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Re: [ScottishWarPrisoners] George Gray and fornication

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  • Rom
    Common or no don t mean tweren t illegal. Or summat. ... ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ If you aren t someone s villain,
    Message 1 of 12 , Jan 15, 2007
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      Common or no don't mean tweren't illegal. Or summat.


      > I heard or read somewhere that sex before marriage
      > was
      > not uncommon in Colonial days.
      >
      > Eleanor Hall


      ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
      "If you aren't someone's villain, you aren't defined well enough." - Tom
      "I'm beginning to see why the others fear you." - Carolyn
      "Oh, Bob? Do we have any openings this man might fit?" - Madeline Kahn
      ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++



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    • Mark Sutherland-Fisher
      Eleanor, Sex before marriage was the norm in Scotland and probably England as well until Queen Victoria and her German morals kicked in! At a time when divorce
      Message 2 of 12 , Jan 16, 2007
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        Eleanor,
        Sex before marriage was the norm in Scotland and probably England as well
        until Queen Victoria and her German morals kicked in!

        At a time when divorce was only for the rich and powerful, the only reason a
        couple married was to have children and the only way they would know if they
        could ahve children togther was to try. The normal practice in Scotland was
        for a courting couple to have premarital sex and then as soon as the girl
        discovered she was pregnant, they married. If they got the timing wrong,
        they just announced that they had entered into an irregular marriage and if
        they could afford it, paid the fee to the Kirk and then had their irregular
        marriage recognised by the Kirk.

        The majority of people pre Victorian times entered into irregular marriages
        and as both marriages and baptisms had to be paid for to be recorded, the
        great majority of ordinary people didnt register their marriages and
        childrens births, which is why often people cant trace ancestors entries
        inthe OPR in years where there are not gaps in the records.

        Remember entire generations of men were regularly culled on the battlefield
        and disproportionately large numbers of women died either in or as a
        consequence of childbirth. A widower with young children would almost
        immediately remarry, often to his wife's younger sister or cousin to provide
        a new mother for his children and would then probably saddle the poor woman
        with another handful of her own and if she died, he would get another. A man
        was often having children with several wives over a 30 or 40 year period and
        frequently was still fathering children when his older children were
        themselves already having children.

        The converse was also true. Often a widow left with young children perhaps
        in her 20's or even as late as early 40's would acquire a new husband, often
        a man young enough to be her son, who would have his eye on her farm or
        property which would become his on marriage and then proceed to have even 2
        or 3 children by her. I have seen cases of women previously widowed with
        several children in their 40's having more children by their husbands in
        their 20s and unsurprisingly such women rarely lived to be old and a few
        years later the younger husband would be taking another wife after her
        premature death, often as a consequence of a very late pregnancy or
        childbirth. Within my own family I have numerous cases of multiple marriages
        in both sexes where there wasn't a single divorce. that is why it is
        essential you carefully analyse who the witnesses to any child's birth were.
        almost always they were specially chosen by the father/parents.
        Mark

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      • Dave Fisher
        My guess is that the Massachusetts Bay Colony and the York County Court (then part of the MBC) took a dimmer view of what the Scottish ex-prisoners took as a
        Message 3 of 12 , Jan 16, 2007
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          My guess is that the Massachusetts Bay Colony and the York County
          Court (then part of the MBC) took a dimmer view of what the Scottish
          ex-prisoners took as a norm. The court proceeding fell about halfway
          between the establishment of the Puritan colony and the later Salem
          witch trials.

          Dave

          --- In ScottishWarPrisoners@yahoogroups.com, "Mark Sutherland-Fisher"
          <msf10@...> wrote:
          >
          > Eleanor,
          > Sex before marriage was the norm in Scotland and probably England
          as well
          > until Queen Victoria and her German morals kicked in!
          >
          > At a time when divorce was only for the rich and powerful, the only
          reason a
          > couple married was to have children and the only way they would
          know if they
          > could ahve children togther was to try. The normal practice in
          Scotland was
          > for a courting couple to have premarital sex and then as soon as
          the girl
          > discovered she was pregnant, they married. If they got the timing
          wrong,
          > they just announced that they had entered into an irregular
          marriage and if
          > they could afford it, paid the fee to the Kirk and then had their
          irregular
          > marriage recognised by the Kirk.
          >
          > The majority of people pre Victorian times entered into irregular
          marriages
          > and as both marriages and baptisms had to be paid for to be
          recorded, the
          > great majority of ordinary people didnt register their marriages
          and
          > childrens births, which is why often people cant trace ancestors
          entries
          > inthe OPR in years where there are not gaps in the records.
          >
          > Remember entire generations of men were regularly culled on the
          battlefield
          > and disproportionately large numbers of women died either in or as
          a
          > consequence of childbirth. A widower with young children would
          almost
          > immediately remarry, often to his wife's younger sister or cousin
          to provide
          > a new mother for his children and would then probably saddle the
          poor woman
          > with another handful of her own and if she died, he would get
          another. A man
          > was often having children with several wives over a 30 or 40 year
          period and
          > frequently was still fathering children when his older children
          were
          > themselves already having children.
          >
          > The converse was also true. Often a widow left with young children
          perhaps
          > in her 20's or even as late as early 40's would acquire a new
          husband, often
          > a man young enough to be her son, who would have his eye on her
          farm or
          > property which would become his on marriage and then proceed to
          have even 2
          > or 3 children by her. I have seen cases of women previously widowed
          with
          > several children in their 40's having more children by their
          husbands in
          > their 20s and unsurprisingly such women rarely lived to be old and
          a few
          > years later the younger husband would be taking another wife after
          her
          > premature death, often as a consequence of a very late pregnancy or
          > childbirth. Within my own family I have numerous cases of multiple
          marriages
          > in both sexes where there wasn't a single divorce. that is why it
          is
          > essential you carefully analyse who the witnesses to any child's
          birth were.
          > almost always they were specially chosen by the father/parents.
          > Mark
          >
          > _________________________________________________________________
          > MSN Hotmail is evolving – check out the new Windows Live Mail
          > http://ideas.live.com
          >
        • bob gillis
          ... I think that the Puritans had a lot to do with it also. bob gillis
          Message 4 of 12 , Jan 16, 2007
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            Mark Sutherland-Fisher wrote:

            >Eleanor,
            >Sex before marriage was the norm in Scotland and probably England as well
            >until Queen Victoria and her German morals kicked in!
            >

            I think that the Puritans had a lot to do with it also.

            bob gillis
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