Edward Raymond Turner.

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developed character and derived their princii)al tlioughts.
Accordingly, many of the inhabitants acquired a new way
of looking at things, both better and worse than the old.
It was also true that the artisans and workers of the towns
were soon mentally more alert, more apt to question
existing conditions, better able to conceive of changes,
more insistent in demanding that changes be made,
and more powerful in bringing them about. It had
ever been so. The most brilliant civilization of an-
tiquity arose in the cities; in after times the great re-
forms in Europe began in the towns.

During the course of the nineteenth century the ideas
once formulated in England, then more grandly stated
in France, then worked out through the American and
the French Revolutions, were gradually followed by the
masses in western Europe. Especially in the towns arose
demand for revision of the franchise and extension to the
workers of some share in governing the state. In course
of time in Great Britain, in France, in Italy, and in Bel-
gium, and to a less extent in the German states, working-
men and rural laborers were admitted to the franchise,
and in time tended to secure control. They themselves and
the classes above them saw that this power could not be
wisely used unless they had education, which already the
townspeople were more and more desiring to have. Ac-
cordingly, in the nineteenth century for the first time in
the history of mankind, it became one of the great pur-
poses to see that all men and women should be able to
read and write. By no means had this been completely
accomplished by 1870, nor is it yet, save in the most ad-
vanced and prosperous countries of the world. But in
those lands where most of the people had gradually
got some education and some political experience, more
and more were they demanding reforms in the govern-

New en-

Results of





The position
of women

and woman

ment, and other reforms which would make their lives
happier and better.

In consequence of the Industrial Revolution, probably,
more than anything else, the position of women was
changed profoundly. By 1870 there had already been
alteration in their status in some countries, though much
larger results would be more evident fifty years later. The
nineteenth century was the era of great change in the
history of women. The great movements of the past,
the Renaissance, the Reformation, even the French
Revolution, which carried many men so far forward, left
w^omen much as they had been, inferior and subordinate
to men. Among savage and barbarous peoples, in primi-
tive times, though occasionally women had possessed
political power and were held in high respect, they were
generally obliged to do most of the work. Among the
earlier civilized peoples they had usually been the servants
and chattels of men, though under the Roman Empire
law and custom gradually gave them the highest position
held by women before the latter part of the nineteenth
century. Christianity, since it made people gentler and
more kindly, affected women's lot in many ways for the
better, yet it assisted in keeping them in lower position
than men. Through the first woman, it was said, came
sin; and, from her, death and the fall of man. The curse
of Eve was on all women: they were less than men; they
should be obedient to their husbands. Accordingly, the
Church had given them an honorable but inferior position,
though this was counterbalanced by veneration of the
mother of Christ. The monks and the hermits, at one
time so powerful, taught that women were sinful creatures
to be avoided. Through all these ages down to recent times
certain circumstances pertaining to women combined with
prevailing conditions of society to influence ideas about
them. They were less strong than men: they needed
men's protection; this was purchased by obedience and



submission. Down to the time of the Industrial Revolu-
tion most of women's work was always done in the home,
under the control and supervision of men, whose authority
was recognized by law. It was not often possible for an
unmarried woman to have a business of her own, or find
work outside the home; and there she worked under the
direction of some male relative or some man who gave her
support. Englishmen believed that their women were
better off than those of any other country, but in Eng-
land unmarried women had a legal position less good than
men's, while married women, the great majority of the
sex, had no legal existence separate from the husbands', of
whom they were considered a part. The husband was
responsible for the wife, and had entire authority over her.
At the time of marriage the husband became owner of
the wife's property, and when children were born they
were legally his. Generally women were not supposed to
possess any learning except what pertained to home
duties. They were advised not to display such education
as they had, since learning in women was thought un-
womanly and improper, and apt to be disliked by the men.
Generally families were larger then than now, and a great
part of all the mental and physical energy of most women
was given to the bearing and raising of children.

From time immemorial had these things been, but now
a great transformation was taking place. Many things
contributed to effect this change. The grand ideas of the
French Revolution were gradually considered to pertain
to women as well as to men. In the nineteenth century
several causes brought it about that greater sympathy and
humanitarianism developed than ever before. The rapid
advance of men was being shared by women. "Unless
women are raised to the level of men, men will be pulled
down to theirs," said John Stuart Mill in 1866. In course of
time women as well as men obtained education, and from
it came deepening of intellect and broadening of mind,

tion to men

of women's




Greater pro-
duction and
more leisure

greater sense of dignity and worth, and inevitably larger
power. Finally, as a result of the Industrial Revolution,
much of the work formerly done in the home — spinning,
weaving, making clothes, preserving food, and even pre-
paring it to be eaten — was taken away to be done by factory
workers. To the factories women followed this work, of
which previously the larger part had always been done
by themselves; and there they worked for wages, which,
after a while, they kept and considered as their own. In
this way came the beginning of some economic independ-
ence. Furthermore, the Industrial Revolution, as will
be shown, made possible a larger amount of leisure than
ever before, especially for women. The greater material
prosperity and the higher standard of living in conse-
quence often brought it about that families were smaller
than before. By 1870 women were at the threshold of a
new era, which in some respects would be preeminently
a Woman's Age.

Finally the industrial changes of the nineteenth cen-
tury created a different standard of living and a higher
material civilization for a great many people. In earlier
times there had often been much comfortable, even
splendid, living, with a great deal of beauty and grace;
but most of the population had no share in it, and never
could hope to have. There were then wanting many
things now taken as a matter of course. However much
most people strove they could not hope to get a large
amount of such things as then existed, for working alone
in their homes, with hands or simple appliances, without
machinery, with little cooperation and division of labor,
it was not possible ever to produce much more than was
needed by most people for mere subsistence. So it had
been in ancient times, when only a minority enjoyed luxury
and fine li\nng through the labor of a multitude of slaves.
So it was through medieval and modern times, when only
the aristocracy and a few prosperous people had these


things. But with the coming of the great factories and Moreneces-
machines of the Industrial Revolution it was possible to saries and
produce easily much greater quantities of things than had J^fngg^p^ro-
ever been obtained before, so that more people might have duced
them; and this increased production had to do also with
many new articles which were now invented. Accord-
ingly, while at first numerous laborers were thrown out of
work, and while the condition of the workers was often
very bad, yet it was presently evident that the new system
yielded far greater output, and that now the mass of the
people might get things formerly possessed only by the
wealthy. Furthermore, the machines doing the work of
many men made it possible for an increasing number of
people to work less for the obtaining of what they wanted,
with the result that leisure, time free from the toil neces-
sary for existence, became the possession of a larger number
of people than ever before. This leisure was devoted by
some of the fortunate to improving their education and still
further advancing their civilization.


For the great inventions and changes: A. R. Wallace, The
Wonderful Century: Its Successes and Its Failures (1898), a very
stimulating brief account, The Progress of the Century (1901),
by the same author and many others. Also James Samuelson
(editor), The Civilisation of Our Day (1896), containing essays
by various specialists; E. W. Byrn, The Progress of Invention
in the Nineteenth Century (1900).

For the history of industry and the old systems in general:
Johannes Conrad, Ilandworterbuch der Slaats^wissenschaft, 8 vols.
(3d ed. 1909-11); R. H. I. Palgrave, Dictionary of Political
Economy, 3 vols. (1910-13); Benjamin Rand, Selections Illustrat-
ing Economic History Since the Seven Years" War (5th ed. 1911).
Also W. W. Cunningham, The Growth of English Industry and
Commerce in Modern Times, 3 vols. (5th ed. 1910-12).

The Industrial Revolution: D. H. Macgregor, The Evol ition
of Industry (1912); H. de B. Gibbins, Economic and Industrial
Progress of the Century (1903) excellent; Paul Mantoux, La


Eevohdion Industrielle au XVIW Steele (1906), best account of
tlie Industrial Revolution.

In England: G. H. Ferris, The Industrial History of Modern
England (1914); Arnold Toynbee, Lectures on the Industrial
Revolution of the 18th Century in England (1884), the classic
exposition in English; A. P. Usher, An Introduction to the Indus-
trial History of England (1920); G. T. Warner, Landmarks in
English Industrial History (11th ed. 1912).

The new system: J. A. Hobson, The Evolution of Modern
Capitalism: a Study of Machine Production (ed. 1912), excellent;
Charles Gide and Charles Rist, Histoire des Doctrines Economi-
ques depuis les Physiocrates jusqua Nos Jours (1919), trans.
A History of Economic Doctrines (1915); Werner Sombart, Der
Moderne Capitalismus, 2 vols. (1902).

Condition and progress of the laboring classes : Louis Blanc,
Histoire des Dix Ans, 1830-18^0, trans. History of Ten Years,
1830-1840, 2 vols. (1844-5); Friedrich Engels, The Condition of
the Working Class in England in 18U (ed. 1892); Octave Festy,
Le Mouvement Ouvrier au DSbut de la Monarchic de Juillet, 2 vols.
(1908); R. G. Gammage, History of Chartism (1854, new ed.
1894), the author was a leader in the movement; Mark Ho veil.
The Chartist Movement (1918), the best account; E. Levasseur,
Histoire des Classes Ouvrier es et de V Industrie en France de 1789
a 1870, 2 vols. (1903); J. A. R. Marriott, editor. The French
Revolution in 184-8 in Its Economic Aspects, 2 vols. (1913);
James Mavor, An Economic History of Russia, 2 vols. (1914).



Everybody has read Mr. Darwin's book . . . pietists . . .
decry it . . . bigots denounce it with ignorant invective;
old ladies of both sexes consider it a decidedly dangerous book, and
even savants . . . quote antiquated writers to show tliat its
author is no better than an ape himself. . . .
T. H. Huxley, "The Origin of the Species" (1860).

In England ist der Umwalzungsprocess mit Handen greifbar . .
in Deutschland, Frankreich, kurz alien Kulturstaaten des europa-
ischen Kontinents, eine Umwandlung der bestehenden Verhaltnisse
von Kapital und Arbeit ebenso f lihlbar und ebenso unvermeidlich
ist als in England.
Karl Marx, preface to Das Kapital (1867).

Romanum pontificem, cum ex cathedra loquitur, id est, cum omnium
christianorum pastoris et doctoris munere fungens pro suprema sua
apostolica auctoritate doctrinam de fide vel moribus ab universa
ecclesia tenendam definit, per assistentiam divinam, ipsi in beato
Petro promissam, ea infallibilitate poUere, qua divinus redemptor
ecclesiam suam in definienda doctrina de fide vel moribus instruc-
tam esse voluit.

Concilium Vaticanttm: "De Romani pontificis infallibili
magisterio" (July 18, 1870).

During the hundred years or more from the middle intellectual
of the eighteenth century great changes took place which changes
profoundly altered men's ideas about themselves, about
the world around them, their conception of the Church,
of the State, of the relations of men one with another, and
of the organization of society; so that by 1870, and es-
pecially in the latter part of the nineteenth century, a
vast alteration was apparent. During this time came
not only the French Revolution and the Industrial Revo-





The uni-

of the

lution, but from them socialism took its rise, while the
doctrine of evolution and the spread of scientific thinking
brought large change in methods of thought and in intel-
lectual outlook.

The new inventions and the new industrial organization
were making it possible to produce more of the necessaries
and of the desirable things of life than in the past, with
much less of human labor. Gradually a considerable
part of all the population had more time to spare from
work to devote to the enjoyment of life and the considera-
tion of various things. Hence it was possible for more
people than previously to be aware of intellectual changes,
and by them to be more affected.

During this period came completely altered conception
of mankind and the world, of their origin, their progress,
and their development. For a long time before, indeed,
had such a change been in progress. After the second
century of the Christian Era it had generally been con-
sidered that the earth was the center of the universe.
Above were the heavens, containing sun, moon, and
stars, relatively small and in the firmament at no great
distance above the earth. In accordance with this con-
ception Dante in the Divina Commedia explained the
position of heaven, purgatory, and hell, and thus even
Milton during the seventeenth century, in his Paradise
Lost, conceived the structure and parts of the universe.
According to this belief the sun, the moon, and the stars
were all considered relatively unimportant and sub-
sidiary to the earth. The world and mankind therein
were the center of things, the beginning and end of creation.

A change began when Copernicus, a Prussian, in 1543
published his book, De orhium ca^lestium revolutionihus
(concerning the movements of the heavenly bodies), in
which he asserted that the sun was the center of the
universe, and the earth only one of the bodies which
revolved about it. At the beginning of the seventeenth





century his teachings were confirmed and extended by the
German, Kepler, and slowly the results were accepted.
When this took place it was no longer possible to attach
either to men or their world such immense importance as
before. During the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries
conceptions of the universe altered still more with the pro-
gress of astronomy and other sciences. Mathematics was
developed, delicate instruments were perfected, telescopes
became ever more powerful, and spectrum analysis was
brought into service, with the result that further discover-
ies were made which more completely altered ideas. At
the end of the eighteenth century men thought of the sun
as the center of a universe, with planets and attendant
satellites revolving about it, and so vast was this universe
that the outermost planet, Neptune, revolved at a distance
of 2,800,000,000 miles. Slowly during the nineteenth
century was knowledge of the heavens advanced, until
this solar universe seemed small and but a little part of
all things. By the beginning of the twentieth century
distances had become so vast that they were measured
now only by the "light year," the distance that light,
travelling 186,000 miles a second, would traverse in a
year. From the earth to the sun, light would go in eight
minutes, but it would take four years for the passage to the
nearest fixed star, and myriads or millions of years to
reach another nebula like the INIilky Way, of which perhaps
the sun and its system are a part.

Along with this idea of the diminishing importance
of the earth came another great change in thought. In
early times, and especially since the rise of Christianity,
it had been taught that the heavens and the earth and all
the things they contained were created by God in six daj's;
and it was believed that as they had suddenly been made
in the beginning, so they had continued, essentially
unchanged. Things had been designed for a purpose;
that purpose continued to be. Men and women must

The earth
smaller, not
the center
of things




accept the conditions around them by which they were
ruled. "In the beginning," said the Genesis of Scrip-
tures, "God created the heaven and the earth . . .
man in his own image. . . . Thus the heavens and
the earth were finished." Literal belief in these precepts
was fundamental. Many a reader of the Bible studied
the chronology which it contained, laboriously estimating
the years which had elapsed since Creation. About the
middle of the seventeenth century Archbishop Usher, of
the Anglican Church in Ireland, declared that Creation had
taken place 4,004 years before the birth of Jesus Christ.
Thus, according to current ideas, the life of man and of
the world was but short, just as the universe was little.
Altered These conceptions also were changed for many people

conception during the course of the nineteenth century by the ad-
vance of science and the formulation of the doctrine of
evolution until it became increasingly doubtful to many
whether the universe and all it contained had been made
suddenly and primarily with reference to man. The
very idea of creation, or a sudden making of things, was
slowly displaced by the belief that things had evolved out
of other things slowly, through long process of time.
Evolution The doctrine of evolution was not new, for it went back

at least to the time of some of the Greek philosophers,
from whom it had been taken to be grandly stated by
Lucretius in his De Natura Rerum. In 1749 the great
French naturalist, Buffon, began the publication of his
Histoire Naturelle, in which he declared that environment
altered animals, and suggested that both men and apes
might have developed from a common ancestor long be-
fore. At the end of the eighteenth century James Hutton,
a Scottish geologist, showed how changes in the earth's
surface had been made, and declared that he could "find
no traces of a beginning, no prospect of an end. " About
this time also the doctrine of development and slow change
was advanced by the French astronomer and mathema-



tician, Laplace, who undertook in liis Nebular Hypothesis
to explain the development of the solar system.

It was in the first half of the nineteenth century, how-
ever, that contributions were made which caused the
doctrine to revolutionize thinking. In 1830 Sir Charles
Lyell began the publication of his Principles of Geology,
in which he showed how earth features had developed
and were everywhere developing still. Later on he de-
clared that remains of primitive man were found under
some of the later strata of the earth's surface, and esti-
mated that men had lived in the world for 50,000 or
100,000 years. Later authorities believed that man
might have existed for 1,000,000 years, and that the
years of the age of the earth might be 200,000,000.

Most important of all, however, was the work of the
English naturalist, Charles Darwin. Influenced by Lyell's
teaching of slow development, and also by the doctrine
of the English economist Malthus, that increase of living
things depended on their supply of food, he made a long
and careful study of animals and plants. In 1859 he
published his work, On the Origin of Species by Means
of Natural Selection, and twelve years later his other work,
The Descent of Man. In these WTitings he taught that there
had been a long, slow development of things, an evolution
of one type from another; that the changes in this evolution
had been brought about as the result of a struggle for
survival, in which some individuals or species had sur-
vived because of peculiarities which especially fitted them
to succeed or survive, and that these peculiarities increas-
ing in course of time had constituted the changes of
evolution, and brought about variation of species. There
had been a long descent of species in which man could be
traced back through the ape families to lower forms more
distant and remote in time. Meanwhile, a younger scien-
tist, A. R. Wallace, had independently reached the same


Darwin :




spread of
the doctrine
of evolution



The sober writings of Darwin, from the nature of their
substance very difficult to comprehend, could have no
wide circle of understanding readers, but in consequence
of his work the idea of evolution attracted great attention.
Among English-speaking people it was expounded by
Thomas Huxlej^ with such brilliancy and complete clear-
ness that the educated layman understood it. Presently
the doctrine became the most important new intellectual
force of the time. Herbert Spencer in England undertook
to explain all branches of knowledge in terms of evolution.
By 1870 a bitter controversy was raging, in which clergy-
men and conservatives heaped upon the hypothesis their
obloquy, denunciation, and ridicule. In course of time,
however, it was generally accepted among educated peo-
ple, and though afterward modified in important particu-
lars, it was in the end recognized as one of the very bases
of modern thought.

The results of all this were enormous. The conceptions
of scholars and learned men were fundamentally changed,
and religious ideas soon affected. The Bible had seemed
to make it certain that the earth was created in six days;
now geologists were teaching that the world had been
slowly evolving for 100,000,000 years. Hitherto most
people had believed that man had existed for about 6,000
years; now geologists asserted that he had been on the
earth for more than 100,000. For ages had it been taught
that "God created man in his own image, in the image of
God created he him"; now many declared that human
beings had gradually been evolved from lower animals,
these from reptiles, they from fishes, and so on back to
the lowest forms in primeval times. It was therefore
a generation of unhappiness and stress to many pious and
thoughtful people, who were yet struck by the apparent
truth of the new assertions which were being taught;
they felt that the basis of their faith was being shaken
since they had taken all the Bible as inspired and all its



contents to be literally true. By 1870 a painful conflict
was going on between science and religion, which con-
tinued long after. In this conflict evolutionists and men
of science were held up as atheists and blasphemers, while
they heaped scorn on the ignorance of their opponents.
As the century slowly progressed many people were able
to adjust their beliefs and modify their conceptions, so
that religion and science were reconciled for them.

Meanwhile, innovation no less profound was taking place
concerning ideas of social and economic arrangement.
To the humane French philosophers of the latter part of

Online LibraryEdward Raymond TurnerEurope since 1870 → online text (page 6 of 49)