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The bridegroom’s spokesman skillfully argues his way into the sympathetic consideration of the bride’s family. To start the marriage ceremony, the bride’s spokesman calls the gathering to order and welcomes all.
While negotiations proceed, the bride is not present but is close by, watching. Thus, a person living far away can authorize his parents to contract the marriage on his behalf.On the set day, representatives from both families gather for the ceremony. The following is a very brief version of what transpired at one such door-knocking ceremony. BR: We want to knock on the door and request Afi’s hand in marriage to our son Kwasi.Girl’s representative (GR): [Talking to the bridegroom’s representatives] We know your reason for coming, but custom demands that we still ask, What brings you here? The boy’s family now presents some items, such as various drinks and some money.Customary marriage is practiced by people in much of Africa and in such places as Hong Kong, Papua New Guinea, and the Solomon Islands as well as among the Goajiro Indians in northeastern Colombia and northwestern Venezuela, to mention a few.Payment of the bride-price was a custom in Bible times.
One woman in India whose parents arranged her marriage stated: “How could a young person be qualified to make such a weighty decision? At an appropriate point in courtship, the couple inform the parents of their intentions.