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seldom avail themselves of their privilege of re-marrying They never assume the family names of their husbands, but in all the vicissitudes of matrimony retain their own.
In Scotland, the weddings of persons of inferior rank are managed in a very sociable manner. The company consists promiscuously of the high and low. Each guest contributes according to his ability or inclination; for which, a decent dinner is provided, and afterwards a jovial dance. When the parties happen to be servants in respectable families, the contributions are sometimes so liberal that they are sufficient to establish the young couple in the world.
Buchanan reports a law of Evenus, or Ewen the 3d. King of Scotland, by which it was ordered that the first night of a nobleman's marriage should be the king's fee; and that the nobleman, besides taking the same liberty with the commoner's wife, should again command their company whenever they pleased. Malcolm the 3d, at the entreaty of his Queen Margaret, changed this indulgence into a fine of half a mark, to be paid by the husband in lieu of parting with the privileges of his bed for the first night.
In Ireland, weddings are always celebrated with much dancing—a number of country neighbours among the poor people fix upon some young woman, who ought as they think to be married, and they agree also upon a young fellow as a proper husband; this being determined, they send to the fair one's cabin, to inform her that on the Sunday following, she is to be horsed, that is, carried on men's backs. She must then provide whiskey and cyder for a treat, as all will pay her a visit after mass for a hurling match. As soon as she is horsed the hurling begins, in which the young fellow appointed for her husband has the eyes of the company fixed on him : if he come off conqueror, he is certainly married to the girl ; but if another is victorious, the prize is transferred to the victor. These trials are not always finished in one Sunday—they occupy sometimes two or three, and the common expression when the contest is over is, that such a person is goaled.
The Circassian young women are brought up by the mother, who teaches them embroidery, to make their own dress, and that of their future husbands. On the day of marriage, the father makes the bride a present, but reserves the greatest part of what he intends to give her till the birth of the first child. On this occasion she pays him a visit, receives from him the remainder of her portion, and is clothed in the matron's dress, consisting principally of a veil.
In China, marriage is peculiarly reverenced by the people, and protected by the law. The adulterer is always punished with death, and the same punishment is usually inflicted upon him who seduces an unmarried woman from the path of rectitude. A Chinese often enters into the marriage state without having ever seen the woman he espouses. His knowledge of her is generally gained from some female relation who acts the part of a match-maker. If, however, the husband is imposed upon with respect to her age or figure, he can, if he pleases, obtain a divorce. The father gives no dowry with his daughter, on the contrary the bridegroom is obliged to pay him for his wife. The amount to be given is generally decided by the aforesaid marriage negociators. The parents of the bride fix the day for the performance of the ceremony, taking special care to consult the calendar for a lucky one. At the appointed time the bride is placed in a chair, or close palanquin, and is surrounded by persons of both sexes, carrying torches and flambeaux even in the middle of the day. A troop of musicians, with pipes, drums, and hautboys, march before the chair, her family follow behind. The key of the chair in which she is enclosed, is committed to the custody of a trusty servant, to be delivered to the husband only, who, richly dressed, waits at his gate for the arrival of the procession. When it approaches, the key is put into his hands, by means of which, at the first glance, he learns his fortune. If he is discontented with his intended spouse, he suddenly shuts the chair, and sends her back to her relations; but to get rid of her, it costs him a sum equal to that he gave to obtain her. If he is contented, she de. scends from her chair, and enters the house ; she is then committed into the hands of the women, who partake of an entertainment, and remain with her the whole day; the male part of the guests are treated in like manner by the husband. The women amuse themselves separately, and the men do the same in another apartment. A handsome Chinese damsel, who unites accomplishments with her beauty, will fetch from 450 to 700 louis d'ors, while there are some who sell for less than 100.
The Tartars, in general, are not restricted in the number
of their wives, besides concubines whom they choose from among their slaves. The Mahometan Tartars must not contract a marriage within certain degrees of affinity ; but the Pagan may marry any of their kindred, except their natural mothers: it is not unusual for the father to take his daughter to wife, and they generally abandon their wives when they draw near forty, considering them thenceforth as no other than servants, whom they provide with victuals, for taking care of, and tending upon the young wives who succeed to their places. It is usual among some of the Tartar tribes, for a young pair to retire and live together as man and wife for one year: if, during that time, the woman produces a child, their marriage is completed; but if not, they separate at pleasure, or agree to make another year's trial. Traces of this custom may be still discovered in the law of Scotland, according to which a marriage dissolved within a year and a day, and without a child, has no legal consequences, but restores the property of each party to the same situation, as if no such alliance had ever existed. We believe a somewhat similar custom is still prevalent in the Isle of Portland.
(To be resumed.)
THE LIFE OF EDWARD LORD HERBERT, OF CHERBURY.
WRITTEN BY HIMSELF. (Resumed from page 54.)
There is another custom likewise, that the knights the first day wear the gown of some religious order, and the night following to be bathed; after which, they take an oath never to sit in place where injustice shou'd be done, but they shall right it to the uttermost of their power, and particularly ladies and gentlewomen that shall be wronged in their honour, if they demand assistance, and many other points, not unlike the romances of Knight Errand.
The second day to wear robes of crimson taffita (in which habit I am painted in my study and so to ride from St. James's to Whitehall with our Esquires before us, and the third day to wear a gown of purple sattin, upon the left sleeve whereof is fastened certain strings, weaved of white silk and gold tied in a knot, and tassels to it of the same, which all the knights are obliged to wear untill they have done something famous in Arms, or 'till some lady of honour take it off, and fasten it on her sleeve, saying I will answer he shall prove a good knight. I had not long worn this string, but a principal lady of the Court, and certainly in most men's opinion, the handsomest, * took mine off, and said she would pledge her honour for mine; I do not name this lady because some passages happened afterwards which oblige me to silence, though nothing could be justly said to her prejudice, or wrong.
Shortly after this, I intended to go with Charles, Earl of Nottingham, the Lord Admiral, who went to Spain to take the king's oath for confirmation of the articles of peace betwixt the two crowns; howbeit, by the industry of some near me, who desired to stay me at home, I was hindered, and instead of going that voyage, was made sheriff of Monto, gomeryshire, concerning which I will say no more, but that I bestowed the place of under sheriff, as also other places in my gifts, freely, without either taking gift or reward; which custom also I have observed throughout the whole course of my life; in so much that when I was ambassador in France and might have had great presents, which former ambassadors accepted, for doing lawfull courtesies to merchants and others, yet no gratuity, upon what terms soever, cou'd ever be fastened upon me.
This public duty did not hinder me yet to follow my beloved studies in a country life for the most part; though sometimes also I resorted to Court, without yet that I had any ambition there, and much less was tainted with those corrupt delights incident to the times: for living with my wife in all conjugall loyalty for the space of about ten years after my marriage, I wholly declined the allurements and temptations whatsoever, which might incline me to violate my marriage bed.
About the year 1608 my two daughters, called Beatrice and Florance, who lived not yet long after, and one son Richard being born, and come to so much maturity, that though in their meer childhood they gave no little hopes of themselves for the future time, I called them all before my wife, demanding how she liked them, to which she answering, well; I demanded then whether she was willing to do so
* It is impossible perhaps at this distance of time to ascertain who this lady was, but there is no doubt of it being the same person mentioned afterwards, whom he calls the fairest of her time.
much for them as I wou'd ? whereupon she replying demanded what I meant by that? I told her that for my part I was but young for a man, and she not old for a woman, that our lives were in the hands of God, that if he pleased to call either of us away, that party which remained might marry again, and have children by some other, to which our estates might be disposed; for preventing whereof I thought fit to motion to her, that if she wou'd assure upon the son any quantity of lands from 300l. a year to 10001. I wou'd do the like ; but my wife not approving hereof, answered in these express words, that she wou'd not draw the cradle upon her head; whereupon I desiring her to advise better upon the business, and to take some few days respite for that purpose, she seem'd to depart from me not very well contented. About a week or ten days afterwards, I demanded again what she thought concerning the motion I made, to which she said no more, but that she thought she had already answered me sufficiently to the point ; I told her then that I shou'd make another motion to her, which was that in regard I was too young to go beyond sea before I married her, she now wou'd give me leave for a while to see foreign countries; howbeit if she wou'd assure her lands as I wou'd mine, in the manner above-mentioned, I wou'd never depart from her; she answered that I knew her mind before concerning that point, yet that she shou'd be sorry I went beyond sea, never the less, if I wou'd needs go, she could not help it. This, whether a licence taken or given, served my turn to prepare without delay, for a journey beyond sea, that so I might satisfy that curiosity I long since had to see foreign countrys: so that I might leave my wife so little discontented as I cou'd, I left her not only posterity to renew the family of the Herberts of St. Gillian's, according to her father's desire to inherit his lands, but the rents of all the lands she brought with her, reserving mine own partly to pay my brothers and sisters portions, and defraying my charges abroad. Upon which terms, though I was sorry to leave my wife, as having lived most honestly with her all this time, I thought it no such unjust ambition to attain the knowledge of foreign countrys, especially since I had in great part already attained the languages, and that I intended not to spend any long time out of my country.
Before I departed yet I left her with child of a son,