THE interest which constructors of utopias had always displayed in the ideal number of citizens, along with the academic controversies about the "populousness of ancient nations" which entertained eighteenth century writers, gave place early in the last century to very practical discussions of population problems. It became widely recognized that numbers have a bearing upon social welfare, though the discussions were limited to conditions within certain old countries which were supposed to be suffering from overpopulation. But as the century advanced, the prevailing optimism and the determination not to raise devils, Malthusian or otherwise, caused interest in population problems to

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