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Married women could not own property in their own right, and were indeed themselves the property of their husbands.But Blackstone went on to observe that "even the disabilities the wife lies under are, for the most part, intended for her protection and benefit.Wife selling in England was a way of ending an unsatisfactory marriage by mutual agreement that probably began in the late 17th century, when divorce was a practical impossibility for all but the very wealthiest.After parading his wife with a halter around her neck, arm, or waist, a husband would publicly auction her to the highest bidder.**There are obviously a lot of single farmers out there!If you're a single farmer, why not register for free and see how Muddy Matches can work for you?All that was required was for both parties to agree to the union, so long as each had reached the legal age of consent, Women were completely subordinated to their husbands after marriage, the husband and wife becoming one legal entity, a legal status known as coverture.
With no financial resources, and no skills on which to trade, for many women a sale was the only way out of an unhappy marriage.'e [the husband] turned shy, and tried to get out of the business, but Mattie mad' un stick to it.
So great a favourite is the female sex of the laws of England".
Five distinct methods of breaking up a marriage existed in the early modern period of English history.
As a child he witnessed the local poet return from market with a bought wife, and when confronted by the local JP and vicar (both related to SBG) he claimed the sale had been carried out correctly and that it was both legal and Christian.
Until the passing of the Marriage Act of 1753, a formal ceremony of marriage before a clergyman was not a legal requirement in England, and marriages were unregistered.