History of Engineering – Renaissance Era

Watt Steam Engine

First pioneers before the modern times.

The first electrical engineer is considered to be William Gilbert, with his 1600 publication of De Magnete, who was the originator of the term „electricity“.[6]

The first steam engine was built in 1698 by mechanical engineer Thomas Savery. The development of this device gave rise to the industrial revolution in the coming decades, allowing for the beginnings of mass production.

With the rise of engineering as a profession in the 18th century, the term became more narrowly applied to fields in which mathematics and science were applied to these ends. Similarly, in addition to military and civil engineering the fields then known as the mechanic arts became incorporated into engineering.

The following images are samples from a deck of cards illustrating engineering instruments in England in 1702. They illustrate a range of engineering specializations, that would eventually become known as civil engineering, mechanical engineering, geodesy and geomatics, and so on.