University of Arkansas System
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
The agriculture revolution occurred in the Eighteenth Century. It was the age of new inventions and methods which caused agriculture to boom and end the long problem of famine. The agriculture revolution also caused social and economic consequences. What are some of these methods, inventions an also, the downfalls and consequences of the agriculture revolution? In the eighteenth century it was important to improve agriculture to feed the rapidly increasing population. This meant they needed to make inventions to grow more food at a more rapid rate.
This is about the time when they discovered crop rotation, which is rotationing the crop to refurnish the nutrients in the soil by switching the crops that used the nutrients in the soil with the ones that replaced it. This system gave farmers the opportunity to farm all their land at all times, instead of having to let some land set for a long period of time. Some of the important crops were peas, beans, turnips, potatoes, clovers and grasses. Other inventions like the seed drill, threshing machine, along with the enclosure of fields helped produce enough food for the growing population.
The enclosure of fields was a new invention, which took a farmers scattered land and put it together in fenced in fields to farm a lot smarter and more efficiently. Not all the people of the eighteenth century went to farming in this new style, they were used to the traditional style and preferred to continue farming that way. The Low Countries and England were the main people that used crop rotation. New crops made ideal feed for animals, which meant farmers could increase their herds, which ultimately meant more meat and better diets for all.
Some downfalls of the agriculture revolution meant that if a farmer wanted to experiment with new methods they would have to get all landowners in the village to agree. Enclosure didn’t seem to help the poor rural families; this meant that they couldn’t do the things they traditionally did. They liked using common pastureland to graze stock, forests and marshlands for firewood and berries, therefore the poor highly opposed the idea of enclosure and created allies with the wealthy land owners.
The wealthy land owners were also against enclosure, because it required large risks and investments? The agricultural revolution had a very big impact on women; the new inventions and the machinery were much harder for them to handle. This meant women had to find another role in society, working at Cottage Industries or as Domestic Servants. The agriculture revolution was the start of a great stepping stone. The new inventions like Crop Rotation and Enclosure helped form the age we live in today.
There were ups and downs to the agricultural revolution, as there is in any new ideas that are trying to be implemented. The revolution ended famine, the methods used caused distress with the poor and even the wealthy at times; they also wanted to keep the traditional ways of farming. The transformation and experimentation of new crops and systems of crop rotation was not completed until the nineteenth century. Agricultural revolution allowed farms to be more compact and increased investments. The agricultural revolution was an essential prelude to the Industrial Revolution.