Great Britain and Ireland, 1800–1900 A.D.

  • Great Britain and Ireland, 1800–1900 A.D.



The economic, social, and artistic developments of the nineteenth century are shaped by the Industrial Revolution—the period of transition from manual to mechanical labor, which reaches its midpoint at the turn of the century. The Romantic movement in the arts and literature responds to this and the trend of rationalism fostered during the Enlightenment by rejecting reason in favor of emotion, and exalting the supreme power of nature in an aesthetic known as the Sublime. While industrial progress provides tremendous wealth for the British empire, social ills such as overpopulation, prostitution, child labor, and poverty among the working classes escalate. As movements such as Chartism and the Reform Acts of 1832, 1867, and 1884 aim to resolve these issues, many artists, architects, and writers seek to repair the growing rift between art and craft, and to restore beauty and integrity of design to everyday objects.


“Great Britain and Ireland, 1800–1900 A.D.”. In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. (October 2004)