How the Victorians Took Us to the Moon

The Story of the Nineteenth-Century Innovators Who Forged the Future

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Iwan Rhys Morus: How the Victorians Took Us to the Moon (2022, Icon Books, Limited)

English language

Published June 8, 2022 by Icon Books, Limited.

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3 editions

Bit dry, but a good starting point for further reading

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This is an exploration of how Victorian innovations, development and men (I use the term intentionally) laid the foundation for ongoing science and technology.

I admit I found the first half slow going. The events and personalities came across as facts and lists rather than the (I would imagine) exciting, maybe even scandalous, clashes that would have played out at the time. No doubt The Royal Society played a hugely important role in fostering and challenging ideas, but its internal politics make dry reading from this vantage point. I found myself dipping in and out rather than reading from start to finish. This was easy enough to do with each chapter’s focus being on a different technology.

I enjoyed the later chapters more, especially about telegraphy and attempts to fly.

Each chapter ends with a list of cited references, which will be a useful resource for further perusal.


  • Technology