Situation in England In 1485
The Social Situation The first notable thing about England’s social situation in 1485 is that its overall population was no higher than around 2.2 million inhabitants although it is thought to have previously peaked in the range of 6 million. This is in no doubt due to the numerous epidemics and famines that ravaged England throughout the 14th Century (The Black Death being the main culprit in the mid 1300’s) with the population continuing to dwindle until the late 15th Century. It was a lack of connection between hygiene and health that kept disease at a flourish along with poor living conditions especially in the larger populated towns where poor drainage and excreta covered streets attracted disease carrying vermin. Famine was the other major threat to the population with around 1 in 6 harvests being so poor as to create enough dearth to cause famine. These though, were not the only reasons for the population decrease. By 1485 the country had been through 3 decades of civil war, the average life expectancy was no more than 35 and infant mortality meant 20% of new borns would die before the end of their first year and 10% before the age of 10 but it was around this time that the population stabilised and began to increase. Compared to today’s modern society, in 1485 only around 10% of the population lived in the cities with London being the main population hub. The majority of the population lived in small villages and market towns or settlements throughout the countryside making their living through farming, the only real building of note being the church, the focal point of the community.
The Religious Situation
In 1485 England, the majority of the population were Roman Catholics, no other faith would be tolerated. The focus for most aspects of life were based upon religion due to the fact that people believed the harder you worked for yourself and the church in addition to