Poverty and its Relief in Medieval England Essay

Poverty and its Relief in Medieval England Essay

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Collapse of medieval social structure paved the way for the policies which majorly concentrated on the upliftment of poor. This resulted in the poor relief act for the betterment of the underprivileged people of the society. During 1547 beggars were grouped as ‘V’ and were forced to slavery for two years. The law of 1572 continued this approach stating that beggars should be punished and for a third offence should be given death penalty. The only help for poor people was through private charity. Growing numbers of beggars and vagrants were of great concern to the then ruling government. They were of the view that this might lead to social disorder and hence a distinction was being made between the poor. The poor then were categorized into deserving and the undeserving poor. The deserving poor consisted of the elderly and the very young and families who occasionally found themselves in financial difficulties due to a change in circumstance they were considered deserving of social support. The undeserving poor were those people who often turned to crime to make their living, migrant wo...

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