Questions tagged [18th-century]

The 18th century lasted from January 1, 1701 to December 31, 1800 in the Gregorian calendar.

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How can I review Cole MSS XXXIII, the description of the English polymath John Michell?

On the wikipedia page for the polymath John Michell, it gives a description of him. The source for this description is “Cole MSS XXXIII, 156, British Library.” According to this article on Harvard’s ...
Curious Layman's user avatar
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3 answers
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How did blackpowder sharpshooters achieve precision?

I was wondering about this since I delved into the naval warfare of the age of sail and noticed the mentions of having sharpshooters on the masts of ships to pick off valuable targets. It seems to ...
Kugelblitz's user avatar
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Was there really an attempted repeal of English common law in Kentucky?

A couple of decades ago I read an allegation in a book that seemed generally not reliable, and whose title I don't remember, and I wonder whether it can be corroborated. "Everybody knows" (...
Michael Hardy's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
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Where, other than Voltaire, are there other references to "cat's eyes" in 18th century Europe?

Reading Voltaire’s A Philosophical Dictionary, in the article on character, I found this: “If I have a wry nose and cat's eyes I can hide them behind a mask, and can I do more with the character that ...
Barnaby's user avatar
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Where in America did James Macpherson travel?

I'm looking into James Macpherson, the 18th century Scottish writer, and I can't find much. I know that in 1764 he took a job as secretary to the colonial governor, George Johnstone, also a Scott, in ...
eje211's user avatar
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3 answers
275 views

Why are there 37 numbers on European roulette wheels?

A European roulette wheel contains the numbers 0 to 36. Who decided to put 37 numbers on a wheel, and why did they choose this number?
Riemann's user avatar
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1 answer
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What was life like in Korbach, Hesse, Germany during the 1700s?

I have been trying to learn about Korbach, Hesse relative to my family history. I have an ancestor who was born there around 1728. He married in Efferen (close to Cologne) in 1765 as a Catholic and ...
jls's user avatar
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What's the significance of a wreath hung on the traverse / ridge pole of a tent in a military camp?

The first time I saw it, I thought it was odd, but then, 18th century artists love putting strange details in things, so I went on my merry way. But I've seen it a few times since, and now I've got ...
l'Abeille's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
396 views

Did Clausewitz read Sun Tzu's Art of War?

I'm currently reading Clausewitz' Vom Kriege, and noticing some parallels and references to Sun Tzu's philosophy. In particular, Clausewitz, without mentioning any names, criticises earlier military ...
Sinthorion's user avatar
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1 answer
197 views

Was it illegal in 18th century France or Spain to use false titles of nobility?

The friend of popes and kings and noblemen, and of all the male and female ruffians and vagabonds of Europe, abbé, soldier, charlatan, gamester, financier, diplomatist, viveur, philosopher, virtuoso, “...
Duncan Drake's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
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How would a musician travel from Venice to Dresden around 1700?

I'm writing a historical fiction TV pilot and I need some help from the history buffs here. One of my characters, a young, aspiring, musician needs to travel from Venice to Dresden, Germany. I suspect ...
Riddle Leaf Films's user avatar
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What is "chaud melee"?

I believe this question could be asked in either the English Language, Legal, or History stack, but I believe the historical aspect of this question is, by far, the most interesting, and I think will ...
Curious Layman's user avatar
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What was Vittoria Conti's date of birth and date of death?

What is the exact date of birth and exact date of death of Vittoria Conti? She was the first wife of Joseph-Louis Lagrange, a famous Italian-French mathematician. So far I have these vague dates: ...
Jane B.'s user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
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What year did Isaac Newton die? [closed]

What is the year of death of Isaac Newton? Different sources provide info that it's either 1726 or 1727. On his tomb is written 1726, findagrave.com has it listed as 1727, Wikipedia even states: &...
Jane B.'s user avatar
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Why did Latin language stop being in use in the 18th century?

Why did Latin language fall? According to Wikipedia, in the 18th century the Latin language stopped to be the language in academia and politics. It is written there in the wiki article that Latin was ...
Mike B.'s user avatar
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What was typical of Ireland England court system in the 1700’s?

In the 1700’s there were Court proceedings called ExChequer Court of Equity Bill Books (e.g) in Ireland. I found records of one of my ancestors in the early 1700’s who was a defendant several times ...
Lallie Johnson's user avatar
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Were weapons allowed in Carpenters Hall during the first and second continental Congresses?

During the founding of the nation, what restrictions were in place at public forums related to the carrying of weapons (fire arms, knives, small caliber pistols, etc.), especially during the ...
Steven Tarloff's user avatar
24 votes
2 answers
7k views

What was the criminal charge of "pretending sodomy" in 1719 England?

In an old London, England newspaper called "The Post Boy", the edition of 19 May 1719, there is what I believe is an advertisement for a book that will be published the next day (it says). ...
Curious Layman's user avatar
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1 answer
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What kind of building materials did Cavendish use in determining the density of the earth?

I’m working to build the Cavendish experiment of 1798 according to Cavendish’s own specifications. I have a question about building materials Cavendish may have used. Cavendish put his pendulum inside ...
zeynel's user avatar
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2 votes
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What is the earliest record of smallpox inoculation in Turkey?

In 1721, Lady Mary Wortley Montague introduced the practice of smallpox inoculation to England. She had learned about the procedure in Turkey, where she had already survived the illness as well as ...
DrMcCleod's user avatar
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Do we have any records of what pirates during the golden age of piracy would actually sing?

In almost EVERY Hollywood depiction of Pirates the pirates almost always sing some sort of song/sea shanty. But do we have any actual records of what songs the pirates of golden age of piracy (1650 to ...
Gridlock's user avatar
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How did pirates back in the day not get killed themselves when they attacked ships? [closed]

Maybe I'm completely misinformed about how things were done "back in the day" (I imagine 1600s-1800s, when all ships were completely made out of wood with sails), but once the pirates had ...
Zylis's user avatar
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How long would a letter take to arrive in Geneva from Ingolstadt? (Georgian era)

The two cities are ~300 miles (488 km) apart as the crow flies. In the late 1700s/early 1800s, how long would it take to send a letter from Ingolstadt to Geneva, and vice versa?
RJK's user avatar
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What were Lord Macartney's original words about Chinese under the Qianlong Emperor's brutal regime in 18th century?

This is a follow-up question of Where can I find modern account of Macartney Embassy to China (1792–1794)? After Lord Macartney returned from his mission to the Qianlong Emperor, he made a poignant ...
Qiulang 邱朗's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
130 views

Where can I find modern account of Macartney Embassy to China (1792–1794)?

Macartney Embassy was the first British diplomatic mission to China. It was such an important but little-known event. I read quite some Chinese materials but not many English materials. The wiki ...
Qiulang 邱朗's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
120 views

Was there any significant cultural shift in Russian Empire caused by the partition of Poland?

Wikipedia article on Tsardom of Russia claims that acquisition of Wild Fields and Kiev Academy caused an influx of intellectuals in Russia, which in turn kick-started later reforms by Peter The Great ...
Reverent Lapwing's user avatar
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0 answers
156 views

How did composers of the mid 18th and early 19th century get discovered and hired for jobs?

Say you were a composer of the mid 18th and early 19th century during the time of composers such as Beethoven and Mozart. How would you go about getting yourself discovered by others? Was it through ...
Gridlock's user avatar
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0 answers
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Would a house built in 1745 have a water tank in the attic? (up to 1847)

Was looking at the floorplans on this page (picture 43), was wondering if buildings from 1745-1847 were likely to have water tanks in the attic? Would this have been added during a relatively modern (...
Reverend Speed's user avatar
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1 answer
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In 18th century America, how did people board ships to travel long distance?

This is a continuation of this question I asked earlier. According to the answers I got from the question, a better way for my character to travel is by ship, as quoted from user Mark Johnson: Taking ...
Twinkling Star's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
305 views

Did Americans in the later half of the 18th-century have more freedom in choosing a partner?

According to this article, starting from the last half of the 18th century there was a decline in parents' influence over young people's choice of partners, and the idea of romantic love started to be ...
Twinkling Star's user avatar
10 votes
1 answer
2k views

What was the error in 1790, if any, of the lat. and long. of Greenwich Observatory of 1783?

A YouTube video by Brady Haran, Mapping the Meridians - Objectivity 97, ended in a cliff hanger (the answer not found by Brady, and Keith Moore of The Royal Society). It's with regard to the Anglo-...
ymb1's user avatar
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11 votes
1 answer
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Did Continental Army officers wear wigs or keep their hair white like their British Army counterparts?

I just can't find any concrete answer to this question because there is just too much conflicting information. While I know British enlisted men weren't allowed to wear wigs but were forced to grow ...
Twinkling Star's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
341 views

How did coach service in 18th century America work?

I know that carriage transportation in the US imitated that of Europe, and I know that in the 18th century coaches could be used to transport goods and people and they could also be used as a public ...
Twinkling Star's user avatar
5 votes
0 answers
154 views

What were Russian empresses' position and policy regarding women's role in society and their rights?

There are 4 empress regnants (Catherine I, Anna, Elizabeth, Catherine II) in Russian history, all of whom ruled during roughly the same historic period (18th century). 3 of them (Anna, Elizabeth, ...
kandi's user avatar
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1 vote
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Could an eight-year-old child be eligible to stand trial as a witness and provide testimony in an 18th-century American courtroom? [closed]

I'm doing research for a historical fiction set in a small fictional town in America between the year 1778 and 1779. Let's say I have two characters, John and Jack. John is an officer in the ...
Twinkling Star's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
264 views

Would a commissioned officer in the Royal Navy during the mid-late 18th century ever sail on a vessel other than a man-o-war, ship of the line, etc?

As someone who does not exactly understand how naval commissions worked in the 18th century, I am curious to know if there might have ever been an occasion where a commissioned officer (such as a ...
Ray's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
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Where did a ship's navigator usually work?

On a 16-1700s ship, did the navigator have his own room/section of the ship to work? If so, where? Any articles I find just talk about how the navigate, not where.
blobfish sandwich's user avatar
17 votes
1 answer
3k views

What did it mean to be a Grecian in late-18th Century British schools?

Near the beginning of CS Forester's novel Mr Midshipman Hornblower, which begins in 1793, the titular Hornblower arrives on board his first ship, where the captain asks about his schooling: "How ...
walrus's user avatar
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4 votes
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What were the components of a good classical education in 18th Century British Empire?

Reading the Federalist Papers, I’m really impressed by the command that the American Founders had not only of the language but also models of philosophy, history, and politics. What would a good ...
Andrew Kvochick's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
975 views

Why were so many female members of Hapsburg family named Maria something?

Recently, I have noticed that Empress Maria Theresa’s daughters’ names all begin with Maria. Archduchess Maria Elisabeth Archduchess Maria Anna Archduchess Maria Carolina Maria Christina, Duchess of ...
NotMaria SomethingK's user avatar
27 votes
2 answers
7k views

How likely it is that a nobleman of the eighteenth century would give written instructions to his maids?

This question is about a detail in the biography of one of the greatest scientists who ever lived, Henry Cavendish. The Wikipedia article about him states that He communicated with his female ...
José Carlos Santos's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
181 views

How to track down a Spanish/Latin American soldier that fought in wars internationally (18th/19th century)?

The details are scant, but I hope it's enough to get the community interested and a clear answer emerge (there can't be that many people who fit the bill?). I read a long time ago about a famous ...
Khashir's user avatar
  • 237
7 votes
2 answers
172 views

How to find the population and mortality in London during the period 1760-1834?

I have to reconstruct the graph showing death rates from infectious diseases and from all causes in London. But I have trouble with finding the data for the period 1760-1834. In the graph are shown ...
forrest's user avatar
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13 votes
2 answers
4k views

Did Augustus the Strong sleep with his own daughter?

I'm working my way through Robert Massie's voluminous biography of Peter the Great at the moment. It's truly a pleasure to read; one really does have the sensation of stepping into Peter's world. ...
Tom Hosker's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
98 views

Did Spanish missions block exploration of South America?

According to The river sea : the Amazon in history, myth, and legend, page 112, In any study of these wild regions [of South America], one is constantly astounded, even moved, regardless of one's ...
rwallace's user avatar
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11 votes
1 answer
272 views

What is or was a Bond Major?

In our parish church we have a clock with an engraving on it that says 'The Gift of the Hon. Edward Trelawny the Bond Major 1737'. Does anybody know what a Bond Major was/is? Unfortunately I have no ...
Mark Camp's user avatar
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In the Middle Ages - 18th century, how long would it take for a blacksmith forge a regular farming scythe to a war scythe?

Whenever I look up how long it took for a blacksmith to certain tools or weapons, I just get information on forging swords. Let's say a peasant is trying to make his scythe efficient for self-defense ...
Lola's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
96 views

Where does Edmund Burke explain aristocratic eccentricity as a reaction to the influx of non-titled country gentlemen?

I am looking for the source of a notion of Edmund Burke’s that the English aristocracy turned to eccentric behavior in order to distinguish themselves from the “new men” who were acquiring estates in ...
Denkof Zwemmen's user avatar
14 votes
2 answers
2k views

Was there a way for ships to disengage from boarding actions?

I was doing some research about Naval tactics in Age of Sail - especially in boarding tactics. I read several personal diaries, letters and accounts of these battles written by combatants. From ...
Prahara's user avatar
  • 243
8 votes
1 answer
372 views

What were the typical types of ships used in the Persian Navy in the 1730's and 1740's?

What were the typical types of ships used in the Persian Navy in the 1730's and 1740's? Is the make-up of the fleet known (i.e., how many ships of what class, etc)? The revival of Persia's power in ...
gktscrk's user avatar
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