BROWSE DECADES
   
 

1740's

1650  1660  1670  1680  1690  1700  1710  1720  1730  1740  1750  1760  1770  1780  1790  1800  1810  1820  1830  1840  1850  1860  1870  1880  1890  1900  1910  1920  1930  1940  1950  1960  1970  1980  1990  2000 

     
 
 

Events of the Decade:

England fights Spain in the War of Jenkins" Ear
War of the Austrian Succession (King George's War in America)
Prussia invades Austrian Empire of Silesia; Prussia invades Bohemia - wins Second Silesian War vs. Austria
The Ohio Company granted charter by King George II to settle the Ohio Valley
Alaska discovered by Vitus Bering
Amazon River explored by Charles Marie de la Condamine
Turkish-Persian War

Who's 'In':

Maria Theresa of Austria, Bohemia & Hungary
King Louis XV of France
Frederick II (The Great) of Prussia
Elizabeth, czarina of Russia
Charles VII, Holy Roman Emperor
Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor
King Ferdinand VI of Spain
British PM: Spencer Compton
Czar Ivan VI of Russia, then Elizabeth Petrovna
Robert Clive in India
Ishege, Shogun of Japan
King Frederick V of Denmark
Ahmed Shah, King of Afghanistan
Shah Rukh ruler of Persia

Who Died:

Smallpox epidemic in England kills tens of thousands
Edmund Halley, 86
Jethro Tull
Alexander Pope, 56
Pope Clement XII
Philip V Spain
Antonio Vivaldi, 66
Jonathan Swift, 78
Vitus Bering, 60
Frederick William I of Prussia
Emperor Charles VII
Czarina Anne of Russia
King Christian VI of Denmark

Bad Guys:

What's 'In':

Chinoiserie, Chinese art and design, popular in Europe
The sport of cricket in England
Dancing the Quadrille in France
Waxworks Museum in New York
America's first orphanage in Savannah, GA
A carillon in church in Boston
Chess method of François Philidor
Umbrellas in America
A candle factory in America at Newport RI
Marie-Thérèse Geoffrin's literary salon in Paris
Yarns exported to Europe from India
First code of Boxing rules
Ben Franklin's Franklin stove
Radial ball bearings
Universities of Pennsylvania, Princeton and Washington & Lee founded
Gothic style of furnishings back "in" in England
First golf club in Scotland

Entertainment:

Burgtheatre, Vienna founded
David Garrick's acting debut in "Richard III"
Robert Dodsley "The Blind Beggar of Bethnal Green"
Voltaire's "Mahomet," "Mérope," "Zadig"
David Garrick's "Miss in her Teens" or The Medley of Lovers"
Carlo Goldoni's "The Liar," "The Servant of Two Masters"
Samuel Johnson's "Irene"

Music:

The rise of the symphony orchestra; first in America in Bethlehem, PA
Handel's "Messiah," and "Music for the Royal Fireworks," "Samson" at Covent Garden, and oratorio "Judas Maccabaeus"
Thomas Arne's "Alfred" including "Rule Britannia"
Gluck's operas "Artaserse," "Iphigénie en Aulide"
Bach's "Das Wohltemperierte Klavier" part II, "Das Musikalische Opfer," "Die Kunst der Fuge"
Hit songs: "God Save the Queen," "The Campbells Are Coming"

Literature:

Samuel Richardson's "Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded," the first modern English novel
Henry Fielding's "Apology for the Life of Mrs. Shamela Andrews," "Joseph Andrews," "Jonathan Wilde," and "History of Tom Jones"
Voltaire's "Zadig"
Samuel Johnson's "The Vanity of Human Wishes," "Life of Mr. Richard Savage," "Plan of a Dictionary of the English Language"
John Cleland's "Fanny Hill: Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure"
Denis Diderot's "Pensées philosophiques"

Art:

William Hogarth's "Captain Thomas Coran," "Self- Portrait with his Dog Trump," "The Graham Children," "Marriage à la Mode," "Calais Gate"
Canaletto "Return of the Bucintoro"
Boucher's "Autumn," "Bath of Diana," "the Milliners"
Tiepolo "Antony and Cleopatra"
Joshua Reynolds "The Eliot Family"
Thomas Gainsborough's "Cornard Wood"

Fashion & Beauty:

Men:
Shorter waistcoats, a more tailored look
Tight-fitting breeches
Velvet and serge the most popular materials

Media:

First American magazine published in Philadelphia aptly titled "The American Magazine."
2nd - Ben Franklin's "General Magazine"
Freedom of the press in Prussia thanks to Frederick the Great
First double-column ad in New York Weekly Journal

Money:

Carriage tax passed in England
Precious metal platinum first seen in Europe
Sotheby's auctioneers founded in London 1744

Religion:

First Shakers arrive in New York from Liverpool, England.
Pope Benedict XIV
Freedom of worship in Prussia thanks to Frederick the Great
Pogroms in Russia
Wahhabi movement of Islam founded by Muhammed ibn Abd al-Wahhab
Bible printed in German in Philadelphia

Science:

Benjamin Franklin invents Lightning Rod and experiments in electric cooking
Sugar discovered in beets
African sleeping sickness first identified
Compresses first used to stop bleeding
Earth proven to be flattened at poles, not perfectly spherical
William Cullen discovers artificial refrigeration
Centigrade thermometer by Anders Celsius
Diphtheria described by John
Fothergill
Cambridge University gets chair of astronomy
The Leyden Jar developed; able to store static electricity

New Slang Words:

Blissful ignorance
Stuff and nonsense
A fine kettle of fish
Knuckle down to work

 

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About These Tools
An introduction to History by Decades by Larry Belling. More...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       
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