The chivalric cult had a strange parallel in the sleeping arrangment known as 'bundling', which was common both to rural areas of seventeenth-century Wales and to eighteenth-century New England. This was likewise a non-sexual relationship, where a young man and woman passed the night alone in a bedroom together, but remained fully clothed. Sometimes they were even tied down or a board was placed down the middle of their bed. The idea was to make it through to morning without having sex, in order to find out whether they got on well enough together to marry. Until 1800, when it began to arouse a new moralistic disapproval, to 'bundle' was considered both chaste and sensible as it lead to more successful marriages.
p. 67, If Walls Could Talk: An Intimate History of the Home; Lucy Worsley. This is an advanced review copy of a book due out on 28 February.