GCSE 9-1 History got me f--ked up - SOMEONE HELP

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Eulex
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WHY ARE ALL THE SOURCES IN MY TEXTBOOK CONTRADICTING EACH OTHER WHEN IT COMES TO DATES AND STATISTICS. It says information about the number of soldiers in the Triple Entente countries and Triple Alliance countries but then in another source a few pages later it says the number of military personnel and for some countries the number is much lower and some it is much higher.
For example:
Russia's number of soldiers in 1914: 3,400,000
Russia's number of military personnel in 1914: 800,000

Britain's number of soldiers in 1914: 248,000
Britain's number of military personnel in 1914: 500,000

f--k man idek what to do
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999tigger
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(Original post by Eulex)
WHY ARE ALL THE SOURCES IN MY TEXTBOOK CONTRADICTING EACH OTHER WHEN IT COMES TO DATES AND STATISTICS. It says information about the number of soldiers in the Triple Entente countries and Triple Alliance countries but then in another source a few pages later it says the number of military personnel and for some countries the number is much lower and some it is much higher.
For example:
Russia's number of soldiers in 1914: 3,400,000
Russia's number of military personnel in 1914: 800,000

Britain's number of soldiers in 1914: 248,000
Britain's number of military personnel in 1914: 500,000

f--k man idek what to do
Thats the whole point of being an historian. You have to examine the evidence, ask questions and weigh it all up.

For instance

Source #1 Britain's number of soldiers in 1914: 248,000
Source /2 Britain's number of military personnel in 1914: 500,000



Who wrote the source?
When?
How accurate might it be?
What is the definition of soldier and that of military personnel?
Are there any reasonable methods to id why the numbers differ? [ soldiers might just mean the army, but military personnel could also mean army+ navy + airforce]
Could either or both be wrong? [check other sources, if others agree with A or B then the weight of opinion favours that]

If its a source question then you have every reason to point out the difference in numbers and can speculate which one is correct or close to the mark or why there is a difference.

In my experience i would just look at my textbooks and go with a number from reasonable verified sources. You are getting caught up in facts that dont really matter too much. Do not swap facts between sources

Another way to handle it is to put the range of numbers. Its not really important and dont get hung up on it. You can waste valuable time and energy. Fo with what 2 out of 3 textbooks suggest.
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