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The Inclosure Acts were a series of United Kingdom Acts of Parliament which enclosed open fields and common land in the country. This meant that the rights that people once held to graze animals on these areas as well as use the resources(wood, water, etc.) of the area were denied.
Inclosure Acts for small areas had been passed sporadically since the 12th century but the majority were passed between 1750 and 1860. Much larger areas were also enclosed during this time and in 1801 the Inclosure (Consolidation) Act was passed to tidy up previous acts. In 1845 another General Inclosure Act allowed for the appointment of Inclosure Commissioners who could enclose land without submitting a request to Parliament.
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The Inclosure Acts encouraged many English country-dwellers to move to urban areas where they might typically become employed in wage labour jobs, thus becoming, in the terms of Marxist economics, the proletariat. In Marxist interpretation, the Inclosure Acts can be seen as a process of bringing (previously common and public) land and people into the sphere of capitalist social relations through political force; in Marxist terminology this process is an example of primitive accumulation of capital.
The Inclosure Act 1773 (13 Geo.3 c.81)
The Inclosure Acts 1845 to 1882 means:
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