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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Dutch Age of Majority in New Netherland

Barbara asked about the legal age in New Netherland (New York) when the Dutch first settled

The original Dutch Roman law gave the legal age as 25.But many people in New Netherland even without evident parental permission married around age 21, now the question is it feasible that a young man said to be born 1639 would be able to buy his own land in 1660 being about age 21---

----or is it more feasible (my believe) that if he is recorded buying land in 1660 he was closer to age 25, being born (a likely date for this young man named Gerrit Lubberts) around 1635.?

Hello Barbara - The Dutch age of majority was 21 so it is possible that your man was indeed purchasing land at that age. I certainly would not eliminate the possibility that he was anywhere from 21 and older.

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