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A Study of Bigamists in Pre-Victorian London

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This article explores the potential reasons for and extent of bigamy in London in the early nineteenth century. The nature of the criminal offence is considered, examining the evidence required to secure a conviction, and the penalties imposed. Based largely on records of Old Bailey convictions, together with associated newspaper reports, the varied personal circumstances of those involved are noted. Some were victims of the system; others were exploited targets of their callous partner. Gender distinctions are considered and the sentences imposed analysed to ascertain how they reflected society's view of the particular misconduct.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2016

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  • Local Population Studies was first published in 1968, and since then it has focused on presenting cutting-edge research in local, population and social history. It is published twice a year online and in print by the Local Population Studies Society, with the support of the University of Oxford. For information about how to become a member of the LPSS, and for freely available back issues from 1968 to 2010, please visit
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