Sunday, January 9, 2011

[Resources] Wife Selling

Wife selling - who'da thunk?

In England during the 17th century, it was pretty hard to get a divorce, so enterprising husbands sold their wives instead. Since English law saw women as subordinate to men in marriage, it was an unusual response to the lack of separation and divorce with many judges claiming they had not right to stop the sale.

If it was a possibility in Jolly Ole England, what makes it more of a possibility in a fantasy setting? Even if slavery is unlawful, this could be a different form of it and not quite up to the law to resolve for a time.

I think I'm going to include this in a game sometime. Will the PCs stop the sale, find out why the family is being broken up? Or will one of them purchase a new wife, only to sell her again later. Or have them encounter a wife who's been sold, begging them for her safety and freedom. I haven't decided which but it'll be interesting and definitely bring the drama.

1 comment:

  1. Who'da thunk-
    Historically humans are bastards; it really bodes ill for any potential alien invaders, imo.

    Wife-selling, specifically:
    Depends on how close your game world maps to England in the 17th Century or thereabouts. This law is based on their variation of a real-world religion which in all likelihood doesn't exist in the campaign, so there's that... Why not hock the kids, or pawn the husband? Much more rare than this scenario in most Ren-eval bog standard fantasy. In any event, it should at least generate a little heat, right?


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