Pre-hispanic filipino marriage custom

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Topics: Marriage
MARRIAGE CUSTOMS
Most cases, a woman of one class are married to a man of her same class (eg. A noble married to a noble). However there were exceptions, this happens when a man showed bravery and courage in battle or he had become powerful enough to lead the people of his community. Mixed marriages were not common. They produce division of the classes within children (eg. Odd numbered children had the class of the father while even numbered children will have the class of the mother). If there is one child, he/she is half of the class of the father and half the class of the mother (eg. Father:freeman, Mother: dependent, Child:half free- half dependent). If the number of children were odd, the third, fifth, seventh and so on will be half of the class of the father and half the class of the mother.
A man could marry as many women he could as long as he can support. Children from the first wife are the legitimate ones and are granted rights to inherit property from the father; others were considered illegitimate and cannot inherit any property.
Courtships during the pre-colonial period were long. It could take weeks, months or even years. A man must fetch water, chop wood, and do errands to prove to the parents that he is capable of supporting his wife and family. If he is accepted, then the marriage will be arranged. The groom is required to give a dowry called bigay-kaya usually a piece of land or gold which is reasonable because women were considered highly in society as they were the givers of life, took on the roles of taking care of the money and trading affairs, had craftsmanship skills such as sewing and looking out after the household and raising the children, panghimuyat(gift for the parents), bigay-suso (gift for the wet-nurse). These were agreed upon and arranged by the parents of the bride and groom. Before the marriage ceremony, the parents of both families don’t allow the couple to eat, see, or talk with each other. The whole wedding ceremony

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