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Erik Bengtsson . Foto

Erik Bengtsson

Universitetslektor

Erik Bengtsson . Foto

The living standards of the labouring classes in Sweden, 1750–1900: Evidence from rural probate inventories

Författare

  • Erik Bengtsson
  • Patrick Svensson

Summary, in Swedish

We present new estimates of the living standards among the rural labouring classes in Sweden from 1750 to 1900. Starting with a database of more than 1,000 probate inventories of rural, landless and semi-landless people from the years 1750, 1800, 1850 and 1900, we study the development for crofters in particular. In a sub-sample of 120 probate inventories we map in great detail the material items of the crofter households, focusing especially on two categories: the means of production (animals and agricultural tools) and consumption goods. The crofters held over time fewer means of production but more consumption goods: glass, porcelain, mirrors, and clocks become more common. However, the decrease in means of production indicates a greater dependence on wage labour, rising land prices made it more difficult to become a farmer, and housing standards stayed poor. The study shows the usefulness of probate inventories to study labouring people’s living standards.

Avdelning/ar

  • Ekonomisk-historiska institutionen
  • Tillväxt, teknologisk förändring och ojämlikhet
  • Centrum för ekonomisk demografi

Publiceringsår

2022-06

Språk

Engelska

Sidor

49-69

Publikation/Tidskrift/Serie

Agricultural History Review

Volym

70

Issue

1

Dokumenttyp

Artikel i tidskrift

Förlag

BAHS - British Agricultural History Society

Ämne

  • Economic History

Aktiv

Published

ISBN/ISSN/Övrigt

  • ISSN: 0002-1490