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Polynesian Researches

XII. Concering (Divorce) Putting away Husbands and Putting away Wives

XII. Concering (Divorce) Putting away Husbands and Putting away Wives

That a man should put away his wife, who has not been unfaithful to him, is wrong. The magistrates shall admonish such an one that he receive his wife again. If he will not regard the admonition, let him be punished with labour till the day that he will return to his wife. If he is obstinate, and will not return, then they shall both remain till one of them die; the husband shall not marry page 181 another wife. The woman, also, who shall forsake, or put away her husband without cause, the above is the regulation with regard to such. But if a man put away his wife on account of her great anger (violent temper,) and for her bad behaviour, such man put (her) away, the magistrates shall admonish the wife and the husband that they live together: but if they are perverse, they shall remain; the wife shall not take another husband, and the husband shall not take another wife. They shall also be adjudged to labour till they live together again. The husband's work shall be on the road or the plantation. The wife shall perform such work as weaving mats or beating cloth. For the king one part, and for the governor the other part, of the work they shall do.