Breach of Promise to Marry
A History of How Jilted Brides Settled Scores
Hiding from daylight in her mouldering wedding dress, Dickens’s Miss Havisham is the classic literary image of the jilted bride. But thanks to the 18th-century law of breach of promise, many women had more attractive options. This entertaining social history uncovers more than a thousand cases in which wronged fiancées employed no win no fee lawyers to gain substantial financial redress for their disappointment – and adventuresses extracted money from men ‘they cannot possibly want as husbands’.
Divorced, Beheaded, Sold
Ending an English Marriage 1500–1847
How could English people end unhappy marriages before divorce was readily available? As the colourful stories in this book reveal, the options ranged from quietly but bigamously remarrying to selling an unwanted wife to the highest bidder at market. The author also examines a 1594 case in which neighbours helped a woman retrieve property from her husband, and occasions when wives successfully sued for legal separation. The appendix focuses on Henry VIII's marital arrangements.
Factory Production in Nineteenth-Century Britain
This anthology brings together writings that suggest the scope of responses – from wondrous celebration to apocalyptic horror – elicited by the advent and establishment of the factory system in 19th century Britain. Addressing complex questions about the possible effects of mass production on human life and labour, the collection includes important works by Adam Smith, Ruskin, Carlyle and Morris alongside extracts from lesser-known factory tourists' tales and inspectors' reports, a Luddite pamphlet and a cotton mill worker's autobiography.
The Way We Were
In sections on various kinds of work, including manufacturing, mining, farming, retail, office work and domestic service, this compilation of archive photographs dating from the late-19th to mid-20th century is part of the English Heritage series The Way We Were. Slightly off-mint.