Principles For Choosing The Right Marriage Partner | How To Know You’re Marrying The Right Person – The Vintage Woman.
When to marry.
The proper age to marry is a somewhat vexed question, but needlessly so, because that age varies much, according to temperament and other circumstances relating to the individual. Although after puberty the sexual organs are capable of reproduction, yet it by no means follows that they should be used for that purpose.
Their early activity is intended for the perfection of the body and mind, and not for the continuation of the species.
Very early marriage therefore, should be avoided, because the nervous force expended in amative indulgence is imperatively required in both sexes for developing the physical and mental faculties. The zoösperms produced by the male in the first years of puberty are inferior in power and less capable of producing healthy offspring than those of mature years.
The early germs, also, of the female are less fitted for fecundation than those that appear later in life; nature evidently intending these early efforts to be used on the individuals themselves in building up their bodies, strengthening their minds, and preparing them to reproduce their species in maturer years.
There is a serious day of reckoning for early indulgence; for precocious persons (unless their constitutions are as powerful as their desires) who give way to their passions at their first exactions, barter their youth for their enjoyment, and are old and weary of the world at an age when people of more moderate habits are only in the meridian of pleasure and existence.
Generally the best age to marry where the health is perfect, is from twenty-one to twenty-five in the male and from eighteen to twenty-one in the female. As a general rule, marriages earlier than this are injurious and detrimental to health.
Men who marry too young, unless they are of cold and phlegmatic constitution, [and thus moderate in their conduct, become partially bald, dim of sight, and lose all elasticity of limb in a few years; while women in a like position rarely have any bloom on their cheek or fire in their eye by the time they are twenty-five. And all profound physiologists agree that from the same cause the mental faculties suffer in the same ratio.
A medium, however, is to be observed. It is not well to defer till middle age the period of connubial intercourse; for too tedious spinsterhood is as much calculated to hasten the decay of beauty as too early a marriage.
Hence, there is rarely any freshness to be seen in a maiden of thirty; while the matron of that age, if her life has been a happy one, and her hymeneal condition of not more than ten years’ standing, is scarcely in the heyday of her charm’s. And the same rule will apply with equal force to the other sex; for, after the first prime of life, bachelors decay and grow old much faster than married men.
The rich are qualified for marriage before the poor. This is owing to the superiority of their aliment; for very nutritious food, and the constant use of wines, coffee, etc., greatly assists in developing the organs of reproduction; whereas the food generally made use of among the peasantry of most countries—as vegetables, corn, milk, etc.—retards their growth.
Owing to this difference of diet, the daughter of a man of wealth, who keeps a good table, will be as adequate to certain duties of married life at eighteen as the daughter of a humble peasant at twenty-one.
Singular as it may seem, it is none the less true, that love novels, amorous conversations, playing parlor games for kisses, voluptuous pictures, waltzing, and, in fact, all things having a tendency to create desire, assist in promoting puberty and preparing young persons for early marriage. Those who reach this estate, however, by artificial means and much before the natural period will have to suffer for it in after life.
The female who marries before the completion of her womanhood—that is, before her puberty is established—will cease to grow and probably become pale and delicate, the more especially if she become pregnant soon after marriage. A person who is thus circumstanced will also be liable to abortions and painful deliveries.
Marriage unless under very peculiar circumstances, should not take place until two or three years after the age of puberty. Many instances could be cited of the injurious effects resulting from not observing this rule.
The case of the son of Napoleon I. is a notable instance, who, at the age of fifteen or sixteen, began his career of sexual indulgence, which ended his life at the early age of twenty-one years.
He was an amiable, inoffensive, and studious youth, beloved by his grandfather and the whole Austrian court; and though the son of the most energetic man that modern times has produced, yet, from his effeminate life, he scarcely attracted the least public attention.
Let me, therefore, advise the male reader to keep his desires in leading-strings until he is at least twenty-one, and the female not to enter the pale of wedlock until she is past her eighteenth year; but after these periods marriage is their proper sphere of action, and one in which they must play a part or suffer actual pain as well as the loss of one of the greatest of earthly pleasures.
Mental, Physical And Personality Considerations.
Marriages are most happy and most productive of handsome and healthy offspring when the husband and wife differ, not only in mental conformation, but in bodily construction. A melancholy man should mate himself with a sprightly woman, and vice versa; for otherwise they will soon grow weary of the monotony of each other’s company.
By the same rule should the choleric and the patient be united, and the ambitious and the humble; for the opposites of their natures not only produce pleasurable excitement, but each keeps the other in a wholesome check. In the size and form of the parties the same principles hold good.
Tall women are not the ideals of beauty to tall men; and if they marry such, they will soon begin to imagine greater perfections in other forms than in those of their own wives. And this is well ordered by nature to prevent the disagreeable results which are almost certain to grow out of unions where the parties have a strong resemblance.
For instance, tall parents will probably have children taller than either, and mental imbecility is the usual attendant of extreme size. The union of persons prone to corpulency, of dwarfs, etc., would have parallel results; and so, likewise, of weakly and attenuated couples.
The tall should marry the short, the corpulent the lean, the choleric the gentle, and so on, and the tendency to extremes in the parents will be corrected in the offspring.
Apart from these considerations, there are reasons why persons of the same disposition should not be united and wedlock. An amiable wife to a choleric man is like oil to troubled waters; an ill-tempered one will make his life a misery and his home a hell.
The man of studious habits should marry a woman of sense and spirit rather than of erudition, or the union will increase the monotony of his existence, which it would be well for his health and spirits to correct by a little conjugal excitement; and the man of gloomy temperament will find the greatest relief from the dark forebodings of his mind in the society of a gentle, but lively and smiling partner.
However, in some particulars the dispositions and constructions of married people must assimilate or they will have but few enjoyments in common.
The man of full habits and warm nature had better remain single than unite his destinies with a woman whose heart repulses the soft advancements of love; and the sanguine female in whose soul love is the dominant principle should avoid marriage with a very phlegmatic person, or her caresses, instead of being returned in kind, will rather excite feelings of disgust.
Thus the discriminations to be made in the choice of a partner are extremely nice.Nature generally assists art in the choice of partners. We instinctively seek in the object of our desires the qualities which we do not possess ourselves.
This is a most admirable arrangement of Providence, as it establishes an equilibrium and prevents people from tending to extremes; for it is known that unions of dwarfs are fruitful of dwarfs, that giants proceed from the embrace of giants, and that offspring of parents alike irritable, alike passive, alike bashful, etc., inherit the prominent qualities of both to such a degree as to seriously interfere with their prospects in the world.
It has another advantage. Through its means “Every eye forms its own beauty”; hence, what one person rejects is the beau ideal of another’s conceptions, and thus we are all provided for.
In fine, with man as with animals, the best way to improve the breed is to cross it, for the intermarriage of like with like and relative with relative not only causes man to degenerate, but if the system became universal would in time bring the human race to a termination altogether.
A male or female with a very low forehead should carefully avoid marriage with a person of like conformation, or their offspring will, in all probability, be weak-minded or victims to partial idiocy.
The system of crossing is so perfect that marriages between persons of different countries are likely to be pleasant and fruitful. Speaking on this subject, an English writer says: “The Persians have been so improved by introducing foreigners that they have completely succeeded in washing out their Mongolian origin.”
And the same author adds to the effect that in those parts of Persia where there is no foreign intercourse the inhabitants are sickly and stunted, while in those that are frequented by strangers they are large and healthy.
To make what is called, “A handsome couple,” the female should be about three inches less than the male, and the parties should be proportionately developed throughout their system.
A well formed woman says a modern physiologist, “should have her head, shoulders, and chest small and compact; arms and limbs relatively short; her haunches apart; her hips elevated; her abdomen large and her thighs voluminous. Hence, she should taper from the center, up and down.
Whereas, in a well-formed man the shoulders are more prominent than the hips. Great hollowness of the back, the pressing of the thigh against each other in walking, and the elevation of one hip above the other, are indications of the malformation of the pelvis.”
From the same writer I take the following, which is applicable here. It is very correct in its estimates of beauty in both sexes:—
“The length of the neck should be proportionately less in the male than in the female, because the dependence of the mental system on the vital one is naturally connected with the shorter courses of the vessels of the neck.
“The neck should form a gradual transition between the body and head—its fullness concealing all prominences of the throat.
“The shoulders should slope from the lower part of the neck, because the reverse shows that the upper part of the chest owes its width to the bones and muscles of the shoulders.
“The upper part of the chest should be relatively short and wide, independent of the size of the shoulders, for this shows the vital organs which it contains are sufficiently developed.
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“The waist should taper a little farther than the middle of the trunk, and be marked, especially in the back and loins, by the approximation of the hips. “The waist should be narrower than the upper part of the trunk and its muscles, because the reverse indicates the expansion of the stomach, liver, and great intestine, resulting from their excessive use.
“The back of woman should be more hollow than that of man; for otherwise the pelvis is not of sufficient depth for parturition.
“Women should have more extended loins than men, at the expense of the superior and inferior parts, for this conformation is essential to gestation. “The abdomen should be larger in woman than in man, for the same reason.
“Over all these parts the cellular tissue, and the plumpness connected with it, should obliterate all distinct projection of muscles.
“The surface of the whole female form should be characterized by its softness, elasticity, smoothness, delicacy, and polish, and by the gradual and easy transition between the parts.
“The moderate plumpness already described should bestow on the organs of woman great suppleness. Plumpness is essential to beauty, especially in mothers, because in them the abdomen necessarily expands, and would afterwards collapse and become wrinkled.
“An excess of plumpness, however, is to be guarded against. Young women who are very fat are cold and prone to barrenness. “In no case should plumpness be so predominant as to destroy the distinctness of parts.”
A male and female formed on the above models would be well matched and have fine children.
Excerpt From The Ladies Book Of Useful Information.
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