Divorce System in Ancient China

In ancient China, a system of permitting divorce, authoritative divorce, and restricting divorce was implemented. Reflected in the method of divorce, it is mainly giving wife, supplemented by righteousness, harmonious divorce and suit for divorce under certain conditions.

Wives system

Widowhood, that is, a man s forced divorce, is the most important divorce method in ancient China. In ancient China, li and law provided seven reasons for men to divorce their wives. This is the so-called seven out . Dadai Book of Rites · Birth records: There are seven women: they will not go with their parents, they will go without sons, they will go to prostitution, they will be jealous, they will go to evil , they will talk, they will steal. Disobedience to the in-laws will not get the favor of the in-laws, although the women are not at fault, as long as the in-laws don t like daughter-in- law, it can be a reason for a wife. There is no child, that is, the wife does not have children. [2] Feudal law stipulates that no child under 49 is not suitable. Prostitution is the adultery of a wife . Jealousy, in ancient society, in addition to marrying a legitimate wife, government officials and gentry could accept him. If a woman is not allowed to accept her husband s thoughts and b ehaviors, a man can take this off as a reason. Illness refers to the fact that his wife suffers from a serious infectious disease. According to research, the disease here mainly refers to leprosy. Multi-spoken, refers to the wife s multi -spoken, separated from the kinship of the husband s family. Theft refers to the unauthorized use of family property by a wife. In ancient society, wives did not have the right to deal with family property, and private use of household wealth was considered to be theft.

In order to maintain feudal morals, the ancient marriage system also stipulated three legal reasons for a husband not to divorce his wife, which objectively achieved the effect of protecting women s rights. This is the so-called three not to go , and even if the wife has a seven out reason, the husband must not abandon it. Its content, as recorded in Dadai Li, is: Get nothing and get nothing, Mourn with more three years, Before the poor and the poor after rich. Which is:

If the wife is homeless and unattached, she cannot rest.

If you have served your husband-in-law for three years with your husband, you cannot rest.

When he got married, his husband s family was poor, and he shared the hardships with his husband, but later became rich and couldn t rest.

Heli system

The harmony and separation system is a legal system in China s feudal society that allows spouses to voluntarily divorce through agreement. However, in the feudal society where men are superior to women, women are severely constrained by the traditional concept of three from four virtues and virginity, and it is difficult to truly realize their desire for divorce. The so-called peace and divorce are mostly a form of agreement to divorce or release the wife , and often become a form of modification adopted by the man in order to cover up the reason for the marriage of the wife in order to avoid the ugliness of the family.


The righteousness system is not an independent divorce system, but a civil legal consequence incidental to a criminal case. If there is a criminal incident such as brawl or killing as specified in the law between a husband and wife, a certain relative of the other party , or a certain relative of both parties, the criminal relationship of the offender must be investigated while the husband and wife relationship must be Lifted. Righteousness is compulsory, and those who are rightful and righteous must be punished.

Complaint against divorce

The so-called divorce is a divorce that is terminated by a lawsuit when a specific cause occurs. According to feudal law, if wife is running away from husband, husband flees for three years, husband forcing wife to be concubine , weng bullying man and woman , etc.

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