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MAKING THE MODERN WORLD
Stories about the lives we've made

period:  1750-1820 Enlightenment & Measurement

Figure using cross-staff, 1535. © Science Museum / Science and Society

Eighteenth century thinkers had new confidence that the world could be understood through experiment and reason. This spirit inspired astronomy, mapping and navigation, as well as ideas for new systems in manufacturing and working.

1750-1820
Enlightenment & Measurement
Measuring the Universe
Accurate measurement improved astronomy, navigation and trade.
Empire, navy and trade
A maritime empire transformed British culture and identity.
Rational manufacture
New, rationally organised manufacturing systems gradually transformed industry.
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