46 votes
Accepted

Were women the property of men prior to 1919 in the UK?

No. Slavery was abolished in 1833 in England. Prior to 1919 women were not property. Not having equal rights doesn't automatically mean slavery. Neither is a woman taking the family name of her ...
Jos's user avatar
  • 21.9k
27 votes

Were women the property of men prior to 1919 in the UK?

If you consider the wording carefully: Until women got full legal rights, [where] they could own property themselves, [and] they could work, essentially they were owned by their fathers and then by ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
  • 80.9k
25 votes
Accepted

In medieval Europe, were children born in an annulled marriage automatically illegitimate?

An annulment does not "break" a marriage, as does a divorce. It declares that the marriage never happened in the first place. This meant that the married couple would revert to their previous legal ...
sempaiscuba's user avatar
  • 77.6k
21 votes
Accepted

How common was marriage between nobles and peasants in the Middle Ages?

Probably more common than you would think. Lots of nobles were little more than farmers with a coat of arms. Peasants could acquire a lot of wealth. Where the division between the two classes fell ...
andejons's user avatar
  • 5,671
17 votes
Accepted

Who were the first people to get divorced in Western* Christendom?

I know of a Galician (NW Iberian Peninsula) charter issued before a notary and a judge in 1457 where a married couple divorce by mutual agreement. You can access a good edition of the original ...
Miguel Costa's user avatar
15 votes
Accepted

What was the average age of first marriage in 18th century Russia?

The "average age of brides in Russian history" is quite the timespan to observe. For that it might be said it varied, a lot, but a lot around basically the same age window: very young. ...
LаngLаngС's user avatar
  • 80.9k
13 votes
Accepted

When did age gaps in marriage become looked down upon in America?

One side of the problem is covered in the answers and comments already given. The other side - I would argue the biggest side - is that women not only live longer, but that they now usually work and ...
Luís Henrique's user avatar
12 votes

Why did emperors of India and China have so many mistresses?

I think you're finding this odd because you are looking at it from the point of view of your own culture, and assuming that is "normal". In fact, different cultures evolved with different standards ...
T.E.D.'s user avatar
  • 119k
11 votes

Who were the first people to get divorced in Western* Christendom?

If you count Spain as part of Western Europe, then divorce was available at least to the Muslim population from the time of the Arab conquest in the 8th century until the Catholic reconquest in the ...
fdb's user avatar
  • 9,784
10 votes

Probation time in marriage?

Until 1603, Irish couples could divorce for several reasons (sterility/infertility, impotency, homosexuality, abortion, infanticide, flagrant infidelity, insanity, abandonment...). Marriage was a ...
Alberto Yagos's user avatar
10 votes
Accepted

In Francoist Spain, what steps were required for non-Catholics to marry?

what was required for non-Catholics to marry in Francoist Spain? Imagine, for example, that two Protestants want to marry in Spain in 1950 Short answer for 1950: they needed an affidavit expressing ...
Ginasius's user avatar
  • 1,924
10 votes

How common was marriage between nobles and peasants in the Middle Ages?

It's hard to prove a negative (outside of math, of course), but let me try to show why this would be extremely rare (and mostly exist in legends). The institution of marriage exists to protect the ...
sds's user avatar
  • 27k
9 votes

Were there cases of bride kidnapping in the medieval period?

There are many instances of bridal abduction in Medieval Europe, especially to wealthy heiresses. In fact, marriage by abduction continued to occur in many areas well into the modern era, for example ...
Semaphore's user avatar
  • 97.5k
9 votes
Accepted

Were life imprisonment and mental insanity the only reasons a divorce couldn't be granted in early 20th century England?

Prior to the Matrimonial Causes Act 1937 (so pre-1938), access to divorce in England and Wales was quite limited. It is correct to say that a divorce could not be granted on the grounds of ...
Andrew is gone's user avatar
6 votes

Was Pablo Vicente de Solá married?

Yes. In California Through Russian Eyes, 1806–1848, on page 158, there is a discussion of a celebration being held in honor of the Tsar's birthday. Entertainment in the form of dancing and singing ...
justCal's user avatar
  • 39.1k
5 votes
Accepted

Why did Uesugi Kenshin never marry? Was it common practice for Japanese Buddhists of the time?

A lot of Buddhists got married in the Sengoku era- and in fact, quite a few daimyo were, like Kenshin, lay monks. Takeda Shingen and Otomo Sorin prior to his conversion to Christianity were two such ...
Mewshuji's user avatar
5 votes
Accepted

When did divorce become legal in California?

The earliest I find,according to Digest of the laws of California: containing all laws of a general character which will be in force on the first day of January, 1858 ... prepared under an act of the ...
justCal's user avatar
  • 39.1k
5 votes
Accepted

Probation time in marriage?

Citing the work is really critical. Knowing the title permits me to access the Wikipedia page which gives me the legal statue under which the marriage occurred. According to Irish “Brehon Laws,” a ...
MCW's user avatar
  • 33.1k
5 votes

How was Christian intermarriage with the Muslim Turks viewed by the Byzantines?

Just a partial answer here to one of the questions posed in the body (not in the title): "Is it safe to assume that such marriages of marrying off a Christian daughter resulted in their forced ...
AllInOne's user avatar
  • 3,183
5 votes

Was marriage a religious institution in its beginings or not?

I'm going to assume the question, like most people who bring up questions relating the two these days, is referring to only "pair-bonded" (strict) monogamous relationships. The thing is, ...
T.E.D.'s user avatar
  • 119k
5 votes
Accepted

Has the concept of "annulment" of a putative marriage changed over time in the Roman Catholic Church?

No, it's been consistent. The 1917 Code of Canon Law, which consolidated canon law dating back to the Decretals of Gratian (12th cen.), defines putative marriage: Canon 1015 § 4. Invalid marriage is ...
Geremia's user avatar
  • 2,225
4 votes
Accepted

How do they prove adultery before video/digital evidence was available?

It depends, but mainly by witnesses, catching during the act, or acting on mere suspicions And at some times and cultures oaths and ordeals also came into the game For example in the 10th century ...
b.Lorenz's user avatar
  • 4,364
4 votes

Why did marriage and multiple children make Hurrem Sultan special?

Prior to Hurrem, an arrangement known as the Sultanate of Women prevented the Sultan from marrying and designating a wife. Instead, beautiful women from the kingdom were placed in the Sultan's harem ...
Tom Au's user avatar
  • 104k
3 votes

In what sense was marriage in 19th century Europe "expensive"?

Weddings were expensive in the 19th century (not just in Europe) because of the wedding party. In the 20th century, "society" dispensed with a lot of wedding formalities, allowing cheap "civil" ...
Tom Au's user avatar
  • 104k
3 votes

How did wills work in times of Oscar Wilde?

For our purposes, "coming of age" does not refer to legal majority (aged 21), but the ability to inherit free and clear, through the will (age 35). "Guardian" may be the wrong word for Cecily after ...
Tom Au's user avatar
  • 104k
3 votes
Accepted

Was the 1852 Richard/Bolcoff divorce the first one in California?

No, it was not the first. Sacramento Transcript, Volume 2, Number 29, 27 November 1850: Divorces in California.— If there is any one spot on earth where less of this kind of thing should take ...
Aaron Brick's user avatar
  • 27.6k
3 votes

How common was marriage between nobles and peasants in the Middle Ages?

There are some examples. King Erik XIV of Sweden married the servant Karin Månsdotter in 1567 (not really middle ages, but quite close). Karin Månsdotter was the daughter of a soldier/jailkeeper and a ...
liftarn's user avatar
  • 2,066
3 votes

How common was marriage between nobles and peasants in the Middle Ages?

Since I have a great memory and access to the internet I quickly found a case of the child of a mighty noble and a peasant becoming his father's successor, but unfortunately they don't seem to have ...
MAGolding's user avatar
  • 19.3k
3 votes

To prevent sex were men bound in bags or locked in beds?

Bundling was a technique of separating two people of the opposite sex by textile devices to allow intimate contact without the possibility of intercourse during courtship. It is thought to have ...

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