In Condorcet's Progress Of The Human Mind the enlightenment view of history is expressed as a series of long open-ended questions that sort of map out what mankind has to do in order to develop, improve and be peaceful.
In the first paragraph Condorcet quotes "Will not every nation one day arrive at the state of civilization attained by those people who are most enlightened, most free, most exempt from prejudices, as the French, for instance, and the Anglo-Americans?".
I think what he means here is that in order for a nation or the world to become a better place people need to put aside all their differences and just except the fact that everyone is human and that we"re all the same. .
In Condorcet's view man's greatest crime and fault is war. On page 300 Condorcet is being quoted saying "The people being more enlightened, and having resumed the right of disposing for themselves of their blood and their treasure, will learn by degrees to regard war as the most dreadful of all calamities, the most terrible of all crimes-.
In Condorcet's view man should use technology to improve upon man's capabilities and skills and improve himself rather than to destroy himself, " , that instruments, machines, looms, will add every day to the capabilities and skill of man-will augment at once the excellence and precision of his works, while the will diminish the time and labour necessary for executing them.".
The final stage of human development is for the enlightened people to be able to pass on enlightenment to their children.
In the 1851 Economist progress has been "rapid" since the late half of the 18th and the first half of the 19th century. Where roads in 1650 were "almost as bad everywhere, except near the metropolis: the streets nearly as ill-lighted and not much more and ill-arranged." In the middle of the 18th century the streets are described as being lit up in a "blaze of light which gas now pours" meaning the streets are all lit up by gas lanterns.