The Victorian Time Period

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Many Victorians thought they were living in a time of great change. Queen Victoria’s long reign occurred during political and social stability. But this stability was established before Victoria and most of her subjects were even born. Britain was free of war between Napoleon’s defeat in 1815 and World War I in 1914. While in power, Victoria was queen-empress of over 200 million people not living in Great Britain. At the same time the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century was expanding. New towns, goods, wealth and jobs for those that were climbing through the middle class. Middle-class and working-class politicians were put into power, allowing all to have a say while still remaining a monarchy. Thomas Babington Macaulay helped show the middle class attitude of the time government, history, and civilization. To Macaulay, history was related to progress and progress was defined as actual improvements that the person could physically see or touch. Macaulay also wanted the streets of London to be cleaned up, paved, lighted, and watched over by an actual police force. He had the idea of splitting areas based on wealth, so the poor did not bother the wealthier. Although all did not agree with Macaulay, many of those like him did agree. The first decade Victoria was in power was known as the “Hungry Forties”. She came into power the very first year of a depression that left 1.5 million workers and their families on a type of relief. When the government decided to check out
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