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Roman Family.docx

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Kevin Wilkinson

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Roman Family Marriage  Not a personal relationship, but rather an economic arrangement between the groom and the bride's father  Transfer of the bride from her fathers home to her new groom  The guarantee of this transaction was a dowry o Usually property or money o Used for the groom to use it as he sought fit o If the marriage was annulled, the dowry was to be returned to the bride's family  Women originally not allowed to own property, so whatever she brought with her became the property of her husband o In early Rome, changed as time went on  Significant age gap between spouses. o Men usually married in their mid to late twenties o Women would marry shortly after puberty (13, 14) o Age gap increased the power of the husband in marriage  Males could commit adultery with slaves or free women, but women couldn't  Husbands essentially had all of the economic control and rights/liberties  Nevertheless, husbands and wives eventually built close bonds Children  Patria potestas o Paternal power o Legal power that gave the oldest male of the family complete control of their descendants, including the power to put them to death  Executing ones own children was usually frowned upon o Children under their fathers power could not own property o When a male child reached a certain age, the father would usually emancipate him, freeing him from his fathers rule  Could then own property o Legal principal of patria potes
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