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Marriage Law Reform Association
instituted 15th january, 1851,
for the exclusive object of promoting the passing of an act to render lawful marriage with a deceased wife's sister.

Committee Room,
21, Parliament Street, London,

The Committee of the Marriage Law Reform Association, again submit to public attention Facts and Opinions tending to show the Scriptural lawfulness of marriage with a deceased wife's sister, and the consequent necessity for its legalization in Great Britain and all its colonies, in accordance with the practice of other Christian nations.

Every day's observation yields fresh proof of the frequency of such marriages, of their happy results to motherless children, and of the favourable estimation in which they are held by society; and the Committee feel undiminished confidence that, as the result of patient effort and temperate discussion, the law of the land on this important point will, at no distant period, be brought into conformity with the law of God.

Representing the tens or hundreds of thousands injuriously affected by the existing law, and the large majority of the population who desire its repeal, they pledge themselves to renewed and persevering exertion to obtain for all marriages with a deceased wife's sister that validity which, with the unanimous consent of the bench of bishops, was accorded to the marriage of the late Duke of Beaufort with a niece of the late Duke of Wellington, and to all other similar marriages celebrated before the 31st of August, 1835.

Information respecting the law relating to these marriages in this and foreign countries may be obtained, on application personally or by letter, at the offices of the Association, where may also be had numerous publications, showing the opinions of eminent statesmen, divines, and others, in favour of the repeal of the existing prohibition.

The Committee request that you will favour them with your opinion upon this important question and should you think that the restriction on marriage with a deceased wife's sister ought to be removed, they trust you will embrace every suitable occasion of using your influence to promote that object.


Hon. Sec.