The wife auction drawing appeared in England's Illustrated Police News in 1870.
Sometimes, the first passion dies and a marriage doesn't work out. After the ignition of the fiery spark, the heat leaves the relationship and ash covers the lover's hearts.
In Victorian Britain, divorce was a practical impossibility for everyone but the wealthy in society. That may be the reason why a navvy in Lancashire who'd grown tired of married life, reverted to an old English custom.
I had to look this up in Wikipedia. Here is the information in brief:
'Wife selling in England probably began in the late 17th century. After parading his wife with a halter around her neck, arm, or waist, a husband would publicly auction her to the highest bidder. Although the custom had no basis in law and sometimes resulted in prosecution, judges were loath to prosecute the husband because he needed the money to save him from maintaining the family in workhouses.
Wife selling persisted in England in some form until the early 20th century. In one of the last reported instances of a wife sale in England, a woman giving evidence in a Leeds police court in 1913 claimed that she had been sold to one of her husband's workmates for £1.'
In our 1870 story, the cooling Lancashire navvy offered up his wife for auction to the highest bidder at the home they'd shared together. Sheffield and Rotherham Independent stated that 'despite Solomon's testimony as to a woman being more precious than rubies, and notwithstanding that the spectators were numerous, the highest offer was only 4d [4 pence]'. The seller wanted to throw in three children, but the buyer objected, and the youngsters remained. The wife, however, seemed quite glad to escape her husband's flare-up and retreated to safety at her next-door neighbor's home.
Read nine more bizarre love stories at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-26136764
Thousands of people are evacuating their homes in Indonesia. So far two deaths have occurred after houses collapsed under the weight of ash from the powerful eruption on the main island, Java. This has led to the temporary closure of three international airports.
Natural disaster authorities said more than 50 eruptions occurred. The volcano continues to spit gas and lava as high as 13,00 feet this morning. Ash and gravel flew as far as 200km (124 miles) away, National Disaster Mitigation Agency reported.
Officials raised an alert on Thursday around an hour before the volcano erupted, and urged around 200,000 people living in 36 villages in a 10km (6 mile) radius around the volcano to evacuate.
AFP news agency reported some of the evacuees tried to visit their houses this morning to gather clothing and valuables, but were forced to turn back by the continuous stream of volcanic ash and rocks from the volcano. Some families have lost all their possessions.
The thick dust makes it dangerous for pedestrians and vehicles to be on the road, and authorities say residents are volunteering to sweep the streets.
Experts say the volcano tends to rest after a large eruption, and further spewing is unlikely. The volcano last erupted in 1990, killing dozens of people. A powerful eruption in 1919 killed around 5,000 people.
With 130 active volcanoes, Indonesia lies across a series of geological fault-lines and is prone to frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Earlier this month, Mount Sinabung on the island of Sumatra erupted, killing at least 14 people.
And so, the passionate fire dies, leaving cooling ash behind in both our stories. Let's hope possessions can be reclaimed after the Earth settles.