As wreath money you designated a financial compensation that could demand a woman by her former fiancé when she had permitted him because of a promise of marriage, the cohabitation, so lost virginity, and he then dissolved the betrothal. The same was true for neuverlobte widows.
There are two explanations of word origins: An obsolete virgin bride, the bridesmaid straw, had to wear a straw wreath according to ancient custom in the wedding. The innocent bride was allowed to contrast present in the myrtle wreath. The other version is that the virgin bride wore a wreath closed and no longer virgin bride or widow open.
In the German private law can normally only financial losses as part of the damages to be compensated (see § 253 para 1 BGB). The " dishonor " of the Virgin is but an immaterial damage. The claim for wreath money was similar to the still existing claim for pain and suffering, an exception to this principle. The claim was governed by § 1300 in the Fourth Book ( Family Law ) of the Civil Code of 1896 and went with him on 1 January 1900 in force.
§ 1300 of the Civil Code was:
The claim for damages was justified by the fact that the unmarried have less chance of being befitting marriage with another man because of the loss of her virginity. Was the unmarried or a widow, however, before the cohabitation no longer " unblemished ," said her was not a wreath money, where the term " bescholten " referred not only to unchastity, but also to other issues, such as prison stays.
In 1993, a lawsuit on a wreath of money in the amount of DM 1,000 was from the Münster District Court dismissed on the grounds that § 1300 of the BGB because of the changed morals against the principle of equality of the Basic Law (Art. 3 GG) and was therefore no longer apply. A constitutional complaint against this decision was not accepted by the Federal Constitutional Court. Practical importance was the rule at that time no longer anyway. It has therefore been deleted entirely by the law for the reorganization of the marriage law of 4 May 1998. The provision was pre-constitutional law, with the result that individual specialized courts even had the opportunity to rate the provision as unconstitutional and ignore. A submission to the Federal Constitutional Court was not required. The law has been abolished in the GDR in 1957.
The remaining paragraphs between § 1297 to § 1302 BGB remain. From this, any monetary compensation ( damages, return of gifts ) derived. The validity of claims is governed by § 1302 of the Civil Code.