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During the Hanoverian era, Britain experienced considerable demographic growth, the birth of an industrial economy, and extensive social change.

The British population doubled in the century after 1721, from 7.1 to 14.2 million people. Most of the growth occurred after 1750, and particularly after the 1780s.

Between 1810 and 1820, average family size reached five or six children per family, the highest rate in any decade in modern British history.

This surge in population was to some degree the result of falling mortality, which itself was partly the result of widespread smallpox inoculation in the early 19th century.

But it resulted more from a rise in marital fertility, which came primarily from more people marrying and, moreover, marrying at a younger age, thereby maximising women's childbearing years.

Improved material circumstances in industrialising parts of the nation explain the trend towards earlier and more extensive marriage and larger families. Britain already had a thriving economy in the early 18th century, with productive agriculture, scientific ingenuity, a strong commercial and middling sector, and extensive manufacturing.

After 1760, a gradual but continuing rise in the rates of industrial and economic growth led to Britain becoming the world's first industrial nation. Britain built factories and canals, extended agricultural productivity through parliamentary enclosure, experienced rapid urban growth, manufactured and patented new industrial techniques, achieved a breakthrough in fuel sources for energy and traded extensively along its own coasts and with Ireland, Europe and the wider world.

Industrialisation did not affect all parts of the nation equally. It was particularly strong in south Lancashire, Yorkshire, Birmingham and the Black Country, the Edinburgh-Glasgow corridor and London.Though industrialisation brought disruption to communities, pollution, booms and slumps and unequal gains, it led in the long term to a better standard of living for most workers.

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  1. jo oliver said...
    Yeah, comment section is working:)

    Interesting how a factor, like just marrying at a younger age, can change an entire nation like this.
    正玲正玲 said...
    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
    Auron said...
    Yeah, thanks Jo :)

    I did a few classes on population control in collage and they say the best way to reduce a population is to educate women. That way the tend to marry/start families later so have fewer children.

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