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Five Essays.

the Medium between which number, and the above 812 thousand is 800604, somewhat exceeding 800 thousand, the supposed number of Holland[1].

Farthermore, I say that upon former searches into the Peopling of the World, I never found that in any Countrey (not in China it self) there was more than one Man to every English Acre of Land (many Territories passing for well peopled, where there is but one Man for ten |45| such acres) I found by measuring Holland and West-Frizia, alias North-Holland, upon the best Maps, that it contained but as many such Acres as London doth of People, viz. about 696 thousand Acres; I therefore venture to pronounce (till better informed) That the People of London are as many as those of Holland, or at least above ⅔ of the same; which is enough to disable the Objection above mentioned; nor is there any need to strain up London from 696 thousand to 800 thousand, though competent reasons have been given to that purpose, and though the Authour of the excellent Map of London, set forth Anno 1682, reckoned the People thereof (as by the said Map[2] appears) to be 1200 |46| thousand, even when he thought the Houses of the same to be but 85 thousand.

The worthy person who makes this objection in the same Letter also saith,

  1. The Aanwysing der heilsame politike Gronden en Maximen van de Republike van Holland en West-Vriesland, Leyden, 1669, frequently attributed to De Witt, but written chiefly by Pieter de la Court, gives the return of a "very strict and severe" poll tax in 1662. There were then found but 481,934 persons in South Holland, and supposing West Friesland might yield a fourth part as many, the total population would have been 602,417. "But because possibly none but intelligent Readers, and such as have travelled, will believe, what we see is customary in all Places, that the number of people in all Populous Countries is excessively magnified, and that the Common Readers will think, that since many would be willing to evade the Poll Tax, there was an extraordinary Fraud in the Number given in: I shall therefore follow the common Opinion, and conclude, that the Number of People was indeed much greater, and that these Countries are since that time much improved in the Number of Inhabitants; and accordingly I shall give a guess as by vulgar Report, that the whole Number, without excluding any Inhabitants whatsoever, may amount to two Millions and four hundred thousand People." P. 40–41 of the Engl. Transl., The True Interest of Holland, 1702.
  2. See p. 533, note.