Ní Bhrolcháin, Máire
The age difference at marriage in England and Wales: a century of patterns and trends
Population Trends, 120, Summer Issue, .
In the last 100 years the mean age difference at marriage in England and Wales has fl uctuated in the range 2–3 years, but without exhibiting any long-run trend. Nevertheless, an age gap of 2–3 years is not typical. A 1-year gap is the most common in recent years and there is a good deal of variation between couples. Marriage partners are closer in age than would be predicted if men and women were matched at random by age. There is little evidence that the age difference is governed by strong social norms. Some explanations for diversity and change in the age difference are discussed.
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