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Daniele Caramani, "The End of Silent Elections: The Birth of Electoral Competition, 1832-1915," Party Politics, 9 (July 2003), 411-443.

First Paragraph:
In the first Danish election to the Folketing in 1849 (the lower house of the Rigsdag, introduced after the February Revolution of 1848), the seat returned by the constituency of Odder Arhus) was won by G. Winter of Venstre, of the Liberal Party. Almost 30 years later, in 1876, the same candidate won the same seat again. In the interim, 13 elections took place and G. Winter was never opposed by any other candidate (except in 1852, and then later in 1879). Elections therefore never really took place in Odder for three decades. Winter had always been 'elected by acclamation' (valgt ved kdring), a procedure adopted in the case of unopposed candidates. He was eventually defeated in 1884.

Figures and Tables:
Table 1: Electoral systems in eight countries: 1832-World War I
Figure 1: Percentage of uncontested constituencies in Denmark and the United Kingdom
Table 2: Uncontested constituencies and unopposed seats in the United Kingdom: 1832-1910
Figure 2: 'Shared constituencies' in Britain, 1832-85
Figure 3: Percentage of constituencies in which a second ballot was held in Belgium, Germany, The Netherlands and Norway, 1847-1915
Figure 5: Number of uncontested constituencies for Højre, Venstre and Social Democats in Denmark, 1849-1913
Figure 6: Number of uncontested constituencies for Conservatives, Liberals and Labour in Britain, 1832-1935
Figure 7: Number of uncontested constituencies for Conservatives, Liberals, Nationalist and Unionist in Ireland, 1832-1918
Figure 8: Main historical phases of party competition: 19th-early 20th century

Last Paragraph:
Finally, the third factor that definitively transformed competition from territorial into functional is the general transition in continental Europe to PR. This formula had a major effect on reducing territorial opposition. After its introduction, competition mainly opposes groups and parties on an ideological non-territorial basis. The change of the electoral formula from majorirarian to PR introduced incentives high enough for attempting to break down the monopoly of representation of given political groups in given areas. Not only did PR favour the access and growth of social democrats and consequently the domination of the leftÐright dimension, but PR has represented a strong incentive for parties to spread across territory. Whereas the majority vote accentuates geographical divisions of opinion, the list system hinders local particularisms and favours a national standard party organization and programme. National issues therefore occupy a more important place with respect to territorially localized ones.