CHAP. XII. Of the Country Bills.
WE have, for the present, done with our Obser∣vations upon the Accompts of Burials, and Christnings, in, and about London; we shall next pre∣sent the Accompts of both Burials, Christnings, and also of Weddings in the Country, having to that purpose inserted Tables of 90 years for a certain Parish in Hampshire, being a place neither famous for Longevity,Page 64 and Healthfulness, nor for the contrary. Upon which Tables we observe,
1. That every Wedding, one with another, produ∣ces four Children, and consequently, that that is the proportion of Children, which any Marriagable man, or woman may be presumed shall have. For, though a man may be Married more then once, yet, being once Married, he may die without any Issue at all.
2. That in this Parish there were born 15 Females for 16 Males, whereas in London there were 13 for 14, which shews, that London is somewhat more apt to pro∣duce Males, then the country. And it is possible, that in some other places there are more Females born, then Males, which, upon this variation of proportion, I again recommend to the examination of the curious.
3. That in the said whole 90 years the Burials of the Males and Females were exactly equal, and that in several Decads they differed not 1/100 part, that in one of the two Decads, wherein the difference was very notorious, there were Buried of Males 337, and of Fe∣males but 284, viz. 53 difference, and in the other there died contrariwise 338 Males, and 386 Females, differing 46.
4. There are also Decads, where the Birth of Males and Females differ very much, viz. about 60.
5. That in the said 90 years there have been born more, then buried in the said Parish, (the which both 90 years ago, and also now, consisted of about 2700 Souls) but 1059, viz. not 12 per Annum, one year with another.
6. That these 1059 have in all probability contri∣buted to the increase of London; since, as was said even Page 65 now, it neither appears by the Burials, Christnings, or by the built of new-housing, that the said Parish is more populous now, then 90 years ago, by above two or 300 souls. Now, if all other places send about ⅓ of their encrease, viz. about one out of 900 of their Inhabitants Annually to London, and that there be 14 times as many people in England, as there be in London, (for which we have given some reasons) then London encreases by such Advenae every year above 6000: the which will make the Accompt of Burials to swell about 200 per Annum, and will answer the encreases. We observe it is clear, that the said Parish is encreased about 300, and it is probable, that three or four hun∣dred more went to London, and it is known, That about 400 went to New-England, the Caribe-Islands, and New-found-Land, within these last fourty years.
7. According to the Medium of the said whole 90 years, there have been five Christnings for four Burials, although in some single Years, and Decads, there have been three to two, although sometimes (though more rarely) the Burials have exceeded the Births, as in the case of Epidemical Diseases.
8. Our former Observation, That healthfull years are also the most fruitfull, is much confirmed by our Country Accompts; for, 70 being our Standard for Births, and 58 for Burials, you shall finde, that where fewer then 58 died, more then 70 were born. Having given you a few instances thereof, I shall remit you to the Tables for the general proof of this Assertion. Viz. Anno 1633. when 103 were born, there died but 29. Now, in none of the whole 90 years more were born then 103, and but in one, fewer then 29 died, viz.Page 66 28 Anno 1658. Again Anno 1568, when 93 were born, but 42 died. Anno 1584, when 90 were born, but 41 died. Anno 1650, when 86 were born, but 52 died. So that by how much more are born, by so much (as it were) the fewer die. For when 103 were born, but 29 died: but when but 86 were born, then 52 died.
On the other side Anno 1638, when 156 died per Annum, which was the greatest year of Mortality, then less then the meer Standard 70, viz. but 66 were born. Again Anno 1644, when 137 died, but 59 were born. Anno 1597, when 117 died, but 48 were born. And Anno 1583, when 87 died, but 59 were born.
A little Irregularity may be found herein, as that Anno 1612, when 116 died (viz. a number double to our Standard 58 yet) 87 (viz. 17 about the Standard 70) were born. And that when 89 died 075 were born: but these differences are not so great, nor so often, as to evert our Rule, which besides the Autho∣rity of these Accompts is probable in it self.
9. Of all the said 90 years the year 1638 was the most Mortal, I therefore enquired whether the Plague was then in that Parish, and having received good sa∣tisfaction that it was not (which I the rather believe, because, that the Plague was not then considerable at London) but that it was a Malignant Fever raging so fiercely about Harvest, that there appeared scarce hands enough to take in the Corn: which argues, considering there were 2700 Parishioners, that seven might be sick for one that died: whereas of the Plague more die then recover. Lastly, these People lay long∣er Page 67 sick then is usual in the Plague, nor was there any mention of Sores, Swellings, blew-Tokens, &c. among them. It follows, that the proportion between the greatest and the least Mortalities in the Country are far greater then at London. Forasmuch as the greatest 156 is above quintuple unto 28 the least, whereas in London (the Plague excepted, as here it hath been) the number of Burials upon other Accompts within no Decad of years hath been double, whereas in the Country it hath been quintuple not onely within the whole 90 years, but also within the same Decad: for Anno 1633. there died but 29, and Anno 1638 the above-menti∣oned number of 156. Moreover, as in London, in no Decad, the Burials of one year are double to those of another: so in the Country they are seldom not more then so. As by this Table appears,
|Decad||greatest||least number of Burials|
Page 68 Which shews, that the opener, and freer Airs are most subject both to the good and bad Impressions, and that the Fumes, Steams, and Stenches of London do so medicate, and impregnate the Air about it, that it becomes capable of little more, as if the said Fumes rising out of London met with, opposed, and ju∣stled backwards the Influences falling from above, or resisted the Incursion of the Country-Airs.
10. In the last Paragraph we said, that the Burials in the Country were sometimes quintuple to one ano∣ther, but of the Christnings we affirm, that within the same Decad they are seldome double, as appears by this Table, viz.
|Decad||greatest||least number of Burials|
Now, although the disproportions of Births be not so great as that of Burials, yet these disproportions are Page 69 far greater then at London: for let it be shewn in any of the London Bills, that within two years the Christnings have decreased ½. or increased double, as they did Anno 1584, when 90 were born, and An. 1586, where∣in were but 45: or to rise from 52, as Anno 1593, to 71, as in the next year 1594. Now, these dispropor∣tions both in Births, and Burials, confirm what hath been before Asserted, that Healthfulness, and Fruit∣fulness go together, as they would not, were there not disproportions in both, although proportional.
11. By the Standard of Burials in this Parish, I thought to have computed the number of Inha∣bitants in it, viz. by multiplying 58 by 4, which made the Product 232, the number of Families. Hereupon I wondered, that a Parish containing a large Market-Town, and 12 Miles compass, should have but 232 Houses, I then multiplied 232 by 8, the Product where∣of was 1856, thereby hoping to have had the num∣ber of the Inhabitants, as I had for London; but when upon enquiry I found there had been 2100 Com∣municants in that Parish in the time of a Minister, who forced too many into that Ordinance, and that 1500 was the ordinary number of Communicants in all times, I found also, that for as much as there were near as many under 16 years old, as there are above, viz. Communicants, I concluded, that there must be about 27, or 2800 Souls in that Parish: from whence it follows, that little more then one of 50 dies in the Country, whereas in London, it seems manifest, that about one in 32 dies, over and above what dies of the Plague.
12. It follows therefore from hence, what I more Page 70 faintly asserted in the former Chapter, that the Country is more healthfull, then the City, That is to say, although men die more regularly, and less per Saltum in London, then in the Country, yet, upon the whole matter, there die fewer per Rata; so as the Fumes, Steams, and Stenches above-mentioned, al∣though they make the Air of London more equal, yet not more Healthfull.
13. When I consider, That in the Country se∣venty are Born for fifty eight Buried, and that be∣fore the year 1600 the like happened in Lon∣don, I considered, whether a City, as it becomes more populous, doth not, for that very cause, become more unhealthfull, I inclined to believe, that London now is more unhealthfull, then heretofore, partly for that it is more populous, but chiefly, because I have heard, that 60 years ago few Sea-Coals were burnt in London, which now are universally used. For I have heard, that Newcastle is more unhealthfull then other places, and that many People cannot at all endure the smoak of London, not onely for its unpleasantness, but for the suffocations which it causes.
14. Suppose, that Anno 1569 there were 2400 souls in that Parish, and that they increased by the Births 70, exceeding the Burials 58, it will follow, that the said 2400 cannot double under 200. Now, if London be less healthfull then the Country, as certainly it is, the Plague being reckoned in, it follows, that London must be doubling it self by generation in much above 200: but if it hath encreased from 2 to 5 in 54, as aforesaid, the same must be by reason of transplantation out of the Country.