Economic Changes In The 18Th C Essay

, Research Paper

The 18th century brought many changes for England s social classes and economic situation. One of the main changes was England s industrial revolution(1760-1800) which changed working conditions from a domestic system to a factory system. People worked in their villages, making essential goods so they could survive. There were not as many goods being produced, the economy was not as strong as it became when the factory system was developed. The factory system was not the only change, more people were becoming rich, the merchants were becoming Parliament members, statesmen, privy counselors, judges, bishops, and nobles, and more efficient ways of production, especially in farming, were becoming more popular. The social classes in England were bettered by the economic changes that occurred during the 18th century.

Farming methods were changing because of the innovative ideas that helped to achieve a better product from less work. The Norfolk four-course system was adapted and also enclosure so that the Norfolk system would work. As a result of this, livestock was better fed by the new fodder which came from the new farming methods. The landlords leased their land for longer terms which benefited the tenant farmer as well as the landlord himself. This way, a tenant farmer could use crop rotation as well as drilling and other modernized agricultural methods. The new methods lead to bigger food exports which bettered the economy.

Another export was cotton, which was grown in the Americas. Cotton was much cheaper than wool, so everybody could afford it. Clothes and sheets made of cotton were common and very important in the winter, the warmth from the cotton saved lives in England s harsh winters causing a drastic population growth. When pig iron was introduced people in lower classes could afford silverware and other metal products. This caused more sanitary eating conditions, which also lead to the population growth.

The sole purpose of all production is to provide the best possible goods to the consumer at the lowest possible price. (Document C) Mercantilism was very common in the 18th century and people were accepting wealthy merchants into noble groups and associations. Merchants became rich through the work of others, the workers had to get the raw materials and use their tools and time to make the product. The merchant was a mere middleman who got rich off the workers cheaply-bought product. The merchant class grew to merge with the nobles in the 1700s.

The class system was for the most part becoming better for all of the classes. The population was growing because of the food, cotton, coal, and pig iron, and other new ideas. The 1700s were revolutionized by groups of people not the ideas of a single person. The farming community was revolutionized by the Norfolk four-course system which helped revive the needed nitrogen in the soil. The economy boosted the social classes and made life better for all classes especially the poor.


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