Of Particular Casualties.
2. The Observation, which I shall add hereunto, is, That the vast numbers of Beggars, swarming up and down this City, do all live, and seem to be most of them healthy and strong; whereupon I make this Question, Whether, since they do all live by Begging, that is, without any kind of labour; it were not better for the State to keep them, even although they earned nothing; that so they might live regularly, and not in that Debauchery, as many Beggars do; and that they might be cured of their bodily Impotencies, or taught to work, &c. each according to his condition, and capacity; or by being employed in some work (not better undone) might be accustomed, and fitted for labour.
3. To this some may Object; That Beggars are now maintained by voluntary Contributions, whereas in the other way the same must be done by a ge-
neral Tax; and consequently, the Objects of Charity would be removed, and taken
4. To which we Answer; That in Holland, although no where fewer Beggars appear to charm up commiseration in the credulous, yet no where is there greater, or more frequent Charity: onely indeed the Magistrate is both the Beggar, and the disposer of what is gotten by begging; so as all Givers have a moral certainty, that their Charity shall be well applied.
5. Moreover, I question; Whether what we give to a Wretch, that shews us lamentable sores, and mutilations, be always out of the purest charity? that is, purely for God's sake; for as much as when we see such Objects, we then feel in our selves a kinde of pain, and passion by consent; of which we ease our selves, when we think we have eased them, with whom we sympathized: or else we bespeak aforehand the like commiseration in others towards our selves, when we shall (as we fear we may) fall into the like distress.
6. We have said, 'Twere better the Publick should keep the Beggars, though they earned nothing, &c. But most men will laugh to hear us suppose, That any able to work (as indeed most Beggars are, in one kind of measure, or another) should be kept without earning anything. But we Answer, That if there be but a certain proportion of work to be done; and that the same be already done by the not-Beggars; then to employ the Beggars about it, will but transfer the want from one hand to another; nor can a Learner work so cheap as a skilfull practised Artist can. As for example, A practised Spinner shall spin a pound of
Wool worth two shillings for six pence; but a learner, undertaking it for three
pence, shall make the Wool indeed into Yarn, but not worth twelve pence.|
7. This little hint is the model of the greatest work in the World, which is the making England as considerable for Trade as Holland; for there is but a certain proportion of the Trade in the world, and Holland is prepossessed of the greater part of it, and is thought to have more skill, and experience to manage it: wherefore, to bring England into Holland's condition, as to this particular, is the same, as to send all the Beggars about London into the West-Countrey to Spin, where they shall onely spoil the Clothiers Wool, and beggar the present Spinners at best; but, at worst, put the whole Trade of the Countrey to a stand, untill the Hollander, being more ready for it, have snapt that with the rest.
8. My next Observation is; That but few are Murthered, viz. not above 86 of the 22950 [sic], which have died of other diseases, and casualties; whereas in Paris few nights scape without their Tragedie.
9. The Reasons of this we conceive to be Two; One is the Government, and guard of the City by Citizens themselves, and that alternately. No man settling into a Trade for that employment. And the other is, The natural, and customary abhorrence of that inhumane Crime, and all Bloodshed by most Englishmen: for of all that are Executed few are for Murther. Besides the great and frequent Revolutions, and Changes of Government since the year 1650, have been with little bloodshed; the Usurpers themselves having Executed few in comparison, upon the
Accompt of the disturbing their Innovations.|
10. In brief, when any dead Body is found in England, no Algebraist, or Uncipherer of Letters, can use more subtile suppositions, and varietie of conjectures to finde out the Demonstration, or Cipher; then every common unconcerned Person doth to finde out the Murtherers, and that for ever, untill it be done.
11. The Lunaticks are also but few, viz. 158 in 229250. though I fear many more then are set down in our Bills, few being entred for such, but those who die at Bedlam; and there all seem to die of their Lunacie, who died Lunaticks; for there is much difference in computing the number of Lunaticks, that die (though of Fevers, and all other Diseases, unto which Lunacie is no Supersedeas) and those, that die by reason of their Madness.
12. So that, this Casualty being so uncertain, I shall not force my self to make any inference from the numbers, and proportions we finde in our Bills concerning it: onely I dare ensure any man at this present, well in his Wits, for one in the thousand, that he shall not die a Lunatick in Bedlam, within these seven years, because I finde not above one in about one thousand five hundred have done so.
13. The like use may be made of the Accompts of men, that made away themselves, who are another sort of Madmen, that think to ease themselves of pain by leaping into Hell; or else are yet more Mad, so as to think there is no such place; or that men may go to rest by death, though they die in self-murther, the greatest Sin.
14. We shall say nothing of the numbers of those, that have been
Crowned, Killed by falls from Scaffolds, or by Carts running over
them, &c. because the same depends upon the casual Trade, and
Employment of men, and upon matters, which are but circumstantial to the
Seasons, and Regions we live in; and affords little of that Science, and
Certainty we aim at.|
15. We finde one Casualty in our Bills, of which though there be daily talk, there is little effect, much like our abhorrence of Toads, and Snakes, as most poisonous Creatures, whereas few men dare say upon their own knowledge, they ever found harm by either; and this Casualty is the French-Pox, gotten, for the most part, not so much by the intemperate use of Venery (which rather causeth the Gowt) as of many common Women.
16. I say, the Bills of Mortality would take off these Bars, which keep some men within bounds, as to these extravagancies: for in the afore-mentioned 229250 we finde not above 392 to haved died of the Pox. Now, forasmuch as it is not good to let the World be lulled into a security, and belief of Impunity by our Bills, which we intend shall not be onely as Death's-heads to put men in minde of their Mortality, but also as Mercurial Statues to point out the most dangerous ways, that lead us into it, and misery. We shall therefore shew, that the Pox is not as the Toads, and Snakes afore-mentioned, but of a quite contrary nature, together with the reason, why it appears otherwise.
17. Foreasmuch as by the ordinary discourse of the world it seems a great part of men have, at one time
or other, had some species of this disease, I wondering why so
few died of it, especially because I could not take that to be so
harmless, whereof so many complained very fiercely; upon inquirey I found
that those who died of it out of the Hospitals (especially that of
King's-Land, and the Lock in
Southwark) were returned of Ulcers, and
Sores. And in brief I found, that all mentioned to die of the
French-Pox were retured by the Clerks of Saint
Giles's, and Saint Martin's in the Fields onely;
in which place I understood that most of the vilest, and most miserable
houses of uncleanness were: from whence I concluded, that onely
hated persons, and such, whose very Noses were
eaten of, were reported by the Searchers to have died of this
too frequent Maladie. |
18. In the next place, it shall be examined under what name, or Casualties, such as die of these diseases are brought in: I say, under the Consumption: forasmuch, as all dying thereof die so emaciated and lean (their Ulcers disappearing upon Death) that the Old-women Searchers after the mist of a Cup of Ale, and the bribe of a two-groat fee, instead of one, given them, cannot tell whether this emaciation, or leanness were from a Phthisis, or from an Hectick Fever, Atrophy, &c. or from an Infection of the Spermatick parts, which in length of time, and in various disguises hath at last vitiated the habit of the Body, and by disabling the parts to digest their nourishment brought them to the condition of Leanness above- mentioned
19. My next Observation is, that of the Rickets we finde no mention among the Casualties; untill the
year 1634, and then but of 14 for that whole year.|
20. Now the Question is, whether that Disease did first appear about that time; or whether a Disease, which had been long before, did then first receive its Name?
21. To clear this Difficulty out of the Bills (for I dare venture on no deeper Arguments:) I enquired what other Casualties before the year 1634, named in the Bills, was most like the Rickets; and found, not onely by Pretenders to know it, but also from other Bills, that Liver- grown was the nearest. For in some years I finde Liver-grown, Spleen, and Rickets, put all together, by reson (as I conceive) of their likeness to each other. Hereupon I added the Liver- growns of the year 1634, viz. 77, to the Rickets of the same year, viz. 14. making in all 91. which Total, as also the Number 77. it self, I compared with the Liver- grown of the precedent year, 1633, viz. 82. All which shewed me, that the Rickets was a new Disease over and above.
22. Now, this being but a faint Argument, I looked both forwards and backwards, and found, that in the year 1629, when no Rickets appeared, there was but 94 Liver-growns; and in the year 1636. there was 99 Liver-grown, although there were also 50 of the Rickets: onely this is not to be denyed, that when the Rickets grew very numerous (as in the year 1660, viz. to be 521.) then there appeared not above 15 of Liver-grown.
23. In the year 1659 were 441 Rickets, and 8 Liver- grown. In the year 1658, were 476 Rickets, and 51 Liver- grown. Now, though it be granted that
these Diseases were confounded in the judgment of the Nurses, yet it
is most certain, that the Liver-grown did never but once, viz.
Anno 1630, exceed 100. whereas Anno 1660, Liver-
grown, and Rickets were 536.|
24. It is also to be observed, That the Rickets were never more numerous then now, and that they are still increasing; for Anno 1649, there was but 190, next year 260, next after that 329, and so forwards, with some little starting backwards in some years, untill the year 1660, which produced the greatest of all.
25. Now, such backstartings seem to be universal in all things; for we do not onely see in the progressive motion of the wheels of Watches, and in the rowing of Boats, that there is a little starting, or jerking backwards between every step forwards, but also (if I am not much deceived) there appeared the like in the motion of the Moon, which in the long Telescopes at Gresham- College one may sensibly discern.
26. There seems also to be another new Disease, called by our Bills The stopping of the Stomack, first mentioned in the year 1636, the which Malady from that year to 1647, increased but from 6 to 29; Anno 1655 it came to be 145. In 57, to 277. In 60, to 214. Now these proportions far exceeding the difference of proportion generally arising from the increase of Inhabitants, and from the resort of Advenæ to the City, shews there is some new Disease, which appeareth to the Vulgar as A stopping of the Stomach.
27. Hereupon I apprehended, that this Stopping might be
the Green-sickness, for as much as I finde few, or none, to have
been returned upon that Accompt, although many be visibly stained with it. Now
whether the same be forborn out of shame, I know not? For since the world
believes, that Marriage cures it, it may seem indeed a shame, that any maid
should die uncured, when there are more Males then
Females, that is, an overplus of Husbands to all that can be
28. In the next place I conjectured, that this stopping of the Stomach might be the Mother, for as much as I have heard of many troubled with Mother-fits (as they call them) although few returned to have died of them; which conjecture, if it be true, we may then safely say, That the Mother-fits have also increased.
29. But I was somewhat taken off from thinking this stopping of the Stomach to be the Mother, because I guessed rather the Rising of the Lights might be it. For I remembered that some Women, troubled with the Mother-fits, did complain of achoaking in their Throats. Now as I understand, it is more conceivable, that the Lights, ot Lungs (which I have heard called The Bellows of the Body) not blowing, that is, neither venting out, nor taking in breath, might rather cause such a Choaking, then that the Mother should rise up thither, and do it. For me-thinks, when a woman is with childe, there is a greater rising, and yet no such Fits at all.
30. But what I have said of the Rickets, and stopping of the Stomach, I do in some measure say of the
Rising of the Lights also, viz. that these
Risings (be they what they will) have increased much above the
general proportion; for in 1629 there was but 44, and in 1660, 249,
viz. almost six times as many.|
31. Now for as much as Rickets appear much in the Over-growing of Childrens Livers, and Spleens (as by the Bills may appear) which surely may cause stopping of the Stomach by squeezing, and crowding upon that part. And for as much as these Choakings, or Risings of the Lights may proceed from the same stuffings, as make the Liver, and Spleen to over-grow their due proportion. And lastly, for as much as the Rickets, stopping of the Stomach, and rising of the Lights, have all increased together, and in some kinde of correspondent proportions; it seems to me, that they depend one upon another. And that what is the Rickets in children may be the other in more grown bodies; for surely children, which recover of the Rickets, may retain somewhat sufficient to cause what I have imagined; but of this let the learned Physicians consider, as I presume they have.
32. I had not medled thus far, but that I have heard, the first hints of the circulation of the Blood were taken from a common Person's wondering what became of all the blood which issued out of the heart, since the heart beats above three thousand times an hour, although but one drop should be pumpt out of it, at every stroke.
33. The Stone seemed to decrease: for in 1632, 33, 34, 35, and 36. there died of the Stone, and Strangury, 254. And in the Years 1655, 56, 57, 58, 59, and 1660, but 250, which numbers although in
deed they be almost equal, yet considering the Burials of the first named five
Years were but half those of the latter, it seems to be decreased by about one
34. Now the Stone, and Strangury, are diseases, which most men know, that feel them, unless it be in some few cases, where (as I have heard Physicians say) a Stone is held up by the Filmes of the Bladder, and so kept from grating, or offending it.
35. The Gowt stands much at a stay, that is, it answer the general proportion of the Burials; there dies not above one of 1000. of the Gowt, although I believe that more die gowty. The reason is, because those that have the Gowt, are said to be Long- livers, and therefore, when such die, they are returned as Aged.
36. The Scurvy hath likewise increased, and that gradually from 12. Anno 1629. to 95. Anno 1660.
37. The Tyssick seems to be quite worn away, but that it is probable the same is entred as Cough, or Consumption.
38. Agues and Fevers are entred promiscuously, yet in the few Bills, wherein they have been distinguished, it appears that not above one in 40, of the whole are Agues.
39. The Abortives, and Stil-born are about the twentieth part of those that are Christned, and the numbers seem the same thirty Years ago as now, which shews there were more proportion in those Years then now: or else that in those latter Years due Accompts have not been kept of the Abortives, as having been Buried without notice, and perhaps not in Church-Yards.
40. For that there hath been a neglect in the Accompts of the
Christnings is most certain, because untill the year 1642, we finde
the Burials but equal with the Christnings, or near
thereabouts, but in 1648, when the differences in Religion had
changed the Government, the Christnings were but two thirds of the
burials. And in the year 1659, not half, viz. the
burials were 14720. (of the Plague but 36) and the
Christnings were but 5670, which great disproportion could be from
no other Cause, then that above-mentioned, for as much as the same grew as the
Confusions, and Changes grew.|
41. Moreover, although the Bills give us in Anno 1659 but 5670 Christnings, yet they give us 421 Abortives, and 226 dying in Child-bed, whereas in the year 1631, when the Abortives were 410, that is, near the number of the year 1659, the Christnings were 8288. Wherefore by the proportion of Abortives Anno 1659, the Christnings should have been about 8500, but if we shall reckon by the women dying in Child-bed, of whom a better Accompt is kept then of Stil-borns, and Abortives, we shall finde Anno 1650, there were 226 Child-beds; and Anno 1631, 112, viz. not 1/2. Wherefore I conceive that the true number of the Christnings Anno 1659 is above double to the 5690 set down in our Bills; that is about 11500, and then the Christnings will come near the same proportion to the burials, as hath been observed in former times.
42. In regular Times, when Accompts were well kept, we finde that not above three in 200 died in Child-bed, and that the number of Abortives was about treble to that of the women dying in Child- bed,
from whence we may probably collect, that not one woman of an hundred (I might
say of two hundred) dies in her Labour; for as much as there be other Causes of
a woman's dying within the Moneth, then the hardness of her Labour.|
43. If this be true in these Countries, where women hinder the facility of their Child-bearing by affected straightning of their Bodies; then certainly in America, where the same is not practised, Nature is little more to be taxed as to women, then in Brutes, among whom not one in some thousands do die of their deliveries: what I have heard of the Irish-women confirms me herein.
44. Before we quite leave this matter, we shall insert the causes, why the Accompt of Christnings hath been neglected more then that of Burials: one, and the chief whereof was a Religious Opinion against Baptizing of Infants, either as unlawfull, or unnecessary. If this were the onely reason, we might by our defects of this kinde, conclude the growth of this Opinion, and pronounce, that not half the People of England, between the years 1650, and 1660, were convinced of the need of Baptizing.
45. A second Reason was, The scruples, which many Publick Ministers would make of the worthiness of Parents to have their Children Baptized, which forced such questioned Parents, who did also not believe the necessity of having their Children Baptized by such scrupulers, to carry their Children unto such other Ministers, as having performed the thing, had not the authority or command of the Register to enter the names of the Baptized.
46. A third Reason was, That a little Fee was to be paid for
47. Upon the whole matter it is most certain, that the number of Heterodox Believers was very great between the said year, 1650, and 1660, and so peevish were they, as not to have the Births of their Children Registred, although thereby the time of their coming Age might be known, in respect of such Inheritances, as might belong unto them; and withall by such Registring it would have appeared unto what Parish each Childe had belonged, in case any of them should happen to want its relief.
48. Of Convulsions there appeared very few, viz. but 52 in the year 1629, which 1636 grew to 709, keeping about that stay, till 1659, though sometimes rising to about 1000.
49. It is to be noted, that from 1629 to 1636, when the Convulsions were but few, the number of Chrysoms, and Infants was greater: for in 1629, there was of Chrysoms, and Infants 2596, and of the Convulsion 52, viz. of both, 2648. And in 1636 there was of Infants 1895, and of the Convulsions 709, in both 2604, by which it appears, that this difference is likely to be onely a confusion in the Accompts.
50. Moreover, we finde that for these later years, since 1636, the Total of Convulsions and Chrysoms added together are much less, viz. by about 400 or 500, per Annum, then the like Totals from 1626 to 36, which makes me think, that Teeth also were thrust in under the Title of Chrysoms, and Infants, in as much as in the said years, from 1629 to 1639, the number of Worms, and Teeth, wants by about 400 per Annum of what we find in following years.