[LMB] Haram, was Female characters (was Aral)

Harimad harimad2001 at yahoo.com
Mon Sep 19 19:25:25 BST 2011

--- On Sat, 8/6/11, Paula Lieberman <paal at gis.net> wrote:
PL> Meanwhile, I'm trying to remember what book I was skimming
PL> through a few hours ago, which mentioned a historical
PL> culture where families offered daughters for marriage/sold
PL> them as slaves to be wed, and for "ugly: daughters, actually
PL> paid men to take the daughters to be their slaves/wives!

I can't help you with a book title, but the authorities ancient Mesopotamia did something like this.  They auctioned the right to marry women[1].  The women would be offered from the most beautiful to the least, with the profits from the most beautiful subsidizing the dowry of the least.  

I don't remember if this was the Sumerian culture or the Akkadian one, but based on what I know about each I'd bet money it was the Semitic Akkadian.

- Harimad

[1] Not all women but I don't remember the actual criteria.  Maybe poor?  Or previously dedicated to the Temple?  Or orphans?  I can only speculate.

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