Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Question from Kirsten - Male and female adultery, etc.

I want to know why men could cheat on the woman but when a woman cheats on a man she usaly dies Aso I want to know who james 1 of england had any kids it does not say on the web site and I'm doing an report for myself and I need more info please get back to me as soon as posible
Thank you

ps my name is kirsten I'm 14 years old and in the 8th grade


Lara said...

In regards to the first part of your question, at the time there was a logical reason why a woman (in particular a Queen) could be executed for adultery. If a woman is unfaithful and becomes pregnant, it would threaten the inheritance of the woman's husband. Of course, this is most important when then woman is a Queen, since it would threaten the succession to the throne. In the days before DNA testing, you can see why it is a problem.

For your other question, check out the official website of the monarchy. They have a section on the Stuarts, which includes a family tree. I think there were some other children who died young, but the important ones are listed: http://www.royal.gov.uk/output/Page74.asp

Anonymous said...

Not all women were executed for cheating. Many were sent to nunneries. It really depended on the womans status. Kings and Dukes etc. had to be as sure as possible that their sons inherited their titles and Kings had to think of the stabilty of the country. It could cause civil war if a bastard took the throne and other family members felt they had a stronger claim to be king.

Women were rarely taught anything other than, dancing, sewing and music. Women were considered stupid and not worth educating, few could write even in high born families educated women were rare.

Often daughters were married off to the highest bidder. Rarely did anyone of high status marry for love fathers chose who would marry their children (male and female.) Marriage was a deal and there must have been many unhappy marriages in rich families.Poor women may have faired better. Queens were not thought able to rule without a husband to rule her. A women belonged to her husband and before that her Father. She was his propery like a chair or a table with simular human rights.

I am not a student of the Stuarts but I think James 1sts son was Charles 1st and his son was Poor old Charles 2nd who was executed by the good old British public! I think we were British by then, we were united with Scotland by James 1st anyway!

Elizabeth said...

Actually, neither Anne Boleyn or Katherine Howard were executed for adultery they were executed for treason. In Anne's case her treasonous activity was conspiring to kill the King, because adultery was not legally considered to be treason. I don't know what Katherine Howard was convicted of, perhaps adultery by the Queen was defined as treason later, I haven't really studied Katherine Howard's life.
Outside the King's family Women weren't killed for adultery, they were generally punished more severely than men (although if a man's wife was adulterous he was often ridiculed by his community) The most severe sanction would be a legal separation in which neither party could re-marry but the husband had no responsibility to provide for his wife and he got to keep the children. So a woman would often be stuck with no income and no access to her children, but she wouldn't have been killed.

sbz5809 said...

Anonymous said: "I think James 1sts son was Charles 1st and his son was Poor old Charles 2nd who was executed by the good old British public!"
You're half correct! James I (= James VI of Scotland) was indeed the father of Charles I. He (not his son) was executed in 1649 by the parliamentarian regime of Oliver Cromwell, at which point his son legally became King. However, the monarchy was declared abolished by Cromwell, and Charles II had no option but to flee the country. He returned in 1660 at the restoration of the monarchy, and, having no legitimate heir, was succeeded in 1685 by his brother James II.

PlusHeureuse said...

I thought that Anne Boleyn was indeed executed for treason, as adultery against the king, as was anything against the king, treasonous. One of the many (trumped up!) charges against Anne was adultery, explaining why George, Norris, Smeaton, Bereton and...i know there was one more...were executed on the charge of having relations with the queen.
But in answer to your question, the reason that women were more readily punished was the amount of power men had and the patriarchal nature of tudor society.

Lobo said...

Women are more punished for their sexual adultry for several reasons - inheritance is one - no man wants a child not his to have any part of what he has built in life; No man want to support a child that is not his or he has not chosen to support;
If a man cannot be sure a child is his, it also makes bad commentary about who is in charge of his household. It's not just the rich or the kings who are concerned about this.
This is why men and relatives of the man's side of the familly examine or make more comments about children born to the woman he is with about how much the child does nor does not look like any member of their family - the man, man's father, uncle, grandfather, etc.

All children born to a woman are his no matter who the father is. Women are much less likely to choose to raise children who are not theirs or from their side of the family than men are - more men choose to raise or adopt children that are hers from however many men than women are willing to adopt or raise children that are not hers from another women.

Men want to choose to do this, not have it thurst upon them. A couple of studies have found that about 10 - 20% of children born in hospitals are not the children of the man, where there is an intact couple and the man believes the woman has been faithful. That does not count women without a man or the man is not committed to the woman.

Anonymous said...

Actually, to rectify a certain answer; Anne Boleyn was tried for treason and adultery, (It says so on court documents) and the reason for that is when a Queen in Tudor England committed adultery, it was in fact considered: Treason. So they both go hand in hand.

Maria said...

Anne Boleyn was executed for both adultery and treason, though not legally. A fact not often brought up but one that could be debated is that Henry had Cramner annul the marriage, which means that the marriage never existed. Anne Boleyn was executed for conspiring to kill the king and planning to pass of a baby not his.