The greatest invention of the nineteenth century was the invention of the method of invention. — Albert North Whitehead

Man is a Tool-using Animal (Handthierendes Thier). Weak in himself, and of small stature, he stands on a basis, at most for the flattest-soled, of some half-square foot, insecurely enough; has to straddle out his legs, lest the very wind supplant him. Feeblest of bipeds! Three quintals [hundredweights] are a crushing load for him; the steer of the meadow tosses him aloft, like a waste rag. Nevertheless he can use Tools, can devise Tools: with these the granite mountain melts into light dust before him; he kneads glowing iron, as if it were soft paste; seas are his smooth highway, winds and fire his unwearying steeds. Nowhere do you find him without Tools: without Tools he is nothing, with Tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle, Sartor Resartus, Book I, Chapter 5.


The Industrial Revolution

Factories, Mining, and Other Heavy Industry

Techonology in the Home

Railways, Canals, and Other Forms of Transportation


Bridges and Canals

Ships and Shipping

Printing, publishing, letter writing, and the beginnings of telecommunications

Technology, Commerce, and Culture


Last modified 15 October 2014