Historum - History Forums  

Go Back   Historum - History Forums > World History Forum > General History
Register Forums Blogs Social Groups Mark Forums Read

General History General History Forum - General history questions and discussions


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old November 19th, 2012, 05:05 PM   #21

Frank81's Avatar
Guanarteme
 
Joined: Feb 2010
From: Canary Islands-Spain
Posts: 2,523

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ancientgeezer View Post
A snapshot of 1841

* The census taken on 6 June 1841 records the English population as 15.9m, with 2.6m Scots and 8.2m Irish bringing Britain's total to 26.7m. The figure does not include the large homeless population
* Life expectancy was 40.2 years for men, 42.2 for women. More than 70 per cent of the population were under 35. Out of every 1,000 babies, 150 died before they were one
* The most popular girls' names were Mary (1.43m) and Elizabeth (809,000); for boys it was John (1.28m) and William (1m) - a top four that remained unchanged for 50 years
* The population of London, already the largest city in the world, was 1.58m, with less than two-thirds of its inhabitants born there. Non-English arrivals commonly came from Ireland, Scotland, India, China, Poland, France and Italy * Fuelled by industrialisation, Liverpool, Glasgow, Manchester and Leeds were also in the middle of population explosions that would see their total of inhabitants rise by more than 50 per cent from 1831 to 1851
* A British force was engaged in a disastrous occupation of Afghanistan which ended with 690 British soldiers, 2,800 Indians and 12,000 followers massacred or taken prisoner by Afghan militiamen. It was blamed on political officers making military judgements



It was, in the words of Friedrich Engels who arrived in Manchester the following year to begin the study which he published as The Condition of the Working Class in England, "an industrial revolution, a revolution which at the same time changed the whole of civil society". And at what a cost. Conditions in the new factories, and in the coal mines that supplied them, were deadly.
At Bigge's Pit at Wollington, Co Durham, that year, 32 men and children died in "a melancholy explosion" which sent "a violent shock in the neighbourhood resembling what might be supposed to proceed from an earthquake". It was but one of many such industrial disasters. A contemporary account was vivid in its detail: the men's mutilated bodies "presented a sight truly appalling, so completely disfigured, so broken every bone and muscle, that coffins had to be sent down, to prevent limb falling from limb, while being conveyed up the shaft".
Such horror was beginning to press upon the conscience of the nation. In 1841 a young Charles Dickens serialised one of his more mawkish pieces of sentimentality, The Old Curiosity Shop, which tantalised the whole of the reading world with the drawn-out death of the heroine, Little Nell. "Does she live?" shouted readers from the quayside in New York to the ship delivering the next episode. It was not one of Dicken's better novels. But two years earlier he had published Oliver Twist, a book whose depiction of the evils of the workhouse was instrumental in bringing changes to the law.
In a speech not long after his 1841 election victory, Sir Robert Peel told the Commons that he was not going to stand idly by while MPs reported cases of atrocious suffering in their constituencies: "When I hear of any case of individual distress ... I am resolved to institute thereupon an immediate inquiry into all the circumstances." Not long after he strengthened the Poor Law Commission to give it power to enforce a uniform national policy. There was much else to do. That year a survey was conducted of children working in the mines, often in seams which were only 32 inches high.
The job of Fanny Drake, aged 15, was to "hurry" (push) small wagons full of coal which weighed as much as two hefty men, from the face to the shaft. She told the survey: "I work at Charlesworth's Wood Pit in Wakefield. I hurry by myself. I don't like it so well. It's cold and there is no fire in the pit. I'd rather be out of it altogether. I push with my head sometimes; it makes my head sore sometimes that I cannot bear it to be touched, it is soft too. I often have headaches and colds and coughs and sore throats." The year after, Peel banned child labour from the mines altogether.
It was on the move too. The national exodus from the countryside to the town continued but there was also mass international migration. The population of England and Wales almost doubled in the half century from 1801 and trebled by 1901. In 1841 huge numbers of people were mobile. More than three million people - of a total population of just 15.9 million in 1841 - left Britain and Ireland for America, Canada and Australia in the three decades around this time. The notion of such far-flung "kith and kin" was to influence British politics for a century to come.


As a year it was, however, to end on a sombre tone. War broke out again in Afghanistan as the local people resisted British domination. An insurrection began in Kabul where the British Army was encamped within its own racecourse and polo field. In December 1841, British officials were assassinated as the first snow flakes began to fall on the city.


The rest of the article is here 1841: A window on Victorian Britain - This Britain - UK - The Independent


Have you read

The Making of the English Working Class: E. P. Thompson: 9780394703220: Amazon.com: Books
The Making of the English Working Class: E. P. Thompson: 9780394703220: Amazon.com: Books

? It goes on this line of thinking, from a very original point of view. I recommend to any one interested on social transition to industrial age.

I should note that in some cities of the "Black England" age, the birth death rate was way higher than overall national rate. It went as high as 400/1000.
Frank81 is offline  
Remove Ads
Old November 19th, 2012, 10:39 PM   #22

Black Dog's Avatar
Idiot of the year 2011
 
Joined: Mar 2008
From: Damned England
Posts: 7,824
Blog Entries: 2

It must also be remembered that death by accident and, especially, violence was common, especially during the 17th and 18th centuries, where men often settled the slightest of disputes by fighting and honour was seen as vitally important.
Black Dog is offline  
Old November 19th, 2012, 11:15 PM   #23
Suspended indefinitely
 
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 15

Quote:
Originally Posted by KRusEvo View Post
I always imagined people of history (be it 200 years ago, or 2,000 years ago, and be they rich or poor) as being of poor health and poor nutrition, and I was always thankful that I live in a land of doctors and hospitals. But I have been wondering if that is actually the case.

For example I read about the Pintupi Nine (the last Aboriginal Tribe to be found by white people in 1984), and they were described by a doctor as being in beautiful physical condition. Also when I see other people of primitive technology on TV they often have beautiful white teeth and look (on the outside at least) to be very healthy.

So this led my thoughts to people throughout history (who likewise lived with lower technology, no doctors, via their own labour etc). Were they unhealthy, or were they like the primitive peoples we see today?

What do you think? I am sure such a question has many answers depending on the variables.

On your planet..it depends on class and wealth and opportunity. All the rest is supposition, speculation and generally on venues such as this-ill- informed and or uneducated wannabe commentators on a history blog guess. Based on some one else's research efforts. Tho I did like the original idea of your British 'meat-pie'.

As for aboriginals and brilliant white teeth..so what? Sounds like that particular doc was into self glamorization of a life style he envied all the while eating his fillet Mignon's. Iow. self serving hypocritical bastard eh.


My advice?

Stick with a hearty diet of fatty red meats and alcohol...if anybody objects tell them to 'bugger off' and get out of your life.
Dragonborn is offline  
Old November 20th, 2012, 12:25 AM   #24

Black Dog's Avatar
Idiot of the year 2011
 
Joined: Mar 2008
From: Damned England
Posts: 7,824
Blog Entries: 2

In Medieval and early modern England, though (and onward, of course) we do have a very good idea of life expectancy and what people died of. The Church Records of a Parish, for example, show not just births, Christenings, marriages and deaths, but also the proceedings of Church Courts and many other items where the church record may be the only record. Plus, we have archaeological evidence, which throws up quite a few surprises.

I spent years studying the church records of three quite diverse English parishes at academic level.

Was health a consequence of health and opportunity? The simple answer is yes. But nothing like as much as one may think. The material difference between the medieval rich and the modern rich and poor is nothing like as great. Lack of basic medical understanding, lack of food hygiene, lack of antibiotics put everyone in the same boat. Sure, the rich in the past had more nutrition, but it wasn't the much fabled "5 a day" nonsense we hear so much about: how could it be? As we know today, more doesn't mean better.

The most simple truth is: if you lived in the right part of the (rural) country, avoided war, and got past a certain age, then your chances of living a long life even by modern standards was reasonable.
Black Dog is offline  
Old November 20th, 2012, 12:49 AM   #25

Brisieis's Avatar
Historian
¤ Member of the Year ¤
 
Joined: Sep 2011
From: UK
Posts: 16,033
Blog Entries: 8

I recall a documentary, though it is vague now. It was based in the times when the women used to make the alcohol in there homes for the men in the 'taverns' of the time. Anyway, there was this one prominent woman and she grew her own herbs and vegetables and ate well (well for the time anyway) and managed to escape the plague, because of her apparent diet. Does this ring any bells? Sorry for the vagueness, I saw it quite a while back.
Brisieis is offline  
Old November 20th, 2012, 03:08 AM   #26

Black Dog's Avatar
Idiot of the year 2011
 
Joined: Mar 2008
From: Damned England
Posts: 7,824
Blog Entries: 2

It's possible. Bubonic plague was spread by insects such as fleas and lice, probably from humanity's nearest competitor, the rat. But a series of poor harvests and poor nutrition generally (because of the so called "Little Ice Age") made people in Northern Europe in particular much more vulnerable to Bubonic Plague and related diseases and less able to resist it.

Arable crops are much more effective at feeding populations per acre than are animal foods, but since these were in relatively short supply, someone who brewed beer would have a distinct advantage, assuming they were not too fussy: they could eat the spent grains used for making beer. To make 5 gallons of beer, they'd have used something like 15 pounds of malted barley! These grains are steeped in hot water for a couple of hours and then the whole lot drained off. In better times, it made ideal animal food, but in hard times, one could eat the grains. I wouldn't recommend eating hops, though, but a lot of British beer during the time of the black death was made without hops, and other (related) plants were used, like nettles and also other herbs. Once they'd been boiled with the beer from the grains, they could be eaten, too.

If you weren't too fussy, you could have in income (beer), eat plenty of rather boring food (which they tended to in any case) and still get blind drunk to forget it all.

The "Alewife" was a common figure: every ordinary woman would know how to make beer and would use it to supplement her family income, but the monks were best at it.
Black Dog is offline  
Old November 20th, 2012, 03:51 AM   #27

Sargon of Akkad's Avatar
Backworldsman
 
Joined: Jun 2009
From: Glorious England
Posts: 6,965

Wow, I really want an alewife.
Sargon of Akkad is offline  
Old November 20th, 2012, 05:00 AM   #28

Frank81's Avatar
Guanarteme
 
Joined: Feb 2010
From: Canary Islands-Spain
Posts: 2,523

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brisieis View Post
I recall a documentary, though it is vague now. It was based in the times when the women used to make the alcohol in there homes for the men in the 'taverns' of the time. Anyway, there was this one prominent woman and she grew her own herbs and vegetables and ate well (well for the time anyway) and managed to escape the plague, because of her apparent diet. Does this ring any bells? Sorry for the vagueness, I saw it quite a while back.


Yes, the bells ring... what a nice candidate to witchcraft accusation

Well, seriously, during the 1348 plague, maybe as much as 70-90% of population got infected. Being healthy did not prevented infection, but survival.

However, might this woman could not be infected because of her use of certain herbs... could the herbs repel the plague transmission agents? I need to watch that docu.
Frank81 is offline  
Old November 20th, 2012, 05:26 AM   #29

JoeGlidden's Avatar
Lecturer
 
Joined: Apr 2010
From: New York
Posts: 328

Quote:
Originally Posted by astafjevs View Post
I'm inclined to believe that pre-industrial revolution people were fitter and much stronger than most modern people, but also far more susceptible to illness and famine. So on that basis I'll stick with being a weakling but healthy.
I appears as though in today's society, we associate length of life with health. Most people associate length of life with quality of life, as well. I'd see both as being incorrect.
JoeGlidden is offline  
Old November 20th, 2012, 06:50 AM   #30

Brisieis's Avatar
Historian
¤ Member of the Year ¤
 
Joined: Sep 2011
From: UK
Posts: 16,033
Blog Entries: 8

Cheers Blackdog, thanks for your knowledge and nice to see you online.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sargon of Akkad View Post
Wow, I really want an alewife.
Funny.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank81 View Post
Yes, the bells ring... what a nice candidate to witchcraft accusation

Well, seriously, during the 1348 plague, maybe as much as 70-90% of population got infected. Being healthy did not prevented infection, but survival.

However, might this woman could not be infected because of her use of certain herbs... could the herbs repel the plague transmission agents? I need to watch that docu.
Because my memory is very vague, it may well have been that she got the plague but it was not severe... I really thought that she did not get infected though... but unfortunately I could be wrong due my memory on the matter. I definitely recall for sure that people around her were dropping like flies. Damn I wish I remembered the documentary! Think it was a BBC one..

It is probably true that people who had unhealthy diets (being malnourished, not by modern standards of bad diets) had less chance of surviving the plague, you are right.
Brisieis is offline  
Reply

  Historum > World History Forum > General History

Tags
healthy, historically


Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
What does History have to say about a healthy diet? Yōḥānān General History 66 October 24th, 2012 01:23 PM
Media In America (Historically) CT9 American History 12 May 13th, 2012 07:54 AM
Who was Li Naomasa and why is he historically significant? lokariototal Asian History 13 March 6th, 2011 06:01 PM
if henry viii and katherine of aragon had a healthy son.. kbear Speculative History 17 November 6th, 2010 03:49 PM

Copyright © 2006-2013 Historum. All rights reserved.