This section is from the book "The Transmission Of Life. Counsels On The Nature And Hygiene Of The Masculine Function", by George H. Napheys. Also available from Amazon: The Transmission of Life.
A max first becomes a man and a woman a woman in marriage. Only when united by that mysterious rite does each find nature satisfied, and all the faculties and functions meetly exercised. By such union those powers which are directed without the individual, those strong sentiments which are the reverse of the selfish and introverted portions of our constitution, are called into action. The husband and the father no longer labors for himself alone, no longer even principally for himself. There are others who, he feels, have claims upon his time, his thoughts, his possessions, more imperative even than himself. He first provides for these, and for their sakes willingly and often undergoes deprivations and self-denials. To the philosopher who occupies his mind with the study of the motives of men, their self-abnegation must appear at once one of the most singular and most beautiful traits in our nature. That we may justly appreciate the rite which we are about to describe, we shall first speak of