The Custom of Arranged Marriages in India

(Scouting the Land Before the Nuptials)

The arranging of marriages in India dates back to over one thousand years.  This practice was instituted as a means of providing continuity and stability in a community.

Initially it was the higher caste that promoted the ideas of arranged marriages, but in time the other castes adopted the custom as well.

Generally there are two ways in which marriages are arranged.  The first involves a contract established between two families who agree that their children will be betrothed to one another.  A second method involves a friend or mutual acquaintance who arranges and handles the details between the families of the bride and groom.

The process of finding a suitable mate takes time due to the seriousness of the task.  Family considerations must be taken into account.  These can include common interests, social class, educational level, dowry and spirituality.

In most instances, this process of arranged marriages is initiated by the groom’s family while he is still a child.  A marriage broker is often consulted to seek out a prospective bride that the groom's family will find acceptable.  Once this task is accomplished, a date for the nuptials is set.

wedding photo

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