In the movie Oliver! (1968), during a heated confrontation between Mr Brownlow and Mr Bumble, over the origins of Oliver, a point is made by Mr Brownlow:
Mr. Brownlow: In the eyes of the law, you are the more guilty of the two, for the law supposes that your wife acts under your direction.
Mr. Bumble: If that's what the law supposes, sir, then the law is an ass! If that be the eyes of the law, sir, then the law is a bachelor!
Before this statement is made, they are arguing over the fact that Mr Bumble was not told by Mrs Bumble that Oliver's mother was a young girl who is identified by the picture in the locket.
I would like to know why does Mr Bumble call the law a bachelor? Did this word have some different meaning in the time setting? If I look up the definition of the word on Google, I find no other indication of it being used in a derogatory way or meaning something other than intended.
Does anyone have a clear definition of this, or know what was the point trying to be made mean?