1 of 2 portraits of Joanna Baillie
by John Henry Robinson, after Sir William John Newton
stipple and line engraving, published 1851
9 3/8 in. x 6 5/8 in. (241 mm x 170 mm) plate size; 15 in. x 10 1/2 in. (385 mm x 268 mm) paper size
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Events of 1851back to top
Current affairsA population census is taken of all the people living in Britain, recording details about every householder on the night of March 30. This census greatly extends the fields of the 1841 census, being the first to record full details of individuals' birth locations, exact age, marital status, and details of disability, thus making it a valuable tool for demographers and genealogists. The census was made open for public inspection in 1912.
Art and scienceThe Great Exhibition is held in London,at the Crystal Palace, especially designed by Sir Joseph Paxton. The international exhibition was designed to showcase the best in science, art and industry. it attracted millions of visitors.
Lizzie Siddal poses for John Millais's painting Ophelia.
Hermann von Helmotz invents the ophthalmoscope, making it possible for doctors to examine within a patient's eye.