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Women In The Sacred Laws
Kulapati's Preface The Author
Foreword Prologue
The Dharma Sutras Contemporary Evidence
The Manu - Samhita The Later Law-Books
Digest On Hindu Law Espirit Des Lois
Major Sections

CONTEMPORARY EVIDENCE

The first four he designates ‘ancestral customs of old,’ and they are valid if the father approves them. The rest are to be sanctioned by both the father and the mother; for the Sulka, or the money paid by the bridegroom for their daughter, goes to them. When either of the parents is dead, the survivor receives the Sulka; and, when both of them are dead, the Sulka goes to the bride (Artha Sastra III. iii 152).

In courts of law, the average age at which a girl is considered to have attained majority is twelve, and that of a boy sixteen. Until this period any transgression of law on the part of a girl was pardonable, and any violation of law this age was punishable by law: ‘Women, when twelve years old, attain their majority and men when sixteen years old. If after that they disobey the law, women shall be filled twelve panas, men double‘. (2)

From the accounts of the lawgivers it is evident that marriage once performed before the nuptial fire is binding on both the man and the woman. It cannot be dissolved. But Kautilya allows divorce under certain conditions; but those conditions are applicable only in the case of the last four kinds of marriages. It can be concluded from this that the last four kinds of marriages were valid according to law.

Women In The Sacred Laws ] Up ] Next ]

Women In The Sacred Laws
About Contemporary Evidence
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