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Marriage in Clandestine Scotland

Marriage; the union of two individuals into a sacred bond that is intended to last and grow over a lifetime, is significantly different from culture to culture and society to society. Marriage in a tribal society in Africa has many different meanings and applications to it, than the union of two people in matrimony, in England. Rules, practices and legislation of marriage in one culture and even a single class within the aforementioned culture also differs from what it was in centuries past. The marriage practices and customs of present day England have changed significantly from those of the 17th century. This is most true when studying the higher social groups, the Aristocratic and gentry classes in England. Marriage in seventeenth century ‘high’ English society had many political, economic and social implications attached to it. Reasons for marriage were not structured mainly love and compassion, such as it is today; rather the political and economic stature of both families were of great concern and therefore played a large role in marriage. For this reason, the fathers of the couple to be wed had the greatest interest in the wedding, as they had the most to gain or lose. The lack of control over the ‘most important event in the lives of the young adults’ begs the question of who the marriage was really for and what the reasons for marriage were. The meeting and subsequent wedding of two young adults was therefore proposed and arranged, similar to a business deal, with concessions being made on both sides to ensure a successful outcome. Marriage within the aristocratic classes of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in England were largely predetermined and controlled by the fathers of the bride and groom, leaving the couple to be wed, without say in the matter. The couple’s meeting, corting and wedding were set up by the father. A dowry would be proposed and other concessions were made for the union of the ...

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Marriage in Clandestine Scotland. (1969, December 31). In Retrieved 22:19, August 20, 2014, from