20 Bizarre Pieces Of Marriage Advice That Victorian-Era Women Were Compelled To Follow

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Image: via Wikimedia Commons
Image: via Wikimedia Commons

But the truth was, according to Bernarr Macfadden’s 1918 tome Womanhood and Marriage, that women with sexual appetites had to be mindful of their husband’s welfare. This was because “the life-giving fluid called the semen, which is produced in the creative organs of the man, is of great value in the upbuilding of his own body.” So the vital male fluid could not just be squandered willy-nilly.

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Image: The Print Collector/Print Collector/Getty Images
Image: The Print Collector/Print Collector/Getty Images

17. Don’t be too willing

In fact, don’t be too willing is a little weak. The message from Ruth Smythers, “Beloved wife of The Reverend L.D. Smythers” in 1894 was much stronger than that. Her Instruction and Advice for the Young Bride positively struck terror into the reader at the prospect of marital relations. “Some young women,” Smythers revealed with apparent horror, “actually anticipate the wedding night ordeal with curiosity and pleasure!”

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