A young man of the Amana sect who went courting in the late 19th century faced as many trials as a knight on a quest. Unlike other utopian sects, the Society of the True Inspirationists, as this group called themselves, did not forbid courtship and marriage; they just made getting there so difficult that only the most determined would succeed.
Children were warned that the opposite sex possessed a “magical fire.” Young people who were drawn to one another despite this warning could apply to the community’s Great Council for permission to marry. If the young man was 24 years old and the woman 20, the minimum ages required for marriage, they were examined for “spiritual, mental, or physical” suitability and advised that marrying would lower their spiritual standing in the community. If deemed suitable, the man spent a year in another of the Amana villages that dotted a six-mile stretch along the Iowa River. Finally, if the couple’s affection withstood this separation, the man returned to his home, a wedding date was set – sometimes for as much as a year in the future – and permission was granted for Sunday courtship calls.
Despite these trials – or maybe because of them – marriage flourished and Amana thrived.
|appy – faire une demande|
|court - courtiser|
|courtship – l’acte de courtiser|
|deem - juger|
|dot - parsemer|
|drawn – attiré|
|flourish - prospérer|
|knight – un chevalier|
|quest – une quête|
|standing – la réputation|
|stretch – une partie|
|suitable – apte|
|suitability – un caractère approprié|
|thrive - prospérer|
|trial – une épreuve, une difficulté|
|withstand (irregular verb – withstood, withstood) -résister|
I discovered that this religion still survives in the United States. To find out more, go to: