Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 82.djvu/609

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605
STATISTICAL STUDY OF EMINENT WOMEN

Rosa Bonheur and Antoninus Pius are accorded the same number of lines. Thirteen eminent women are less distinguished than King Hakon of Norway, the least eminent of the husbands. We have here an exact means for telling whether Robert Browning is more or less eminent than his gifted wife, and how much; whether the joint sovereigns of England, William and Mary, are equally distinguished; whether Cornelia, the mother, and Tiberius Sempronius, the father, of the Gracchi are equally famous; and whether Otto Goldschmidt is more or less distinguished than Jenny Lind.

The two hundred and fifty-nine eminent women who married men of sufficient distinction to come within our criterion of eminence were natives of thirty-one different nations, but France, England, Germany and Rome produced the larger number of them. Julia Ward Howe, Julia Marlowe and Elizabeth Drew Stoddard are the only noteworthy American women who married husbands sufficiently eminent to be included in our list.

The average age at which eminent women have married (based on 459 cases) is 23.4 years. This means, in each instance, the age when married for the first time. Three of the women wen 1 married under ten years; thirty were married before they were fifteen; five married later than fifty. The youngest bride was Joan of Naples, who at the age of six was married to Andrew, Prince of Hungary. The oldest bride was Angela Burdette-Coutts, who at sixty-seven married Mr. Ashmead-Bartlett.

The following table shows a fairly regular tendency through the centuries to postpone marriage from 16.2 years in the twelfth century to 26.2 years in the nineteenth. The range of age of brides has also varied, particularly in the maximum limit. Through the twelfth, thirteenth, fourteenth and fifteenth centuries no eminent woman was married Later than thirty. In the last four centuries the maximum limit has varied from forty-three to sixty-seven. In other words, we may say that the maximum age of marriage during the last four centuries (nineteenth, eighteenth, seventeenth, sixteenth) averaged 53.3 years; for the preceding four centuries (fifteenth, fourteenth, thirteenth, twelfth) it averaged 25.8 years.

 

Age at Marriage in Different Centuries

Century Average Age at
Marriage
No. of Cases on which
Average is Based
Range of Age of Brides,
Years
19 26.2 189 15-67
18 23.1 127 13-53
17 20.0 50 13-43
16 21.7 28 12.50
15 17.6 20 13-26
14 13.8 11 6-18
13 16.6 5 12-29
12 16.2 5 8-30