Adoption: A Brief Social and Cultural History by Peter Conn (auth.)

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By Peter Conn (auth.)

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71 This position, which governed English laws of succession for at least 600 years, had been given definitive expression in the twelfth century by Ranulf de Glanville, Edward II’s justiciar (roughly, chief minister). ”72 Adoption in such cases was not merely discouraged but forbidden. In Utopia (1516), Thomas More described an imaginary world of adoption, specifically to provide greater freedom for (male) children who wanted to pursue a trade other than their fathers: As a rule, the son is trained to his father’s craft, for which most feel a natural inclination.

27 In classical Greece, adoption served almost exclusively to provide a man with an heir. There were three different ways of going about it: a man could adopt while he was still alive, he could nominate an heir in his will, or his surviving family could undertake a posthumous adoption. )28 The practice of adoption continued over at least six centuries (through the second century BCE), but scholars concede that the surviving records do not permit great precision in describing changes and continuity over that long period.

The relevant sections of Hammurabi’s laws are §185–193. ”9 Several of the additional stipulations relate to specific professional circumstances. For example, if a craftsman adopts a son and trains him in that craft, the child cannot be returned to its family. On the other hand, if a man “does not count” an adopted infant as his son, the child can be returned. Despite the references to infants, adopted persons were more often adults than young children. Based on twenty-five contracts dating from ca.

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