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Table of contents
PREFACE
THE MOTHER AND HER CHILD-1.1
THE MOTHER AND HER CHILD-1.2
THE MOTHER AND HER CHILD-1.3
THE MOTHER AND HER CHILD-1.4
THE MOTHER AND HER CHILD-1.5
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.1
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.2
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.3
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.4
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.5
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.6
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.7
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.8
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.9
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.10
SEXUAL EDUCATION-2.11
SEXUAL EDUCATION AND NAKEDNESS-3.1
SEXUAL EDUCATION AND NAKEDNESS-3.2
SEXUAL EDUCATION AND NAKEDNESS-3.3
SEXUAL EDUCATION AND NAKEDNESS-3.4
THE VALUATION OF SEXUAL LOVE-4.1
THE VALUATION OF SEXUAL LOVE-4.2
THE VALUATION OF SEXUAL LOVE-4.3
THE VALUATION OF SEXUAL LOVE-4.4
THE FUNCTION OF CHASTITY-5.1
THE FUNCTION OF CHASTITY-5.2
THE FUNCTION OF CHASTITY-5.3
THE FUNCTION OF CHASTITY-5.4
THE FUNCTION OF CHASTITY-5.5
THE FUNCTION OF CHASTITY-5.6
THE PROBLEM OF SEXUAL ABSTINENCE-6.1
THE PROBLEM OF SEXUAL ABSTINENCE-6.2
THE PROBLEM OF SEXUAL ABSTINENCE-6.3
THE PROBLEM OF SEXUAL ABSTINENCE-6.4
THE PROBLEM OF SEXUAL ABSTINENCE-6.5
THE PROBLEM OF SEXUAL ABSTINENCE-6.6
PROSTITUTION-7.1
PROSTITUTION-7.2
PROSTITUTION-7.3
PROSTITUTION-7.4
PROSTITUTION-7.5
PROSTITUTION-7.6
PROSTITUTION-7.7
PROSTITUTION-7.8
PROSTITUTION-7.9
PROSTITUTION-7.10
PROSTITUTION-7.11
PROSTITUTION-7.12
PROSTITUTION-7.13
PROSTITUTION-7.14
PROSTITUTION-7.15
FOOTNOTES-1
FOOTNOTES-2

daughter if her conduct threatens to deprive them of their gain 

from the bride-price; but if once they have lost hope of marrying 

her off, or if the bride-price has been spent, they manifest 

complete indifference to her conduct. Maidens who no longer 

expect marriage are not restrained at all, if they observe 

decorum it is only out of respect to custom." Westermarck 

(_History of Human Marriage_, pp. 123 et seq.) also shows the 

connection between the high estimates of virginity and the 

conception of woman as property, and returning to the question in 

his later work, _The Origin and Development of the Moral Ideas_ 

(vol. ii, Ch. XLII), after pointing out that "marriage by 

purchase has thus raised the standard of female chastity," he 

refers (p. 437) to the significant fact that the seduction of an 

unmarried girl "is chiefly, if not exclusively, regarded as an 

offense against the parents or family of the girl," and there is 

no indication that it is ever held by savages that any wrong has 

been done to the woman herself. Westermarck recognizes at the 

same time that the preference given to virgins has also a 

biological basis in the instinctive masculine feeling of jealousy 

in regard to women who have had intercourse with other men, and 

especially in the erotic charm for men of the emotional state of 

shyness which accompanies virginity. (This point has been dealt 

with in the discussion of Modesty in vol. i of these _Studies_.) 

 

It is scarcely necessary to add that the insistence on the 

virginity of brides is by no means confined, as A.B. Ellis seems 

to imply, to uncivilized peoples, nor is it necessary that 

wife-purchase should always accompany it. The preference still 

persists, not only by virtue of its natural biological basis, but 

as a refinement and extension of the idea of woman as property, 

among those civilized peoples who, like ourselves, inherit a form 

of marriage to some extent based on wife-purchase. Under such 

conditions a woman's chastity has an important social function to 

perform, being, as Mrs. Mona Caird has put it (_The Morality of 

Marriage_, 1897, p. 88), the watch-dog of man's property. The 

fact that no element of ideal morality enters into the question 

is shown by the usual absence of any demand for ante-nuptial 

chastity in the husband. 

 

It must not be supposed that when, as is most usually the case, 

there is no complete and permanent prohibition of extra-nuptial 

intercourse, mere unrestrained license prevails. That has 

probably never happened anywhere among uncontaminated savages. 

The rule probably is that, as among the tribes at Torres Straits 

(_Reports Cambridge Anthropological Expedition_, vol. v, p. 275), 

there is no complete continence before marriage, but neither is 

there any unbridled license. 

 

 

The example of Tahiti is instructive as regards the prevalence of 

chastity among peoples of what we generally consider low grades 

of civilization. Tahiti, according to all who have visited it, 

from the earliest explorers down to that distinguished American 

surgeon, the late Dr. Nicholas Senn, is an island possessing 

qualities of natural beauty and climatic excellence, which it is 

impossible to rate too highly. "I seemed to be transported into 

the garden of Eden," said Bougainville in 1768. But, mainly under 

the influence of the early English missionaries who held ideas of 

theoretical morality totally alien to those of the inhabitants of 


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