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Autumn Semester Coursework Plan Notes

History Notes > Reformation to Revolution 1517-1789 Notes

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POPULATION ESSAY PLAN Question: Why did the population of Europe experience a period of sustained growth in the eighteenth century, when in previous centuries such growth had proved temporary?
Reasons:Fall in average age at first marriage


Wrigley and SchofieldCouples married for longer - more childrenInfant mortality falls - children more likely to survive to adulthoodMultiplier effect if these children marry and reproduce youngFewer and less destructive warsThe end of plague in western EuropeBetter medical care available to more peopleBetter living conditions for more people

oDevelopment of cities

Increased food production and better distribution

Write about how each individual factor affected:


Birth rate


Death rateFertility, average age of marriage, availability of medicines



oFertility rates improving along with diet; birth rate increases; farming techniques developing increasing yield; death rate decreases because more food; ability to raise children to adulthood; without agricultural developments the demographic increase impossible; people need feeding; technology lowers death rate link to next paragraph by talking about bad nutrition making the populace more prone to epidemics


Impact of plague on previous society; death rates exceeding birth rate; idea that plague not the worst disease, fevers killing more people over time - death rate; infant mortality rates; better nutrition from agricultural advances leads to reduction in epidemics throughout Europe; link to next paragraph by talking about the spread of disease by an army

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