POPULATION (Lat. populus, people; popular -e, to populate), a term used in two different significations, (i) for the total number of human beings existing within certain area at a given time, and (2) for the " peopling " of the area, or the influence of the various forces of which that number is the result. The population of a country, in the former sense of the word, is ascertained by means of a census (q.v.), which periodically records the number of people found in it on a certain date. Where, as is generally the case, detail of sex, age, conjugal condition and birthplace is included in the return, the census results can be co-ordinated with those of the parallel registration of marriages, births, deaths and migration, thus forming the basis of what are summarily termed vital statistics, the source of our information regarding the nature and causes of the process of " peopling," i.e. the movement of the population between one census and another. Neither of these two operations has yet reached perfection, either in scope or accuracy, though the census, being the subject of special and concentrated effort, is generally found the superior in the latter respect, and is in many cases taken in countries where registration has not yet been introduced. The countries where neither is in force ate still, unfortunately, very numerous.
The Population of the World, and its Geographical Distribution. Man is the only animal which has proved able to pass from dependence upon its environment to a greater or less control over it. He alone, accordingly, has spread over every quarter of the globe. The area and population of the world, as a whole, have been the subject of many estimates in scientific works for the last three centuries and are still to a considerable extent matters of rough approximation. Every decade, however, brings a diminution of the field of conjecture, as some form of civilized administration is extended over the more backward tracts, and is followed, in due course, by a survey and a census. It is not necessary, therefore, to cite the estimates framed before 1882, when a carefully revised summary was published by Boehm and H. Wagner. Since then the laborious investigations of P. F. Levasseur and L. Bodio have been completed in the case of Europe and America, and, for the rest of the world, the figures annually brought up to date in the Statesman's Year Book may be taken to be the best available. From these sources the abstract at foot of page has been derived.
The principal tracts still unmeasured and unenumerated (in any strict sense) in the Old World are the Turkish Empire, Persia, Afghanistan, China and the Indo-Chinese peninsula and nearly nine-tenths of Africa. In the same category must be placed a considerable proportion of central, southern and Polar America (see CENSUS). There is little of the world which is entirely uninhabited; still less permanently uninhabitable and unlikely to be required to support a population in the course of the expansion of the race beyond its present abodes. Probably the polar regions alone do not fall within the category of the potentially productive, as even sandy and alkaline desert is rendered habitable where irrigation can be introduced; and vast tracts of fertile soil adapted for immediate exploitation, especially in the temperate zones, both north and south, only remain unpeopled because they are not yet wanted for colonization. The geographical distribution of the population of the world is therefore extremely irregular, and, omitting from consideration areas but recently colonized, the density is regulated by the means of subsistence within reach. " La population," says G. de Molinari, " a tendance de se proportionner a son debouche." These, in their turn, depend mainly upon the character of the people who inhabit the country. Even amongst savages there are few communities, and those but sparse, which subsist entirely upon what is directly provided by nature. As human intelligence and industry come into play the means of livelihood are proportionately extended; population multiplies, and with this multiplication production increases. Thus, the higher densities are found in the eastern hemisphere, within the zone in which arose the great civilizations of the world, or, roughly speaking, between north parallels 25 and 40 towards the east, and 25 and 55 in the west. Here large areas with a mean density of over 500 to the sq. m. may be found either supported by the food directly produced by themselves, as in the great agricultural plains of the middle kingdom of China and the Ganges valley and delta; or else, as in western Europe, relying largely upon food from abroad, purchased by the products of manufacturing industry. In the one class the density is mainly rural, in the other it is chiefly due to the . concentration of the population into large urban aggregates. It is chiefly from the populations of the south-west of Europe that the New World is being colonized; but the territories over which the settlers and their recruits from abroad are able to scatter are so extensive that even the lower densities of the Old World have not yet been attained, except in a few tracts along the eastern coasts of Australia and North America. Details of area and population are given under the headings of the respective countries, and the only general point in connexion with the relation between these two facts which may be mentioned here is the need to bear in mind that the larger the territory the less likely is its mean density-figure to be typical or really representative. Even in the case of small and comparatively homogeneous countries such as Holland, Belgium or Saxony there is considerable deviation from the mean in the density of the respective component subdivisions, a difference which when extended over more numerous aggregates often renders the general mean misleading or of little value. Distribution of Population by Sex. After geographical dispersion, the most general feature amongst the human race is its division by sex. The number of speculations as to the nature of this distinction has been, it is said, well-nigh doubled since Drelincourt, in the 18th century, brought together 262 " groundless hypotheses," and propounded on his own part a theory which has since been held to be the 263rd in the series. It is not proposed to deal here with incidents appertaining to the " ante-natal gloom," and we are concerned only with human beings when once they have been born. In regard to the division of these into male and female, the first point to be noted is that, in all communities of western civilization, more boys are born than girls. The excess ranges from 20 to 60 per thousand. In Greece and Rumania it is exceptionally high, and in some Oriental or semi-Oriental countries it is said to give place to a deficit, though in the latter case the returns are probably not trustworthy. From the more accurate statistics available it appears that the excess of male births varies amongst different races and also at different times in the same community. It is high in new colonies and amongst the Latin races, with the exception of the French. These, with the English, show a much smaller excess of boy-births than the average of western Europe, and the proportion, moreover, seems to be somewhat declining in both these countries and in Belgium, from causes which have not yet been ascertained. As the mortality amongst boys, especially during the first year, is considerably above that of the other sex, numerical equilibrium between the two is established in early youth, and in most cases girls outnumber boys, except for a few years between twelve and sixteen. Then follows the chequered period of the prime of life and middle age, during which the liability of men to industrial accidents, war and other causes of special mortality, irrespective of their greater inclination to emigrate, is generally sufficient to outweigh the dangers of childbirth or premature decay among the women, who tend, accordingly, to predominate in number at this stage. In old age, again, their vitality rises superior to that of the men, and they continue to form the majority of the community. The general results are an excess of females over males throughout western Europe: but though the relative proportions vary from time to time, remaining always in favour of what is conventionally called the weaker sex, it is impossible, owing to disturbing factors like war and migration, to ascertain whether there is any general tendency for the proportion of females to increase or not. In comparatively new settlements, largely fed by immigration, the number of males is obviously likely to be greater than that of females, but in the case of countries in Asia and eastern Europe in which also a considerable deficiency of the latter sex is indicated by the returns, it is probable that the strict seclusion imposed by convention on women and the consequent reticence regarding them on the part of the householders answering the official inquiry tend towards a short count. On the other hand, the lower position there assigned to women and the very considerable amount of hard work exacted from them, may cause them to wear out earlier than under higher conditions, though not to the extent implied in the statistics. In the following table the latest available information on this head is given for representative countries of western and eastern Europe, the East and the New World.
Distribution by Age. Few facts are more uncertain about an individual than the number of years he will live. Few, on the contrary, as was pointed out by C. Babbage, are less subject to fluctuation than the duration of life amongst people taken in large aggregates. The age-constitution of a community does indeed vary, and to a considerable extent, in course of time, but the changes are usually gradual, and often spread over a generation or more. At the same time, it must be admitted that those which have recently taken place amongst most of the communities of western Europe are remarkable for both their rapidity and their extent; and are probably attributable, in part at least, to influences which were almost inoperative at the time when Babbage wrote. The distribution of a population amongst the different periods of life is regulated, in normal circumstances, by the birth-rate, and, as the mortality at some of the periods is far greater than at others, the death-rate falls indirectly under the same influence. The statistics of age, therefore, may be said to form a link between those of the population, considered as a fixed quantity, as at a census, and those which record its movement from year to year. To the correct interpretation of the latter, indeed, they are essential, as will appear below. Unfortunately, the return of age is amongst the less satisfactory results of a general enumeration, though its inaccuracy, when spread over millions of persons, is susceptible of correction mathematically, to an extent to make it serve its purpose in the directions above indicated. The error in the original return generally arises from ignorance. An illiterate population is very prone to state its age in even multiples of five, and even where education is widely spread this tendency is not altogether absent.
Deliberate mis-statements, too, are not unknown, especially amongst women. This has been repeatedly illustrated in the English census reports. Irrespective of the wish of women between 25 and 40 to return themselves as under 25, there appears to be the more practical motive of obtaining better terms in industrial insurance, whilst an overstatement of age often has, it is said, the object of getting better wages in domestic service, or better dietary in the workhouse! In all countries, moreover, there seems to be an inclination to exaggerate longevity after the three score years and ten have been passed. In order to minimize the results of such inaccuracy, the return of ages is compiled in aggregates of five or ten years and then redistributed over single years by the method of differences. The present purpose being merely to illustrate the variation of distribution amongst a few representative countries, it is unnecessary to enter into more detail than such as will serve to distinguish the proportions of the population in main divisions of life. Thus it may be said that in the west of Europe about one-third of the people, roughly speaking, are under fifteen; about one-half, between that age and fifty, and the remaining sixth older than fifty. The middle period may conveniently be extended to sixty and subdivided at forty, as is done in Table IV. The differences between the several countries in their age-constitution can best be appreciated by reference to some recognized general standard. The one here adopted is the result of the co-ordination of a long series of enumerations taken in Sweden during the last century and a half, prepared by Dr G. Sundbarg of Stockholm. It is true that for practical use in connexion with vital statistics for a given period, the aggregate age-distribution of the countries concerned would be a more accurate basis of comparison, but the wide period covered by the Swedish observations has the advantage of eliminating temporary disturbances of the balance of ages, and may thus be held to compensate for the comparatively narrow geographical extent of the field to which it relates.
As regards correspondence with the standard distribution, it will be noted that Finland, the next country to Sweden geographically, comes after Japan, far detached from northern Europe by both race and distance, and is followed by Portugal, where the conditions are also very dissimilar. The other Scandinavian countries, Norway and Denmark, appear, like Sweden itself in the present day, to bear in their age-distribution distinct marks of the emigration of adults, or, at least, the temporary absence from home of this class at the time of enumeration. The same can be said of Italy in its later returns and of Germany in those before 1895. On the contrary, the effect of the inflow of adult migrants is very marked, as is to be expected, in the returns for the new countries, such as the United States, Canada and Australasia. In the case of the Old World, the divergence from the standard which most deserves notice is the remarkable preponderance of the young in all the countries of eastern Europe, as well as in India, accompanied by an equally notable deficiency of the older elements in the population. Again, there are in the west two well-known instances of deficient reinforcement of the young, France and Ireland, in which countries the proportion of those under 15 falls respectively 75 and 32 per mille below the standard; throwing those over 60 up to 41 and 26 per mille above it. The table does not include figures for earlier enumerations, but one general character- istic in them should be mentioned, viz. the far higher proportion borne in them of the young, as compared with the mere recent returns. In England, for instance, those under 15 amounted to 360 per mille in 1841, against 324 sixty years later. In Ireland the corresponding fall has been still more marked, from 382 to 304. The ratio in France was low throughout the 1pth century, and during the last half fell only from 273 to 261, raising the proportion of the old above that resulting in northern Europe and Italy from emigration. It is remarkable that the same tendency for the proportion of the young to fall off is perceptible in new countries as well as in the older civilizations, setting aside the influence of immigration at the prime of life in depressing the proportion of children. The possible causes of this widespread tendency of the mean age of a western community to increase appertain to the subject of the movement of the population, which is dealt with below.
The Movement of Population. " The true greatness of a State " says Bacon, " consisteth essentially in population and breed of men "; and an increasing population is one of the most certain signs of the well-being of a community. Successive accretions, however, being spread over so long a term as that of human life, it does not follow that the population at any given time is necessarily the result of contemporary prosperity. Conversely, the traces left by a casual set-back, such as famine, war, or an epidemic disease, remain long after it has been succeeded by a period of recuperation, and are to be found in the ageconstitution and the current vital statistics. Population is continually in a state of motion, and in large aggregates the direction is invariably towards increase. The forces underlying the movement may differ from time to time in their respective intensity, and, in highly exceptional cases, may approach equilibrium, their natural tendencies being interrupted by special causes, but the instances of general decline are confined to wild and comparatively small communities brought into contact with alien and more civilized races. The factors upon which the growth of a population depend are internal, operating within the community, or external, arising out of the relations of the community with other countries. In the latter case, population already in existence is transferred from one territory to another by migration, a subject which will be referred to later. Far more important is the vegetative, or " natural " increase, through the excess of births over deaths. The principal influences upon this, in civilized life, are the number of the married, the age at which they marry or bear children, the fertility of marriages and the duration of life, each of which is in some way or other connected with the others.
Marriage. In every country a small and generally diminishing proportion of the children is born out of wedlock, but the primary regulator of the native growth of a community is the institution of marriage. Wherever, it has been said, there is room for two to live up to the conventional standard of comfort, a marriage takes place. So close, indeed, up to recent times, was the connexion held to be between the prosperity of the country and the number of marriages, that Dr W. Farr used to call the latter the barometer of the former. The experience of the present generation, however, both in England and other countries, seems to justify some relaxation of that view, as will appear below. The tendency of a community towards matrimony, or its " nuptiality," as it is sometimes termed, is usually indicated by the ratio to the total population of the persons married each year. For the purpose of comparing the circumstances of the same community at successive periods this method is fairly trustworthy, assuming that there has been no material shifting of the age-proportions during the intervals. It is not a safe guide, however, when applied to the comparison of different communities, the age-composition of which is probably by no means identical, but in consideration of its familiarity it has been adopted in the first section of Table V. below, at three periods for each of the countries selected as representative.
One of the features which is prominent throughout the return is that in every country except Belgium the rate per mille attained a maximum in the early seventies, and has since shown a descending tendency, notwithstanding the fact, noted in the preceding paragraph, that the youthful population, which, of course, weighs down the rate, has also been relatively decreasing. Countries of Oriental and semi-Oriental habits have not been n, owing to the difference in their marriage system from that of western Europe. It may be mentioned, however, in passing, that their marriage rate is generally considerably higher than that here indicated, as may be seen from the example of Galicia, which is here shown separately from cis-Leithian Austria.
In the opposite direction will be noted the case of Ireland, where the rate is abnormally low; and returns more recent than those included in the table show that of late the rates in Sweden and Norway have also fallen to but little above n per mille. In regard to the necessity of taking into consideration the factor of age in the return of marriage-rates, an example may be here given from the data for England. The rate taken upon the total population was 16-7 per mille in 1870-1871 and 15-3 in 1905; by excluding the population under fifteen the corresponding figures are 57-2 and 46-6 per mille. Thus the decline, which by the first method is only 8%, becomes, by the second, 19%; and if the age-distribution of 1905 were reduced to that of the earlier period, the difference would increase to -22%, the most accurate figure of the three. For the present purpose it is sufficient to connect the rate of marriage with that of births by using as a basis for the former the number of women of conceptive age, or between 15 and 45 years old. The proportion of these is given in the latter portion of the table. Again taking England as an example, the women of the above ages bore the proportion to the total population of 23% in 1871 and had risen to 25% in 1901; but at the former time, 49-6% were married, whilst thirty years later, only 46-8 were thus situated. The table also shows that the proportion of the women of the ages in question who were married exceeds half only in Italy, France and Germany, not to mention Galicia. In other countries the average proportion is about 45%. In Sweden and Norway it is only 41 and in Ireland less than a third. In Scandinavia, and perhaps in Italy, the rate may be affected by the emigration of adult males, but the later columns of the table indicate that this is not the cause of the low rate in Ireland, which appears to be mainly due to abstinence from marriage at the ages specified.
Next to the proportion of the married to the total marriageable the most important factor connected with the natural increase of the population is the age at which marriage takes place. Where the proportion of the married is high, the average age of the wives is low, and early marriage is conducive to relatively rapid increase. In the first place, the interval between generations is shortened, and the elder is contemporaneous with the younger for a longer period. Then, again, the fecundity of women amongst western peoples is at its maximum between 18 and 25 years of age and decreases rapidly as that period is left behind. A Swedish return of 1896-1900 shows that the annual births per thousand wives of 20-25 are fewer by nearly 17% than those of wives under 20. Between 25 and 30 the number falls off by one- fifth, and after 40 by about 44%. In the countries mentioned in Table V. the average proportion borne by wives under 30 to the total under 45 is just over one-third. That proportion is exceeded in southern Europe, where women develop earlier, and in Galicia. In England and France it stands at 36. In Ireland and Sweden it is only 28, and in Denmark, Holland and Norway, too, it is below the average. The registrargeneral of England has pointed out a marked tendency towards the postponement of marriage in that country. Between 1876 and 1905, for instance, the proportion of minors married receded by 43% in the case of men and 32% amongst women. The mean age of husbands married in 1873 was 25-6 years and of wives 24-2, whereas thirty years later the corresponding ages were 28-6 and 26-4. The general results of the decline of the marriage-rate and the postponement of marriage upon the natural growth of population will be discussed in connection with the birth-rate, though the statistics available do not permit of the accurate measurement of the respective influence of these factors, and there are others, too, which have to be taken into consideration, as will appear below.
Births. Apart from the information which the statistics of birth furnish as to the growth of population, they have, like those of marriage, and perhaps to even a greater extent, a special social interest from their bearings upon the moral conditions of the community to which they relate. It is in their former capacity, however, that they enter into the present subject. A birth-rate, taken as it usually is upon the total population, old and young, is open to the objections made above respecting the marriage-rate, and with even more force, as the basis is itself largely the product of the fact which is being measured by it. The internal variations of the rate in a single community, however, can be fairly indicated in this way, as is done in Table VI., which, it is to be noted, refers to those born alive only and excludes the still-born, statistics regarding whom are incomplete.
The crude birth-rate, it will be noted, is in general harmony with that of marriage. In the countries where the former is high the rate of marriage is also above the average. In eastern Europe, so far as the figures can be trusted, this is markedly the case, and the birth-rates range between 39 per mille in Hungary and 49 in Russia, where the tradition of encouraging prolificity amongst the peasantry has not been effaced. Among the lower rates which prevail in western Europe, however, the connexion is not so direct, and a low birth-rate is sometimes found with a relatively higher marriage rate and vice versa, a deviation from the natural course of events which will be discussed presently. The birth-rate, like the marriage-rate, seems to have reached its acme in the seventies, except in the three southern countries, France, Italy and Spain. The decline since the above period is very marked and exceeds that noted in the case of the rate of marriage. It is worth noting, too, that the fall in the crude birth-rate is not confined to the Old World, but has attracted Special attention in Australia and New Zealand, where a rate of 40 per mille in the period 1861-1870 has now given place to one of 26. In Massachusetts and other of the older settlements of the United States, moreover, the same feature has been the subject of investigation.
The crude rates which have been discussed above afford no explanation of this change, nor do they always illustrate its full extent. It is necessary, therefore, to eliminate the difference in the age-constitution of the countries in question by excluding from the field of observation, as before, all except possible mothers, basing the rate upon the respective numbers of women of the conceptive age, that is between 15 and 45. The proportion borne by this group to the total population is in most cases fairly up to that set forth by Dr Sundbarg in his standard. It is well above it in all three parts of the United Kingdom and falls materially below it only in Scandinavia and Italy. Indeed, during the last generation, this proportion has been in most cases slightly increased, in consequence of the fall of the birth-rate which set in anterior to this period. The stock, then, from which wives are drawn is ample. The question remains, how far advantage is taken of it. According to the Sundbarg standard the percentage married is 48. As has been shown in the preceding paragraph, this is surpassed in Italy, France and Germany, and approached in most of the rest, with the exception of Sweden, Norway and Scotland, which are six or seven points below it, and Ireland, where less than a third are married. The proportion married, moreover, has slightly increased since 1880, except in the United Kingdom. In England the marriage-rate (on the age basis) fell off by 4.6% and in Scotland by 2%, whilst the crude birth-rate declined by 15 and 11% respectively. In Ireland the case was different, as the marriage-rate declined by 12% and the birth-rate by no more than 5.7 %. In New South Wales and New Zealand, too, the marriage-rates fell off in the same period by n and 28% respectively, whilst the decline in the birth-rates amounted to 35 and 31 %. In the above countries, therefore, abstinence from matrimony may be said to have been a factor of some importance in the decline. On the continent of Europe, however, looking at the divergence in direction between the crude marriage-rate and that corrected to an age-basis, it is not improbable that the decline in the former may be attributable to some cause other than abstinence from marriage, at all events at the principal reproductive period; and perhaps to a decrease in marriage or remarriage after middle life, a period of which the weight in the age-distribution has been increasing of late. On the other hand, the postponement of marriage in the case of women of conceptive ages is a tendency which seems to be growing in other countries as well as in England and undoubtedly has a depressing effect upon the rate of births. It would conduce, therefore, to further accuracy in the comparison of the rates of different countries if the latter were to be correlated with greater subdivision of the ages amongst wives between 15 and 45. The proportion of wives below 30 to the total of that group was mentioned in connexion with the marriage-rate, and in the figures relating to some 30 years back some traces can be found of a connexion between a high birth-rate and a high proportion of young wives. In the present day, however, these indications do not appear, so it would seem that the tendency in question had been interrupted by some other influence, a point to which reference will be made below.
If abstinence from marriage and the curtailment of the reproductive period by postponement of marriage be insufficient to account for the material change which has taken place in the birth-rate within the last few decades, it is clear that the latter must be attributable to the diminished fertility of those who are married. On this question the figures in the second portion of Table VI. throws some light. Here the annual number of legitimate births is shown in its proportion to the mean number of married women of conceptive age at each of the three latest enumerations. The rate, it will be seen, has fallen in all the countries specified, except for a slight increase of 2 % in Ireland and an almost stationary condition in Austria and Spain. The decline in Italy and Norway is small, but in France, where for a long time the fertility of the population has been very much below that of any other European country, the birth-rate thus calculated fell by nearly 20%, the same figure being approached in Belgium, where however, the fertility of married women is considerably greater. The case of England is remarkable. In the earlier period its crude birth and marriage-rates were above the average and its proportion of young wives well up to it. Its fertility-rate, however, which was by no means high in 1880, fell by nearly 18% by 1901, and since that date a further fall is reported by the registrar-general, to 24%, leaving the rate below that of all the other European countries except France. The States of Australasia, again, have experienced a decline even more marked. In 1880-1882 their fertility-rate ranged from 300 to 338, a low proportion for a new country, but nearly up to the European standard. By 1900-1902, however,the rate had fallen in all the larger States by from 23 to 31% and the highest rate recorded, 253 per thousand conceptive wives, was lower than that of any European country except France and Belgium. The cessation of assisted immigration early in the life of the present generation is alleged to have had considerable influence upon the rate, in Victoria, at least, owing to the curtailment of the supply of adult women of the more conceptive ages ami the ageing of those who had reached the country at an earlier date. But neither this nor the diminution of the marriagerate amongst women of those ages suffices to account for more than a fraction of the decline. The same tendency, moreover, is traceable in the New England States of America, so far as statistics are available.
It has been held by some that a phenomenon so widely diffused over the western world must be attributable to physiological causes, such as alcoholism, syphilis, the abuse of narcotics and so on. Herbert Spencer, again, before the decline in question set in, put forward the hypothesis that " the ability to maintain individual life and the ability to multiply vary inversely "; in other words, the strain upon the nervous system involved in the struggle for life under the conditions of modern civilization, by reacting on the reproductive powers, tends towards comparative sterility. These theories, however, being supported, according to the authorities of to-day, by no evidence, statistical or other, need not be here considered.
Nor, again, can the decline in fertility be connected with any diminution of material prosperity. On the contrary, the fertility-rate appears to be best maintained in countries by no means distinguished for their high standard of living, such as Spain, Italy, Ireland, and, perhaps, Austria. In this respect Holland stands by itself; but in the others mentioned, with the exception of Ireland, both marriage and birth-rates are high and there has been a comparatively insignificant fall in prolificity. The decline has been greatest where the standard of comfort is notoriously high, as in the United States, England and Australasia; also in France, where the general wellbeing reaches probably a lower depth in the community than in any other part of Europe. The comparison of the rates in France with those of Ireland is an instructive illustration of the point under consideration. In France more than half the women of conceptive age are married: in Ireland less than a third, and the proportion of youthful wives in the latter is 28% below that in France. In both the crude birth-rate is far below that of any other European country. But the fertility of the Irish wife exceeded that of her French compeer by 44% in 1880 and by no less than 84% twenty years later. So steady, indeed, has been the prolificity of Ireland, that from being ninth on the list at the earlier period mentioned, it is now inferior only to Holland and perhaps Finland in this respect.
It need not be assumed, however, that because these rates cannot be associated with the comparative degree of prosperity attained by the individual community they are altogether independent of the economic factors mainly contributing to that condition, such as trade, employment and prices. It is difficult, indeed, if not impracticable, to disentangle the effects which should be respectively attributed to influences so closely related to each other; but, of the three, prices alone tend to sufficient uniformity in their course in different countries to justify a supposition that they are in some way connected with a phenomenon so widely diffused as that of the decline in marriage and fertility. It is not improbable, therefore, that the fall in wholesale prices which, with temporary interruptions, persisted between 1870 and looo, in general harmony with the other movement, may have conduced to reluctance on the part of those who have enlarged their notions of the standard of comfort to endanger their prospects of enjoying it by incurring the additional expenses of family life. Matrimony may be postponed, or, when entered upon, may be rendered a lighter burden upon the breadwinner. The economic element in the situation, which is imposed upon the individual by circumstances, is thus modified voluntarily into a moral or prudential consideration. In this case diminished prolificity where unaccompanied by a decrease in the number of marriages at reproductive ages, is attributable xxn. 4 to the voluntary restriction of child-bearing on the part of the married. This explanation of the decline is supported by the almost unanimous opinion of the medical profession in the countries in question, and substantial evidence can be found everywhere of the extensive prevalence of the doctrine and practice of what has been termed, in further derogation of the repute of the " much misrepresented Malthus," Neomalthusianism. Preventive measures of this kind have long been in use in France, with the result shown in Tables V. and VI., and from that country they have spread, mostly since 1870, nearly all over western Europe, as well as to the AngloSaxon world beyond the seas; but are scarcely apparent in countries where the Roman church has a strong hold on the people. It is generally held that the practice of thus limiting families usually prevails, in the first instance, among the betteroff classes, and in time niters down, as " the gospel of comfort " is accepted by those of less resources, until the prolificity of the whole community is more or less affected by it. The registrar general for England, indeed, has stated that whilst no more than about 17% of the decline in the birth-rate can be attributed to abstinence or postponement of marriage, nearly 70% should be ascribed to voluntary restriction.
The question of illegitimate births is the last to be here mentioned. It appears to be connected to a considerable extent with the subject dealt with above. In nearly every country the rate of these births has of late years shown a marked fall, which is by some ascribed to the adoption of the same expedients in illicit intercourse as are becoming conventional amongst the married. The rates given at the end of Table VI. are calculated upon the number of women most likely to produce them, that is, the spinsters, widows and divorced of conceptive age. In comparing the different countries, it may be noted that in some parts of Europe the rate is raised by the inclusion of the offspring of marriages not registered as demanded by law, though duly performed in church. Then, again, the possibility of legitimization by subsequent marriage tends to raise the rate. Italy and Scotland may be taken as examples of these two influences, and in Germany, too, the rates in Saxony and Bavaria, which are among the highest in Europe, are in part due to the non-registration of marriages sanctioned by religious ceremony only. The low rates in Ireland, Holland and England are especially noticeable, and in the last named, the decrease between 1870 and 1905 amounted to more than 50%, not, however, entirely due, it is said, to improved morality.
Deaths. The forces tending towards the natural growth of population, which have been described above, differ from that which acts in the opposite direction in two material features. Marriage and child-bearing, in the first place, are operative amongst a fraction of the population only those of conceptive age; whereas to the Urn of Death, as Dr Farr expressed it, all ages are called upon to contribute in their differing degrees. Then, again, the former are voluntary acts, entirely under the control of the individual; but mortality, though not beyond human regulation, is far less subject to it, and in order to have substantial results the control must be the outcome of collective rather than individual co-operation. The course of the marriage and birth-rates, set forth above, affords evidence that the control over both has been exercised of recent years to an unprecedented extent, and it will appear from what is stated below, that partly owing to this cause, partly, also, to improved hygienic conditions in western life, there has been an even more pronounced decline in the rate of mortality. The general results of both upon the natural increase of population in the countries selected for illustration of this subject will be found at the end of this paragraph. For the purpose of showing this, the crude death-rate, taken, like that of births, upon the whole population, without distinction of age or sex, will suffice. Where, however, the tendency to mortality, not its results, is in question, both the above factors must be taken into account, as they have been above in distinguishing the rate of fertility from that of births. The process of correcting the mere numbers of annual deaths per thousand of population into a form which renders the return comparable with those for communities differently constituted is somewhat complicated, but it is amply justified by its necessity in adapting the figures to the important services they perform in actuarial and sanitary science. This subject can only be dealt with here in outline. In the first place, sex must be distinguished, because, from infancy upwards, except between the ages of 10 and 20, the mortality amongst females is considerably less than amongst the other sex, and appears, too, to be declining more rapidly. So far as adult life is concerned this superior vitality is no doubt attributable to comparative immunity from the risks and hardships to which men are exposed, as, also, to the weaker inclination of women towards intemperance of different kinds. Thus, though the generally higher proportion of females in the community may seldom be enough to depress more than slightly the death-rate as a whole, it has a substantial effect upon it at the ages where women are in more marked numerical predominance, as in later life, and in places where the number of domestic servants is unusually great. Age is a factor still more important than sex in a return intended to serve as an index of mortality. The liability to death is extremely high amongst infants, decreasing with every month of life during the first year, but continuing above the mean rate until about the age of five. From the latter period until the fifteenth or sixteenth year vitality is at its best. The death-rate then gradually rises, slowly till 25, more rapidly later, when, from about 45 onward deterioration asserts itself more pronouncedly, and by three score years and ten the rate begins to exceed that of childhood. Thus, all other considerations being set aside, mortality tends to vary inversely with the proportion of the population at the healthy period 5 to 25. As the replenishment of this group depends upon the conditions prevailing at the earlier ages, it is to the mortality in childhood that most weight, from the standpoint of hygiene, must be attached. In most European countries not much less than half the annual deaths take place amongst children below five years of age, upon the total number of whom the incidence falls to the extent of from 40 to 1 20 per mille. The greater part of this is debitable, as just pointed out, to the first year, in which the mortality, calculated upon the number of births, ranged, in the decennium 1895-1904, between 70 per mille, in the exceptionally favourable circumstances of the Australasian States, to nearly 270 in European Russia. It should be remarked, in passing, that these rates are enormously higher amongst illegitimate children than amongst those born in wedlock, and that the proportion of still-born amongst the former is also in excess of that amongst the latter by some 50%. Infantile mortality is higher, too, in urban tracts, especially those associated with manufacturing industries. In Table VII. below, in which the crude rate alone is dealt with, evidence will be found of the general decline which has taken place in the mortality, thus expressed in different countries.
The difference in the rates for the various countries must not be taken as a measure of difference in mortality, since, as according to the table, much of it is ascribable to difference in ageconstitution. At the same time, where the range is very wide, as between the rates in Scandinavia and Australia, and those in southern and eastern Europe, the variation, to a great extent, cannot be accounted for otherwise than by difference in hygienic conditions, more especially in the light thrown by the figures of infantile mortality in the second part of the table. The variations from period to period in the same country are more instructive. They show that in the 35 years covered the deathrate has generally declined by over 20%. The exceptional cases are, first, Ireland and Norway, with their emigrating tendencies; then Spain, where the returns have probably to be discounted for improved registration, and France, where the population is all but stationary. In Finland the death-rate at the earlier period taken for the comparison was abnormally swollen by epidemic disease, and if it be set on one side the decline appears to have been in harmony with that in its Scandinavian neighbours. The decline in mortality has been much greater than that in the crude birth-rate everywhere except in France, Australia, and, of course, Ireland; and it is only in the two former that it has been exceeded by that in the fertilityrate. The standard mortality of each community is deduced from a life-table, representing a " generation " of people assumed to be born at the same moment and followed throughout their hypothetical lif e, in the light of the distribution by age ascertained through the census and the number of deaths at each age observed for as many years, generally from 10 to 20, as suffice to furnish a trustworthy average. The population thus dealt with is supposed to be stationary, that is, the loss by death at each age is at once made good by the addition of an equal number of the same age, whilst the survivors pass on to the age above. Of the many calculations set forth in these valuable tables there is only room here to refer to the " afterlifetime " for such countries as it is available, which is quoted in the last column of Table VII. It shows the average number of years which persons of a given age, or, as here, of all ages, will live, on the assumption that they are subject to the calculated probabilities of survival. It is sometimes known as the " expectation of life," a term, however, which involves a mathematical hypothesis now discarded.
1 Mean after lifetime at birth. ! Finland from 1850-1891, decrease 20-4. * Prussia only; Saxony, 284 and 272; Bavaria, 308 257.
The relation between the birth and the death rates has been the subject of much analysis and controversy. Observation has demonstrated that the two rates are generally found to move along parallel lines. A high birth-rate is accompanied by high mortality; conversely, when one is low, so is the other. A birthrate continuously in excess of the death-rate tends to lower the latter through the supply it affords of people annually reaching the more healthy ages. If the supply be diminished, the narrower field open to the risks of infancy has the immediate effect of further decreasing the mortality. In course of time, however, under the same influence, those passing from their prime into the second period of danger acquire a numerical preponderance which throws its weight upon the general death-rate and tends to raise it. It is assumed that throughout the above course the hygienic conditions of life remain unchanged. If, however, they undergo marked improvement, the duration of life is extended and both birth and death-rates, being spread over a wider field of the living, tend to decrease. On the other hand, an accidental set-back to population, such as that caused by famine or a disastrous war, leaves room which an increasing birth-rate hastens to occupy. A similar result follows in a lesser degree a wave of emigration. Examples of all the above tendencies may be gleaned from the returns of the countries named in the table, though space does not admit of their exhibtion. In both France and Germany, for instance, the process of replenishment after a great war can be traced both early and late in the 19th century. In England, the decrease in " natality " is in itself enough to account for the decline in the death-rate, apart from any considerations of improved hygiene. In France, on the contrary, the low natality having been so long continued, has raised the death-rate, by reason of the balance of proportion having been shifted by it from youth and the prime of life to old age. It may be inferred from the above that a high birthrate does not imply a high rate of increase of population, any more than does a decreasing mortality, but the two rates must be considered in their relations to each other. The death-rate, however, is often taken by itself as the measure of the relatively favourable conditions or otherwise of the different countries; but it indicates at best the maintaining power of the community, whereas the increasing power, as manifested in the birth-rate, has also to be taken into account. Here, again, it is not sufficient to rely upon the mere rate of natural growth, or the difference between the two rates, since this may be the same in a community where both the rates are very high as in one where they are relatively low, a distinction of considerable importance. It has been suggested by Dr Rubin of Copenhagen, that if the death rate (d) be squared and divided by the birth-rate (6), due influence is allowed to each rate respectively, as well as to the difference in the height of the rates in different countries (Journ. R. Statist. Soc., London, 1897, p. 154). The quotient thus obtained decreases as the conditions are more favourable, and, on the whole, it seems to form a good index to the merit of the respective countries from the standpoint of vital forces. The first column of Table VIII. shows the order in which the countries mentioned are found to stand according to the above test.
The three Australasian states head the list in virtue of their remarkably low death-rate, which outweighs the relative paucity of their births. The next countries in order all belong to north-western Europe, and their index-quotients are all very close to each other. Sweden falls below its geographical neighbours owing to its low birth-rate, and Finland because of its higher mortality. England and Scotland, in spite of their higher birth-rates, are kept below Scandinavia by the higher death-rate, but their birth-rate places them above Belgium. Ireland and France are pulled down by their low natality. The latter, with the same mortality as Germany, stands far below it for the above reason, as Ireland is raised by its lower deathrate above the prolific countries of eastern Europe. The rate of natural growth is given in the second part of the table. In the case of two of the Australasian states, of Holland, Finland, Spain and Italy, the order is in accord with that given by the test applied above, and the difference between the two in Austria, Ireland and France is not large. The great difference between the serial rank occupied in the respective lists by Russia, Servia and Galicia, with remarkably high rates of natural growth, as well as that found in the case of most of the other countries in question, shows that this factor is by no means a trustworthy guide in the estimate of hygienic balance.
Migration. Passing from the internal factors in the movement of population, the influence has to be taken into account of the interchange of population between different countries. The net results of such exchange can be roughly estimated by comparing the rate of natural growth with that of the total increase of the community between one census and another, as set forth in Table VIII., in the last section of which the approximate loss by emigration, as calculated by Dr Sundbarg, is given. It will be seen that the only European country which gains by the exchange is France, and there the accretion is almost insignificant. Between many of the countries there is a good deal of migration which is only seasonal or temporary, according to the demand for labour. From Russia, too, there is a stream of colonization across the Urals into western Siberia, and amongst the western Mediterranean populations there is constant migration to North Africa The greatest drain from Europe, however, has been across the sea to the United States, Canada and Australasia, especially to the first-named. Dr Sundbarg's returns give about 28 millions as the number which left Europe by sea during the 19th century, of whom all but 4 millions emigrated during the last half of that period. Between 1821 and 1904, about 22 millions landed from Europe in the United States; about 23 millions in Canada; 2 millions in Australia, besides a good number in Brazil, the Argentine and South Africa. The return of birthplace which usually forms part of the census inquiry, affords supplementary information on the subject of immigration. In Canada, for instance, those born abroad numbered 17 % of the population in 1871, and about 13 % thirty years later. In New South Wales, the corresponding figures were 41 and 28 %, and in Victoria 55 and 27. In New Zealand the consequences of the cessation of special encouragement to emigration were still more marked, the foreign-born declining in proportion from 63 to 33 %. On the other hand, in the United States, from 9-7 % in 1850 the proportion rose to 13-7 in 1900, and has since reached still higher figures, as has been the case recently in Canada also. Up to the early 'nineties the greater part of the immigrants into America were furnished by Germany, Ireland and Great Britain, but for the next fifteen years the place of those countries was taken by Italy and eastern Europe. The general results of the two movements in Europe have been thus summarised by Dr Sundbarg.
Differences tend to be smoothened out, of course, in dealing with a population so large and varied as that of a continent, but the figures suffice to show the contrast between the early part of the century and the period following the great migratory movements to the new goldfields. In the countries receiving the stream of newcomers, the intercensal rate of increase was obviously very different from those of the older countries, though it seems to have largely spent itself or been counteracted by other influences. The latest rates, for instance, were only 18 per mille per annum in Australia; n in Canada and 19 in the United States.
BIBLIOGRAPHY. A very full bibliography up to 1899 is appended to von Fircke's Bevolkerungslehre und Bevolkerungspolitik. Reference may also be made to Matthews Duncan, Fecundity, Fertility and Sterility (ed. 1871); Newsholme, Elements of Vital Statistics (ed. 1899), and his paper on birth-rates, Journ. R. Statist. Soc. (1906); W. Farr, Vital Statistics (1885) ; Coghlan, Report on Decline in Birthrate, New^ South Wales (1903), and report of Royal Commission on that decline (1904) ; Bonar, Malthus and his Work (1885) ; Bertillon, Elements^ de demographie; Gamier, Du Principe de population; de Molinari, Ralentissement du mouvement de la population; Bertheau, Essai sur les lots de la population; Starkenburg, Die BevolkerungsWissenschaft; Stieda, Das sexual Verhdltniss der Geborenen; Rubin and Westergaard, Statistik der Ehen; Westergaard, Die Lehre von der Mortalilat und Morbilitat, and Die Grundzuge der Theorie der Statistik ; Gonnard, L' Emigration europeenne. (J. A. B.)
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)