As we look forward to the dawn of a New Year, a glimpse of divorce and separation in Olde England of yesteryear is revealed.
The 1774 marital settlement agreement between Elizabeth Paine and early American patriot and revolutionary Thomas Paine was rediscovered some years ago – in a novel from the period stored in a shop cellar in the UK.
The marital settlement agreement is set to go on exhibit in the new year.
As part of the divorce settlement, the unemployed Paine received UK 45 pounds, which reportedly paid for his transportation to America.
Before it’s resurfacing, the document had last been seen in 1892.
There is speculation that the book belonged to Paine’s wife.
This may be an example of how divorce shaped a man’s and a nation’s destiny.