What You Had to Do to Hook Up in the Victorian Era
Courting the Victorian Woman. By Michelle J. Hoppe Until , the legal age in England for marriage was 21 years--for men and women. After , a male. If you think that personal ads and dating services are only 50 or 60 years In a new book titled Courtship and Marriage in Victorian England. The British Library has unearthed a Victorian self-help book for from 21 to 25 years is a favourable age to wed, because: "If she marry young.
The lady writes to her future husband that the company he is keeping of late is "fast" and that his associates are "prejudicial to his future prospects" in business and also, since possessed of greater fortunes than has he, are luring him into a life beyond his means.
In nineteenth century America a young man was reared to look to his mother and sisters for moral guidance and away from these influences he was culturally unprepared to take a strong moral stand on his own.
As a "victim" of the new technology, the town worker had more leisure than had even his recent ancestors. In search of ways to occupy his evenings when his pocket money was limited, he often fell in with other fellows like himself. It is curious that the same letter writing volume contains a form for a letter between young men-about-town which has the seeds for disaster on which the three foregoing letters touch: I trust you will be present on that occasion If he had acquired a taste for high living and the suitable young women were refusing his advances, perhaps he could find a wealthy widow.
At least enough young men had to be trying that route in order to justify the letter manual's inclusion of "Refusal on the grounds that the suitor is much younger than herself".
The text is interesting enough to be cited at length: You are twenty-six years of age, I am forty-five. I have a son seventeen years of age, and consequently too far advanced to learn filial duty from one not much his senior.
As to my little fortune, I consider myself merely the trustee for my children When you can convince me that, in point of age, fortune, and morals, you are such a person as I can, without reproach, take for my husband, and constitute the guardian of my children, I shall cease to suspect, that motives not the most honorable have induced you to play the lover to a woman sufficiently old to be your mother.
I hope I have said enough to make you ashamed of your conduct They were exposed to temptations unknown to most of their fathers in a society more restrictive than that which their sons would enjoy. Women were at even more of a disadvantage in that restrictive society as they still could not seek out men or make "the first move.
No impure conversations were held in front of single women. A woman could not receive a man at home if she was alone. Another family member had to be present in the room.
There was no physical contact between the woman and the gentleman until marriage. That was the only touch, which was accepted between a man and a woman, who was not engaged to him.
The Dating Traditions During the Victorian Period
A woman was allowed some liberties, however. She could flirt with her fan, as this behavior was within the protocol of accepted behavior. An unmarried girl would never date a man at the night.
This was considered extremely impolite.
Dating in the Victorian Age
Even if the girl entered the stage of courtship, she could never walk with the gentleman. Women were restrained to ride alone in the closed carriage with a man, expect for a close relative. The girl should not be invited by any gentleman at his place. If engaged, the gentleman could not turn back to see any other girl.
The Dating Traditions During the Victorian Period | Synonym
Even after an engagement, the couple was not allowed to have sexual behavior. In the relationship, intelligence was not at all required, neither any interest in the politics. The dating would firstly begin when the couple would speak to one another.
The next step was to go out for a walk and then lastly by keeping company. The upper class socialized at social events while the lowers classes socialized at events like Sunday Service or Church suppers.
The second stage of the courtship was engagement. After getting engaged, the couple could get hold hands in public, go for walks alone, and take unchaperoned rides.Victorian Marriages
The engaged couple was allowed to meet behind closed doors but had to be dutifully separated by nightfall. However, marriage between two persons was permitted so long the couple intending to marry belonged to the same class. After marriage, the woman played the role of a dutiful wife and mother.