In trying to establish what happened to the standard of living of the rural labouring classes in Lincolnshire\ud two statistical variables, the cost of living and the earnings of adult male labourers, have been constructed\ud to determine the long-run trend of real wages. The analysis shows that the cost of living was the\ud dynamic variable in the real wage equation and that in the short-run, as during the French wars, volatile\ud price movements had a devastating effect upon the purchasing power of wages. The level of employment\ud and incomes after I815, though varying between upland and clayland areas, was a potent cause of\ud distress and class conflict. In analysing the shift in emphasis from overt to covert expressions of anger,\ud attention is paid to the collective response of the county's ruling order to the threat from below and\ud the mechanisms of control that were used to restore law and order
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