Emergence of the modern timeline Timelines are routinely used to represent history, plotting events chronologically.1 In the eighteenth century, the rst modern timelines replaced typographic representations of historical time such as lists and tables on the one hand, or symbolic shapes on the other. These designs made novel use of space, in formats that we continue to recognize in modern information visualization. In doing so they re ected a changed model of how time is conceived, one where the past is a uniform, arithmetic space in which events are situated.