Adam Went

Apr 28, 2003
How did the Gilded Age come to be in the 1800's as well? Those dates you've given there, Doug, are at the height of the Victorian era! :)

Doug Criner

Dec 2, 2009
I think the generally accepted "ages" differ among various countries. In the U.S., for example, there is Reconstruction - obviously not applicable to the U.K. - prior to our Gilded Age. And maybe the "Edwardian Age" is a bit less recognized in the U.S.

Supposedly, the term "Gilded Age" was coined by the American author, Mark Twain. If true, then we Yankees can claim it!

The weblink I gave is a U.S. Government site (actually Library of Congress), so it obviously reflects American history or perhaps Americans' hisory.

My original post was made in the spirit of my observation that many, if not most, contributors here are from the U.S. But I apologize for any insult given or perceived.
Dec 2, 2000
Easley South Carolina
I think there may be a matter of some perspective at work here. When we (As in our happy band on this forum) think of the Guilded Age, we think of the later part of Queen Victoria's reign right up to around the start of World War One.

Professional historians clearly have a different take on this question, and even there, some differences of opinion vary with the nation one happens to be a citizen of.

Not saying which is right or wrong. I only observe that it's just there.

Adam Went

Apr 28, 2003
Doug and Michael,

Yes you're quite right, I hadn't considered the different terms for different continents. As far as England is concerned, I believe that it would be the Victorian era (Queen Victoria - that would be 1837 - 1901), followed by the Edwardian Era (King Edward VII.)

I have heard the term "gilded age" applied to the days of the Titanic before though.

Bob Godfrey

Nov 22, 2002
The term 'Gilded Age' was specifically American, and has been used in this forum only by American members, while 'Edwardian' (unlike 'Victorian') is a term not much used other than here in Britain. The Titanic sank in the reign of George V, but at a time when Britain was still 'Edwardian', and remained so until the outbreak of the Great War in 1914. Britain's Edwardian era is often thought of a golden age of peace and contentment, but in reality it was a turbulent period of change and of political, industrial and social unrest.

robert warren

Feb 19, 2016
The Gilded Age is a loose description that basically describes the period following the Civil War to World War 1. It was coined in America by Mark Twain and not in a flattering way. It's very easy to section off history by putting dates on things ( 1878 -1889)Keep in mind certain epochs don't end because of what a calendar says.The ideas, attitudes and traditions keep them going. The reason the Titanic falls into the Gilded Age category is because the principles and lifestyles of the super rich and upper class were just as they had been (lavish parties, yachts, Newport ,women changing clothes 8 times a day etc...) As well as a massive set of rules and social behaviors that were strictly adhered to.This world and class conscious lifestyle was no different in 1912 then in 1882.It's also worth noting that certain periods can overlap and share certain titles.The period of 1890 - 1917 has also been called The Progressive Era, The Confident Era and The Age Of Innocence as well.The period between 1901 - 1910 may not be Victorian in the official sense but the traditions and attitudes of that period were still lived by. In fact the true essence of the Gilded Age probably ended with the beginning of the income tax in 1913.
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