Page:Unlawfulmarriage00jane.djvu/182

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178
UNLAWFUL MARRIAGE.

6. Her son's daughter, v. 17.

7. Her daughter's daughter, v. 17.

8. Wife's sister, v. 18.

All these are obviously relations by affinity; and they are as numerous as the relations by consanguinity, specified in the law: so that it is very evident, from the explanation given by the Lawgiver himself of the general rule laid down in the sixth verse, that near of kin comprehends affinity as well as consanguinity.[1]

  1. The Supreme Court of Massachusetts has, by a recent decision, reversed that of an inferior court which had pronounced the marriage of a man with his deceased wife's daughter to be incestuous, on the ground that, by the death of his wife, the affinity between him and his wife's daughter entirely ceased; and therefore he could lawfully marry his step-daughter. So state the public papers.
    Such is the decision of a Supreme Court in the land of steady habits—in the land of the descendants of the Puritans! This is the doctrine of the Puritan. See p. 9, paragraph next to the last. He will hail it as another advance of the public mind towards the truth!
    Let us look at the consequences of this decision of the Supreme Court.
    If the death of a wife dissolve the affinity between