bride price

(noun) Money or property given to the family of the bride either by the groom or on his behalf.

Example: Bride prices are still paid in parts of Papua New Guinea which was famously studied by Bronislaw Malinowski (1884–1942).

Audio Pronunciation: (bride price)

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Usage Notes:

  • Plural: bride prices
  • This is a simplified definition of a vast continuum of societal and cultural practices.
  • Bride price is viewed a compensating the bride’s family for the loss of her economic value in providing goods and services and a reflection of the grooms ability to provide for the bride and their offspring.
  • In contrast to bride price, a dowry is the transfer of money or property to a woman’s husband from her parents when she gets married.
  • Variant forms:
    • bride-price
    • brideprice
  • Also called:
    • bride gift (bride-gift, bridegift)
    • bride token
    • bride wealth (bride-wealth, bridewealth)
    • marriage payment
    • progeny price
    • reverse dowry (reverse-dowry)
  • Bride price used in a sentence: The people of Papua New Guinea use pigs to pay a bride price.

Related Terms: