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Aaron HillThe Muses' Projector, 1685-1750$
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Christine Gerrard

Print publication date: 2003

Print ISBN-13: 9780198183884

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198183884.001.0001

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Schemes and Projects 1712–1721

Schemes and Projects 1712–1721

Chapter:
(p.39) 2 Schemes and Projects 1712–1721
Source:
Aaron Hill
Author(s):

CHRISTINE GERRARD

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198183884.003.0003

This chapter discusses Hill's schemes and projects from 1712 to 1721. Hill, like another of The Dunciad's victims, Daniel Defoe, devoted much of his early maturity to the obsessive pursuit of ‘projects.’ Hill's subsequent notoriety as a failed beech-oil projector was harder to shake off than Defoe, but the drive which led them to pursue the application of scientific process to commercial venturism makes them in some sense more characteristic of the age than the satirist who targeted them as ‘dunces.’ He produced two volumes of essays to air the numerous schemes and projects teeming in his fertile brain, from the establishment of chinaware manufacture and vineyards in Britain, through to techniques to repair Dragenham Breech, and the foundation of engineering and agricultural colleges. Hill and Defoe were products of the enterprise culture which reached its apotheosis and its nadir in 1720, the year of the South Sea Bubble disaster.

Keywords:   The Dunciad, Daniel Defoe, scientific process, commercial venturism, South Sea Bubble disaster

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