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Roman Ruins Parking in Cologne


Renässansen/ The Renaissance (1300's-1600's)

  • After the Middle Ages, the Renaissance. A rebirth of learning starting with the Ancients.
  • Renaissance man Leonardo da Vinci painted The Last Supper and Mona Lisa. He excelled at many things:  Why was Leonard da Vinci that famous? 3'
  • Michelangelo painted the Sistine Chapel Ceiling in Rome.

Upplysningen/ The Enlightenment (1700's)

  • Grew out of the earlier scientific revolution and "The father of Western philosophy" (Frenchman) Descartes' ideas, "I think, therefore I am." Enlightenment was very popular in France.
  • Early Wikipedia: The first big encyclopedia available to everyone (French).
  • Voltaire was a philosopher & debater who brought Britain's freedom of religion & of speech to France. Wanted a good king to rule. Deist. Wrote the book Candide or Optimism, which voiced the idea that "all is for the best" in this "best of all possible worlds." But he meant that instead "We must cultivate our garden."
  • Everyone can reason and think themselves. Question authority, even the Church - a very new idea at the time.
  • Society works best when everyone cooperates. Even the poor & powerless should have the same rights as the rich & powerful to help create the society they live in. The nobels didn't like that idea.
  • Many USA Founding Fathers were enlightenment thinkers. Government "of the people, by the people & for the people."
  • Enlightenment's ideas→ French Revolution of 1789. Response: "Enlightened despots" reformed their governments but kept power for themselves. Eg: Catherine the Great of Russia, Frederick the Great of Prussia, and Gustav III of Sweden.
  • Some said that God did not create the world. This caused conflicts - and, later, war.
  • Heritage from the Enlightenment: Freedom, democracy, and reason should be the most important things in a society. Equal rights. Social contract. Solve problems with rationalism and the scientific method, not religion. Freedom of religion. Seek truth, wheresoever it may lead.  
  • Reason, personal freedom, and not having to follow the Catholic Church → capitalism and socialism.
  • Locke (British): "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" in US Declaration of Independence.
  • Rousseau (Swiss-born French): philosopher, writer, and teacher. Dissed the French State. Counter-Enlightenment.
  • Adam Smith (Scottish): "The Wealth of Nations" for laissez-faire (anything goes, no government regulation of the economy).
  • Jefferson & Franklin (Americans).
  • Emanuel Swedenborg (Sw): Philosopher and theologian who tried to figure out how the soul worked in the body.

New Worlds: Age of Discovery/ Age of Exploration → early 1600's

  • Columbus. Vasco da Gama. Magellan. Slave trade. Colonialism like the Phoenicians, Greeks & Romans.

Pax Britannica

  • Peaceful Europe (1815–1914; Victorian). British Empire the global power &  police.

Viktiga dokument

Bill of Rights, 1689. Declaration of Independence, 1776. Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, 1789. Constitution of the United States, 1789.


1800's: telegraph, then telephone. Early 1900's: radio.


Better maps & better ships. Railways, mid-1800's. Cars mass produced, 1901.

The Winter Ball (St. Petersburg, Russia), 1903


"Even with a looming global economic crisis that would mark the beginning of the end for the Russian Empire, no expense was spared. If tsarist Russia was going down, they were going out with a bang. And so, in February of 1903, on the eve of revolution, they threw the most obscenely opulent event the world had ever seen."
"A new and hostile Russia glared through the large windows of the palace…while we danced, the workers were striking and the clouds in the Far East were hanging dangerously low"

A high school in Oklahoma USA, 1917