18th century england
James II, who had been expelled in the Glorious Revolution of 1688, died 13 years later, but his son, James Francis Edward Stuart, the Old Pretender, pressed his family’s claims from his exile in France. Transporting goods was also made much easier by digging canals. They served as sources of spiritual comfort and also as centres for village social life. Taxation had accounted for 70 percent of Britain’s wartime expenditure (£93,644,560 between 1702 and 1713), so the Commons’ control over taxation became a powerful guarantee of its continuing importance. Moreover, a kind of cricket was played long before the 18th century but at that time it took on its modern form. Some also arranged collections of rubbish. The miserable, that really pinch and suffer want. In the early 18th century goods were often transported by packhorse. In the south Portsmouth had a population of about 32,000 in 1800 while Exeter had about 20,000 people. In 1785 his engine was adapted to driving machinery in a cotton factory. The land tax was cut to two shillings in the pound (10 percent) in 1730 and to one shilling in the pound two years later. These included games such as chess, draughts, and backgammon. So was taking snuff. They played a major role in the industrial revolution by making it cheaper to transport goods. In the 18th century drinking tea became common even among ordinary people. Walpole duly became first lord of the treasury and chancellor of exchequer, while Townshend returned to his post as secretary of state. The first industry to become mechanized was the textile industry. Scotland was also swept by a revival in the mid-18th century. The church, moreover, commanded massive popular loyalty, and assaults on its position would arouse nationwide discontent. Seaside resorts like Brighton and Bognor boomed. In the later 18th century bodies of men called Paving or Improvement Commissioners were formed in many towns. In 1784 Cort invented the puddling process. He created a style called neo-classical and he designed many 18th-century country houses. Men wore buckled shoes. Fundamentally, however, it was prosperous, cohesive, … One of the most common treatments, for the wealthy, was bathing in or drinking spa water, which they believed could cure all kinds of illnesses. This crisis led to nationwide riots and demonstrations, and Walpole’s House-of-Commons majority seemed in jeopardy. For the well off card games and gambling were popular. Despite the improvements in farming food for ordinary people remained plain and monotonous. Townshend’s brother-in-law, Robert Walpole, became paymaster general. Owning land was the main form of wealth in the 18th century. In 1720 investing in the South Sea Company became a mania among those who could afford it and some who could not; South Sea stock was at 120 in January and rose to 1,000 by August. However, dissenters (Protestants who did not belong to the Church of England) were not allowed to attend most public schools. The South Sea Company had been founded in 1711 as a trading and finance company. The problem for the Opposition in 1734 was that there were few such populous, open constituencies but very many rotten borough seats such as Malmesbury. One reason for this was that Britain’s electoral system at this time did not adequately reflect the state of public opinion. During the 18th century England produced two great portrait painters, Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788) and Sir Joshua Reynolds (1723-1792). To vote, adult males had to possess some kind of residential property or, in certain borough constituencies, be registered as freemen. On the other hand, after the Seven Years War 1756-1763, Britain captured Canada and India. The famous clockmaker James Cox (1723-1800) made exquisite clocks for the rich. The population of London was about 600,000. At religious services vicars would not only preach the word of God but also explain to congregations important national developments: wars, victories, and royal deaths and births. Oxford and Cambridge universities were also allowed four representatives in Parliament. Enclosure allowed farmers to use their land more efficiently. Controversy over the succession sharpened partisan infighting between the Whig and Tory parties. Travelers had to pay tolls to use them. The Jockey Club was formed in 1727. In 1733 he proposed to levy excise taxes on the sale of wine and tobacco, but the Opposition in Parliament launched a ferocious and successful campaign against these proposals. The patient would (hopefully!) Other Georgian towns were much smaller. 18th-century Britain, 1714–1815 The state of Britain in 1714 When Georg Ludwig, elector of Hanover, became king of Great Britain on August 1, 1714, the country was in some respects bitterly divided. The Dutch began to grow swedes or turnips on land instead of leaving it fallow. However other middle class people such as merchants and professional men became richer and more numerous, especially in the towns. William Herschel (1738-1822) discovered Uranus. Horse racing was carried on for centuries before the 18th century but at this time it became a professional sport. Closer familiarity with Walpole’s gifts, however, dissuaded him from taking this step, as did his formidable wife, Queen Caroline, who remained an important ally of the minister until her death in 1737. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox.


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