in their parents’ home for more than six to eight years after birth. The rigidity
of the custom together with the celebration of the marriage at a very early age
left no room whatsoever for either the bride or bridegroom to have time to
think of a partner of their own choice. Dowry was demanded while in some
castes and localities the bride-price was also known to be prevalent.
Monogamy Monogamy seems to have been the rule among the lower
stratum of society in both communities during the medieval period. In spite
of the decision of the ulema in the Ibadat Khana in Akbar’s times, that a man
might marry any number of wives by mutah but only four by nikah, Akbar
had issued definite orders that a man of ordinary means should not possess
more than one wife unless the first proved to be barren. Polygamy was the
privilege of the rich.