Posted on 22nd December 2020
Marriage in Egypt was classed as a duty, therefore undertaken early in life. Girls could be married as young as eight or nine, although commonly were married in their early teens. Men normally married by the age of twenty.
People today have a marriage ceremony and reception (party), but there is no evidence that this took place in ancient Egypt. If a girl left her father’s house and moved into a man’s house, she became his wife.
Women did have rights in Egypt and when they married, they took a dowry (their own property and goods) with them. This dowry would remain the wife’s property through marriage and not pass to the control of her husband as it would in many other cultures.
Agreeing a marriage contract was common in middle and upper-class families. Although possible for poorer Egyptians to have a marriage contract, this was rare, it was expensive to employ a scribe to draw up the contract, and poorer people did not have enough possessions to warrant a contract.
Marriage contracts were used to agree the rights of property and possessions during the marriage and in cases of divorce where proceedings could be taken by either the husband or the wife; no reason had to be given for the decision to divorce.
Tagged as: Junior Ancient Egypt
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