Thus, though the generally higher proportion of females in the community may seldom be enough to depress more than slightly the death-rate as a whole, it has a substantial effect upon it at the ages where women are in more marked numerical predominance, as in later life, and in places where the number of domestic servants is unusually great.
The average deaths for the years 1901-1905 amounted to 1,227,903 the rate was thus 202 per thousand inhabitants, but the death-rate has materially decreased, the total number of deaths in 1907 standing at 1,178,349; the births for the same year were 2,060,974.
In Finland the death-rate at the earlier period taken for the comparison was abnormally swollen by epidemic disease, and if it be set on one side the decline appears to have been in harmony with that in its Scandinavian neighbours.
In France, on the contrary, the low natality having been so long continued, has raised the death-rate, by reason of the balance of proportion having been shifted by it from youth and the prime of life to old age.
The birth-rate between 1876 and 1900 averaged 28.51 per thousand; the death-rate between 1891 and 1900 was 16.36 per thousand, the lowest ever recorded over such a period for any European country.
In Santiago and Valparaiso the death-rate sometimes rises to 42 and 60 per 1000, and infant mortality is very high, being 73% of the births in some of the provincial towns.
A birthrate continuously in excess of the death-rate tends to lower the latter through the supply it affords of people annually reaching the more healthy ages.
In England, the decrease in "natality" is in itself enough to account for the decline in the death-rate, apart from any considerations of improved hygiene.
In this respect, however, matters are improving, the death-rate sinking from 33.1 per thousand in1881-1885to 28.1 per thousand in 1896-1900.
The birth-rate of the people is considered to exceed the death-rate by very little, and the Red Karen habit of life is most unwholesome.