This multi-disciplinary study considers the intersection between law and family life in Ireland from the early nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century. Setting the law in its wider social historical context it traces marriage from its formation through to its breakdown. It considers the impact of the law on such issues as adultery, divorce, broken engagements, marriage settlements, pregnancy, adoption, property, domestic violence, concealment of birth and inter-family homicide, as well as the historical origins of the Constitutional protection of the family. An underlying theme is the way in which the law of the family in Ireland differed from the law of the family in England.
Niamh Howlin is a Lecturer at the Sutherland School of Law, University College Dublin, Ireland Kevin Costello is a Senior Lecturer at the Sutherland School of Law, University College Dublin, Ireland
1. Introduction; Niamh Howlin and Kevin Costello.- 2. Marriage Breakdown in Ireland, c. 1660-1857; Mary O'Dowd.- 3. The comeback of the medieval marriage per verba de praesenti in 19th century bigamy cases; Maebh Harding.- 4. The Action for Breach of Promise of Marriage in Nineteenth Century Ireland; Michael Sinnott.- 5. Married Women's Property in Ireland 1800-1900; Kevin Costello.- 6. Adultery in the Courts: Damages for Criminal Conversation in Ireland; Niamh Howlin.- 7. `Divorce Irish style': Marriage dissolution in Ireland, 1850-1950; Diane Urquart.- 8. Class, Criminality and Marriage Breakdown in Post-Independence Ireland; Deirdre McGowan.- 9. 'Behind closed doors': Society, Law and familial violence in Ireland, 1922-1990; Lindsey Earner-Byrne.- 10. Murder in the Irish Family, 1930-1950; Karen Brennan.- 11. Interrogating the Charge Concealment of Birth in Nineteenth Century Irish courts; Elaine Farrell.- 12. The Fate of the `Illegitimate' Child: An Analysis of Irish Social Policy in the Period: 1750-1952; Simone McCoughren and Fred Powell.- 13. Embedding the Family in the Irish Constitution; Thomas Mohr.