The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #1682   Message #6219
Posted By: LaMarca
04-Jun-97 - 10:12 AM
Thread Name: Folklore: Auctioning Off Wives
Subject: RE: Query: Auctioning off Wives
Roy Harris, Tony Fraser and Michael O'Leary Johns did a house concert in our area last night, and sang "The Ship Carpenter's Wife". They prefaced it with the comment that the auction frequently was used when there was a third party already involved, so to speak; the cuckolded husband could then "sell" his wife to her lover, the lovers could go off together and the husband at least could get a cash settlement, and everyone gets a share... Since divorce was unavailable to working class folks (as mentioned above), this provided a somewhat satisfactory end to a dicey social problem.

By the way, Roy Harris and his friends are performing at Mystic this weekend, too - they're great, and well worth a listen! Wish we could get up there for the festival...