Casilda's Reviews > Wedlock: How Georgian Britain's Worst Husband Met His Match

Wedlock by Wendy Moore
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May 25, 12

bookshelves: historical-non-fiction
Read from May 13 to 25, 2012

Whilst reading this book my overwhelming thought was "thank God I wasnt alive in the times this harrowing story happened." Every woman should read this book and be truly grateful for the progress that has been made with regard to womens rights in the last 200 years. It is almost unbelievable how Mary Eleanor Bowes was treated by her second husband, Andrew Robinson Stoney, a greedy and ambitious Irish adventuring nobody.

One of the wealthiest heiresses in England, Mary Eleanor was duped into marrying him and by law then relinquished all her wealth to him. She was no angel but she didnt deserve the unspeakable abuse, cruelty and depravity he meted out to her over a period of 8 years. Even after she escaped with the help of a devoted servant, he hounded her and abducted her in a busy London street in broad daylight. It wasnt just her he treated abominably, although she got the worst treatment, it seemed to be just about every woman he came into contact with and there were a lot of them. He had an undefinable charm and attraction that few women both rich and poor, could resist.

Wendy Moore has done exceptional research and you get a very good sense of the times and attitudes of society as background to the story. I particularly enjoyed it as I live in the north of England, just a few miles away from Durham and know well the towns and places which are mentioned. Ive visited the famous Bowes Museum, built up by Mary Eleanor's grandson, quite a few times over the years.

The only slight criticism I would make is that there was a bit too much padding and repetition which slowed the story down for me.
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