Category Archives: Nineteenth century society

From Peace to Victory: Amiens to Waterloo 1802-1815

The Peace of Amiens, negotiated by Hawkesbury (later Lord Liverpool) and Cornwallis and ratified by Parliament in May 1802, received a poor press from contemporaries and subsequently from historians. The surren­der of Austria deprived Britain of any leverage in Europe … Continue reading

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Recollections of Victorian Birmingham

This book offers readers an absorbing portrait of Birmingham’s nineteenth century. It provides eyewitness accounts of the main events and personalities of the time. These twenty-five autobiographical articles were originally published in the Birmingham Gazette and Express in 1907-9, but … Continue reading

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What were British foreign interests between 1793 and 1841?

In the fifty-four years before 1793, Britain had fought three major wars with France lasting some twenty-three years. Britain could not ignore France and the threat to European security posed by the expansion of the French Revolution. Lord Auckland declared … Continue reading

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What were the social and economic effects of the Famine?

The ‘Great Famine’ began unexpectedly in the late summer of 1845. By September, potatoes were rotting in the ground and within a month blight was spreading rapidly. Three-quarters of the country’s crop, the chief food for some three million people … Continue reading

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Why was Catholic Emancipation such a contentious issue?

The Catholic question was left unresolved by Union and until 1823 the issue stagnated. There were two main reasons why the campaign for Catholic Emancipation before the formation of the Catholic Association by Daniel O’Connell in 1823-1824 made little headway. … Continue reading

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Resisting tithes

Tithes were traditional payments that entitled the Church to a tenth of people’s annual income. Usually the payments were made in kind in the form of crops, wool, milk and other produce, to represent a tenth of the yearly production. … Continue reading

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Treating the disabled

Throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries the policy of segregating severely disabled people into institutions slowly increased and was subsequently extended to other disadvantaged groups.[1] The term ‘institution’ can refer to a variety of social organisations but refers here to … Continue reading

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Posted in Books, Health and Housing, Nineteenth century society

Whig reforms 1832-1841

During the 1833 and 1834 sessions Lord Althorp,[1] leader of the House of Commons, showed that the energy for further reform remained strong. Although ministers sympathised with and even promoted specific bills in general, legislation to improve the condition of … Continue reading

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Whigs and constitutional reform 1830-1835

The Whigs supported the idea of both parliamentary and social reform. When they came to power in late 1830, they put parliamentary reform at the centre of their political agenda and it dominated debate until the Reform Act was passed … Continue reading

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What was the nature and extent of change?

The view that the industrial revolution represented a dramatic watershed between an old and a new world has recently been questioned by historians. Growth was considerably slower and longer than previously believed. Few historians would go as far as Jonathan … Continue reading

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How and why did industrialisation occur in Britain between 1780 and 1850?

In the latter part of the eighteenth and the first half of the nineteenth century, Britain underwent what historians have called an ‘industrial revolution’ with factories pouring out goods, chimneys polluting the air, escalating exports and productivity spiralling upwards. This … Continue reading

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How was British society structured?

All societies are, to some degree, stratified or divided into different social groups. These groups may be in competition with each other for social control or wealth. They may be functional, defined by their contribution to society as a whole. … Continue reading

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Posted in Nineteenth century society, Uncategorized

An ‘Industrial Revolution’

Between 1750 and 1850 the British economy experienced a very rapid and, by international standards, pronounced growth in manufacturing. The proportion of the labour force employed in industry, whether in the manufacturing or service sectors increased, and the proportion employed … Continue reading

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Three Rebellions…a second edition

There have been important change in the Rebellion Trilogy, a series of books that were written between 2004 and 2010 and published in 2010, 2011 and 2013.  The series will become a Quartet with the addition of a fourth volume … Continue reading

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Vicars and Tarts!! Well almost

Tom Hughes Clerical Errors: A Victorian Series, Volume 1, (Kindle edition), £3.86 The behaviour of public figures has always been subject to scrutiny from an often prurient public. This has been particularly the case with clergymen especially those who pronounce … Continue reading

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