During Antiquity and the Middle Ages, people did not make much of childhood. Children were still considered mini-adults.
In the mid-19th century, the idea of specific protection for children emerged. The concept was pioneered in France. A body of law relating to minors gradually developed.
From 1841, recognition of children’s interests emerged. Bit by bit, with the Industrial Revolution in full swing, legislation was passed to protect children in the workplace.
From 1881, French law on children’s education developed.
In the early 20th century, child protection began to be established. This included medical, social and court protection, among other things. The principle of child protection spread from France to other European countries.
In 1919, came a watershed moment. The League of Nations set up a Child Welfare Committee, which increased recognition of children’s rights by putting them in the international spotlight.