Page:EB1911 - Volume 10.djvu/801

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population]
779
FRANCE

combined with logical and organizing faculties of a high order, the heritage from the Latin domination, and with the industry, frugality and love of the soil natural in an agricultural people go to make up the national character. The Bretons, who most nearly represent the Celts, and the Basques, who inhabit parts of the western versant of the Pyrenees, have preserved their distinctive languages and customs, and are ethnically the most interesting sections of the nation; the Flemings of French Flanders where Flemish is still spoken are also racially distinct. The immigration of Belgians into the northern departments and of Italians into those of the south-east exercise a constant modifying influence on the local populations.

During the 19th century the population of France increased to a less extent than that of any other country (except Ireland) for which definite data exist, and during the last twenty years of that period it was little more than stationary. The following table exhibits the rate of increase as indicated by the censuses from 1876 to 1906.

Population
1876   .  .  .  36,905,788
1881  .  .  .  .  37,672,048
1886  .  .  .  .  38,218,903
1891  .  .  .  .  38,342,948
1896  .  .  .  .  38,517,975
1901  .  .  .  .  |38,961,945
1906   .  .  .  39,252,245

Thus the rate of increase during the decade 1891-1901 was ·16%, whereas during the same period the population of England increased 1·08%. The birth-rate markedly decreased during the 19th century; despite an increase of population between 1801 and 1901 amounting to 40%, the number of births in the former was 904,000, as against 857,000 in the latter year, the diminution being accompanied by a decrease in the annual number of deaths.[1] In the following table the decrease in births and deaths for the decennial periods during the thirty years ending 1900 are compared.

Births.
1871 – 1880 .  .  .  .  935,000   or   25·4   per 1000
1881 – 1890emsp;.  .  .  .  909,000 23·9   ”
1891 – 1900 .  .  .  .  853,000 22·2   ”
Deaths.
1871 – 1880 .  .  .  .  870,900   or   23·7   per 1000
1881 – 1890 .  .  .  .  841,700 22·1   ”
1891 – 1900 .  .  .  .  829,000 21·5   ”

About two-thirds of the French departments, comprising a large proportion of those situated in mountainous districts and in the basin of the Garonne, where the birth-rate is especially feeble, show a decrease in population. Those which show an increase usually possess large centres of industry and are already thickly populated, e.g. Seine and Pas-de-Calais. In most departments the principal cause of decrease of population is the attraction of great centres. The average density of population in France is about 190 to the square mile, the tendency being for the large towns to increase at the expense of the small towns as well as the rural communities. In 1901 37% of the population lived in centres containing more than 2000 inhabitants, whereas in 1861 the proportion was 28%. Besides the industrial districts the most thickly populated regions include the coast of the department of Seine-Inférieure and Brittany, the wine-growing region of the Bordelais and the Riviera.[2]

In the quinquennial period 1901–1905, out of the total number of births the number of illegitimate births to every 1000 inhabitants was 2·0, as compared with 2·1 in the four preceding periods of like duration.

In 1906 the number of foreigners in France was 1,009,415 compared with 1,027,491 in 1896 and 1,115,214 in 1886. The departments with the largest population of foreigners were Nord (191,678), in which there is a large proportion of Belgians; Bouches-du-Rhône (123,497), Alpes-Maritimes (93,554), Var (47,475), Italians being numerous in these three departments; Seine (153,647), Meurthe-et-Moselle (44,595), Pas-de-Calais (21,436) and Ardennes (21,401).


The following table gives the area in square miles of each of the eighty-seven departments with its population according to the census returns of 1886, 1896 and 1906:

Departments. Area,
sq. m.
Population.
1886. 1896. 1906.
Ain .  .  .  .  .  2,249   364,408  351,569  345,856 
Aisne .  .  .  .  .  2,867   555,925  541,613  534,495 
Allier  .  .  .  .  2,849}}   424,582  424,378  417,961 
Alpes-Maritimes  .  .  1,442   238,057  265,155  334,007 
Ardèche .  .  .  .  2,145   375,472  363,501  347,140 
Ardennes .  .  .  .  2,028   332,759}}  318,865  317,505 
Ariège  .  .  .  .  1,893   237,619  219,641  205,684 
Aube .  .  .  .  .  2,326   257,374  251,435  243,670 
Aude .  .  .  .  .  2,448   332,080  310,513  308,327 
Aveyron .  .  .  .  3,386   415,826  389,464  377,299 
Basses-Alpes .  .  .  2,698   129,494  118,142  113,126 
Basses-Pyrénées  .  .  2,977   432,999  423,572  426,817 
Belfort, Territoire de  .  235   79,758  88,047  95,421 
Bouches-du-Rhône .  .  2,026   604,857  673,820  765,918 
Calvados .  .  .  .  2,197   437,267  417,176  403,431 
Cantal  .  .  .  .  2,231   241,742  234,382  228,690 
Charente .  .  .  .  2,305   366,408  356,236  351,733 
Charente-Inférieure  .  2,791   462,803  453,455  453,793 
Cher .  .  .  .  .  2,819   355,349  347,725  343,484 
Corrèze  .  .  .  .  2,273   326,494  322,393  317,430 
Corse (Corsica)  .  .  3,367   278,501  290,168  291,160 
Côte-d’Or .  .  .  .  3,392   381,574  368,168  357,959 
Côtes-du-Nord  .  .  2,786   628,256  616,074  611,506 
Creuse  .  .  .  .  2,164   284,942  279,366  274,094 
Deux-Sèvres .  .  .  2,337   353,766  346,694  339,466 
Dordogne .  .  .  .  3,561   492,205  464,822  447,052 
Doubs  .  .  .  .  2,030   310,963  302,046  298,438 
Drôme  .  .  .  .  2,533   314,615  303,491  297,270 
Eure .  .  .  .  .  2,330   358,829  340,652  330,140 
Eure-et-Loir .  .  .  2,293   283,719  280,469  273,823 
Finistère .  .  .  .  2,713   707,820  739,648  795,103 
Gard .  .  .  .  .  2,270   417,099  416,036  421,166 
Gers .  .  .  .  .  2,428   274,391  250,472  231,088 
Girdonde .  .  .  .  4,140   775,845  809,902  823,925 
Haute-Garonne  .  .  2,458   481,169  459,377  442,065 
Haute-Loire .  .  .  1,931   320,063  316,699  314,770 
Haute-Marne .  .  .  2,415   247,781  232,057  221,724 
Hautes-Alpes .  .  .  2,178   122,924  113,229  107,498 
Haute-Saône .  .  .  2,075   290,954  272,891  263,890 
Haute-Savoie .  .  .  1,775   275,018  265,872  260,617 
Hautes-Pyrénées  .  .  1,750   234,825  218,973  209,397 
Haute-Vienne .  .  .  2,144   363,182  375,724  385,732 
Hérault .  .  .  .  2,403   439,044  469,684  482,799 
Ille-et-Vilaine .  .  .  2,699   621,384  622,039  611,805 
Indre .  .  .  .  .  2,666   296,147  289,206  290,216 
Indre-et-Loire .  .  .  2,377   340,921  337,064  337,916 
Isère .  .  .  .  .  3,179   581,680  568,933  562,315 
Jura .  .  .  .  .  1,951   281,292  266,143  257,725 
Landes  .  .  .  .  3,615   302,266  292,884  293,397 
Loir-et-Cher .  .  .  2,479   279,214  278,153  276,019 
Loire .  .  .  .  .  1,853   603,384  625,336  643,943 
Loire-Inférieure  .  .  2,694   643,884  646,172  666,748 
Loiret  .  .  .  .  2,629   374,875  371,019  364,999 
Lot .  .  .  .  .  2,017   271,514  240,403  216,611 
Lot-et-Garonne  .  .  2,079   307,437  286,377  274,610 
Lozère  .  .  .  .  1,999   141,264  132,151  128,016 
Maine-et-Loire  .  .  2,706   527,680  514,870  513,490 
Manche  .  .  .  .  2,475   520,865  500,052  487,443 
Marne  .  .  .  .  3,167   429,494  439,577  434,157 
Mayenne .  .  .  .  2,012   340,063  321,187  305,457 
Meurthe-et-Moselle .  .  2,038   431,693  466,417  517,508 
Meuse  .  .  .  .  2,409   291,971  290,384  280,220 
Morbihan .  .  .  .  2,738   535,256  552,028  573,152 
Nièvre  .  .  .  .  2,659   347,645  333,899  313,972 
Nord .  .  .  .  .  2,229   1,670,184  1,811,868  1,895,861 
Oise .  .  .  .  .  2,272   403,146  404,511  410,049 
Orne .  .  .  .  .  2,372   367,248  339,162  315,993 
Pas-de-Calais .  .  2,606   853,526  906,249  1,012,466 
Puy-de-Dôme .  .  3,094   570,964  555,078  535,419 
Pyrénées-Orientales  .  1,599   211,187  208,387  213,171 
Rhône  .  .  .  .  1,104   772,912  839,329  858,907 
Saône-et-Loire .  .  .  3,330   625,885  621,237  613,377 
Sarthe  .  .  .  .  2,410   436,111  425,077  421,470 
Savoie  .  .  .  .  2,389   267,428  259,790  253,297 
Seine .  .  .  .  .  185   2,961,089  3,340,514  3,848,618 
Seine-Inférieure  .  .  2,448   833,386  837,824  863,879 
Seine-et-Marne  .  .  2,289   355,136  359,044  361,939 
Seine-et-Oise .  .  .  2,184   618,089  669,098  749,753 
Somme .  .  .  .  2,423   548,982  543,279  532,567 
Tarn .  .  .  .  .  2,231   358,757  339,827  330,533 
Tarn-et-Garonne .  .  1,440   214,046  200,390  188,553 
Var .  .  .  .  .  2,325   283,689  309,191  324,638 
Vaucluse .  .  .  .  1,381   241,787  236,313  239,178 
Vendée  .  .  .  .  2,708   434,808  441,735  442,777 
Vienne  .  .  .  .  2,719   342,785  338,114  333,621 
Vosges  .  .  .  .  2,279   413,707  421,412  429,812 
Yonne  .  .  .  .   2,880    355,364   332,656   315,199 
 Total .  .   207,076    38,218,903   38,517,975   39,252,245 
  1. In 1907 deaths were superior in number to births by nearly 20,000.
  2. The following list comprises the three most densely-populated and the three most sparsely populated departments in France:
    Inhabitants to the Square Mile.
    Seine .  .  .  20,803   Basses-Alpes .  .  42
    Nord .  .  .  850  Hautes-Alpes .  .  49
    Rhône .  .  .  778  Lozère .  .  .  .  64