Who was the most influential person of the time period 1700-1900?Napoleon, Bismarck, Marx, Einstein, Darwin, Freund, and anyone else. And why do you feel this way?

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Isaac Newton, English physicist, astronomer, mathmatician, natural philosopher, and theologian was of monumental importance!  Many scientists consider him the greatest ever, in fact, and claim that Newton's book, Prinicpia is the most important.  His list of accomplishments are multitudinous; among them, of course, is his theory of relativity, the theory of color, the invention of the telescope, the binominal thereom in algebra, the development of differential and integral calculus along with Gottfried Leibniz.

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rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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Newcomen is a great shout, and one could also certainly argue for Gottleib Daimler or one of the others with a claim on inventing the gasoline engine. Then there's Tim Berners-Lee, who invented the internet (sorry Al Gore.) I'm going to weigh in for Darwin from the list provided in the question. Few thinkers have done more to change our modern worldview, and there are few questions that are more important than those he addressed. A truly wonderful and elegant scientific theory.

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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I think that this is a very hard question to answer. There have been many different people who have been influential between 1700 and 1900. One's answer is going to rely heavily upon their own likes and ways of thinking.

Outside of that, I would have to say that Abraham Lincoln was the most influential.

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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I would have to add Great Britain's Queen Victoria to the list. She was the longest ruling monarch in British history and the longest ruling female ever. During her reign, the British Empire grew to the largest and one of the most powerful in the world, yet she reformed her nation's voting system and gave more muscle to the House of Commons at the expense of her own power.

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Darwin? Certainly his scientific contributions helped shape the way that we look at ourselves and our lives on this planet and our relationship with nature. This has more far-reaching consequences than the various military individuals you quote.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I've already said that I thought George Washington was the most important.

After him, I'd say maybe Marx.  The previous post says no one takes him seriously any more and that's largely true.  But the impact he has had on the world is still tremendous.  His doctrines led to the Cold War which continues to affect us even today and seems likely to continue to do so into the future.

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vangoghfan | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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I would have to say Darwin.  Many people believe that Darwin provided the key that unlocked knowledge about the origins and development of life. His ideas had, have, and will continue to have an enormous influence on the way we perceive ourselves and all our fellow creatures. His ideas can also have very immediate, very practical implications, as, for example, in the study of the evolution of diseases and the development of resistance to vaccines.  Few people take Freud or Marx very seriously anymore. Napoleon and Bismarck had influences that become less important with each passing decade.  Einstein, I would say, is Darwin's closest competitor.

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dthompson38 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

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Who was the most influential person of the time period 1700-1900?

Napoleon, Bismarck, Marx, Einstein, Darwin, Freund, and anyone else. And why do you feel this way?

I wouldn't count Einstein because, while he was born in 1879, he didn't really get started until the early 1900's

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beefheart | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 3) Honors

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How about Thomas Newcomen?

"Who?" I hear you cry. Well, history is not always done by the Kings and famous generals. Thomas Newcomen invented the first practical steam engine in 1710 in England. It was the first device that could generate power reliably in any location and, following on from his lead, there were a series of rapid improvements and developments that gave us power. Basically, it was the little spark of genius that kick-started the industrial revolution. And unless I am reading history all wrong, the most important thing between 1700 and 1900 was the industrial revolution; it catapulted us into the modern world.

He wasn't a Napoleon or a great abstract thinker, just a working engineer with a problem that needed solving (a mine which kept flooding to be precise) but he made a useful machine that unwittingly changed the whole world faster than almost any other human in history. Cheers, Thomas!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Newcomen

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stegny | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Honors

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How about Thomas Newcomen?

"Who?" I hear you cry. Well, history is not always done by the Kings and famous generals. Thomas Newcomen invented the first practical steam engine in 1710 in England. It was the first device that could generate power reliably in any location and, following on from his lead, there were a series of rapid improvements and developments that gave us power. Basically, it was the little spark of genius that kick-started the industrial revolution. And unless I am reading history all wrong, the most important thing between 1700 and 1900 was the industrial revolution; it catapulted us into the modern world.

He wasn't a Napoleon or a great abstract thinker, just a working engineer with a problem that needed solving (a mine which kept flooding to be precise) but he made a useful machine that unwittingly changed the whole world faster than almost any other human in history. Cheers, Thomas!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Newcomen

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