Not at all unusual even today. It was and still within the last 25 years
was the custom in Scotland that women did not attend an internment. On
asking the reason I was told by an elderly relative that this was because
they had to prepare the funeral tea - despite the fact that on this
occasion the reception was in a hotel.
i was at the FRC yesterday making copies of numerous PCC wills. In reading
through them more carefully last night, I came across an (in my experience)
unique proviso. Sir John Osborn wrote his will in 1837 (proved in 1848) with
the following item included: "I desire that my funeral may be attended with
as little expence as can be consistently with my situation in life and I
strictly forbid the attendance of any of the female members of my family."
he had a wife and daughters, from whom he did not seem to be alienated,
referring to his wife as "my dear wife" and, in fact, naming her as one of
Executors. So, why could she settle his estate but not attend his funeral? I
cheecked a reference book (Death in England) but found no mention of such an
oddity. Thoughts anyone?
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