Paperback review: The Fishing Fleet: Husband-Hunting in the Raj, By Anne de Courcy
Sunday 27 October 2013
Who were the women who set out on 16-week-long journeys, courting sickness and even death, all the way from England to India in search of a husband? As de Courcy points out, from 1851 to 1911, approximately one in three of all women aged between 25 and 35 was unmarried.
At a time when spinsterhood carried a great stigma, the statistics alone were enough to send women over the high seas for a suitable mate. It’s interesting though that the Indian Raj never suffered the reputation of other ex-pat colonies like the “Happy Valley” set in Kenya. And interesting, too, that pre-Victoria, British soldiers were positively encouraged to marry local Indian women and father their children.
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 2 Mystery man who gave mum heart-warming note on train 'wanted to put a smile on her face'
- 3 Michelle Obama highlights harsh restrictions faced by Saudi women after meeting King Salman without wearing a headscarf
- 4 Mafia's wall of silence broken: Victim of Cosa Nostra's extortion rackets in its Corleone heartland co-operates with authorities for the first time ever
- 5 Amal Clooney gives excellent answer to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures