Re: Question over name after divorce/annulment #general


Pamela Weisberger
 

Miriam asked:

"If a (Jewish) woman in a small shtetl in 19th century Poland was
divorced or had her marriage annulled only a short time time after the
initial marriage (there were no children), would the custom have been
for her to continue using her married name or would she go back to
using her maiden name?"

If divorced, a woman could probably keep her married name or revert to
her maiden one-- but consider that in the 19th century if the marriage
took place in a shtetl in Galicia, and the marriage ceremony was only
a religious and not civil one (the usual case during that time period)
then the woman might never have legally taken the man's surname to
begin with -- since the marriage was not recognized by the State --
and would still have been known by her maiden name. Even if they had
children, the children would also carry the mother's name and not the
father's. If there was a divorce in those cases all the names would
stay the same in the eyes of the government, although the children
might decide to adopt the father's name in later years. If the
marriage was annulled -- different >from a divorce in that the marriage
is considered to never have taken place -- then the woman would keep
or revert back to her maiden name because she was not considered ever
married.

Pamela Weisberger
pweisberger@gmail.com

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