The Testamentary Condition in Restraint of Marriage Essential to the Plot of Our Mutual Friend
23 Pages Posted: 9 Apr 2019 Last revised: 10 Dec 2019
Date Written: December 10, 2019
Essential to the plot of Our Mutual Friend was a condition in a will made by John Harmon the elder, although it transpires during the course of the story that the will containing that condition was afterwards superseded. The condition was that, in order to benefit under the will, John Harmon the younger had to marry Bella Wilfer. The paper mainly discusses the validity of a testamentary condition like that as it was thought to be when Our Mutual Friend was first being published. Also discussed briefly in the paper are others of Dickens's writings and seven nineteenth century novels by other authors, all of which bear in one way or another on the topic mainly discussed.
Keywords: Charles Dickens, Our Mutual Friend, wills, conditions in restraint of marriage, condition that a beneficiary marry a named individual
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