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Capitalist System

In the 16-th century capitalist industry in Britain began to develop. Rich craftsmen enlarged their workshops and wealthy set up big enterprises. So workshops grew into large enterprises - manufactures where the factory owners exploited the labour of hired workmen. Unlike serves, the hired workers had personal freedom but they possessed neither land, nor implements. Bringing workers together in a factory made it easier to divide up the work between different groups of workers. This led to the division of labour and stimulated a rise in labour productivity. New classes were coming into being, the bourgeoisie and the wage workers whose labour was made more productive than that of the artisans.

The 15-th - 16-th centuries were justly called the era of invention. A hydraulic engine was used in various crafts. There was noticeable progress in shipbuilding. Fire - arms were invented. The invention of printing in Europe stimulated a rapid advance in education, science and literature.

At the end of the 19-th century capitalism entered its highest stage of development - imperialism which has been marked by outstanding discoveries in science and quick political developments.


1. unlike serves - в отличие от крепостных

2. neither land, nor implements - ни земли, ни орудий

3. bringing workers together - объединение рабочих

4. were coming into being - появились

5. were justly called - справедливо называли

6. a rapid advance in... - быстрое продвижение (разви­тие)


I.Give Russian equivalents of the following:

Capitalist industry; rich craftsmen; wealthy merchant; large enterprise; factory owner; personal freedom; labour productivity; neither land, nor implements.

II. Give English equivalents:

Производительность труда; буржуазия; наемные рабочие; ремесленники; быстрый скачок; высшая и последняя стадия; быстрый прогресс.

III. Find in the text the sentences with these words and translate them:

Manufactures; implements; division of labour; era; bourgeoisie; various crafts.

IV. Complete the following sentences in Russian and translate them into English:

1. В конце 15 века в Британии ... .

2. Таким образом, ремесленные мастерские превращались .. -

3. Разделение труда стимулировало ... .

4. Одним из величайших открытий 15 века было ... .

5. В конце 19 века капитализм вступил ... .

V. Express agreement or disagreement with the following using:

Yes, you are right (= it is correct)

No, you are not right (= you are wrong)

1. So workshops grew into large enterprises - manufactures.

2. Unlike serves the hired workers had personal freedom.

3. New classes appeared - slaves and slave - owners.

4. There was a noticeable regress in shipbuilding.

VI. Sum up the contents of the text by answering the following questions:

1. How did manufactures come into existence?

2. Whose labour did the factory owners exploit?

3. Was the division of labour practised in capitalist enterprises?

4. What new classes were coming into being?

5. What great inventions of that time do you know?

6. What was the importance of book printing?

7. When did capitalism enter it's highest stage?

VII. Translate the following text without the help of a dictionary:

In February, 1917, a wave of political strikes and demonstrations spread all over Russia. The strikes and demonstrators carried the slogans "Down with War! Down with the Tsar!". A bourgeois-democratic revolution took place in Russia. It overthrew the tsarist autocracy. Nicholas II, the last monarch of the Romanov dynasty, abdicated (отрекаться от престола).

The bourgeois Provisional Government took power. It began to persecute the Bolshevik Party.