Author Topic: “Regularly coupled” instead of married?  (Read 332 times)

Offline AnnieBard

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“Regularly coupled” instead of married?
« on: Tuesday 07 September 21 22:36 BST (UK) »
Has anyone come across this before and/or is able to shed light on precisely what it means please? This is an entry in the Kilmington, Wilts. parish register for 1715: “Benjamin Fleetwood of Brewton and Grace Cheek of the same parish were regularly coupled”. Every other marriage entry at this time says “were married”.
Somerset and Wiltshire: Rodgers, Wilkins, Maundrill, Tucker, Adlam, Carey, Butcher, Fleetwood AND Scotland: Rodgers

Online arthurk

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Re: “Regularly coupled” instead of married?
« Reply #1 on: Wednesday 08 September 21 11:20 BST (UK) »
Might it mean that they had previously been "married" in some kind of irregular ceremony, and now they were making sure it was fully legal?

I see they were both of Brewton (= Bruton?), which might mean they would have needed a licence to marry in Kilmington. It would probably be worth looking for one, as it might possibly offer clues as to what had happened previously.
Researching among others:
Bartle, Bilton, Bingley, Campbell, Craven, Emmott, Harcourt, Hirst, Kellet(t), Kennedy,
Meaburn, Mennile/Meynell, Metcalf(e), Palliser, Robinson, Rutter, Shipley, Stow, Wilkinson

Census information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline AnnieBard

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Re: “Regularly coupled” instead of married?
« Reply #2 on: Wednesday 08 September 21 15:33 BST (UK) »
Might it mean that they had previously been "married" in some kind of irregular ceremony, and now they were making sure it was fully legal?

I see they were both of Brewton (= Bruton?), which might mean they would have needed a licence to marry in Kilmington.

Thank you for the reply. I haven’t found a license, but clearly that might mean I haven’t looked hard enough or that it hasn’t survived rather than that there wasn’t one. Or could it be that this is the ‘irregular’ marriage and that they didn’t have a license? Interestingly it’s notable how many marriages in the Kilmington register in the 1700s are for couples where one or both parties are from elsewhere.
Somerset and Wiltshire: Rodgers, Wilkins, Maundrill, Tucker, Adlam, Carey, Butcher, Fleetwood AND Scotland: Rodgers


Online arthurk

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Re: “Regularly coupled” instead of married?
« Reply #3 on: Wednesday 08 September 21 15:51 BST (UK) »
Or could it be that this is the ‘irregular’ marriage.....

Since the entry says "regularly coupled", I think it's unlikely that this is an irregular ceremony (but see below). An irregular marriage, almost by definition, might not be recorded in the registers. And "coupled" (rather than "married") might be to reflect some doubt as to whether an earlier ceremony was valid or not.

Or perhaps there hadn't been an earlier ceremony and the couple were living together as man and wife but now wanted to regularise their union; this could also explain why they went to a different parish. (But if they needed a licence and didn't get one, this Kilmington ceremony might in fact have been irregular, though the wording does suggest otherwise.)

If you've taken this entry from the parish register, have you also looked at the bishop's transcript in case there are any further comments? (Or vice versa)

And it could be worth checking out any indexes to irregular marriages (eg Fleet marriages in London) - it might have been some way from Wiltshire.
Researching among others:
Bartle, Bilton, Bingley, Campbell, Craven, Emmott, Harcourt, Hirst, Kellet(t), Kennedy,
Meaburn, Mennile/Meynell, Metcalf(e), Palliser, Robinson, Rutter, Shipley, Stow, Wilkinson

Census information is Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk