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Heiratsalter und Ehehindernisse in Stuttgart-Feuerbach im 19. und frühen 20. Jahrhundert

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Müller, Rita

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Abstract In 19th century Württemberg restrictive marriage laws were introduced to reduce the number of children born into families without sufficient means. The effect is discussed using ages at marriage in Feuerbach, a wine-growing village near Stuttgart, later an industrial town. From 1807 to 1832, when no legal restrictions were in force, marriage ages rose due to economic pressures. A downward trend occurs only after restrictions were lifted in the 1870s. Closer inspection reveals social and gender specific differences. From 1840 to 1879, a period of restrictive laws as well as economic upheaval, women of different social groups married at widely differing ages, whereas men’s marriage ages converged. After 1880 women’s marriage ages came closer again, but differences in male marriage ages widened. Men in higher social groups married later, whereas wage-earning workers could marry earlier. Legal restrictions failed to reduce the birthrate. The number of illegitimate children and premarital conceptions rose dramatically. A falling total birthrate only begins among couples marrying after 1880.
Keywords wedding; age; Germany; German Empire; Württemberg; town; marriage; historical development; statuary regulation; social differentiation; nineteenth century; twentieth century
Classification Social History, Historical Social Research
Method historical
Document language German
Publication Year 2003
Page/Pages p. 92-109
Journal Historical Social Research, 28 (2003) 3
ISSN 0172-6404
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works