Arab Wedding - Arranged Marriages

Arranged Marriages

Arranged marriages are very common in the Arab world, since the traditions of Arab society and Islam forbid couples to have sex before marriage. Therefore, when it is time for a young man to get married, his family will look around to identify a number of potential brides.

Traditionally, the process of investigation takes into consideration the girls' physical beauty, her behaviour, her cleanliness, her conduct in front of elders, her education, her religious education(whether or not she has completed the memorization of the Quran), and finally her qualities as a housewife. In carrying out this traditional investigation parents also take the behaviour of the prospective bride's family into account.

The first meeting usually takes place between the bride, groom, and their respective mothers. They meet, usually in a public place or in the bride's house, and get to know each other. The bride, groom, and their chaperones will typically sit separately, but within sight of each other, in order to get to know each other. Nowadays, the man might suggest to his family who he would like them to consider, and it may be that the man and the woman already know each other. It is also nowadays common in urban families for a bride and the groom to agree to marry before the groom approaches the bride's family for their permission.

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