Life in the 1700's

by Juliana DiCesare

Introduction

Europe in the 1700's was a bustling time in which The Enlightenment took place. The Enlightenment had an effect on nearly everything like the arts, and on everyone of all social classes.

Music

The music during The Enlightenment followed order and had structure. Ballets and operas were popular and were performed at royal courts. Opera houses sprung up all over Europe.

Baroque

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The Baroque style was very grand and complex. It relied on heavy splendor. Paintings were very large, colorful and full of excitement. They usually depicted saints or historic battles. A famous work was “The Assumption of the Virgin Mary” by Peter Paul Rubens.

Rococo

Unlike the Baroque style, Rococo wasn't as flashy and dramatic. The Rococo style was personal, elegant, and charming. It used things like delicate shells and flowers. Paintings often depicted nobles in rural settings with pets and servants. “The Swing” by Jean-Honoré Fragonard was a famous painting.

Peasant life

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1700's peasants in Western Europe were typically more prosperous than those in Eastern Europe. In the west, some worked their own land, while some were tenants of landowners with vast property. They farmed the land and paid a yearly rent. Others hired themselves on land to work on other people’s farms. In Eastern Europe serfdom was still very prominent, and peasants owed services to their lords and were basically tied to them. In France, peasants still had to provide free service like repairing roads and bridges. In terms of food, peasants ate a lot of meat, bread, gruel, and soup. They drank milk and tea. For entertainment, they read, went to the theater to watch performances, and played sports and games.