|The Institution of Marriage|
|And How to Avoid Becoming Institutionalized|
|'Never make a toil out of pleasure, as the man said when he dug his wife's grave only three feet deep'.|
|All kidding aside, the Victorians loved the entire concept of marriage; from the courting process to the wedding; to the happliy ever after. They bought into it all.
Marriage and raising children was a way of life, and every young girl began to prepare for her wedding before she was out of grade school. The old skipping song: 'Who will I marry...butcher, baker or candlestick maker', was imbedded in their brains. It was not, will I become a butcher, baker, etc.; but who will take care of me.
Another popular method to determine a future husband was with apple peelings. The young girls would pare an apple, trying to get as much as possible in one cut around, so as not to break the chain. She would then turn and face the wall, and throw the peeling over her shoulder. Whatever letter was formed from the missile, would be the first initial in the name of her future husband.
In fact, there were few things in a girl's life that did not center around preparation for domestic bliss. Needlework was taught in school, as was cooking and maintaining a home; and only very rarely were they encouraged to seek a career.
If they were relatively intelligent, they accepted a position as a school teacher, but only until they found a husband. Others found employment as domestics, or laborers in factories, but again, only until Mr. Right came along. It was every woman's responsibility to marry and have children, and every man's to find a good woman, settle down, and raise a family.
Though divorces did take place, they were rare, and stigmatized a person forever. This was why it was imperative to choose a mate wisely because, as we all know: "Marry in haste, and be sorry in liesure", because it was always 'until death do you part.'
|Home Sweet Log Cabin - Domestic Life in Victorian Canada|
|Choosing Mr. Right - And Making Sure He Chooses You|
|Beware the Beautiful Woman - It's What's Under the Makeup that Counts|
|Grab that Chicken, I Forgot to Pay the Preacher - The Rural Canadian Wedding|
|The Social Event of the Season - The Canadian Town Wedding|
|The Language of Flowers - And the Garden of Love|
|Wedlock or Deadlock - When and if to Tie the Knot|
|The Charivari - Tying the Knot When You're Long in the Tooth|
|The Conjugal Kiss or an Unruffled Crinoline - Keeping the Homefires Burning|
|Preparing for the Big Day - The Trousseau|
|Don't Look Now But is That the Minister? - The Canadian Wedding|
|Trouble in Paradise - When 'I Do' Becomes 'I'd Rather Not'|
|Uniquely Canadian Home Page|
|Victorian Canada Home Page|