A Good Marriage

Image for A Good MarriageNot currently available on BBC iPlayer

Episode 2 of 3

Duration: 1 hour

Unlike birth and death, which are inescapable facts of life, marriage is rite of passage made by choice and in the Middle Ages it wasn't just a choice made by bride and groom - they were often the last pieces in a puzzle, put together by their parents, with help from their family and friends, according to rules laid down by the Church.

Helen Castor reveals how in the Middle Ages marriage was actually much easier to get into than today - you could get married in a pub or even a hedgerow simply by exchanging words of consent - but from the 12th century onwards the Catholic Church tried to control this conjugal free-for-all. For the Church marriage was a way to contain the troubling issue of sex, but, as the film reveals, it was not easy to impose rules on the most unpredictable human emotions of love and lust.

Credits

Presenter
Helen Castor
Series Producer
Lucy Swingler
Director
Lucy Swingler

Broadcasts

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