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Case Study 2 - What do the figures tell us about changes in crime at this time? Task Glossary

People in 19th century Britain were aware that their country was changing around them, but by how much? And in what ways? They began to collect statistics. Governments particularly reacted to popular feeling in the first part of this period that crime was increasing by systematically collecting crime figures.
Whatever was happening in the early part of this period, the second half of the 19th century seemed to show a fall in crime and again we have the statistics to show whether this impression can be supported by statistics.
However, statistics need interpreting. Crime statistics are notoriously hard to use and 19th century statisticians began to realise how cautious you have to be when working with them.

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