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The Enlightenment

Timeline

TEXTS   CONTEXTS

1664
Jean-Baptiste Poquelin Molière, Tartuffe.

1660
Civil War in England ends with Charles II’s ascension to the throne (the“Restoration”).

1665
François de La Rochefoucauld,
Reflections.


1667
Publication of John Milton’s Paradise Lost.


1666
Isaac Newton uncovers laws of gravity • London, already stricken by plague, is destroyed in the Great Fire and subsequently rebuilt in more orderly fashion.

1668–1694
Jean de La Fontaine, Fables.

1670
The London-based Hudson’s Bay Company is incorporated by royal charter to trade in North America.

1677
Jean Racine, Phaedra.

 

1678
Marie de la Vergne de La Fayette, The Princess of Clèves.

 

1690
John Locke, Essay Concerning
Human Understanding
.

 

1691
Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Reply to Sor Filotea de la Cruz.

 
 

1694
Bank of England is chartered,
forerunner of modern national banks and treasury systems; London Stock Exchange follows in 1698.

1696
Judith Drake, An Essay in Defense of the Female Sex.

 
 

1697
Russian czar Peter the Great visits Western Europe and England, resolves to Westernize Russia.

 

1707
Kingdom of Great Britain formed by union of England and Scotland.

 

1709
Up to 100,000 slaves a year cross the Atlantic, 20,000 to Britain’s Caribbean colonies alone.

1710
First British copyright law, transferring rights of property in a published work from publisher to author.

 

1717
Alexander Pope, The Rape of the Lock.

 

1719
Daniel Defoe publishes Robinson Crusoe, often called the first true novel in English.

1721
J. S. Bach, The Brandenburg
Concertos
.

1726
Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels.