Unit 3 Outline



Western Civilization, 5th Edition,  Jackson J. Spielvogel

  Chapter 16. Toward a New Heaven and a New Earth: The Scientific Revolution and the Emergence of Modern Science.

  Chapter 17. The Eighteenth Century: An Age of Enlightenment.
  Chapter 18. The Eighteenth Century: European States, International Wars, and Social Change.

The European States

Wars and Diplomacy

The Social Order of the Eighteenth Century


Discussion Questions:
  1. Discuss that ways in which scientific discoveries affected the seventeenth century's image of the human experience.  How did this new image differ from the old one?  How did the Scientific Revolution affect religious thought?

  2.  What advances were made in the practical and applied sciences in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries?  In what sense was the study of science becoming institutionalized?

  3. Describe the "scientific method" that developed in the seventeenth century, and show how it was used in one of the emerging branches of science.

  4. Compare the lifestyles of the poor and rich in the early eighteenth century in terms of (a) material aspects, such as food and drink, shelter, and medical care, and (b) less material aspects, such as religion, manners, and forms of entertainment.  What qualities did they share?  Are they more different that those same classes today?

  5. Currents of thought in the 18th century were divergent and inconsistent yet the age has been branded the “Enlightenment”.  There must have been ideas and beliefs that were generally accepted to earn the title to this age.  What were they?  Are there any beliefs from that age that continue to be held today?

  6. Like “jumbo shrimp” and “partial cease fire”  the term enlightened despot seems to be a contradiction in terms.  What is an enlightened despot?  Would you characterize Maria Theresa and by Joseph II as enlightened despots?

  7. Discuss the nature and results of enlightened despotism Prussia under Frederick the Great.  Of what special importance was the stratification of Prussian society?

  8. Describe the personality and personal qualities of Catherine the Great, and assess her reform program.  What seems to have thwarted that program?  Does she qualify as an “enlightened despot”?




Scientific Revolution

"natural philosophers"

alchemy and hermetic magic


geocentric universe vs. heliocentric universe


Nicolaus Copernicus On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres

Tycho Brahe


Johannes Kepler

Galileo Galilei's The Starry Messenger

Isaac Newton's Principia



Andreas Vesalius On the Fabric of the Human Body

William Harvey On the Motion of the Heart and Blood


Margaret Cavendish

Maria Sibylla Merian

Rene Descartes' Discourse on Method

Descartes' deductive method vs. Francis Bacon's inductive method

Scientific Method

Benedict de Spinoza's pantheism

Blaise Pascal's Pensees

English Royal Society

French Royal Academy of Sciences





Immanuel Kant Critique of Pure Reason

Fontenelle's Plurality of Worlds

Pierre Bayle

James Cook's Travels

John Locke's Essay Concerning Human Understanding

Montesquieu's The Spirit of the Laws

Voltaire's Treatise on Toleration

Denis Diderot's Encyclopedia

David Hume



Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations


Condorcet and Baron d'Holbach

Jean-Jacques Rousseau The Social Contract and the general will

Mary Astell

Mary Wollstonecraft Vindication of the Rights of Woman

the salon and the coffeehouse



Jacques-Louis David


Johann Sebastian Bach

George Frederick Handel

Franz Joseph Haydn

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Edward Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

Addison and Steele's Spectator

Cesare Beccaria




pietism and the Moravian Brethren

John Wesley and Methodism



Eighteenth Century States

enlightened absolutism

Louis XV

Cardinal Fleury

Madame de Pompadour

Louis XVI

Marie Antoinette

"pocket boroughs"

the Hanovarians/the Georges

"Wilkes and Liberty"

William Pitt the Elder


Frederick William I


Frederick II, the Great

"the first servant of the state"

Maria Theresa

Joseph II

Catherine the Great

Emelyn Pugachev

partitions of Poland


War of the Austrian Succession


Robert Clive

Seven Years War

French-Indian War

Montcalm and Wolfe

Treaty of Paris