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Married Life; Its Shadows and Sunshine   By: (1809-1885)

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MARRIED LIFE:

ITS SHADOWS AND SUNSHINE

BY

T. S. ARTHUR.

PHILADELPHIA:

1852.

PREFACE.

THE highest, purest, best and holiest relation in life is that of marriage, which ought never to be regarded as a mere civil contract, entered into from worldly ends, but as an essential union of two minds, by which each gains a new power, and acquires! new capacities for enjoyment and usefulness. Much has been said and written about the equality of the sexes, and the rights of woman; but little of all that has been said or written on this subject is based upon a discriminating appreciation of the difference between man and woman; a difference provided by the Creator, who made them for each other, and stamped upon the spirit of each an irresistible tendency towards conjunction.

The many evils resulting from marriage do not arise from a failure in our sex to recognise the equality of man and woman, or the rights of the latter; but from hasty, ill judged and discordant alliances, entered into in so many cases, from motives of a mere external nature, and with no perception of internal qualities tending to a true spiritual conjunction. Oppression and wrong cannot flow from true affection, for love seeks to bless its object. If, therefore, man and woman are not happy in marriage, the fault lies in an improper union, and no remedy can be found in outward constraints or appliances. Let each, under such circumstances, remove from himself or herself a spirit of selfish opposition; let forbearance, gentleness, and a humane consideration, the one for the other, find its way into the heart, and soon a better and a brighter day will dawn upon them; for then will begin that true interior conjunction which only can be called marriage. Happily, we have the intellectual ability to see what is true, and the power to compel ourselves to do what reason shows us to be right. And here lies the power of all to rise above those ills of life which flow from causes in themselves. To aid in this work, so far as discordant marriage relations are concerned, and to bind in closer bonds those whose union is internal, is the present volume prepared. That it will tend to unite rather than separate, where discord unhappily exists, and to warn those about forming alliances against the wrong of improper ones, the author is well assured.

This book is the second in the series of "ARTHUR'S LIBRARY FOR THE HOUSEHOLD." The third in the series will be "THE TWO WIVES; OR, LOST AND WON," which is nearly ready for publication.

CONTENTS.

THREE WAYS OF MANAGING A HUSBAND. RULING A WIFE. THE INVALID WIFE. THE FIRST AND LAST QUARREL. GUESS WHO IT IS. MARRYING A TAILOR. THE MAIDEN'S CHOICE. THE FORTUNE HUNTER. IS MARRIAGE A LOTTERY? THE UNLOVED ONE.

MARRIED LIFE.

THREE WAYS OF MANAGING A HUSBAND.

TO those who have never tried the experiment, the management of a husband may seem a very easy matter. I thought so once, but a few years' hard experience has compelled me to change my mind. When I married Mr. John Smith, which was about ten years ago, I was not altogether blind to his faults and peculiarities; but then he had so many solid virtues, that these were viewed as minor considerations. Besides, I flattered myself that it would be the easiest thing in the world to correct what was not exactly to my taste. It is no matter of especial wonder that I should have erred in this, for Mr. John Smith, while a lover, really appeared to have no will of his own, and no thought of himself. It was only necessary for me to express a wish, and it was gratified.

I soon found, much to my disappointment, that there is a marked difference between a husband and a lover: it was at least so in the case of Mr. Smith, and observation, since I have had my eyes open, satisfies me that it is so in most cases. I must own, in justice to all parties, however, that this difference is made more apparent by a want of knowledge, on the other side, in regard to the difference between the relation of a wife and a sweetheart between the wooed and the won... Continue reading book >>




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