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Industrial Revolution: Introduction

File:Spinning-room-in-Shadwell-Rope-Works.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The Industrial Revolution refers to the time period in Great Britain beginning in the 1700s when the manufacturing of goods moved from small shops and homes to large factories. This shift brought about numerous changes not just in Britain but across the globe as people moved from rural areas to big cities in order to find work. It also introduced new technologies, new types of transportation, and a different way of life for many.


The resources below will give you a more in-depth look at what the Industrial Revolution was, and the tabs along the top of this page will direct you to specific aspects of the Industrial Revolution, such as the causes of the Industrial Revolution, technological advances and working conditions.

The Industrial Revolution (Britannica, n.d.)

This comprehensive article from Britannica Online gives an in-depth analysis of the Industrial Revolution, defining what the period was and describing the main characteristics of the period.

Industrial Revolution (English Online, n.d.)

This website gives you an easy understandable overview of the Industrial Revolution.

The Industrial Revolution (BBC, n.d.)

A useful overview of the Industrial Revolution. use the arrows at the top and bottom of the page to progress through the pages. take note of words that are in blue as these will link you to more information regarding that aspect of the Industrial Revolution.

The Industrial Revolution: a timeline (The Victorian Web, 2012, March 3)

This website provides a timeline of some of the most important events during the Industrial Revolution.

Agriculture: the practice of cultivating the land or raising stock.

Assembly line: mechanical system in a factory whereby an article is conveyed through sites at which successive operations are performed on it.

Automation: the use or introduction of automatic equipment in a manufacturing or other process or facility.

Capital: wealth in the form of money or property.

Capitalism: an economic system based on private ownership of assets.

Competition: business relation in which two parties vie to gain customers.

Corporation: a business firm recognized by law as a single body.

Cotton gin: a machine that separates the seeds from raw cotton fibers.

Demand: the ability and desire to purchase goods and services.

Entrepreneur: someone who organizes a business venture.

Industrialization: the development of commercial enterprise.

Industry: the action of making of goods and services for sale.

Infrastructure: basic facilities needed for the functioning of a country.

Labour: productive work, especially physical work done for wages

Locomotive: a self-propelled vehicle that draws a train along a track.

Manufacture: put together out of artificial or natural components.

Mass production: the production of large quantities of a standardized article.

Mechanization: the act of using technology to automate a process or system.

Merchant: a businessperson engaged in retail trade.

Mill: a facility for manufacturing.

Monopoly: a market in which there are many buyers but only one seller.

Production: manufacturing or mining or growing something for sale.

Profit: excess of revenues over outlays in a given period of time.

Revolution: a drastic and far-reaching change in ways of thinking.

Spinning jenny: an early spinning machine with multiple spindles.

Standard of living: a level of material comfort in terms of goods and services available to someone or some group.

Steam engine: external-combustion engine in which heat is used to raise steam which either turns a turbine or forces a piston to move up and down in a cylinder.

Stock: capital raised by a corporation through the issue of shares.

Strike: refusal to work in protest against low pay or bad conditions.

Tenement: a run-down apartment house barely meeting minimal standards.

Textile: artifact made by weaving or felting or knitting fibers.

Union: an organization of employees that bargains with the employer.

Urbanization: the social process whereby cities grow.