Author Topic: Marriage bonds  (Read 565 times)

Offline izzy41

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Marriage bonds
« on: Saturday 21 May 22 15:14 BST (UK) »
I have seen a few marriage licences from the 18th early 19th c, the bond amount for most i have seen have been around 100 to 300.  However i have received the licence for my 4th x Great Grandparents and it is for 1000.  Does this mean anything, i have never seen one so expensive a bond before.  My theory on this couple is that she was 19yrs old and from a very wealthy family, i think the family felt that she married beneath herself.  I cannot find much on him at all other than the fact that he was a Corn Factor, he signed the bond along with her father, so i think he was much older than her and the family were not best pleased about the union - this was in 1789. 

Offline Guy Etchells

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #1 on: Sunday 22 May 22 09:28 BST (UK) »
I am not really sure what you mean?

A marriage bond was simply a device to ensure the groom (or rather the couple) did not falsify his allegation.
A marriage allegation was a document in which the couple or often just the groom alleged that there were no impediment to the marriage.
As long as the truth was told it was never paid.
If I have read what you have written correctly it is the opposite of your conclusion, the father was very happy with the groom as he has signed to pay the bond if required to do so and the groom does not or cannot.
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Offline Andrew Tarr

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #2 on: Sunday 22 May 22 13:39 BST (UK) »
Presumably if the girl was 19 her father could have forbidden the marriage anyway ? Perhaps she was in the family way and any child was being legitimised - not necessarily by the true father ?
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Online coombs

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #3 on: Sunday 22 May 22 15:28 BST (UK) »
Presumably if the girl was 19 her father could have forbidden the marriage anyway ? Perhaps she was in the family way and any child was being legitimised - not necessarily by the true father ?

So what you are saying is that many pregnant young unmarried women were married off to any man available, to "legitimise" the baby, so as to make an honest woman of her?  :-\ I feel that is less common than you think.

NPE rates are about 1 to 2% in marriage, so I say about the same for pregnant women marrying. I feel the phrase "shotgun" wedding is true. And many married once they knew fertility was proven.
Researching:

LONDON, Coombs, Roberts, Auber, Helsdon, Fradine, Morin, Goodacre
DORSET Coombs, Munday
NORFOLK Helsdon, Riches, Harbord, Budery
KENT Roberts, Goodacre
SUSSEX Walder, Boniface, Dinnage, Standen, Lee, Botten, Wickham, Jupp
SUFFOLK Titshall, Frost, Fairweather, Mayhew, Archer, Eade, Scarfe
DURHAM Stewart, Musgrave, Wilson, Forster
SCOTLAND Stewart in Selkirk
USA Musgrave, Saix
ESSEX Cornwell, Stock, Quilter, Lawrence, Whale, Clift
OXON Edgington, Smith, Inkpen, Snell, Batten, Brain


Offline Andrew Tarr

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #4 on: Sunday 22 May 22 15:36 BST (UK) »
Presumably if the girl was 19 her father could have forbidden the marriage anyway ? Perhaps she was in the family way and any child was being legitimised - not necessarily by the true father ?

So what you are saying is that many pregnant young unmarried women were married off to any man available, to "legitimise" the baby, so as to make an honest woman of her?  :-\ I feel that is less common than you think.

I didn't say, or even suggest that I thought, that was a 'common' scenario.  I was only looking for possible explanations  :)
Tarr, Tydeman, Liversidge, Bartlett, Young

Offline familydar

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #5 on: Monday 23 May 22 11:29 BST (UK) »
My understanding is that the bond would be forfeit if the marriage didn't take place, so when our ancestral ag labs married the dau of another ag lab from the next parish, 100 seems to have been quite normal - it would have been a lot of money so both parties turned up because their families couldn't afford to lose it.  For it to be set at 1000 suggests to me that the bondsman was wealthy and wouldn't have missed a mere 100.

Think of it like modern-day criminal bail, the amount being set at a level appropriate to the persons means.

Jane :-)
ALLEN
BARR, BARRATT, BERRY, BRADLEY,BRAMLEY,BRISTOW,BROWN,BUGBIRD,BUTLER
CAIN,CARR,CHAPMAN,CHARLES,CH*LTON,CHESTER,COCKETT
COLLASON,COLLYER,CORKERY
DARLING, DENYER,DICKERSON,DOLLING,DURBAN
FARMER,FURNELL
GIBSON,GILES,GROOMBRIDGE
HALL,HAMBIDGE,HARMES,HART,HICKS,HILL,HOLLOWAY
JACKSON
K*AT*S
LANCASTER,LINTON
MCDONALD,MCFADEN,MEARS,MILLARD
NICOLAS,NOAK,NORTH
PARFIT,PORTER
RIPPINGALE,ROBINS
SEARLE,SPENCER,STEDHAM
TYLER,TILLY,TUCKWELL
WADE,WAGER,WALKER,WATSON,WEBB,WITHRINGTON,WOOD

Online Galium

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #6 on: Monday 23 May 22 11:48 BST (UK) »
The bond isn't to make sure that the marriage takes place - people who have obtained a licence are (in theory) free to change their mind before the wedding without anything being forfeit, just as those who have had banns read are not obliged to marry just because they have.

The bond is only forfeit if one or both parties is discovered not to be free to marry, either because they are already married, or because of consanguinity.
UK Census info. Crown Copyright, from www.nationalarchives.gov.uk

Offline familydar

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #7 on: Monday 23 May 22 12:04 BST (UK) »
Thanks Galium, that makes sense

Jane :-)
ALLEN
BARR, BARRATT, BERRY, BRADLEY,BRAMLEY,BRISTOW,BROWN,BUGBIRD,BUTLER
CAIN,CARR,CHAPMAN,CHARLES,CH*LTON,CHESTER,COCKETT
COLLASON,COLLYER,CORKERY
DARLING, DENYER,DICKERSON,DOLLING,DURBAN
FARMER,FURNELL
GIBSON,GILES,GROOMBRIDGE
HALL,HAMBIDGE,HARMES,HART,HICKS,HILL,HOLLOWAY
JACKSON
K*AT*S
LANCASTER,LINTON
MCDONALD,MCFADEN,MEARS,MILLARD
NICOLAS,NOAK,NORTH
PARFIT,PORTER
RIPPINGALE,ROBINS
SEARLE,SPENCER,STEDHAM
TYLER,TILLY,TUCKWELL
WADE,WAGER,WALKER,WATSON,WEBB,WITHRINGTON,WOOD

Online coombs

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Re: Marriage bonds
« Reply #8 on: Monday 23 May 22 12:11 BST (UK) »
Several Berkshire people had to apply to the Bishop of Salisbury in Wiltshire if they wanted to marry by license. I think Berkshire was in the Diocese of Salisbury at the time.

My ancestors married by license in 1723 in Marcham, Berkshire, and it appears in the Old Sarum Marriage Licenses and Bonds. So there is a loose connection to Salisbury as the licenses would have been issued there I think.
Researching:

LONDON, Coombs, Roberts, Auber, Helsdon, Fradine, Morin, Goodacre
DORSET Coombs, Munday
NORFOLK Helsdon, Riches, Harbord, Budery
KENT Roberts, Goodacre
SUSSEX Walder, Boniface, Dinnage, Standen, Lee, Botten, Wickham, Jupp
SUFFOLK Titshall, Frost, Fairweather, Mayhew, Archer, Eade, Scarfe
DURHAM Stewart, Musgrave, Wilson, Forster
SCOTLAND Stewart in Selkirk
USA Musgrave, Saix
ESSEX Cornwell, Stock, Quilter, Lawrence, Whale, Clift
OXON Edgington, Smith, Inkpen, Snell, Batten, Brain