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Oliver Twist and the workhouse - The British Library

The hardships of the Victorian workhouse led to Oliver Twist uttering the famous phrase ‘Please Sir, I want some more’. Dr Ruth Richardson explores Dickens’s reaction to the New Poor Law, which established the workhouse system, and his own experiences of poverty and hardship.

Living in a Victorian Workhouse

In a world without social programs, the poor had to rely on the charity of others; sometimes that charity was grudgingly dispensed so as to make it unattractive.

Young girls in the workhouse

Almost two thirds of the 545 youngsters buried in the mass grave were under six while workhouse records show the mortality rate for babies under the age of two was four times higher than older children