Married Women's Property Acts

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1870, 1882.

Prior to these a woman's property became her husband's upon marriage. Whilst recognizing the principle that, in certain circumstances, women should retain and control their own property, the 1870 Act was regarded as a ‘feeble compromise’ and the Married Women's Property Committee pressed for greater reform. The 1882 Act, allowing wives to acquire, hold, use, and dispose of their separate property, was a major victory.

Subjects: British History.

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