...go together like a horse and carriage" crooned Frank Sinatra in 1955, echoing the sentiments of the time, a time when it was virtually unthinkable for a couple in love not to marry, and for the man to buy the couple's home.
It is worth bearing this in mind when considering the new ruling of China's Supreme Court: from now on, the person that buys the marital home (or the parents who provide the money to do so) keeps the property after the divorce.
Previously, Chinese woman would look on prospective bridegrooms with a seriously wary eye unless they owned their own home (and preferably a car as well). But court spokesman Sun Jungong explained the judgement: "Based on feedback from the public consultation, [the court found that] the parents of those who pay for the properties fear their wealth will be lost if their children divorce. In reality, many parents pour their savings into properties for their married children."
In the UK of course our courts take a different attitude. When a married couple separate all property - whether jointly owned or not - goes into one marital pot of all the couple's assets, so to speak. It is then divided up according to what the couple, and their solicitors, decide is fair.
However, the Supreme Court ruling has to be seen in the wider cultural context of Chinese society in order to appreciate just how seismic a move this new ruling is.
China's rising economy (almost double digit annual growth for the past 30 years) has seen a concomitant increase in divorce rates. Precise figures are hard to find, but it seems between 1.1 and 2.68 million couples in China decided to call it a draw in 2010. At the same time, property prices have soared, yet opportunities for career advancement and financial gain are still far greater for men than they are for women. Since property prices are seriously out of synch with per capita income in China, as Sun Jungong said it is quite common for the bridegroom's parents to stump up to purchase their son's marital home.
Add into this mix China's one child policy (introduced in 1978 and which has resulted in a male-female ratio countrywide of 118:100) and the traditional preference for a son over a daughter, and you can see how China's veneration of the tradition of marriage was bound to come a cropper as women started to see marriage purely as a way of owning property.
The result has been the so-called "flash divorce", whereby the woman seduces her man, moves in with him, marries him, swiftly divorces him and takes the house as her divorce settlement.
This new ruling - reported this week on the New York Times website - will, at a stroke, take away the incentive to do this. It would be interesting to see how British couples would take to such a ruling though. It might certainly end the desire of many young women to marry premiership footballers, if nothing else and probably put an end to the term "gold-digger".
Many people, certainly those of my parents' generation, will say that they feel divorce is now too easy; blame is not apportioned, there is little, if any social stigma attached to it and the increasing trend of judges to award joint custody agreements means that parents should, in theory at least, continue to co-parent despite separating.
Whether we need legal intervention as to who gets what when couples split is less certain. I certainly believe in marriage as an institution and I can say, hand on heart, that I have never yet had a client in my office who has clearly married someone with the express intention of taking them for all they've got. Mediation is certainly an excellent way forward - I had a client only last week who decided during the mediation process that he still loved his wife and they are now back together - but mediation presupposes the couple will first try to work things out.
Perhaps China should consider legally binding pre-nups instead.
Follow Amanda McAlister on Twitter: www.twitter.com/amandamcalister