Topic: 1700s

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Getting dressed in 18th century England

What kind of garments did women wear in 18th century England? The above video from CrowsEye Productions, filmed for the Lady Lever Art Gallery just outside of Liverpool, shows the daily dressing routine of a working w...

Carl Linnaeus’ Systema Naturae and Herbarium Cabinet

How did scientists and naturalists organize their artifact collections in the 1700s? How could these systems, long before we began to rely on computers to help us organize data, improve our understanding of the natura...

The Silver Swan, an 18th century automaton at the Bowes Museum

An automaton like no other in the world, The Silver Swan floats upon a flowing glass stream and catches a beautifully crafted silver fish while its music box plays. The action lasts for around 40 seconds, a daily afte...

Weaving on Mount Vernon’s 18th Century Loom

See how shirt fabric was woven on a four-poster wooden loom or barn loom in this demonstration at Mount Vernon, President George Washington's plantation home on the Potomac River in Virginia. Master weaver Melissa Wea...

The complicated history of surfing – TED Ed

Today, surfing is a multi-billion-dollar global industry, with tens of millions of enthusiasts worldwide. For some it’s a serious sport; for others, just a way to let loose. But despite its casual association with fun...

Why America still uses Fahrenheit

Since I've moved to the US in 2010, there's one thing that I still don't fully understand: the imperial system. Virtually every country on earth uses Celsius but America has yet to follow. Although it might not seem l...

Territorial History of the USA: Every Month for 400 Years

Starting in 1629 and continuing through every month for (almost) 400 years, see how the contiguous United States formed colony by colony, then state by state, expanding with massive territories and redefining within c...

One Town, Four Elements: Ytterby

There's a small town in Sweden that has not one, not two, not three, but four elements named after it. Those elements--yttrium(Y), terbium (Tb), erbium (Er), and ytterbium (Yb)--were discovered by part-time chemist Ca...

The exceptional life of Benjamin Banneker

Born in 1731 on a farm in Baltimore, Maryland, Benjamin Banneker was an accomplished author, publisher, scientist, astronomer, mathematician, urban planner, activist, and farmer throughout his life. A free descendant ...

An Automaton of Marie Antoinette, The Dulcimer Player

From the 2012 exhibition Extravagant Inventions: The Princely Furniture of the Roentgens at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, take a closer look at a unique piece of automata: David Roentgen's Automaton of Queen Marie A...

A sonata played on the earliest known surviving piano

What does the earliest known surviving piano sound like? Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, listen to the 'Giga' of Sonata number 6 in B flat major, played by professional keyboard player and music producer D...

The stories behind Fahrenheit and Celsius

Fahrenheit (°F) is a unit of measurement for temperature. Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit (1686–1736) is the inventor of the mercury-in-glass thermometer and the aforementioned scale of measurement. In this Veritasium video...

Repairing a Meissen Lion + King Augustus the Strong’s Menagerie

Commissioned by King Augustus the Strong (1670-1733), Elector of Saxony and King of Poland, for his Japanese Palace in Dresden, The Meissen Lion was one of hundreds of porcelain mammals and birds planned for creation ...

How do batteries work?

If you've ever used a flashlight, or changed the channel with a remote control, if you've ever recharged your electric car, or if you're reading this on a smart device, then you know how useful batteries can be. But h...

Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy on the Glass Armonica

The mechanical version of a glass harp, called a glass armonica, was invented by none other than Benjamin Franklin in 1761. Also, a new word for us: hydrodaktulopsychicharmonica — harmoni...

The Writer, automata by Pierre Jaquet-Droz

Cambridge’s Professor Simon Schaffer presents The Writer, a 240-year-old, 6000 piece machine that was created by Swiss-born watchmaker Pierre Jaquet-Droz, his son Henri-Louis, and Jean-Frédéric Leschot around 1770-177...

Mechanical singing bird box automata of the 1700s

While googling about mechanical inventions like Mark Galt’s walking mechanical humans, I happened upon this lovely 1890 piece of restored gears and springs, with the original bellows: a singing bird mechanism. F...

Extravagant furniture with secret panels, doors, and drawers

If you’ve ever wanted a cabinet with secret compartments — and we’re talking about a lot of secret compartments here — then you’re going to like videos from the Extravagant Inventi...


 
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