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Using provincial data about age at first marriage and permanent singlehood, this paper presents a detailed analysis of marriage behaviour for men and women in Spain over the period 1887-2001. It shows that the great diversity between the Spanish provinces as far as marriage patterns are concerned was basically conditioned by the different numbers of people who never married, rather than by the different ages at which people usually married for the first time. It also concludes that the traditional patterns in each province continued to be replicated at least until the mid-twentieth century. The application of modern panel techniques confirmed some explanatory hypotheses that are often proposed in the literature on the subject (concerning economic, educational, and urbanisation levels) about the historical development of marriage behaviour in Spain.
Panel Surveys; Nuptiality; Provinces; 20th century