Karl Marx Marriage

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Document No. 715


Frederick William,
by the Grace of God
King of Prussia,
Grand Duke of Lower Rhine, etc., etc.,

herewith give notice and let it he known that:

Before the Undersigned Wilhelm Christian Heinrich Burger, royal Prussian notary in the residence of the town of Kreuznach, in the provincial-court district of Coblenz, and in the presence of the two witnesses named below, there appeared Herr Karl Marx, Doctor of Philosophy, resident in Cologne, on the one hand, and Fräulein Johanna Bertha Julie Jenny von Westphalen, without occupation, resident in Kreuznach, on the other hand.

The declarants stated that they intended to marry and in view of their future marriage, the celebration of which is to take place as soon as possible, they have mutually agreed and laid down the clauses and conditions and the consequences in civil law as follows:

Firstly. Legal common ownership of property shall be established between the future marriage partners insofar as this is not specially amended by the following articles.

Secondly. This common ownership shall also apply to all future fixed assets of the spouses by the future spouses hereby declaring all fixed assets which they will inherit in the future, or which will later fall to the lot of one or other of them, to be movable property, and putting these future fixed assets, which they give wholly into common ownership, on a par with movable property, whereby in accordance with Article fifteen hundred and five of the Civil Code their transformation into movable assets (:ameublissement:) takes place.

Thirdly. Each spouse shall for his or her own part pay the debts he or she has made or contracted, inherited or otherwise incurred before marriage; in consequence whereof these debts shall be excluded from the common ownership of property.

Thus everything has been agreed and settled between the future spouses. Concerning which the present marriage contract was adopted, which has been clearly read out to the interested parties.

Done at Kreuznach in the dwelling of the widow Frau von Westphalen, June twelfth of the year one thousand eight hundred and forty-three, in the presence of the attendant witnesses, personally known to the notary, Johann Anton Rickes, private gentleman, and Peter Beltz, tailor, both resident in Kreuznach. And in witness thereof the present document has been signed first by the above-mentioned declarants, the name, position and residence of whom is known to the notary, and after them by the above-mentioned witnesses and the notary.

The original, which has remained in the possession of the notary, and on which a stamp of two talers has been affixed, has been signed by:

"Dr. Karl Marx, Jenny von Westphalen, J. A. Rickes, Peter Beltz, and Burger, notary.

At the same time We order and instruct all executors of courts of justice on request to put into operation the present act; Our Procurators-General and Our Procurators at provincial courts of justice to administer the same; all officers and commandants of the armed forces or their representatives to lend a powerful helping hand if legally requested to do so.

In confirmation thereof the present main copy has been signed by the notary and furnished with his seal of office.

Vouching for the correctness of this main copy

Burger, notary

Written: 1843;
Source: Marx Engels Collected Works Vol 3, pg 571-2;
Publisher: International Publishers (1975);
First Published: Marx/Engels, Gesamtausgabe, Abt. 1, Hb. 2, 1929;
Translated: Clemens Dutt;
Transcribed: S. Ryan;

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