Woman’s Privilege

August 1895

Mexborough and Swinton Times August 23 1895

A Woman’s Privilege

Mary Ann Ward, married woman, new Conisborough, was charged with assaulting William James King, miner, Denaby Main.

Defendant was coming home from his work on the 8th inst, about 2 o’clock, when he met the defendant’s husband, who said: “if you don’t keep your wife’s mouth show I shall shut it for you,” and he replied: “the first thing you have to do is to stop your own wife’s mouth and the bother will then stop.”

Defendant came up then and deliberately slapped the complainant on the face.

Cross-examined by Mr. Baddiley, who defended: there had been a quarrel between the two wives as to their conduct. He never spoke a word to the defendant. It was after the assault complained of that witness and defendant’s husband started. The two wives had been connected with a case at Doncaster the previous week.

Jack Smith, miner, Conisborough, said he saw defendant strike the complainant. When questioned about the quarrel between the two men witness said: “women are such funny things.”

Mr. Baddiley said it was one of those cases which happened almost daily, and such a paltry one that it never ought to have been taken to court. No doubt an offence had been committed on the part of the woman, but the complainant was equally bad, and the two husbands were fighting for 20 minutes, which was only interrupted by the intervention of the police.

Defendant was ordered to pay the costs and keep the peace towards the complainant for six months.