"Unable to Perform the Conjugal Rites" [Trial]. Weld v. Weld. The Whole of the Proceedings in the Arches-Court of Canterbury, In a Cause Between the Hon. Mrs. Catherine Weld, Daughter to the Lord Aston, And Edward Weld Esquire, Her Husband. Containing, I. Her Libel Exhibited Against Him for Impotency. II. Her Answer and Replication. III. Certificates of Ambrose Dickens Esq; His Majesty's Serjeant-Surgeon, Mr. Williams, And Several Other Surgeons, Who Examin'd Mr. Weld; And Also of Three Midwives who Examined Mrs. Weld. IV. Copies of the Depositions of Several Noble Persons, Relating to this Cause. V. The Sentence Pronounced by the Worshipful Dr. Bettesworth, Feb. 15. 1731. To Which is Prefixed a Preface, By the Author of the Tryal of F. Girard and Miss Cadiere. London: Printed for E. Rayner, 1732. 48 pp., leaves B3 and B4 (pp. 13-16) misnumbered 9-12. Octavo (7-1/2" x 4-1/2"). Stab-stitched pamphlet bound into later quarter calf over marbled boards, gilt title and date to spine, a number of blank leaves added by binder after p. 48. Light rubbing to extremities, front joint just starting at ends. Light toning to interior, occasional light foxing, light soiling in a few places, slight offsetting to preliminaries and first two leaves. $750. * Fifth and final edition. The Welds married in 1727, but when there was no issue after three years, Catherine sued Edward for divorce in ecclesiastical court on the grounds that he was "unable to perform the Conjugal Rites, by Reason of some natural Imperfection which he well knew in himself." Edward fought to clear his name, claiming that after a simple surgical procedure he had, in fact, consummated the marriage twice. The case gained a great deal of public attention, largely because the detail of Catherine's claim and the amount of medical evidence presented were unusual even for an impotency trial. Ultimately, the divorce was denied and the couple reached a private resolution to live apart. Edward remarried after Catherine's death and successfully produced a daughter and four sons. English Short-Title Catalogue T52462.
Book number 72769