Buñuel also stated: "Nothing, in the film, symbolizes anything. The only method of investigation of the symbols would be, perhaps, psychoanalysis."

Thomas Mann awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "principally for his great novel, Buddenbrooks, which has won steadily increased recognition as one of the classic works of contemporary literature".

Herman Hollerith Died

image Herbert Hoover becomes thirty-first president of the United States.

Black Tuesday in New York signals the beginning of a worldwide economic crisis and the beginning of the Great Depression, when the US stock exchange collapses, losing $26 billion in value.

Davidson Black announces the find of Sinanthropus pekinensis, or Peking Man, discovered at Zhoukoudian, China. Over the next several years, five nearly-complete skulls will be recovered from the same site. Peking Man will be lost, however, during World War II.

Estonian paleobiologist Alexander Audova publishes a paper rejecting racial senility as the cause of dinosaur extinction and instead pointing to environmental change.

image The Broadway Melody wins Academy Award for best picture. It was the first talkie to win an Oscar, with the movie’s publicity bragging “All talking! All dancing! All singing!” That novelty made it a sensation, but the film is pretty creaky in modern times. There were no nominations that year, just an announcement of winners.

1929

image Painting by René Magritte: The Treachery of Images (French: La trahison des images, 1928–29, sometimes translated as The Treason of Images) shows a pipe. Below it, Magritte painted, "Ceci n'est pas une pipe.", French for "This is not a pipe." Magritte's comment: "The famous pipe. How people reproached me for it! And yet, could you stuff my pipe? No, it's just a representation, is it not? So if I had written on my picture 'This is a pipe', I'd have been lying!" The painting is sometimes given as an example of meta message conveyed by paralanguage. Compare with Korzybski's "The word is not the thing" and "The map is not the territory" or Freud's "Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar."

image Painting by Wassily Kandinsky: Upward (Empor). Geometric abstraction, oil on cardboard.

Sinclair Lewis awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his vigorous and graphic art of description and his ability to create, with wit and humour, new types of characters".

image R. A. Fisher publishes Genetical Theory of Natural Selection, a formal analysis of the mathematics of selection.

Themistocles Zammit publishes Prehistoric Malta: The Tarxien Temples about excavations showing fossil sea urchins in Bronze Age temples.

image All Quiet on the Western Front wins Academy Award for best picture. This WWI film marked a quantum leap from the winner of the previous year: It’s impressive, subtle and moving, an early Hollywood relic that still holds up well in the 21st century.

1930

image Photograph by Man Ray: Yeshwant Rao Holkar II and Sanyogita Devi of Indore. The Maharaja of Indore spent much time in Europe and the United States (one of his homes was in Santa Ana, California). He became a patron of many important artists and designers of his day. The Paris-based American avant-garde photographer Man Ray photographed Yeshwant Rao Holkar extensively. This informal and intimate image of the Maharaja and his wife were probably taken when they were on holiday in Cannes, in the south of France.

image Painting by Grant Wood: American Gothic. Wood's inspiration came from what is now known as the American Gothic House, and his decision to paint the house along with "the kind of people I fancied should live in that house." Created in 1930, it depicts a farmer standing beside a woman that has been interpreted to be either his wife or his daughter. The figures were modeled by Wood's sister, Nan Wood Graham, and a local dentist, Dr. Byron McKeeby. The woman is dressed in a colonial print apron evoking 19th-century Americana, and the man is holding a pitchfork. It is one of the most familiar images in 20th-century American art, and has been widely parodied in American popular culture.

image Painting by Piet Mondrian: Composition II in Red, Blue, and Yellow

Erik Axel Karlfeldt awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature for his poetry.

C. Stern, and independently H. B. Creighton and B. McClintock, provide the cytological proof of crossing over.

The highly influential paleobotanist Sir Albert Charles Seward rejects the biologic interpretation of Cryptozoon fossils (stromatolites). This rejection will become known among paleontologists as "Seward's folly."

image Cimarron wins Academy Award for best picture. This big-scale Hollywood western was based on the novel by Edna Ferber. The land-rush scene is still effective, but the acting is sometimes a reminder that some actors had a hard time making the transition from big theatrical acting to subtler film work.

1931

image Painting by Salvador Dalí: The Persistence of Memory (Catalan: La persistència de la memòria) is one of his most recognizable works. First shown at the Julien Levy Gallery in 1932, since 1934 the painting has been in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City, which received it from an anonymous donor. The well-known surrealist piece introduced the image of the soft melting pocket watch. It epitomizes Dalí's theory of "softness" and "hardness", which was central to his thinking at the time. As Dawn Adès wrote, "The soft watches are an unconscious symbol of the relativity of space and time, a Surrealist meditation on the collapse of our notions of a fixed cosmic order". This interpretation suggests that Dalí was incorporating an understanding of the world introduced by Albert Einstein's theory of special relativity. Asked by Ilya Prigogine whether this was in fact the case, Dalí replied that the soft watches were not inspired by the theory of relativity, but by the surrealist perception of a Camembert melting in the sun.

image Aldous Huxley publishes Brave New World.

John Galsworthy awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his distinguished art of narration which takes its highest form in The Forsyte Saga".

"Flowers and Trees", the first full-color cartoon, is made in Technicolor by Disney.

Kodak introduces the first 8 mm amateur motion picture film, cameras, and projectors.

image A Harvard expedition to Australia collects Kronosaurus queenslandicus, a 135-million-year-old marine reptile fossil with a 9-foot skull and banana-sized teeth. Researchers excavate the fossil from a limestone quarry with the aid of explosives.

Fossil diggers discover a 25-million-year-old toothed, dwarf whale in Australia. Seven years later it will be named Mammalodon. More than 70 years later, it will be described as a "bottom-feeding mud-sucker."

image Grand Hotel wins Academy Award for best picture. The multi-story movie was a novelty as MGM gathered multiple big stars for one film. It remains the only best picture winner to take top honors with only one nomination.

1932

image Painting by Pablo Picasso: Le Rêve (French, "The Dream") portrays his 22-year-old mistress Marie-Thérèse Walter. It is said to have been painted in one afternoon, on 24 January 1932. It belongs to Picasso's period of distorted depictions, with its oversimplified outlines and contrasted colors resembling early Fauvism. In 2001, casino magnate Steve Wynn purchased the work for an undisclosed sum, estimated to be about $60 million. In October 2006, Wynn told a group of his friends that he had agreed the day before to sell the painting for $139 million to Steven A. Cohen. At the time, this price would have made Le Rêve the most expensive piece of art ever. While Wynn was showing the painting to his friends, he put his right elbow through the canvas, puncturing the left forearm of the figure and creating a six-inch tear. After a $90,000 repair, the painting was re-valued at $85 million. Wynn filed a claim to recover the $54 million perceived loss from his Lloyd's of London insurers, an amount which would have covered most of the initial cost of buying the painting. When the insurers balked, Wynn sued them in January 2007. The case was eventually settled out of court in March 2007. Cohen bought the painting from Wynn in 2013 for $155 million. The price is estimated to be the highest ever paid, up to that time, for an artwork by a U.S. collector

Ivan Alekseyevich Bunin awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for the strict artistry with which he has carried on the classical Russian traditions in prose writing".

image Franklin D. Roosevelt becomes thirty-second president of the United States.

Adolf Hitler is appointed German Chancellor; later the same year he is granted dictatorial powers. Events are in motion that will lead to World War II — the greatest military struggle of all time.

Robert Broom publishes The Coming of Man: Was it Accident or Design? arguing that evolution is really driven by spiritual agencies, some with conflicting priorities, and that mankind is the ultimate aim of all evolution.

image T. H. Morgan receives a Nobel Prize in Medicine for his development of the theory of the gene. He is the first geneticist to receive this award.

image Barbara McClintock demonstrates in maize that a single exchange within the inversion loop of a paracentric inversion heterozygote generates an acentric and a dicentric chromatid.

T. S. Painter initiates cytogenetic studies on the salivary gland chromosomes of Drosophila.

image Cavalcade wins Academy Award for best picture. The film was an adaptation of Noel Coward’s play chronicling the passage of time as seen through one family. The Titanic figures prominently in one of the episodes, which wasn’t the last time that the 1912 disaster was features in an Oscar winner.

1933

(no entry for this year)

Luigi Pirandello awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his bold and ingenious revival of dramatic and scenic art".

image In Herndon vs Georgia, the United States Supreme Court sets aside the death sentence of black communist Angelo Herndon, who was convicted under a pre-Civil War slave insurrection statute for passing out leaflets in Atlanta.

IBM 405 Alphabetical Accounting Machine introduced

The 135 film cartridge is introduced, making 35 mm easy to use for still photography.

With funding from Sinclair Oil, Barnum Brown begins excavating in Wyoming's Howe Quarry. His finds will lead to the green dinosaur logo for Sinclair's gas stations. Many of them will simply be named "Dino."

image It Happened One Night wins Academy Award for best picture. Frank Capra’s film was a surprise winner because nobody predicted the comedy to defeat all the year’s serious films. It became the first of only three films to take the top prizes of film, director, screenplay, actor and actress.

1934

image Fresco by Diego Rivera: Man at the Crossroads was intended for New York City's Rockefeller Center. The painting was controversial because it included an image of Lenin and a Soviet Russian May Day parade. Despite protests from artists, Nelson Rockefeller ordered its destruction before it was completed. Only black-and-white photographs exist of the original incomplete mural, taken when Rivera was forced to stop work on it. Using the photographs, Rivera repainted the composition in Mexico under the variant title Man, Controller of the Universe. The creation and destruction of the mural is dramatized in the films Cradle Will Rock (1999) and Frida (2002).

Becky Sharp, the first feature film made in the full-color "three-strip" version of Technicolor, is released.

Introduction of Kodachrome multi-layered color reversal film (16 mm only; 8 mm and 35 mm follow in 1936, sheet film in 1938).

image C. B. Bridges publishes the salivary gland chromosome maps for Drosophila melanogaster.

G. W. Beadle and B. Ephrussi and A. Kuhn and A. Butenandt work out the biochemical genetics of eye-pigment synthesis in Drosophila and Ephestia, respectively.

image J. B. S. Haldane is the first to calculate the spontaneous mutation frequency of a human gene.

M. Baudouin describes more than 80 fossil sea urchins drilled for use as jewelry, some worked as long as 35,000 years ago.

image Mutiny on the Bounty wins Academy Award for best picture. The MGM spectacle is the third (and so far, last) film to take top prize with no other wins, after “Broadway Melody” and “Grand Hotel.” It is also the only film to have three best actor nominations: Clark Gable, Charles Laughton and Franchot Tone. The overcrowding helped lead to the Academy’s creation of the supporting actor and actress categories.

1935

image Architecture by Frank Lloyd Wright: Fallingwater or the Kaufmann Residence is a house in rural southwestern Pennsylvania, 43 miles southeast of Pittsburgh. The home was built partly over a waterfall on Bear Run in the Mill Run section of Stewart Township, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, in the Laurel Highlands of the Allegheny Mountains. The house was designed as a weekend home for the family of Liliane Kaufmann and her husband, Edgar J. Kaufmann, owner of Kaufmann's department store. Time cited it after its completion as Wright's "most beautiful job"; it is listed among Smithsonian's Life List of 28 places "to visit before you die". It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1966. In 1991, members of the American Institute of Architects named the house the "best all-time work of American architecture" and in 2007, it was ranked 29th on the list of America's Favorite Architecture according to the AIA.

Eugene Gladstone O'Neill awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for the power, honesty and deep-felt emotions of his dramatic works, which embody an original concept of tragedy".

image Track star Jesse Owens wins four gold medals at the Berlin Olympics between August 3 and August 9.

At Cambridge Alan Turing invented the principle of the modern computer

Konrad Zuse Files For Patent

Agfacolor Neu (English: New Agfacolor) color reversal film for home movies and slides.

Introduction by IHAGEE of the Ihagee Kine Exakta 1, the first 35 mm SLR (Single Lens Reflex) camera.

German troops occupy the Rhineland in defiance of the treaties of Locarno and Versailles.

A. H. Sturtevant and T. Dobzhansky publish the first account of the use of inversions in constructing a chromosomal phylogenetic tree.

Robert Broom finds the first skull of an adult australopithecine near Johannesburg.

image The Great Ziegfeld wins Academy Award for best picture. The film is enlivened by William Powell’s performance and by the one sequence for which it’s best remembered: A lavish musical number, “A Pretty Girl is Like a Melody,” that is done in one complex continuous take.

1936

image Photograph by Dorothea Lange: Migrant Mother is one of a series of photographs that Lange made of Florence Owens Thompson and her children in February or March of 1936 in Nipomo, California. Lange was concluding a month's trip photographing migratory farm labor around the state for what was then the Resettlement Administration. The images were made using a Graflex camera. The original negatives are 4x5" film. In 1960, Lange gave this account of the experience: I saw and approached the hungry and desperate mother, as if drawn by a magnet. I do not remember how I explained my presence or my camera to her, but I do remember she asked me no questions. I made five exposures, working closer and closer from the same direction. I did not ask her name or her history. She told me her age, that she was thirty-two. She said that they had been living on frozen vegetables from the surrounding fields, and birds that the children killed. She had just sold the tires from her car to buy food. There she sat in that lean- to tent with her children huddled around her, and seemed to know that my pictures might help her, and so she helped me. There was a sort of equality about it.

image Photograph by Walker Evans: Bud Fields with His Wife Ivy, and His Daughter Ellen, Hale County, Alabama, now in the J. Paul Getty Museum.

image Sculpture by Méret Oppenheim: Object (Le Déjeuner en fourrure) [Object (Breakfast in Fur)]. The sculpture consists of a teacup, saucer and spoon that the artist covered with fur from a Chinese gazelle. The fur suggests an expensively decked-out woman; the cup, hollow yet round, can evoke female genitalia; the spoon with its phallic shape further eroticizes the hairy object. It was purchased by Alfred Barr for the collection of the Museum of Modern Art in New York and included the museum's first surrealist exhibition Fantastic Art: Dada and Surrealism in 1936. Oppenheim was willing to sell the piece for one thousand francs, but Barr only offered her $50 and she accepted. This was the first piece of art that the museum acquired, and Oppenheim became known as the First Lady of MoMA. The enormous success of this early work would later create problems for Oppenheim as an artist. Soon after its creation she drifted away from the Surrealists. Decades later, in 1972, she artistically commented on its dominance of her career by producing a number of "souvenirs" of Le Déjeuner en fourrure.

Roger Martin du Gard awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for the artistic power and truth with which he has depicted human conflict as well as some fundamental aspects of contemporary life in his novel-cycle Les Thibault".

Alan Turing Defines the Universal Machine

ILLIAC IV Designer Slotnick is born

The Atanasoff–Berry Computer first conceived

T. Dobzhansky publishes Genetics and the Origin of Species — a milestone in evolutionary genetics.

image a}The Golden Gate Bridge{/a} is completed. At the time of its opening in 1937, it was both the longest and the tallest suspension bridge in the world, with a main span of 4,200 feet and a total height of 746 feet. The Frommer's travel guide describes the Golden Gate Bridge as "possibly the most beautiful, certainly the most photographed, bridge in the world."

image The Life of Emile Zola wins Academy Award for best picture. The bio of French novelist Zola is mostly centered on his passionate defense of Capt. Alfred Dreyfus, who was falsely accused of treason and sentenced to Devil’s Island. It’s a good old-fashioned Hollywood biopic, with plenty of fictional touches, that is a great showcase for Paul Muni in the title role.

1937

image Painting by Pablo Picasso: Guernica is a mural-sized work that Picasso completed in June 1937, at his home on Rue des Grands Augustins, in Paris. The painting, which uses a palette of gray, black, and white, is regarded by many art critics as one of the most moving and powerful anti-war paintings in history. Standing at 3.49 meters (11 ft 5 in) tall and 7.76 meters (25 ft 6 in) wide, the large mural shows the suffering of people wrenched by violence and chaos. Prominent in the composition are a gored horse, a bull, and flames. The painting was created in response to the bombing of Guernica, a Basque Country village in northern Spain, by Nazi German and Fascist Italian warplanes at the request of the Spanish Nationalists. Upon completion, Guernica was exhibited at the Spanish display at the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne (Paris International Exposition) in the 1937 World's Fair in Paris and then at other venues around the world. The touring exhibition was used to raise funds for Spanish war relief. The painting became famous and widely acclaimed, and it helped bring worldwide attention to the Spanish Civil War.

image Painting by Pablo Picasso: The Weeping Woman. Picasso was intrigued with the subject, and revisited the theme numerous times that year. This painting was the final and most elaborate of the series. It has been in the collection of the Tate in London since 1987, and is on exhibition at the Tate Modern, London. Dora Maar was Picasso's mistress from 1936 until 1944. In the course of their relationship, Picasso painted her in a number of guises, some realistic, some benign, others tortured or threatening. Picasso explained: For me she's the weeping woman. For years I've painted her in tortured forms, not through sadism, and not with pleasure, either; just obeying a vision that forced itself on me. It was the deep reality, not the superficial one.

Pearl Buck awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for her rich and truly epic descriptions of peasant life in China and for her biographical masterpieces".

Zuse Z1 built by Konrad Zuse

image Fishermen find a coelacanth, a fish long believed to be extinct, off the coast of South Africa. Margaret Courtney-Latimer, a curator at the East London Museum in South Africa, keeps the fish preserved long enough for its identity to be confirmed by ichthyologist J.L.B. Smith.

image You Can't Take It with You wins Academy Award for best picture. This was the second Frank Capra film to take the top prize. The film is a sweet, zany comedy, but many pundits think that a major factor in its win was Capra’s crucial role in keeping the peace between studios and the new guilds; some had predicted a long strike. Others predicted the end of Hollywood.

1938

image Painting by René Magritte: Time Transfixed (La Durée poignardée) is part of the permanent collection of the Art Institute of Chicago and is usually on display in the museum's new Modern Wing. The painting was one of many done for surrealist patron and Magritte supporter Edward James. The painting depicts a locomotive jutting out of a fireplace, at full steam, in an empty room. Above the mantelpiece is a tall mirror. Only the clock and one candlestick standing on the mantelpiece are reflected in the mirror. The title of the painting translates to English literally as "Ongoing Time Stabbed by a Dagger" and Magritte was reportedly unhappy with the generally accepted translation of "Time Transfixed".

September 1, Germany invades Poland; Britain and France declare war on Germany on September 3. Soviet troops invade Poland. World War II begins.

image September 1, George C. Marshall is sworn in as Chief of Staff of the US Army. After the war, Churchill refers to Marshall (the only military leader to serve through the entirety of WW II) as the Architect of Victory for his crucial role in ensuring the defeat of the Axis Powers.

Frans Eemil Sillanpää awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his deep understanding of his country's peasantry and the exquisite art with which he has portrayed their way of life and their relationship with Nature".

Hewlett Packard Founded

Agfacolor negative and positive 35 mm color film stock for professional motion picture use (not for making paper prints).

The View-Master 3-D viewer and its "reels" of seven small stereoscopic image pairs on Kodachrome film are introduced.

E. L. Ellis and M. Delbrück perform studies on coliphage growth that mark the beginning of modem phage work. They devise the "one-step growth" experiment, which demonstrates that after the phage adsorbs onto the bacterium, it replicates within the bacterium during the "latent period," and finally the progeny are released in a "burst."

About 200 worked ivory fragments, roughly 32,000 years old, are found in the Hohlenstein-Stadel Cave in Germany. Three decades later, the pieces will be reassembled as statue of a lion-headed man.

image Gone with the Wind wins Academy Award for best picture. Producer David O. Selznick optioned Margaret Mitchell’s novel before it became a huge best-seller, and his search for an actress to play Scarlett O’Hara was a pinnacle of Hollywood publicity. Anticipation was ridiculously high when the film opened, but fans embraced the movie and star Vivien Leigh, who won an Oscar (one of eight that the film earned). It also happened to be the only color film to take the Best Picture prize in the Academy’s first 23 years.

1939

(no entry for this year)

Frank Morton Carpenter collects a 2.5-foot wing from a dragonfly-like giant insect that lived in Oklahoma during the Permian Period.

image Rebecca wins Academy Award for best picture. The darkest aspects of the Daphne du Maurier novel were cleaned up a little, but the film was popular then and still remains a fan favorite. It’s the only Alfred Hitchcock film to take the top Academy Award.

1940

(no entry for this year)

Between 1941 and 1945, the desperate need for labor in US defense plants and shipyards leads to the migration of 1.2 million African-Americans from the South to the North and West. This migration transforms American politics as blacks increasingly vote in their new homes and put pressure on Congress to protect civil rights throughout the nation. Their activism lays much of the foundation for the national civil rights movement a decade later.

On June 25, Pres. Franklin Roosevelt issues Executive Order 8802, which desegregates US defense plants and shipyards and creates the Fair Employment Practices Committee.

image The US Army creates the Tuskegee Air Squadron (the 99th Pursuit Squadron) — an all African-American flying unit.

Zuse Z3 machine completed

G. W. Beadle and E. L. Tatum publish their classic study on the biochemical genetics of Neurospora and promulgate the ONE-GENE, ONE-ENZYME theory.

K. Mather coins the term polygenes and describes polygenic traits in various organisms.

Anthropologist E. T. Hall excavates the ruins of a dwelling in New Mexico occupied between 700 and 900 AD. He finds two fossil jawbones of Eocene mammals that were deliberately carried to the dwelling by Paleo-Indians.

German paleontologist H. Kirchner suggests that dinosaur tracks in the Rhine Valley might have inspired the legend of Siegfried slaying the dragon Fafnir.

image 07 DEC 1941: Pearl Harbor bombed by Japanese The US immediately declares war on Japan. Germany quickly declares war on the United States. The US is now a full participant in World War II.

image 08 DEC 1941: The US responds to Pearl Harbor. President to address joint session of Congress. Declaration of War expected.

image 09 DEC 1941: The United States formally declares War on Japan.

image How Green Was My Valley wins Academy Award for best picture. The drama was set in a Welsh mining village, with director John Ford winning one of the film’s five Oscars. Even then, many were surprised that the movie beat Orson Welles’ “Citizen Kane,” but a Variety reporter at the time attributed that to the 6,000 movie extras who voted on Oscar’s top prize: “The mob prefers a regular guy to a genius.”

1941

(no entry for this year)

The Atanasoff-Berry Computer is completed

Kodacolor, the first color film that yields negatives for making chromogenic color prints on paper. Roll films for snapshot cameras only, 35 mm not available until 1958.

image 4-7 JUN 1942: The Battle of Midway occurs. Less than six months after Pearl Harbor the Japanese navy attempts to lure the remnants of the US Navy into a decisive battle at Midway Island. The Japanese plan backfires, as the battle proves to be a huge victory for US forces and the turning point in the war in the Pacific.

Ernst Mayr publishes Systematics and the Origin of Species, and Julian Huxley publishes Evolution: The Modern Synthesis. Both books are significant contributions to the neo darwinian synthesis combining elements of natural selection, genetics, mutation, population biology and paleontology.

S. E. Luria and T. F. Anderson publish the first electron micrographs of bacterial viruses. T2 has a polyhedral body and a tail.

image Mrs. Miniver wins Academy Award for best picture. The film, about a British family during the early days of World War II, came at just the right time, reassuring Americans that their newish war effort was the right decision.

1942

(no entry for this year)

The Colossus Mark 1 computer is delivered to Bletchley Park

The First Computing Journal

Work begins on ENIAC

S. E. Luria and M. Delbrück initiate the field of bacterial genetics when they demonstrate unambiguously that bacteria undergo spontaneous mutation.

image Casablanca wins Academy Award for best picture. The WWII drama represents the studio system at its best, where all the talent (behind and in front of the camera) worked at their peak. Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman were not the studio’s first choices for their roles, but they remain one of the screen’s all-time great romantic pairings.

1943

image Painting by Piet Mondrian: Broadway Boogie Woogie was completed in 1943, shortly after Mondrian moved to New York in 1940. Compared to his earlier work, the canvas is divided into a much larger number of squares. Although he spent most of his career creating abstract work, this painting is inspired by clear real-world examples: the city grid of Manhattan, and the Broadway boogie woogie, a type of music Mondrian loved. The painting was bought by the Brazilian sculptor Maria Martins for the price of $800 at the Valentine Gallery in New York City, after Martins and Mondrian both exhibited there in 1943. Martins later donated the painting to the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

Johannes Vilhelm Jensen awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for the rare strength and fertility of his poetic imagination with which is combined an intellectual curiosity of wide scope and a bold, freshly creative style".

On April 3, the United States Supreme Court in Smith vs. Allright declares white-only political primaries unconstitutional.

First Harvard Mark 1 shipped

image D-Day landing On June 6th, the largest amphibious force ever assembled, led by General Dwight D. Eisenhower, successfully attacks and establishes a landing on the coast of France at Normandy.

Theoretical physicist Erwin Schrödinger publishes What is Life? arguing that living organisms store and pass along information, perhaps using something like Morse code. This book will inspire James Watson, Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins, who will share the Nobel prize for discovering the structure of DNA.

O. T. Avery, C. M. MacLeod, and M. McCarty describe the pneumococcus transforming principle. The fact that it is rich in DNA suggests that DNA and not protein is the hereditary chemical.

image Going My Way wins Academy Award for best picture. Writer-director Leo McCarey once again proved his ability to balance tears and laughs, in this tale of a rule-breaking priest (Oscar winner Bing Crosby) taking over a New York parish from a retiring priest. In the latter role, Barry Fitzgerald was oddly nominated as both lead and supporting actor, winning in the latter category.

1944

image Triptych by Francis Bacon: Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion comprises three canvasses that are based on the Eumenides — or Furies — of Aeschylus's Oresteia, and that depict three writhing anthropomorphic creatures set against a flat burnt orange background. It was executed in oil paint and pastel on Sundeala fibre board and completed within two weeks. The triptych summarises themes explored in Bacon's previous work, including his examination of Picasso's biomorphs and his interpretations of the Crucifixion and the Greek Furies. The Three Studies are generally considered Bacon's first mature piece. When the painting was first exhibited in 1945 it caused a sensation and established him as one of the foremost post-war painters. Remarking on the cultural significance of Three Studies, the critic John Russell observed in 1971 that "there was painting in England before the Three Studies, and painting after them, and no one ... can confuse the two".

image 13 APR 1945: President Roosevelt dies in office.

image Harry S. Truman becomes thirty-third president of the United States.

image 28 APR 1945: US and Russian troops meet. Germany split in two.

image 30 APR 1945: Press reports Mussolini killed by Italian partisans, his body abused. Hitler commits suicide by gunshot while hiding in his Führerbunker, but news of his death will not surface for a few days.

image 02 MAY 1945: Hitler reported dead..

image 08 MAY 1945: Germany surrenders unconditionally. The war in Europe is over.

image 22 JUN 1945: Okinawa falls after 82 days of fierce fighting.

image 16 JUL 1945: The Manhattan Project yields results — the world's first atomic bomb is secretly tested in New Mexico.

image 27 JUL 1945: Churchill is defeated in British elections. Potsdam Declaration is reported, calling for Japan to surrender unconditionally or face "prompt and utter destruction."

image 06 AUG 1945: the first atomic bomb used in combat is dropped on Hiroshima, Japan.

image 07 AUG 1945: The world learns about the atomic bomb. President Truman announces "The force from which the sun draws its power has been loosed against those who brought war to the Far East" and he calls upon Japan to immediately accept the terms of the Potsdam Declaration or “expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth."

image 09 AUG 1945: The second atomic bomb used in combat is dropped on Nagasaki, Japan. The primary target for this mission was actually the city of Kokura, but the bomber crew moved on to the secondary target of Nagasaki when Kokura proved to be too obscured by smoke to get a clear view for the bombsight. Russia declares war on japan.

image 15 AUG 1945: In the afternoon of August 15th (Japanese time), Japan announces its unconditional surrender. World War II is finally over. More than 60 million people have died as a result of the conflict.

Gabriela Mistral awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for her lyric poetry which, inspired by powerful emotions, has made her name a symbol of the idealistic aspirations of the entire Latin American world".

image Col. Benjamin O. Davis, Jr, is named commander of Godman Field, Kentucky. He is the first African-American to command a United States military base.

Grace Hopper recorded the first actual computer "bug"

Patent is Filed for the Harvard Mark I

Vannevar Bush publishes his ideas for MEMEX, a proto-hypertext system and forerunner to the World Wide Web

image S. E. Luria demonstrates that mutations occur in bacterial viruses.

image The Lost Weekend wins Academy Award for best picture. The film, directed by Billy Wilder, was widely admired even though it was controversial: Though movies had featured drunks since the silent days, it was considered daring to address the subject head-on.

1945

(no entry for this year)

Hermann Hesse awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his inspired writings which, while growing in boldness and penetration, exemplify the classical humanitarian ideals and high qualities of style".

The United States Supreme Court, in Morgan vs Virginia, rules that segregation in interstate bus travel is unconstitutional.

Alan Turing Proposal For 'ACE' Automatic Computing Engine

ENIAC Unveiled

ENIAC, short for Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer was announced

Frederick Williams Receives Patent for RAM device

James B. Sumner, John H. Northrop, and Wendell M. Stanley share a Nobel Prize in Chemistry for Sumner's discovery that enzymes can be crystallized and for Northrop and Stanley's preparation of enzymes and virus proteins in a pure form.

image Nobel Prize in Medicine awarded to H. J. Muller for his contributions to radiation genetics

Genetic recombination in bacteriophage is demonstrated by M. Delbrück and W. T. Bailey and by A. D. Hershey.

J. Lederberg and E. L. Tatum demonstrate genetic recombination in bacteria.

Along the Kolyma River in northeastern Siberia, Gulag prisoners discover a nest with three frozen, mummified ground squirrel carcasses. They turn the carcasses over to the Gulag camp geologist, Yuriy Popov, who relays them to other Soviet scientists. Seventy years later, radiocarbon dating and DNA analysis of the ground squirrel mummies will identify their age at over 30,000 years old, and indicate that they are not direct ancestors of modern ground squirrels in the region.

Geologist Reg Sprigg discovers fossils near the Ediacara Hills in Australia. The fossils are of multicellular organisms that predated the Cambrian Period, making them the oldest complex fossils yet discovered. At least some of the fossils are generally assumed to be related to modern cnidarians like jellyfish and corals.

image The Best Years of Our Lives wins Academy Award for best picture. The world population was just adjusting to life after World War II and some film executives feared that audiences wanted escapism, not a movie reflecting their lives. But it was a huge hit, and its honesty in dealing with civilian changes and vulnerabilities are still powerful. It was produced by Samuel Goldwyn, directed by William Wyler.

1946

(no entry for this year)

André Paul Guillaume Gide awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his comprehensive and artistically significant writings, in which human problems and conditions have been presented with a fearless love of truth and keen psychological insight".

image On April 10, Jackie Robinson of the Brooklyn Dodgers becomes the first African-American to play major league baseball in the 20th century.

J Lyons executives report on the potential of computers to automate clerical work

The Williams tube won the race for a practical random-access memory

Dennis Gabor invents holography.

Harold Edgerton develops the Rapatronic camera for the U.S. government.

American Museum of Natural History curator Edwin Colbert finds a massive quarry of Coelophysis dinosaurs in New Mexico and concludes from their skeletons that these Triassic dinosaurs were swift runners with a bird-like posture. Later examination of two fossils will lead Colbert to conclude they were also cannibals, but the "last meals of juvenile coelophyses" will eventually prove to be crocodilian.

Rudolph Zallinger completes The Age of Reptiles mural in the Yale Peabody Museum. His image of slow-moving dinosaurs will prevail until the 1960s.

image Gentleman's Agreement wins Academy Award for best picture. The Elia Kazan-directed drama, starring Gregory Peck, was another hot-button winner, as it addressed the topic of anti-Semitism.

1947

image Painting by Jackson Pollock: Reflections of the Big Dipper, consisting of built up layers of paint with dripped enamel as the final touch, concluding the composition. It was around 1947 that Jackson Pollock traded in his brushes for sticks, trowels and knives and began adding foreign matter, such as sand, broken glass, nails, coins, paint-tube tops and bottle caps to his canvases. Reflection of the Big Dipper was exhibited at the Betty Parsons Gallery in 1948, along with sixteen other paintings by Jackson Pollock. The show received positive reviews. Pollock's works from this time are a transitional step between a more traditional handling of paint and his revolutionary technique of dripping paint on canvases off a large scale.

Thomas Stearns Eliot awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his outstanding, pioneer contribution to present-day poetry".

On July 26, Pres. Harry Truman issues Executive Order 9981, directing the desegregation of the armed forces.

The United States Supreme Court, in Shelley vs Kraemer, rules that racially restrictive covenants are legally unenforceable.

IBM´s Selective Sequence Electronic Calculator was built

The Manchester Baby, the world's first stored program computer, ran its first program

Edwin H. Land introduces the first Polaroid instant camera.

image The Hasselblad 1600F camera is introduced.

image H. J. Muller coins the term dosage compensation.

J. Lederberg and N. Zinder, and, independently, B. D. Davis develop the penicillin selection technique for isolating biochemically deficient bacterial mutants.

Mary Leakey finds the skull of the ape Proconsul, about 16 million years old. Although a very significant find, it does little to bolster Louis and Mary Leakey's meager research funding.

image Hamlet wins Academy Award for best picture. The black and white Shakespeare adaptation, from U.K.’s J. Arthur Rank-Two Cities, was the first non-Hollywood film to take the top award. And Laurence Olivier became the first person to direct himself to a best-actor win.

1948

image Painting by Barnett Newman: Onement I features the first full incarnation of what Newman later called a 'zip', a vertical band of color. This motif would play a central role in many of his subsequent paintings. The painting's title is an archaic derivation of the word 'atonement', meaning, "the state of being made into one."

William Faulkner awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his powerful and artistically unique contribution to the modern American novel".

EDSAC performed its first calculations

EDSAC ran its first programs

EDVAC goes onlline

Jay Forrester Records "Core Memory" Idea

Professor Bill Phillips unveils Phillips Hydraulic Economic Modelling Computer at the LSE

The Contax S camera is introduced, the first 35 mm SLR camera with a pentaprism eye-level viewfinder.

A. D. Hershey and R. Rotman demonstrate that genetic recombination occurs in bacteriophage.

J. V. Neel provides genetic evidence that the sickle-cell disease is inherited as a simple Mendelian autosomal recessive.

French prehistorian André Leroi-Gourhan discovers the Cave of the Reindeer near the village of Arcy-sur-Cure where he will conduct a 15-year excavation. Discoveries at Arcy will suggest to some researchers an artistic sense among Neanderthals, including the collection of fossil mollusk shells and fossil coral. Doubts about ages of objects, however, will leave the subject open to debate.

image All the King's Men wins Academy Award for best picture. The movie, written and directed by Robert Rossen (nominated in both categories), was based on the novel by Robert Penn Warren. It was a thinly disguised version of Louisiana’s Huey Long, and the film’s observations about politics still hold up surprisingly well.

1949

image Alberto Giacometti completes Three Men Walking II

Earl (Bertrand Arthur William) Russell awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought".

The first Elliott 152 computer appeared

Zuse sold first Z4 computer

At a Cold Spring Harbor Symposium, Ernst Mayr argues that all hominid specimens so far found should be categorized in the genus Homo: H. transvaalensis, H. erectus, and H. sapiens.

E. Chargaff lays the foundations for nucleic acid structural studies by his analytical work. He demonstrates for DNA that the numbers of adenine and thymine groups are always equal and so are the numbers of guanine and cytosine groups. These findings later suggest to Watson and Crick that DNA consists of two polynucleotide strands joined by hydrogen bonding between A and T and between G and C.

E. M. Lederberg discovers lambda, the first viral episome of E. coli.

image All about Eve wins Academy Award for best picture. Three of the year’s five best picture nominees were dominated by great female performances: “Born Yesterday,” “Sunset Blvd.” and “All About Eve.” But Joseph Mankiewicz’s witty tale about Broadway competition was the one that ended up in the winner’s circle.

1950

(no entry for this year)

Pär Fabian Lagerkvist awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for the artistic vigour and true independence of mind with which he endeavours in his poetry to find answers to the eternal questions confronting mankind".

image On May 24, a mob of 3500 whites attempt to prevent a black family from moving into an apartment in Cicero, Illinois. Illinois Gov. Adlai Stevenson calls out the Illinois National Guard to protect the family and restore order.

On May 24, the United States Supreme Court rules that racial segregation in District of Columbia restaurants is unconstitutional.

Ferranti Mark 1 delivered to Manchester University

LEO I computer became operational

The first UNIVAC was delivered

UNIVAC-1 goes online

Barbara McClintock publishes a paper describing "jumping" genes that can move around within an organism's genome.

image An American in Paris wins Academy Award for best picture. This Vincent Minnelli musical starring Gene Kelly, was a surprise winner. Producer Arthur Freed took home the Oscar, starting the Academy’s new policy of giving the award to an individual producer, rather than the studio. After “Gone with the Wind,” this was the second best-pic winner in color.

1951

image Painting by Salvador Dalí: Christ of Saint John of the Cross depicts Jesus Christ on the cross in a darkened sky floating over a body of water complete with a boat and fishermen. Although it is a depiction of the crucifixion, it is devoid of nails, blood, and a crown of thorns, because, according to Dalí, he was convinced by a dream that these features would mar his depiction of Christ. Also in a dream, the importance of depicting Christ in the extreme angle evident in the painting was revealed to him.

image Ralph Ellison publishes Invisible Man.

François Mauriac awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for the deep spiritual insight and the artistic intensity with which he has in his novels penetrated the drama of human life".

CBS News Uses UNIVAC Computer to Predict Election

Grace Hopper completes the A-0 Compiler

Heinz Nixdorf founded Nixdorf Computer

Bwana Devil, a low-budget polarized 3-D film, premieres in late November and starts a brief 3-D craze that begins in earnest in 1953 and fades away during 1954.

A. D. Hershey and M. Chase demonstrate that the DNA of phage enters the host, whereas most of the protein remains behind.

F. Sanger and his colleagues work out the complete amino acid sequence for the protein hormone insulin, and show that it contains two polypeptide chains held together by disulfide bridges.

J. Lederberg and E. M. Lederberg invent the replica plating technique.

N. D. Zinder and J. Lederberg describe transduction in Salmonella.

Russian geologist Boris Sokolov establishes the term Vendian. Based on rock strata in the Soviet Union, it designates the period immediately preceding the Cambrian, coinciding with fossils found near the Ediacara Hills.

image The Greatest Show on Earth wins Academy Award for best picture. Director Cecil B. DeMille was a showman since the silent days of movies, but this was his first to take the Best Picture Academy Award, with his colorful and gaudy spectacle about life in the circus.

1952

image Painting by Jackson Pollock: Number 11, 1952, also known as Blue Poles, is one of the most famous works by American artist Jackson Pollock. It was purchased amid controversy by the National Gallery of Australia in 1973 and today remains one of the gallery's major paintings. At the time of the painting's creation, Pollock preferred not to assign names to his works, but rather numbers; hence, the original title of the painting was simply "Number 11"' or "No. 11" for the year 1952. In 1954, the new title Blue Poles was first seen at an exhibition at the Sidney Janis Gallery and reportedly originated from Pollock himself. According to art historian Dennis Phillips, the specific rather than ambiguous title "limits our field of comprehension and does the painting a singular disservice. Because we look for the poles and miss much of the rest, the name is simply too distracting."

Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his mastery of historical and biographical description as well as for brilliant oratory in defending exalted human values".

IBM announces the Model 650 computer

Jay Forrester installed magnetic core memory at MIT

image Dwight D. Eisenhower becomes thirty-fourth president of the United States.

image image J. D. Watson and F. H. C. Crick propose a model for DNA comprised of two helically intertwined chains tied together by hydrogen bonds between the purines and pyrimidines.

W. Hayes discovers polarized behavior in bacterial recombinations. He isolates the Hfr H strain of E. coli and shows that certain genes are readily transferred from Hfr to F- bacteria, whereas others are not.

Piltdown Man is determined to be a hoax: the jaw of an ape and a human skull.

Fiesel Houtermans and Clair Patterson publish independent estimates inferring the age of the Earth through radiometric dating of meteorites. Both estimates are over 4.5 billion years.

image From Here to Eternity wins Academy Award for best picture. Daniel Taradash adapted James Jones’ novel into a great screenplay, augmented by Fred Zinnemann’s smart direction. Burt Lancaster topped a strong cast in the tale of military lives in Hawaii just before the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

1953

image Painting by Francis Bacon: Study after Velázquez's Portrait of Pope Innocent X shows a distorted version of the Portrait of Innocent X painted by Spanish artist Diego Velázquez in 1650. The work is one of a series of over 45 variants of the Velázquez painting which Bacon executed throughout the 1950s and early 1960s. The picture was described by Gilles Deleuze as an example of creative re-interpretation of the classical. When asked why he was compelled to revisit the subject so often, Bacon replied that he had nothing against the Popes, that he merely sought "an excuse to use these colours, and you can't give ordinary clothes that purple colour without getting into a sort of false fauve manner".

Ernest Miller Hemingway awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature "for his mastery of the art of narrative, most recently demonstrated in The Old Man and the Sea, and for the influence that he has exerted on contemporary style".

On May 17, the United States Supreme Court, in Brown vs the Board of Education, declares segregation in all public schools in the United States unconstitutional, nullifying the earlier judicial doctrine of "separate but equal."

20th September First FORTRAN Program Runs

IBM Announces Model 705 Computer

Jack Tramiel starts Commodore

Leica M Introduced

Elso Barghoorn and Stanley Tyler report the discovery of bacterial cells in Canadian rock formations that are nearly 2 billion years old.

Philip Abelson and his team detect amino acids in fish that are over 300 million years old.

image On the Waterfront wins Academy Award for best picture. Marlon Brando won his first Oscar as Terry Malloy, a New York dock worker. Elia Kazan directed from a script by Budd Schulberg, both of whom were targeted by the Hollywood blacklist; some have seen this film as a metaphor for their experiences and an explanation of their actions.

1954

image Painting by Jasper Johns: Flag is an encaustic painting created when Johns was 24 (1954-55), two years after he was discharged from the US Army. This painting was the first of many works that Johns has said were inspired by a dream of the U.S. flag in 1954. It is arguably the painting for which Johns is best known. The US flag was in the news repeatedly in 1954. The McCarthy hearings came to a close on 17 June 1954, only three days after Flag Day. On Flag Day, U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed an amendment to the pledge of allegiance to add the words "under God." The New York Times ran article on facts and myths associated with the flag on the day before Flag Day, and then an article on the "discipline" of the flag on Flag Day itself, saying, with reference to a national air-raid drill "we are all soldiers now". Francis Scott Key, composer of "The Star Spangled Banner", was born in 1779, 175 years before 1954. The Iwo Jima Marine Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery, with its large US flag, was dedicated on 11 November 1954. Johns and his father were both named after Sergeant William Jasper, who saved the fallen flag of the Americans at Fort Moultrie in the American Revolutionary War. The work measures 42.2 inches by 60.6 inches. It is made using encaustic, oil paint, and newsprint collage on three separate canvases, m