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> It makes more sense to me to calculate how much total free time they had compared to now.

You won't have much free time if you and your family can only aspire to reach the ripe old age of 30, if you manage to be the lucky ones who are lucky on the infant mortality lotto.




> You won't have much free time if you and your family can only aspire to reach the ripe old age of 30

That was never the case though; ancient societies had much lower life expectancy at birth because they were very likely to die in early childhood. People who made it to adulthood, sure, didn't live as long as today on average, but the difference is much smaller than life expectancy at birth numbers would suggest. You seem to recognize the high infant mortality, but not understand how it affects the other stats like life expectancy at birth.




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