Portrait Of Britain: 1800

Jeremy Black continues our Portrait of Britain series describing the impact of the French Wars on the islands and the shifting landscape wrought by the Industrial Revolution.

In 1800 Britain was at war, a war that pressed on every household. Although the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars may seem distant from our standard view of the period, which is one largely based on the televising of Jane Austen’s novels (such as Pride and Prejudice begun in 1796 or 1797 although not published until 1811), they impinged on every aspect of life and on society as a whole. Taxes rose, trade was disrupted, goods were produced for the war effort, men were recruited and killed, and families were left to grieve.

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