This text reviews the development of research into the explosive loading of structures, mainly since the beginning of the 20th century. Major contributions in the fields of measurement, analysis and prediction are discussed. Dynamic loading from conventional high explosives is examined, as well as the effects of liquid propellant, dust, gas, vapour, and fuel/air explosions. Subjects include blast in tunnels, underground and underwater explosions, pressure measurement and blast stimulation. Explosive effects on civil buildings, civil bridges, aircraft and ships are summarized, including the estimation of residual strength. The concluding passages refer to structural safety and reliability.