Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: April ::
Re: Who Chooseth Me
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.0708  Thursday, 22 April 1999.

[1]     From:   Sean Lawrence <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 21 Apr 1999 09:47:26 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0706 Re: Who Chooseth Me

[2]     From:   Bruce Young <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Wednesday, 21 Apr 1999 16:54:41 +0000
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.0706 Re: Who Chooseth Me

[3]     From:   John Velz <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Thu, 22 Apr 1999 01:50:00 -0500
        Subj:   Give and Hazard


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sean Lawrence <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Wednesday, 21 Apr 1999 09:47:26 +0000
Subject: 10.0706 Re: Who Chooseth Me
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.0706 Re: Who Chooseth Me

Nely Keinanan points out, sensibly enough, that

>In the early modern period, however, it was the woman who gave and
>hazarded all she had; her property legally became the property of her
>husband, and it's Portia who has the pretty speech about giving
>everything she has to Bassanio.

It is, though there's still a great deal of talk by bachelors and former
bachelors in Shakespeare about losing their liberty in marriage.
Besides which, English canon law immediately after the reformation
seemed to favour the women, property-wise.  The first Edwardian prayer
book gives the following formula to the groom:

"With thys ring I thee wed:  Thys golde and siluer I thee geue: with my
body I thee wurship:  and withal my worldly Goodes I thee endowe."

The second prayer book eliminated the reference to "Gold and silver",
both in the oath and in its preceding rubric.  Nevertheless, we might
see both oaths as efforts to reverse the direction of fiscal obligation,
or perhaps to preserve a more medieval sense of married property against
rising notions of coverture.

Cheers,
Se

 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.