Despite the infamous divorce of Henry VIII in 1529, subsequent moral, political, and religious attitudes ensured that until 1857, England was the only Protestant country with virtually no facilities for full divorce on the grounds of adultery, desertion, or cruelty. Using a mass of transcribed legal testimonies, taken from hitherto unexplored court records, Professor Stone uncovers the means by which laity and lawyers reformed the divorce laws, and offers astonishingly frank and intimate insights into our ancestors' changing views about what makes a marriage. Using personal accounts in which witnesses speak freely about their moral attitudes towards love, sex, adultery, and marriage, Lawrence Stone reveals, for the first time, the full and complex story of how English men and women have contrived to use, twist, or defy the law in order to deal with marital breakdown.
This is the only textbook which offers students a complete picture of Britain's population structure and an informed discussion of such topics as: the pressure of numbers on resources; the stagnation of population growth and the problems of an aging population; immigration and racial composition of the population; marriage, divorce, and the future of the family; and how population questions relate to regional problems, including labor migration and inner city depopulation and impoverishment. This study will prove especially useful for civil servants, journalists, and media people.