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The wealth of the Swedish peasant farmer class (1750-1900) : Composition and distribution

Bengtsson, Erik LU and Svensson, Patrick LU (2019) In Rural History 30(2). p.129-145
Abstract

Using about 1,730 probate inventories, this article studies the wealth of peasant farmers in Sweden for the years 1750, 1800, 1850 and 1900. Average wealth grew rapidly, tripling over the nineteenth century, but it did not grow equally: the Gini coefficient for the farmers' wealth grew from 0.46 in 1750 to 0.73 in 1900. Farmers who lived close to the major grain markets in Stockholm and the mining district of Bergslagen were wealthier than others, as were farmers on fertile plains and, in 1900, those living in coastal areas. Increased market access - in terms of cities and foreign demand - meant that farmers well placed in terms of geography and infrastructure benefited much more than farmers on what became the periphery. The diversity... (More)

Using about 1,730 probate inventories, this article studies the wealth of peasant farmers in Sweden for the years 1750, 1800, 1850 and 1900. Average wealth grew rapidly, tripling over the nineteenth century, but it did not grow equally: the Gini coefficient for the farmers' wealth grew from 0.46 in 1750 to 0.73 in 1900. Farmers who lived close to the major grain markets in Stockholm and the mining district of Bergslagen were wealthier than others, as were farmers on fertile plains and, in 1900, those living in coastal areas. Increased market access - in terms of cities and foreign demand - meant that farmers well placed in terms of geography and infrastructure benefited much more than farmers on what became the periphery. The diversity of farmers' wealth grew, as did their financial sophistication.

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author
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type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Rural History
volume
30
issue
2
pages
17 pages
publisher
Cambridge University Press
external identifiers
  • scopus:85072173440
ISSN
0956-7933
DOI
10.1017/S0956793319000116
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
835e6ba5-87f7-475a-a696-87f609107eb6
date added to LUP
2019-09-30 12:41:55
date last changed
2020-01-13 02:25:41
@article{835e6ba5-87f7-475a-a696-87f609107eb6,
  abstract     = {<p>Using about 1,730 probate inventories, this article studies the wealth of peasant farmers in Sweden for the years 1750, 1800, 1850 and 1900. Average wealth grew rapidly, tripling over the nineteenth century, but it did not grow equally: the Gini coefficient for the farmers' wealth grew from 0.46 in 1750 to 0.73 in 1900. Farmers who lived close to the major grain markets in Stockholm and the mining district of Bergslagen were wealthier than others, as were farmers on fertile plains and, in 1900, those living in coastal areas. Increased market access - in terms of cities and foreign demand - meant that farmers well placed in terms of geography and infrastructure benefited much more than farmers on what became the periphery. The diversity of farmers' wealth grew, as did their financial sophistication.</p>},
  author       = {Bengtsson, Erik and Svensson, Patrick},
  issn         = {0956-7933},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {129--145},
  publisher    = {Cambridge University Press},
  series       = {Rural History},
  title        = {The wealth of the Swedish peasant farmer class (1750-1900) : Composition and distribution},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0956793319000116},
  doi          = {10.1017/S0956793319000116},
  volume       = {30},
  year         = {2019},
}