Recommend to your Librarian

Alienated Affections

Divorce and Separation in Scotland 1684-1830

Leah Leneman

Paperback (Printed to Order)
Personal accounts of adultery, cruelty, desertion and nullity fill this exposition of divorce and separation in Scotland in the seventeenth, eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. Leah Leneman brings vividly to life the marriages and affairs, loves and hates, tenderness and harshness experienced by men and women whose marriages broke down in this period. Their stories, told in their own words, come from the entire spectrum of Scottish society, from the aristocracy to the 'common' people. Contrary to popular belief, divorce and legal separation were available on equal terms to men and women in eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Scotland. Alienated Affections offers an overall picture of this phenomenon, richly illustrated by the experiences of individuals.


This vivid and lively study by the late Leah Leneman has all the strengths of her pioneering work in women's history and Scottish social history over the last twelve years. Alienated Affections uses a previously entirely neglected, but extremely rich source, the records of the Edinburgh Commissary Court to explore this history of divorce and separation in in Scotland.
Leneman has put together fascinating material, and written a very interesting book.
- Jenny Wormald
Alienated Affections is Leah Leneman's freshest and most fascinating work yet.