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The Uncertainty Among Historians when Accounting for the Expansion in Population in the Period 1775 - 1900

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The Uncertainty Among Historians when Accounting for the Expansion in Population in the Period 1775 - 1900

From 1775 – 1900 the population rose dramatically in Britain. So much
so, that at one point, the population doubled in the space of thirty
years. Obviously, this was a cause for concern for the government, as
it would be now if the same were to happen, however, it would seem
that despite knowing that the population did grow at an enormous rate,
there is great debate about why it grew so quickly. I will be looking
over various pieces of information ad opinions from historians in
order to create a realistic view of the reasons that could have been
behind the expansion of the population.

When looking at certain views and opinions regarding the population
change, often statistics will be used to back up these statements. The
lack of accurate statistics in this case, is something that must be
taken into consideration. The first census was carried out in 1801 and
has been carried out every ten years since (excepting 1941). This
means that it is difficult to create accurate population figures from
before this time. In 1837, civil registration produced more reliable
data regarding births and deaths, however when looking back any
further than this, statistics regarding birth and death rates, are
generally taken from parish registers. These, however would only show
baptisms and burials, this clearly would cause complications as if one
was not buried or baptised then they would have no record within the
parish. This also relies on the paperwork of the baptism/burial being
completed and therefore recorded at all.

It could be argued that ...


... middle of paper ...


...e population to a point, however
due to mainly, lack of accurate statistics it will always be open for
debate which had most effect.



Bibliography
============

Floud, R and McCloskey, D (Eds) The Economic History of Britain since
1700, Volume One, Cambridge: Press Syndicate of the University of
Cambridge,

Floud, R and McCloskey, D (Eds) The Economic History of Britain since
1700, Volume Two, Cambridge: Press Syndicate of the University of
Cambridge,

Hill, C P (1985) British Economic and Social History, Fifth Edition,
Bath: Pitman Press

May, T (1993) An Economic and Social History of Britain 1760 – 1970,
Essex: Longman Group

Speed, P F (1986) British Social and Economic History, Oxford:
Pergamon Press Ltd,

[http://victorianerb.org/history/poorlaw/speen.html], Accessed on
01/12/04


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