Children born of parents not married to each other are illegitimate in law. In the Middle Ages such children were taken to be ‘stained’ by the sexual sin of their parents. Illegitimate children faced disabilities about holding offices or participating in various trades, but above all with regard to inheritance. If a father conceded his paternity (not at all a given), the bastard son or daughter had limited, if any, rights to inherit. The fate of illegitimate children ranged from abandonment soon after birth, to recognition and upbringing with care, though almost never with the same consideration as that lavished on legitimate children.