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HISTORY

OF THE

MIDDLE AND WORKING CLASSES;

WITH A

POPULAR EXPOSITION

OF THE

ECONOMICAL AND POLITICAL PRINCIPLES

WHICH HAVE INFLUENCED THE

PAST AND PRESENT CONDITION

OF THE

INDUSTRIOUS ORDERS.

ALSO AN

APPENDIX

OF PRICES, RATES OF WAGES, POPULATION, POOR-RATES, MORTALITY,

MARRIAGES, CRIMES, EDUCATION, OCCUPATIONS, AND OTHER STATISTICAL INFORMATION, ILLUSTRATIVE OF THE FORMER AND PRESENT STATE OF THE AGRICULTURAL, COM

MERCIAL, AND MANUFACTURING CLASSES.

BY JOHN WADE.

THIRD EDITION.

“ Were the benefits of civilization to be partial, not universal, it would

be only a bitter mockery and cruel injustice."-Duchâtel.

LONDON:

PUBLISHED BY EFFINGHAM WILSON,

ROYAL EXCHANGE.

W. F.WAKEMAN, DUBLIN; WAUGH AND INNES, EDINBURGH,

MDCCCXXXV.

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12/16152

INTRODUCTION.

To ROGER LEE, Esq. MY DEAR SIR,

When travelling on the Continent you cannot have forgotten that we arrived at one general, though, perhaps, partial conclusion, namely, that in the command of the substantial elements of national happiness, in the accumulation of wealth, in the diffusion of intelligence, in moral feeling, and in the enjoyment of civil freedom, our own country might justly claim precedency over any European community. Notwithstanding this, we could not conceal from ourselves the fact, that in many respects England exhibited symptoms of a nation suffering under great internal disorders. To reconcile such apparently contradictory conclusions, formed a subject of perplexing inquiry; it might be that the very advantages we had achieved, were the source of our difficulties, or that they had been neutralized by some accompanying evils not yet discovered, or insufficiently appreciated.

The most remarkable circumstance in our social progress, has been the rapid increase and ascendancy of manufacturing wealth and population. This is the distinguishing feature of society, and to it, I doubt not, may be traced much of the good and evil incidental to our condition--the growth of an

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