Married Women's Legal Status in Eighteenth-Century New York and Virginia

  title={Married Women's Legal Status in Eighteenth-Century New York and Virginia},
  author={Joan R. Gundersen and Gwen Victor Gampel},
  journal={William and Mary Quarterly},
A single woman in eighteenth-century British America possessed the same legal, if not political, rights as a single man, but when she married she became a feme covert, thereby undergoing a substantial change in legal status. Historians have disagreed on the meaning of coverture in the colonial period and in their assessments of the legal relationship of wives to husbands and to the system of law in general.' English common law dictated the major terms of the judicial arrangements for the feme… 
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