There is considerable variation in the average age at which women of ability have married in different nations. Considering only those countries for which we have record of nine or more cases, it has been found that the average age at which American women of ability marry is 27.7 years, which is 9.3 years later than the average age at which Russian women of eminence marry. Distinguished women of English birth marry three years younger than American women, but 1.8 years later than German, and 3.5 years later than French women of ability. The average age at marriage of Italian and French eminent women is practically the same (21.3 and 21.2 years, respectively).
The average age at which eminent women engaged in thirteen different activities married is shown in the following table. Though we have record of only five reformers we feel fairly confident that the group is justly placed. Only a few American women of the nineteenth century have achieved eminence as social reformers; but American women of ability marry later than those of any other nation, and the average age at marriage in the nineteenth century is later than in any other period of history. The fact that musicians marry 3.1 years later than actresses, and 4.4 years later than artists, seems to indicate that, in many instances, marriage was postponed until a musical reputation had been won. The women who inherited or wedded their right to eminence, that is, the members of the groups "Marriage," "Sovereign" and "Birth" married earlier; where the cases are sufficiently numerous to justify a conclusion it seems that the women who have won by personal effort their right to distinction—the actresses, writers, musicians and reformers—married several years later.
Age at Marriage by Occupation
|No. Cases on which
Average is Based