1687        Newton, Principia. Until Einstein, Newton's physics forms the foundation of modern science, provides the model for other sciences, and serves as the basic description of the natural laws governing the universe.

1692       Languedoc Canal connects the Mediterranean with the Bay of Biscay. 240 miles long, with 100 locks, 3 major aqueducts, 1 tunnel, and a summit reservoir.  The largest canal project between Roman times and the nineteenth century.

1708     Jethro Tull's mechanical (seed) sower permits large-scale planting in rows, for easier cultivation between the rows.

1709     Abraham Darby uses coke to smelt iron ore, replacing wood and charcoal as fuel.

1712      Thomas Newcomen builds first commercially successful steam engine. Able to keep deep coal mines clear of water. First significant power source other than wind and water.

1714      British Board of Longitude offers 20,000 prize for the first successful method of fixing longitude.

1733     John Kay's flying shuttle.

1741-42     Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, returning from Turkey, introduces smallpox inoculation.

1758     First threshing machine.

1761     James Brindley's Bridgewater Canal opens. Barges carry coal from Worsley to Manchester.

1762     John Harrison's No. 4 chronometer wins the British Board of Longitude's prize (see 1714).

1765     James Hargreaves invents the spinning jenny, automating weaving the warp (in the weaving of cloth).

1769     Arkwright's "water" (powered) frame automates the weft.

1772      Bridgewater Canal extended to the Mersey, thus connecting with Liverpool. Its success kicks off extensive canal construction ("canal mania").

1774     Priestly isolates oxygen.

1775     Watt's first efficient steam engine, much more efficient than the Newcomen. 

1777      Grand Trunk Canal establishes a cross-England route connecting the Mersey to the Trent and connecting the industrial Midlands to the ports of Bristol, Liverpool, and Hull.

1779     First steam powered mills. Crompton's "mule" combines Hargreaves' and Arkwright's machines, fully automating the weaving process.

1781     William Herschel discovers the planet Uranus.

1786     Arkwright puts a Watt engine in the Albion cotton mill, Blackfriars Bridge (photograph), London.

1787     Cartwright builds a power loom.

1789     Thames-Severn Canal links the Thames to the Bristol Channel.

1792     William Murdock (James Watt's assistant) lights his home with coal gas.

1793     Eli Whitney develops his cotton gin (a device to clean raw cotton).

1793     (to 1803) Thomas Telford builds his two great iron aqueducts, over the Dee and the Cierog valleys (photograph).

1795     James Hutton, Theory of the Earth

1796     Edward Jenner develops smallpox vaccination process using cowpox vaccine.

1799     Humphry Davy discovers nitrous oxide (laughing gas), first effective anesthetic.

c. 1800     Oliver Evans (USA) invents conveyer belt; comstructed fully automatede flour mill.

1801     Robert Trevithick demonstrates a steam locomotive.

1803-22     Caledonian Ship Canal cuts clear across Scotland via the Great Glen.

1807     Robert Fulton's "Clermont" first successful steamboat.

1811-15       Luddite riots: laborers attack factories and break up the machines they fear will replace them.

1812     Napoleon's surgeon, Baron Larrey, develops painless amputation.

1812     Friedrich Gottlob Koenig and Andreas Friedrich Bauer invent high-speed printing press

1821     Faraday demonstrates electro-magnetic rotation, the principle of the electric motor.

1825     Marc Brunel invents a tunnelling shield, making subaqueous tunnelling possible.

1826-42     Brunel builds the first subaqueous tunnel, under the Thames.

1827      Berkeley Ship Canal connects Sharpness (on the Severn) to Gloucester.

1829     Braille perfects his reading method for the blind.

1830    Manchester–Liverpool railway begins first regular commercial rail service.

1831      Von Liebig discovers chloroform; Faraday discovers electro-magnetic current, making possible generators and electric engines.

1831     British Association for the Advancement of Science founded

1834      Charles Babbage develops his analytic engine--the forerunner of the computer. 

1834    Fox Talbot produces photographs.

1835     Colt revolver

1837     Morse develops the telegraph and Morse Code. 

1837     Great Western — first ocean-going steamship.

1838     Daguerre perfects the Daguerrotype.

1839     Fox Talbot introduces photographic paper.

1840     Whewell, Philosophy of Inductive Sciences.

1842     Crawford Long uses ether in a minor operation; Richard Owen coins term Dinosaur.

1843     Great Britain — first large, iron, screw-propelled steamship

1843     Typewriter invented.

1844      Chambers,     Vestiges of the natural history of creation (at Project Gutenberg). 

1844     Commercial use of Morse's telegraph (Baltimore to Washington).

c. 1845     Turret-lathe.

1846     Pneumatic tire patented

1846     First telegraph cable laid under the Channel. 

1846     Ether used in a major operation.

1846      Elias Howe invents sewing machine.

1847     Boole, Mathematical Logic.

1849     Monier develops reinforced concrete.

1850     Petrol (gasoline) refining first used. 

1850     Isaac Singer commercializes sewing machine

1850     Natural Science Honours School established at Oxford.

1851     Singer invents first practical sewing machine. 

1851     Natural Sciences Tripos at Cambridge.

1853    Elisha Otis invents the elevator safety brake making skyscrapers possible

1854     Bessemer invents steel converter.

1855     William Thomson and William Rankine proclaim a new science of thermodynamics or "energetics," Regius Chair of Technology founded at Edinburgh. 

1855     Yale lock invented;

1855     ;H. Spencer, Principles of Psychology.

1856     Bessemer's converter enables mass production of steel W.

1856     H. Perkin produces aniline dyes, permitting brightly colored cottons.

1857    Pasteur experiments with fermentation.

1858     First Trans-Atlantic Cable completed

1858     Cathode rays discovered.

1859     Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species.
James Clerk Maxwell, "Kinetic Theory of Gases

1859     Edwin Drake strikes oil in Pennsylvania. 

1859     Etienne Lenoir demonstrates the first successful gasoline engine.

1860    Science degrees at University of London.

1861    Universal milling machine invented;

1861    Machine gun.

1861    James Clerk Maxwell creates first color photograph.

1863      Siemens-Martin open hearth process (along with the Bessemer converter) makes steel available in bulk. Steel begins to replace iron in building: steel framing and reinforced concrete make possible "curtain-wall" architecture — i.e., the skyscraper.

1864    Maxwell's Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field

1867     Lister demonstrates the use of carbolic antiseptic. 

1867     Alfred Nobel produces dynamite, the first high explosive which can be safely handled.

1869     Mendeléev produces the Periodic Table.

c. 1870     Automatic lathe

1873     Maxwell, Treatise on Electricity and Magnetism
Christopher Sholes invents the Remington typewriter.

1873     James Clerk Maxwell states the laws of electro-magnetic radiation

1876     Bell invents the telephone. 

1876     Robert Koch discovers the anthrax-causing micro-organism, demonstrates its life cycle and explains how it causes disease after long dormancy.

1877     Thomas Edison invents the phonograph

1877     Gilchrist-Thomas basic process permits using wider range of ores for manufacturing steel

1878    Microphone invented.

1879    Edison invents the incandescent lamp.

1882     Koch isolates tuberculosis bacillus.

1883      First skyscraper (ten stories) in Chicago. 

1883      The Brooklyn Bridge opens. This large suspension bridge, built by the Roeblings (father and son), is a triumph of engineering.

1884    Maxim invents the machine gun, making possible mass slaughter and beginning the mechanization of warfare. 

1884    Carl Kohler uses cocaine as a local anesthetic. 

1884    Koch isolates the cholera bacillus.

1885     Benz develops first automobile to run on internal- combustion engine. 

1885     Pasteur develops hydrophobia vaccine.

1886     R.H. Fitz identifies appendicitis.

1888     Hertz produces radio waves.

1889     Eiffel Tower.

1890      Wm. James, Principles of Psychology

1890     Koch develops tuberculin, which can be used to test for tuberculosis.

1892     Rudolf Diesel invents his namesake.

p class="chron">1894     William Ramsay discovers argon, first of the inert gases.

1895     Lumière brothers develop Cinematograph.

1895     Roentgen discovers X-rays.

1896     Marconi patents wireless telegraph. 

1896     Becquerel discovers radioactivity in uranium.

1897    Joseph Thomson discovers particles smaller than atoms.

1898     Ramsay and Travers discover krypton, neon and xenon.

1899     Aspirin invented.

1900    Planck develops quantum theory.

1900    First Zeppelin built. 

1900    Freud, The Interpretation of Dreams.

1901    1901 Marconi transmits first trans-Atlantic radio message (from Cape Cod).

1903    Wright brothers make first powered flight.

1905      Einstein, Special Theory of Relativity.

1908     Henry Ford mass-produces the Model T.

1910     Paul Ehrlich develops Salvarsan, the first drug devised to overwhelm a micro-organism (syphilis) without offending the host.

1919     London to Paris air service begun.

1920     James Smathers develops the first electric typewriter.

1922     Radio broadcasting begins.


Victorian Web Overview Victorian Science Victorian Technology

Last modified 3 March 2012