I am playing as the High King of Ireland, who, as an Insular Christian, is required to have 3 wives if I don’t want a piety generation penalty.
When my half-sister died, it pushed me into a mental break, and I was given a choice where one of the options was to convert to Paulicianism, another Christian sect. The big difference though, is that Paulicans are monogamous.
If I make the switch, what happens to my existing marriages? Do they get annulled? Stick around? (but don’t do it again, buster!) Is this true even when switching to a faith that doesn’t allow divorces?
I wasn’t willing to risk it (and am playing Ironman) so I did not find out.
I just tested this as an Ash’ari (Muslim) ruler converting to Catholicism.
This is what happened to my 3 secondary wives:
- I received 3 messages which read “Spouse Invalid – Your new Faith’s beliefs mean that [name] is no longer your spouse”.
- They became regular courtiers in my court.
- They did not change their religions (but my primary wife didn’t either)
- They did not have an opinion penalty for being divorced (just one for me being an Evil [sic] Catholic).
- A couple days later, one of my ex-wives informed me that she is pregnant and that “Since we were married when this child was conceived, there is no stain of bastardy; when the babe is born it will be known as your legitimate offspring”.
So TL;DR: Converting to a monogamous religion will get you a “free” divorce from your secondary wives without any of the usual restrictions, costs or penalties.