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Flashcards in Modern World History Deck (135)
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The ___ Empire, a Sunni Islamic state, arose in the Turkish areas of Central Asia in the 1300s and ultimately spread throughout the Middle East and North Africa, before its collapse after World War I.



Which powerful French king, known as the Sun King, ruled in the 17th and 18th centuries, reigned for more than 70 years, and strongly believed in the divine right of kings?

Louis XIV

During his reign France was the leading European power, and he helped create a centralized state by pacifying the aristocracy by inviting many nobles to live at his palace at Versailles.


Which 17th- and 18th-century Russian czar expanded Russia into a large empire and transformed its medieval sociopolitical system into a more modern and Western science-based one?


Peter the Great

​He established the new capital, St. Petersburg (which was temporarily renamed Leningrad in the 20th century).


What was the Enlightenment?

From roughly 1650-1790, the Enlightenment marked the first time a secular world view predominated among leading intellectuals in the Western world.

Previously, Catholics and Protestants had controlled most knowledge and had contended that all true knowledge came from the Church. The "light" of the Enlightenment came from man's own ability to reason outside of the Church.


The Seven Years' War (1756-1763) took place primarily in what country?

Prussia (modern-day Germany and Austria)

With the financial aid of Great Britain, Frederick the Great of Prussia was able to defeat the combined armies of France, Russia, and Sweden.


Which Empress of Russia ruled in the 18th century and reigned for over thirty years?

Catherine the Great

She encouraged the cultural influences of Western Europe and presided over the Russian Enlightenment. Under her rule Russia grew larger and stronger than ever and became one of the great powers of Europe. She is known for her many romantic affairs, many of them with members of her court and government.


What invention displaced rivers and streams as the main power source for British factories?

the steam engine

  • Patented by James Watt in 1769, the modern steam engine allowed British textile production to skyrocket, ushering in the Industrial Revolution
  • In addition to textile manufacturing, the steam engine had all sorts of other applications ranging from mining to shipping


What type of rock powered the early steam engines?


  • Britain possessed an abundance of coal, providing the country with cheap fuel with which to ignite the Industrial Revolution
  • Due to coal's dirty nature, rivers, streams, and cities became extremely polluted during the Industrial Revolution, leading countries to enact the first major environmental regulations


Which 18th- and 19th-century American is famous for inventing the cotton gin, one of the major inventions of the Industrial Revolution?

Eli Whitney


Which American inventor of the 19th century created the single-wire telegraph and co-invented Morse code?

Samuel Morse



Imperialism is a foreign policy aimed at the permanent control of territories, markets, and raw materials. Countries in the 1500s through early 1900s strove to build empires by conquering and acquiring more colonies.


What was the American Revolution?

The American Revolution describes the virtues of liberty and self-government that inspired American colonists to drive out the British government, and ultimately to form the United States, in the late 1700s. Some key details:

  • After 1763, the English government established taxes on the American colonists to pay the cost of the French and Indian War and to fund the British Army forces protecting the colonists
  • Irritated that they were being taxed without their consent, the American colonists sent missives to the British government and, when these were refused, broke out into open rebellion
  • The Declaration of Independence was submitted to the British government in 1776, causing Britain to declare war
  • With the help of the French, the American colonists defeated the British in 1783


What late-1700s European political and philosophical movement, begun in France, was marked by the overthrow of absolute monarchy and experimentation with democratic forms of government?

the French Revolution

Lasting roughly from 1789 to 1799 and inspired by the new government in America, the French Revolution marked the end of the Ancien Régime, the absolute monarchy that had lasted for centuries. It facilitated several important philosophies such as the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen.


Who was the last king of France before the French Revolution and was beheaded in 1793?

Louis XVI

​Although he first accepted a change from absolute monarchy to constitutional monarchy, he and his family, including his wife Marie Antoinette, eventually tried to flee the country. They were caught and returned to Paris as traitors and prisoners. Marie Antoinette was also sent to the guillotine in 1793.


Which French statesman is generally seen as having led the Reign of Terror (1793-1794), during which 40,000 "enemies of the French Revolution" were executed?

Maximilien Robespierre

An enormously important figure in the early years of the Revolution, he was executed in 1794 after public opinion of him and his extreme policies shifted.


What is Napoleon Bonaparte best known for?

Napoleon was a French military leader who conquered much of Europe between 1805 and 1811.

  • Napoleon sought to promote the ideals of the French Revolution, most notably via the Napoleonic Code, a greatly influential legal code that allowed freedom of religion and forbade privileges based on birth
  • His armies were eventually stopped by a combination of British naval power, an ill-advised invasion of Russia, and a guerrilla war in Spain
  • Defeated by a six-nation army at the Battle of Waterloo in 1815, Napoleon was exiled from Europe
  • He was known for being short, at 5 foot 6 inches (which was actually average for the time); today, short people with big egos are said to have a "Napoleonic complex"


What was the title of Arthur Wellesley, a 19th-century British general and statesman who commanded the allied army that defeated Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo?

Duke of Wellington


What Caribbean nation won independence from France in 1804?


  • Distracted by the French Revolution and large-scale European wars, the French initially did little to put down the Haitian Revolution, which began as a slave revolt in 1791
  • In 1801, Napoleon dispatched troops to retake Haiti
  • The French troops captured Haitian leader Toussaint L'Ouverture and sent him to France, but eventually many French troops died of yellow fever
  • After losing the Battle of Vertières to the Haitian rebels, the French returned home and Haiti became an independent nation


What 1803 event doubled the land area of the United States?

The Louisiana Purchase

  • In 1803, to fund Napoleon's wars, France sold the United States the Louisiana Territory, spanning over 828,000 square miles, for $15 million
  • The Louisiana Purchase doubled the size of the United States overnight and was one of President Thomas Jefferson's greatest accomplishments


Manifest Destiny

Manifest Destiny was an American belief that the U.S. was entitled to the entire North American landmass between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans.

Inspired by this belief, the U.S. fought wars against both the Native American tribes and Mexico to assert control over most of North America. By the 1850s, most of the modern United States was under government control.


Monroe Doctrine

  • Announced by President James Monroe in 1823, the Monroe Doctrine declared that European nations would not be allowed to interfere in the Western Hemisphere
  • While the Monroe Doctrine did ensure that most of the Western Hemisphere remained free of direct European control, the growth of U.S. power in the 19th century ensured that the region became part of the American sphere of influence


Which Latin American country was the first to successfully achieve independence from Spain?


In the 1810s and 1820s, Mexico fought a successful war of independence from Spain. Mexico's war for independence was the first of a number of conflicts that saw much of Latin America freed from Spanish control in the ensuing decades.


Which 18th- and 19th-century Venezuelan military and political leader successfully fought the Spanish Empire for the independence of several countries in South America?

Simón Bolívar

He helped lead Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia (named in his honor) to independence. One of the most important politicians in Latin American history, he helped lay the foundation for democracy in much of the region.


Between 1846 and 1848, Mexico fought a war with what power, eventually losing much of its territory?

The United States

Mexico fought the Mexican-American War against the United States. Mexico sued for peace after U.S. forces captured Mexico City. In the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Mexico gave up most of what is today the Western United States.


Which 19th-century German economist, philosopher, and socialist founded Marxism, the fundamental theory of communism that calls for a classless society where all means of production are commonly owned?

Karl Marx

Working closely with his friend Friedrich Engels, his two most famous works are Das Kapital and The Communist Manifesto. His ideology contributed to the creation of socialist states like the Soviet Union and the People's Republic of China in the 20th century.


Who wrote The Communist Manifesto in 1848?

Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels

  • The Communist Manifesto laid out how the capitalist system would be replaced by socialism, through a triumph of the working class
  • Marxism has continued to inspire revolutionaries and socialist parties around the world


What were Romanticism and Realism?

Romanticism was a cultural movement from around 1800-1850 that emphasized the ideal classical beauty of nature, art, music, and literature. It was largely a reaction to the impure effects of the Industrial Revolution.

In the 1850s, Realism began as a reaction against Romanticism. Realists attempted to portray subject matter truthfully and accurately, without artificiality, and sought to avoid exotic and supernatural elements.


Between 1839 and 1876, the Ottoman Empire introduced the ___ ___, aimed at modernizing the Ottoman state.

Tanzimat Reforms

  • The Tanzimat Reforms were a series of measures that sought to simplify the Ottoman legal system, import Western educational reforms, establish postal and telegraph systems, and increase religious tolerance for non-Muslims
  • The Tanzimat Reforms even went so far as to provide limited public education for women, some of whom began to enter the Ottoman public life
  • The changes were limited, however, and the Ottoman Empire continued to suffer serious problems as it declined


Which Queen of the United Kingdom ruled from 1837 until her death in 1901 and whose reign was characterized by the growth and power of the British Empire?

Queen Victoria

The Victorian Era was a period of great industrial and cultural development within the UK, and is also associated with a certain strict sense of morality.


On July 1, 1867, the federal Dominion of Canada was formed via the ___ ___, with three British colonies forming four provinces of the new dominion.

Canadian Confederation