c1888 Wedlock Marriage Book The Right Relations of the Sexes

Fowler The Right Relations of the Sexes Who May and May Not Marry c1888. This book is chock full of all the social customs, etiquette, manners, and social misnomers of the post-Civil War period. Marriage as Divine Institution; Qualifications for Matrimony, The Right Age to Marry; Motives for Marrying; Marriages of Consanguinity; Conjugal Selection; Courtship; The Duty of Parents; Marriage Customs and Ceremonies; Ethics of Marriage; Second Marriages; Jealousy--It's Cause and Cure; Separation and Divorce; Celibacy, Ancient and Modern; Polygamy and Pantagamy; Love Signs; Love Letters; The Poet's Wife; The Model Husband; The Model Wife; Miscellaneous Matrimonial Matters; Poetry of Love and Marriage.

Some of the sub-chapters further detail Why Married People Live Longest; When a Divorce Will Be Denied; Duties of Home; Matrimonial Fidelity; Ancient Marriages; The Evils of Long Engagements; The Etiquette of Engagement; Social Position; Unhappy Marriages; Marrying for Beauty; Difference in Age; Physical and Mental Soundness; Whom Do Great Men Marry?; Pleasures of Courtship; A Sensible Love Letter; Ancient Polygamy; Love and Jealousy.

It is really quite an insight into Victorian life, how young women and men were brought up, and their chiseled views regarding marriage and courtship brought about by informed authors of that period.

The following excerpts were taken with an optical reader (please excuse any typos)

The Terrible Effects of Jealousy.

How many happy homes have been broken up by this influence I The suspicions of jealousy once entertained by one If those whom the rites of the Church linked into what on their memorable wedding-day they deemed a happy union, engender feelings whose cold impress remains in the heart long after they have been found altogether baseless.

The deeply enamored maiden eyes with keen distrust and pain the polite attentions given by the lord of her heart to another ; and the passionate lover raves and reproaches the star of his affections if she carelessly smile on a gentleman acquaintance.

An honest and considerate husband or wife of true religious tendencies will give no occasion for jealousy. The low, lewd, and weak are not expected to regulate themselves ; and hence the jail, the prison, and the asylum. Is the reader afflicted with the infinity of jealousy? Does the young wife feel neglected, and is she fearing her husband's interests and attentions are being improperly shared by another.

The more intense the feeling experienced by one, the greater the number of faculties employed in its agitation ; so the greater the number of faculties employed in forming an attachment, the more painful the feelings when that attachment is interrupted. Hence, also, the jealousy among human beings in consequence of real or imaginary unfaithfulness, or the fear of rivalry in love matters, is intense and powerful in proportion to the extent of the mental organization unfortunately affected by it. An animal or a man in whom only Amativeness is offended, is appeased when the rival is vanquished or so removed as not to offer further opposition. Moreover, he has no unkind feeling toward his mate. With higher natures, in whom Conjugality, or Union for Life, together with Friendship, the intellectual, the moral, and esthetic faculties take part in the make-up of the love-emotion, we find the jealousy of any infidelity or disturbance quick, sensitive, intense, and powerful.

Morbid Jealousy: This is when jealousy has become a morbid condition of the mind which distorts appearances, creates its own occasions, and would suspect vestal purity. This is a selfish and suspicious action of the love-feelings, and is an exceedingly unfortunate mental condition, whether it come by inheritance in whole or in part of a diseased or badly constituted organization ; whether it be induced by ill health, or provoked by improper social culture or social misadaptation. Novel-reading and the drama seem to excite the imaginative elements of human nature, especially in connection with the social feelings, thereby tending to promote in mankind the spirit of jealousy, for it is among the classes most devoted to these that this passion in some of its varied forms seems to be most frequently and painfully manifested. When Amativeness, Conjugality, and Friendship have become intensely excited in jealousy, and Combativeness and Destructiveness, sympathizing as they do, also become morbid, there sometimes Occurs a species of madness which results in the murder of the real or imaginary offender, followed by the suicide of the infatuated victim of jealousy.

How To Cure Jealousy:

In all these forms of jealousy, it will be seen that the moral Mid religions elements of our nature seem to have taken no part. We are quite certain that none of the moral faculties enter into the production of jealousy. The conduct that awakens jealousy may be, and is, condemned by the moral nature of the victim ; but that conduct is alike condemned by the moral feelings of all that behold it, though they are not made jealous or otherwise personally affected by it. It would seem, then, that the only sure remedy for jealousy is to be found in the strength and right action of the moral and religious nature.

On Divorce:

A divorce from the bonds of matrimony is granted in the following States on the following grounds:

In all the States and Territories (except Utah) it is granted for adultery.

In the former Slave States it is granted for marriages between a white and negro or mulatto.

On the Benefits of Wedlock:

On the other hand, marriage lengthens a man's life :

1st. By its making home inviting.

2d. By the softening influences which it has upon the character and the affections.

3d. By the cultivation of all the better feelings of our nature, and in that proportion saving from vice and crime.

4th. There can be no healthful development of the physical functions of our nature without marriage ; it is necessary to the perfect man, for Divinity has announced that it was " not good for a man to be alone."

5th. Marriage gives a laudable and happifying object in life, the provision for wife and children, their present comfort and future welfare, the enjoyment in witnessing their happiness, and the daily and hourly participations in affectionate interchange of thought, and sentiment, and sympathy ; these are the considerations which antagonize sorrow and lighten the burdens of life, thus strewing flowers and casting sunshine all along its pathway.

Celibacy and Crime:

Voltaire said : The more married men you have, the fewer crimes there will be. Marriage renders a man more virtuous and more wise. An unmarried man is but half of a perfect being, and it requires the other half to make things right ; and it can not be expected that in this imperfect state he can keep the straight path of rectitude any more than a boat with one oar, or a bird with one wing can keep a straight course. In nine cases out of ten, where married men become drunkards, or where they commit crimes against the peace of the community, the foundation of these acts was laid while in a single state, or where the wife is, as is sometimes the case, an unsuitable match. Marriage changes the current of a man's feelings, and gives him a center for his thoughts, his affections, and his acts. Here is a home for the entire man, and the counsel, the affections, the example, and the interest of Us ^better half' keep him from eratic courses, and from falling into a thousand temptations to which he would otherwise be exposed. Therefore the friend to marriage is the friend to society and to his country.

Whatever may be said of Voltaire's theology, his statement on the marriage question is certainly correct. Statistics prove that a large majority of our criminals, State prison convicts, etc., are unmarried. Think of this, young men ; and if you wish to escape all that is bad, try to form a partnership with a good woman, and you will be secure.

Fowler also adds his twist with phrenology, that is, how the shape of the head and body parts govern the personality traits.

Love on the Chin.

The size of the cerebellum, other things being equal, is, as we have said, the measure of the power of love ; but this power is sometimes to a greater or less extent latent, and its manifestation does not correspond with the development of its organ. For the indications of its voluntary activity or ability to act at will, we must observe its facial signs in the chin and lips.

One of the physiognomical signs of love is the anterior projection of the chin proper and the breadth of the lower jaw below the molar teeth. Both this sign and the corresponding phrenological organ were enormously large in Aaron Burr, and his character is well known to have corresponded with these developments.

The natural language of love as expressed in the chin consists in throwing it forward or sidewise, the former movement being the more natural to woman and the latter to man.

The Males Role as the Provider:

A very important, though not a romantic, aspect in which the model husband looks upon his duty to his wife is that of a provider for her material wants and needs. In order to supply her with all the necessaries and comforts of life, and to spare her all the privations and hardships possible, he diligently attends to his business and economically manages his affairs. He is willing to labor to the utmost of his power, if need be, for her support. In every case where true love exists, it will be easy to toil for the support of the loved object.

The model husband believes there should be no separate possessions or clashing interests in marriage. One in heart and mind, the wedded pair should, he thinks, have alt things in common — a common purse, a common store, a common estate — a community of interests in everything.

On and on the text reads, with insightful words as to the psyche of the 1870 married couple. It is quite a view into their social norms and convections of the Victorian period, so very different from what is normal today!

This hardbound book is in good condition. The inside is clean with little age wear, the inside front and back hinge papers are amazingly uncracked, the text block is tight. It looks as if this book was hardly read, and the pages are clean with an aged patina. The front flyleaf pages have a few previous owners notes and a price notation. It has dark green cloth-covered boards with gilt lettering on the front and spine, with two gilt doves holding a wedding ring overhead. The spine has a little wear at the top, and it leans a little forward. Cover board corners have the normal shelf wear for a book of its age. Overall size is 5 x 7.5 inches, 240 pages, with extra pages at the back on other books by Wells, featuring phrenology, physiognomy--wonderful quack medicine. It is an excellent book for the library.

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