Story: Childhood

The age of childhood

The age of childhood

Age is the primary way children are defined in a legal sense. Different abilities, responsibilities and culpabilities are bestowed at different ages. The definition of a child has changed over time, and it also varies between different laws and policies in place at the same time. This newspaper clipping from 1872 explains that a child of seven is treated as an adult when it comes to running a bank account.

Using this item

National Library of New Zealand, Papers Past
Reference: Timaru Herald, 5 February 1972, p. 4

Permission of the National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Kerryn Pollock, 'Childhood - Defining childhood', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 1 December 2023)

Story by Kerryn Pollock, published 5 May 2011, reviewed & revised 12 Dec 2018