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LEVITICAL STATUTES

divided by lot; but that in all other places in the world, the law of Leviticus of not marrying the brother's wife, was obligatory."[1]

Indeed, the Puritan has in fact yielded the reference of these statutes to marriage, in the character (so often referred to) which he gives to sexual intercourse between relations designated in the Levitical law; for, if it were at any time lawful for them to marry, their intercourse might be denominated fornication or adultery, but it could not be called incest; because incest is the crime of cohabiting or sexual commerce between persons so nearly related, that their marriage is declared to be unlawful. Hence, the Jews, who never thought of calling in question the application of these Levitical statutes to marriage, maintained, as Selden informs us, that if an unmarried man were to lie with a woman and her daughter, or with a woman and her sister, he would not be guilty of incest, however criminal his conduct might be.[2]

  1. Burnet's Hist., p. 143.
  2. De Jure Nat. et Gen. Lib. V., chap. x., pp. 545, 546.