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Sexual regulation by the church accounted for a great amount of literature and time.The church saw regulation as necessary to maintain the welfare of society.
The church also went to great lengths to control sexual practice by married couples.
Husbands, not wives, could divorce at any time simply by telling the wife to leave.
The spread of Christianity changed women's lives in many ways by requiring a man to have only one wife and keep her for life, condemning the infidelity of men as well as women and doing away with marriage of prepubescent girls.
Canon law banned premarital sex, lust, masturbation, adultery, bestiality, homosexuality, and any sort of sex outside of marriage.
Adultery was broken up into various categories by the Statutes of Angers: prostitution and simple fornication, adultery, defloration of virgins, intercourse with nuns, incest, homosexuality, and incidental matters relating to sex such as looks, desires, touches, embraces, and kisses.Sex and gender roles in the Roman Catholic Church have been the subject of both intrigue and controversy throughout the Church's history.