chapter  14
The Skilled Artisans during the Industrial Revolution, 1750–1850
WithD. A. Farnie, W. O. Henderson
Pages 12

The Germanic concept of the Lumpenproletariat, with its opprobrious connotations, has gradually, and perhaps unwittingly, been extended to cover the whole of a very varied economic category. The families inhabited Manchester and Dukinfield, a small cotton town nearby, and the budgets give weekly income and expenditure. The older skilled trades were still very numerous in England even as late as 1851, a fact which is often overlooked, because attention has been concentrated on the newly-mechanised industries, of which the outstanding example was the cotton industry. The skilled workers were well aware of their superior status and artisans often treated mere labourers with contempt. In 1750 apprenticeship was governed partly by the Statute of Artificers passed in 1563 during the early years of the first Elizabeth, and partly by custom operating through the common law. The Statute of Artificers made apprenticeship compulsory on artisans, with a general servitude of seven years for young recruits.