In the 19th century, when homosexuality was something new to society, the women sought each other ...

Sarah Orne Jewett is a great figure in romance literature. In 1880, to commemorate his "wedding day", Jewett wrote a romantic poem for his mate.

The poet Sarah and his partner Annie

"Do you remember, darling, a year ago today, when we gave ourselves to each other?” she wrote. “We will not take back the promises we made a year ago.”

In fact, Jewett devotes romantic lines to his "future wife" - Annie Adams Faields. More than a century ago, when gay marriages were not legally recognized, Jewett and Adams lived together in a long "Boston marriage * relationship.

Also read : Meet Eric Radford, The First Openly Gay Athlete To Win A Gold Medal...

Boston marriage * : A popular term used to refer to a long-term relationship between two women as couples at the end of the nineteenth century. It may refer to affectionate and sexual relationships or romantic relationship between two women that does not include sex.


At that time, gay marriage was called Boston marriage. Although homosexuality was taboo throughout the nineteenth century, the romantic and intense relationships between women and men were widely publicized. At the time, women were encouraged not to touch too much on men as well as on community life, work, and money, which belonged to men.

This idea isolates women from the outside world, but brings them closer together. The gentle, sincere, gentle, affectionate women give each other kisses, fists, hands, comfort express emotions. For example, at a newly established female college, students will donate flowers, write romance poems, ornaments and publicly express their love. They are much faster than a blink of an eye - this is also expected and is considered part of the college culture for girls.

Women who love each other in the 19th century

A group of people living in New England put this kind of sentiment to a new height, which is "getting married". Although not committed or legally bound together, they live together, supporting as a true family. These independent women stepped out of the boundaries the society allowed at that time, such as the graduation of women with college degrees, the pursuit of careers, and the transition to independent living. But since they lived so seriously together with another woman, their activities seemed to be socially acceptable.

In 1885, writer Henry James wrote the novel The Bostonians, about the intimate relationship between two independent women, Verena Tarrant - a feminist and Olive Chancellor. They lived together like family ... until Verena decided to marry Olive's cousin, their relationship broke down. This popular novel is thought to have contributed to the popularization of the phrase "Boston marriage," although James never used the word in his book.

Also read : 16 Christmas Season Pictures That Show Some Real Gay Couple...

Michèle André and Alice Sapritch in The Bostonians, adapted from the novel by Henry James.

"Boston marriage" shows the equality, support and independence of wealthy women who are determined to step out of bondage. Although each relationship is different, women often call each other husband or wife, kiss and hug, write passionate love letters when away and share bed stories, but does not mean All relationships are related to sex. Because in the 19th century, women were not expected to have as much physical desire as men, so their emotions could simply be the intersection of two souls.

For some women, "Boston marriage" is seen as a precursor to lesbian behavior in the 21st century. According to historian Stephanie Coontz, NPR shares "a sexually active couple It is easier to manage the affair as well as close than to love the common romance. But for some people, sex is not everything.


In the late nineteenth century, the term "sexual inversion" suggested that socially acceptable relationships were sexual deviance. So although the Jewett poet has been living with her partner for two decades, the public love letters that Jewett wrote for Fields have been edited by the chroniclers a little bit internally. Allow the reader not to think that they are gay.

It took another 100 years for gay marriage to be legally approved in the United States, but in the 1920s, novelist Willa Cather and his longtime friend Edith Lewis lived for many years regardless. the constraints that gay society has. They have been together for nearly 40 years, after being buried next to each other in the New Hampshire cemetery. If this is not love then what is?

We'd love to know your comments on this