« AnteriorContinuar »
1695 to 1710, 1 in 27; from 1711 to 1730, I in 30; from 1731 to 1750, I in 31; from from 1751 to 1770, 1 in 30; from 1771 to 1791, 1 in 33. During the six years, from 1786-91, there were 278 illegitimate in 4352 births, being about I in 15. During the period 1806-12, the births were in the proportion of 1 to 40 of the pop. During the 20 years ending 1833, the births were only in the proportion of 1 in 47 of the pop. During the decennial period 1824-33 the births increased 13.6 p.c.; while the pop. increased 12.5 p.c.
The relative proportions of male and female births varied considerably during the 20 years 1814-33. In the years 1818-20-21, more females than males were born; while in 1832 the males exceeded the females by 57 p.c.! During the decennial 1814-23 the per-centage of males to the whole births was 51 163 p. c. ; in the decennial 1824-33, they were 52 684 p.c. On an average of the 20 years, 13 males were born to 12 females. With regard to the illegitimate births, the following fact appeared-the males were in the proportion of 69 to 68 females. In the first 10 years the stillbirths were 1 in 15; in the second, I in 19. This decrease was attributed to improved midwifery. The number of males who were stillborn was greater than the number of females, in the proportion of 4 to 3. The twin births were 1 to 73 of the total births. In the total number of twin children, the excess of females was very nearly equal to that of the males in the total births. Male twins occurred less frequently than female twins; and male and female twins were the most frequent. No triple births were recorded from 1814 to 1833.
At the meeting of the British Asso. held in Dublin in 1835, a Regis. which had been compiled by Dr. Robert Collins, M.D., then late Master of the Lying-in Hospital of Dublin, was presented. It extended to 16,414 deliveries. An abstract of it appears in the Trans. of the Asso. for that year; but the results there given have a medical rather than a statistical bearing. Of 16,654 children, 1121 were stillborn; and 214 of those born alive died-generally on the 8th or 9th day after birth. The Regis. extended over a period of 7 years, commencing Nov. 1826.
In the Trans. of the same Asso. for the following year there appears: Obs. on the Periodicity of Births, showing the total number born in each Month; the number of Premature Children; the Sex, etc.; the number of Stillborn Children, and Children dying; also with regard to the death of the Mothers, and the most important complications met with in Delivery, deduced from the experience of 16,654 Cases. This was indeed a series of most interesting tables deduced from the Registers of Dr. Collins. The following T. presents some combinations of facts of considerable interest.
The following statistics, compiled from the returns of the five leading powers of Europe about the year 1842, are given in the 6th Rep. of the Reg.-Gen. They show not only the number and proportions of births in each country, but the illegitimate births (except in Russia) separately:
In 1842 there was presented to the Brit. Asso.: Report of a Committee of the Brit. Asso. for the Advancement of Science, consisting of Lieut.-Col. W. H. Sykes, F.R.S.; Lord Sandon, M.P.; G. R. Porter, Esq., F.R.S.; J. Heywood, Esq., F.R.S.; Dr. W.
P. Alison, and E. Chadwick, Esq., on the Vital Statis. of very large Towns in Scotland. The Committee had been appointed in 1840. An extensive series of tables was prepared, including some on "Births and Baptisms. The report itself says regarding these:
The inattention which prevails among parents in Scotland in regard to the recording the births of their children in the public regis., even though the parties themselves continue to experience great inconvenience on many occasions on account of the omission, is so very great as to render the statistics of births of no avail to the statist....
We need not proceed further-except to say that happily this state of things is now remedied.
In 1848 Dr. Kayser, Prof. of Statistics, at the University, Copenhagen, pub. a treatise: Det Kongelige Medicinske Selskabs Skrifter, in which he treats of fecundity, pop., etc., of Denmark. Instead of fixing the births in proportion to the whole pop., he fixes them in proportion to the whole number of women of the fertile age-which in the northern countries is between 20 and 50 years. He especially mentions the error so commonly committed in indicating the morality of a town or country by the proportion of the illegitimate births to the legitimate. The last number, he argues, is never constant, but depends upon the fluctuation of the marriages; when the marriages increase, the number of illegitimate births will be proportionably decreased; and when the marriages decrease, the number will be raised, although perhaps the real relation is quite otherwise. To compute that proportion, it will be necessary to compare the number of illegitimate births with the number of unmarried women living at the fertile age. In that manner he has computed the proportion at different periods for the towns in Denmark, with a result very different from that arrived at by the method commonly used. Some of his results we shall presently have to notice more in detail. It should be stated that Kayser's obs. were extended over a series of years, partly from 1827-44, and partly from 1830-44.
In a paper on the Vital Statistics of Iceland, read before the Statistical So. of Lond. in 1849 [vol. xiv. p. 1] by Dr. P. A. Schleisner, which was an abstract of his work: Island undersögt fra et largevidenskabeligt Synspunkt af, pub. the same year, the writer says:
Almost all the foreigners who have travelled in Iceland have mentioned the extraordinary fecundity of the nation as something remarkable. It is noticed that families with 20 children and upwards occur frequently. But from such single facts, a general rule for the fertility of a nation cannot be deduced. I have tried to find it out. The fertility of a nation is commonly indicated by the proportion of the children born to the whole pop.
He then examines the theory of Dr. Kayser, as we have already set it forth, and considers it faulty:
It will be seen from the Swedish lists of births and deaths, which contain besides the number of children born, also the ages of the lying-in women, that the fertility is different at different ages, being for instance, in Sweden, highest between 30 and 35 years. Now it may very well happen that two nations, even if they contain the same number of fertile women, may contain a different fraction of them at the most fertile age, and also that the ratios of fertility-if I may so express myself-may differ at the various ages. It will therefore be necessary to construct the tables for the fertility in the same manner as for the mort., unless we follow the method indicated by Moser, who recurs to the marriages and life tables.
He then compares the results of Kayser's obs. for Denmark with those of his own for Iceland, in the several particulars discussed. We can only follow him in his details as to
male and female births; thus:
It will hence be seen that the fertility of the Icelandic women both married, and especially unmarried, is a great deal greater than that of the Danish; but that the pop. in point of fertility is not so well composed as the Danish. In Denmark the number of married women out of the whole number of fertile women is 57'4 p.c.; while in Iceland it is only 519 p.c. It will be seen from the above T. that the number of male births exceeds that of female births in a higher degree in Iceland than in Denmark. I have already shown that the prob. lifetime of the Icelandic females in relation to the males is still better than in Denmark; hence it will not excite wonder to find that in the Icelandic pop. the proportion of the males to the females is as 1000 to 1020; while the proportion in Denmark is as 1000 to 1023. The proportion of stillborn children is more favourable in Iceland than in Denmark. It cannot but be apparent that both Kayser and Schleisner are dealing with the results of small populations.
Mr. Saml. Brown, in a paper read before the Inst. of Actuaries in June, 1850, said:, "The regis. of the births, which is an important element in ascertaining whether a pop. is increasing or decreasing, is very deficient even still, and has been noticed by the Reg.Gen. with a view to its correction." We are glad to say that we believe most of the causes of error have been corrected.
There is good reason to believe that in England, at least, the rule of an excess of male births subject to no exception.-Dr. Guy, 1850, Statis. Journ. 13, p. 42.
The following calculation of the Census Commissioners of 1851 shows the influence of bachelorism and old-maidism in retarding the progress of the pop., by keeping down the births: "The Brit. pop. contains a great reserve of more than a million unmarried men, and more than a million unmarried women, in the prime of life, with as many more of younger ages; and if the whole of the pop. were married, the births in Gt. Brit. would,
instead of 700,000, be about 1,600,000 ann., if they bore the same proportion to the wives at different ages as they do now!"
In that year (1851) the births regis. in England and Wales were 615,865; of these 573,865 were the children of married, and 42,000 of unmarried women. The number of married women of the child-bearing age, viz., 15 to 55, was returned at 2,553,894 in that year; and of unmarried women, including widows as well as spinsters, 2,449,669. So that the above figures give to each 1000 of married women, 224 children born annually; and to each 1000 unmarried women, 17 children born annually! Upon which the Census Commissioners remark that, "186,920, or I in 13 of the unmarried women must be living so as to contribute as much to the births as an equal number of married women! From these, or similar statistics, it has been calculated that one out of every fifteen English men and English women now living was born illegitimate!
In a letter communicated by Herr Hopf, of Gotha, to the eds. of the Assu. Mag., in 1852 [vol. iii. p. 255], occurs the following passage, embodying some ideas which we regard as original:
The proportion which the births bear to the numbers of the pop. commonly is a much more uniform one than that of deaths. I some years ago collected the facts in reference to this question, which, with respect to Prussia, have led me to the following results: In the years 1816 to 1843, during which period the pop. of Prussia increased from 10 millions to 15 millions, the average proportion of the births in this country amounted to 4'088 p.c. of the pop. a year, and that of the deaths to 2'886 p.c. But while the mort. of one year rose to 3'549 p.c., or exceeded by 22'95 p.c. the above-stated average proportion, and that of another year lowered to 2'515 p.c., or fell short by 12'85 p.c. of the same average; the utmost fluctuations undergone by the births were between 4'487 and 3'652 p.c., or 9'77 p.c. above, and 10'68 p.c. below the average proportion. The deaths, therefore, required for their fluctuation a scope of 36 p.c. of the regular ratio, whereas the births varied only 20 p.c.; and the former proved much less constant than the latter, though human will is allowed to exercise an influence on births which it cannot exercise on deaths. But this will Providence has limited by the action of instinct, the effects of which we see are far more uniform than the working of the law of mort. Considering this, assu. for BIRTHS, when estab. on a large scale, might be granted with greater safety than DEATHS. Regarding the proportions of the sexes born, he remarks as follows:
It is a fact that 5 to 6 p.c. more boys than girls are born; but the cause of this fact does not seem to be as yet sufficiently fixed. Hofacker, a German, and Sadler, have indeed found that from marriages up to a certain age of the married persons, there will be got so much the more boys, the more the age of the husband exceeds that of the wife. When it is therefore considered that, at least in Germany, the husbands on an average uses to be by 5 to 6 years older than his wife, this difference of age would be sufficient to make good the excess of the male births. Yet this difference of age, instead of being the true operative cause of the fact in question, is, in my opinion, only another parallel exterior fact, unable to account for the other. We first find that the illegitimate show a smaller proportion of the excess of boys-in Prussia there are among natural children only 103 boys to 100 girls-and yet we are not entitled to suppose the difference in the ages of the parents of natural children to differ materially from that of the parents of legitimate ones.
Another most striking abnormity occurs with the Jews, who amounting in Prussia to about 200,000, make at present about 1 p.c. of the whole pop. of the kingdom of Prussia. Among this race, according to facts collected from a period of 15 years, the proportion between births of girls and births of boys being 100 to 111'21, the male births were prevalent in a degree prob. never heard of among any other race. . . . We must therefore think ourselves justified in drawing the inference, that with the Jews the difference of age in married persons is smaller than with Christians; which being acknowledged, the above-mentioned excess of male births must appear still more strange, and is in no accordance whatever with the statements of Hofacker and Sadler, whose obs. were limited to the Christian pop. How is this abnormity to be accounted for?
In 1853 Mr. Samuel Brown contributed to the Assu. Mag. [vol. iii. p. 17] a paper, On the Influence of the Ages of the Parents at the time of Marriage on the Sex of Children, and on the Prolificness of Marriages. In this paper reference is made to many of the facts already here noted, and much additional light is thrown upon the points treated of. In 1855 Dr. Guy read before the Brit. Asso., at Glasgow, a paper, On the Fluctuations in the Number of Births, Deaths, and Marriages, and in the Number of Deaths from Special Causes, in the Metropolis during the last 15 Years, from 1840 to 1854 inclusive. The author says:
In reference to the return of births, deaths, and marriages, it will be sufficient to state that while there is reason to believe that the number of marriages and deaths is truly reported, the reported number of births, in consequence of the regis. of births not being compulsory, has generally fallen short of the actual number, especially in the first years of the series. This will have to be borne in mind when I come to speak of the fluctuations in the number of births.... The births which amount, on an average of the 15 years, to 32,028 in the million, have fluctuated between a minimum of 30,348, and a maximum of 33,736-the first number having been regis. in the first year, the last number in the last year of the series. The mean fluctuation in the intervening period has amounted to nearly 2 p.c. In distinguishing the births and deaths as male and female, we have occasion to observe that both the mean and extreme fluctuations in births and deaths are somewhat greater in females than in males. As the differences, however, are not very considerable, it will suffice to have pointed out the fact.
Dr. Guy points out that while the deaths in Lond. for the 5 years 1840-44 inclusive fluctuated as 2.87, the births only fluctuated as 1'34-the one amount being more than twice as great as the other. In other words, the causes, whatever they may be, which, by their combined operation from year to year, brought about the ascertained number of births, were nearly twice as uniform in their operation as those causes, whatever they be, which issued the ascertained number of deaths.
The English schedule is defective, as it does not show the age of the father and mother at the birth of the child; but it may be inferred, from the Swedish returns, that not more than I in 8 women who bear children is under the age of 20, or above the age of 40.— 14th Rep. of Reg.-Gen., 1855.
The late Mr. Buckle, in his learned History of Civilization, pub. 1857, says:
Now it has always been suspected that on an average the male and female births are tolerably equal; but until very recently no one could tell whether or not they were precisely equal, or, if unequal, on which side there was an excess..... By the simple experiment of registering the number of births and their sexes; by extending this regis. over several years, in different countries, we have been able to eliminate all casual disturbances, and ascertain the existence of a law which, expressed in round numbers, is, that for every 20 girls there are born 21 boys; and we may confidently say that although the operations of this law are of course liable to constant aberrations, the law itself is so powerful, that we know of no country in which, during a single year, the male births have not been greater than the female ones.
The same writer has further pointed out that if this proportion were greatly disturbed in any country, even for a single generation, society would be thrown into the most serious confusion; and there would be a great increase in the vices of the people. He adds:
The causes of the difference have never been solved, although physiologists have made many efforts to ascertain it. They did not indeed discover the fact. The statisticians did this; as they have also discovered that the relative age of the parents does affect the sex of the children.
It used to be supposed that some of the Eastern countries, where polygamy prevails, furnished an exception to this rule; but more precise obs. have corrected and contradicted the loose statements of the earlier travellers; and in no part of the world, so far as our knowledge extends, are more girls born than boys; while in every part of the world, for which we have statistical returns, there is a slight excess on the side of male births.
The following important T., showing the Marriage and Birth rates for the years 1860-1 in four of our largest towns (cities in point of pop.) compared with those in the chief agricultural counties of England, is from an important paper submitted by Dr. John Edward Morgan, M.D., to the Social Science Congress, in 1865, The danger of Deterioration of Race from too rapid increase of Great Cities; and which, as well at the time as since, has engaged much attention. It shows unmistakably that the natural increase of pop. is materially influenced by different conditions of life.
MARRIAGE AND BIRTH RATES TO EVERY 1000 POPULATION.
In 1862 Mr. Frederick Hendriks read before the Statistical So. of Lond. a paper, On the Vital Statistics of Sweden, from 1749 to 1855. This is a most exhaustive production. We must be content to extract a few of its more prominent results.
One living child had been born ann. to the following numbers of the entire pop. :
One living child had been born ann. to the following numbers of Female pop. :
The stillborn children being added did not materially affect the results.
One child (living or stillborn) had been born to the following number of women between the ages 15 and 55:
I in 8:97 average, 8.53.
To each 1000 female children born between 1749 and 1855, there had been on an average 1044 males.
To one marriage contracted, the following were the number of children born alive :
3'77 average of the three periods, 3'99.
The illegitimate births had increased from 6.78 p. 100 of all births (including stillborn) in 1831-35, to 9'55 in 1855; at which last date they stood in relation to legitimate births as 10:55 to 100. The illegitimate births in 1851-55 were one to every 165 of the entire female pop.; and I to every 45 of the unmarried women over 15 years of age. Among the illegitimate births the proportion of boys to 1000 girls was 1027, against 1047 in the legitimate births.
Wars and famines each exercise an influence more or less considerable upon the births of a nation. "War (says the Reg.-Gen.) removes married men from their homes to Occupy garrisons and encampments, to man the fleets, or as workmen, to furnish the mighty equipments of sea and land." This is an influence in add. to the even more direct one, of the number of men of a marriageable age who are killed. Then war too often produces famine, and famines lessen in a marked degree the reproductive powers. These considerations will be followed out under their respective heads: FAMINES; WARS. In the Kingdom of Greece, in 1861, the pop. (excluding the Ionian Islands) was 1,096,810. The marriages were 7175; the births 32,405,-males, 16,775; females, 15,630. The marriages were at the rate of 6.54 p. 1000 of the pop. ; the births 29'54 p. 1000. In the Ionian Islands the births in 1864 were 25'42 p. 1000.
In 1863 an Act was passed providing for the Regis. of Births and Deaths in Ireland. The Act came into operation in 1864. During the first quarter there were regis. 30,330 births, affording an ann. ratio of 1 in 48 of the inhabitants. In the quarter ending 30th June, 1864, there were regis. 38,701, affording an ann. ratio of 1 in 37. The birth-rate varied in the different provinces as follows: In Leinster, I in 38; in Munster, I in 34; in Ulster, I in 38; in Connaught, I in 41. The returns of course were not perfect. We shall speak more at large upon the subject under IRELAND.
For the first time we meet with some statistics regarding the Birth-rate in Australia, which should be authentic. The Reg.-Gen. for Melbourne returned the pop. for that city and suburbs during 1863 at 114,000; and the births for the same year were returned as 5,590. The birth-rate was thus 489 p. 1000. The rate was taken separately for the II districts of the city and suburbs. The highest birth-rate was 79'5, the lowest 33'9 p. 1000 of the pop.
In 1864 obs. of a similar character were taken in Sydney. The total pop. of that city and suburbs then was 43,625. The births in the year were 1993-being at the rate of 45'7 p. 1000 of the pop. The obs. were taken separately for the 8 districts of the city. The highest birth-rate was 64'9, the lowest 37°3 p. 1000. The range of fluctuation was therefore much less than in Melbourne. The Melbourne Argus (1865), commenting on these figures, said:
When we compare the foregoing figures with similar data for European Countries and Capitals, we find that the two Australian Colonies enjoy an absolute supremacy in the matter of births. The prolificness of our pop. is something evidently never dreamt of in the philosophy of the antipodean nations. In England the average birth-rate for the ten years 1852-62 was 34 p. 1000; in Lond. it was 33.8 p. 1000. The highest average rate in any English county during the same period was 41 p. 1000 in Staffordshire and Durham-a ratio not even equal to the average rate of birth in the suburbs of either Sydney or Melbourne, and lower by nearly 40 p. 1000 than the birth-rate of North-Melbourne. The lowest birth-rate at home [England] is that of the extra-metropolitan part of Surrey, which was 29'4 p. 1000, or nearly 5 p. 1000 less than the lowest Melbourne suburb, and 8 p. 1000 less than the lowest Sydney suburb. The same with other countries. Scotland has a birth-rate of 34'4 p. 1000, rising in the towns to 38 p. 1000. In France the birth-rate is 266 p. 1000; in Austria 39'4 p. 1000; in Italy 38 2 p. 1000-none of these rates at all approaching the average birth-rate of either Sydney or Melbourne.
The highest birth-rate in the Melbourne suburbs was considerably higher than that of any of the Sydney suburbs.