The study draws on research on interrogation records connected with vice crime in the Jindrichuv Hradec estate in the years 1670-1710. In 142 cases handled, criminal fornication was by far the most prevalent crime and it was the easiest offence to prove. However, the women offenders, who were usually between 20 and 30 years of age, did not have to worry just about punishment from the authorities, as a woman was above all at risk of losing her honour. Therefore women used various defensive strategies that were intended to ensure them the least possible damage to their honour and could even help them to restore it. Most often a woman defended herself with the claim that prior to sexual intercourse her partner had offered her marriage. If that claim proved true, the woman's behaviour was regarded to some degree as legitimate. Another possible defensive strategy was to accuse the man of rape or throw blame on someone else. Both men and women tended to cite their alleged drunkenness as a mitigating circumstance. However, many women and men accused of criminal fornication never served their sentences
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