Seven Types Of Tamil Marriages

There are eight types of Marriages described in the Sanatana Dharma , the Vedic way of Life, as sanctioned by the Smritis.

What are the types of marriages allowed in the Tamil Culture which is as old and rich as Sanskrit and Sanatana Dharma.?

A study of the ancient Taml work Tholkappiyam, which is regarded as the most ancient Tamil work that deals with Tamil Grammar apart from dealing with Tamil way of Life.

It defines Tamils’  way of Life.

The Vedic Hinduism lists

kalitiogai Poem
Tamil Literature Poem kalotogai

Seven types of Marriages.

1.Brahmah Vivaah

2.Prajapatya Vivaah.

3.Arsha Vivaah.

4.Daiva Vivah.

5.Asura Vivaah.

6.Gaandharva Vivaah.

7.Raakshsa Vivaah and

8.Paisaacha Vvaah.

Tamils also list Seven Types of Marriages.

They are,

  1. மரபு வழி மணம்
  2. சேவை மணம்
  3. போர் நிகழ்த்தி மணம்
  4. துணங்கையாடி மணம்
  5. பரிசம் கொடுத்து மணம்
  6. ஏறு தழுவி மணம்
  7. மடலேறி மணம்

1.Marapu Vazhi Manam, The Traditional Marriage

In this the bridegroom’s parents visit the bride’s parents, seek the bride and on approval the marriage is performed.

2.Sevai Manam.

In this type of marriage, the man serves the bride’s father, pleases him and on his approval gets married.

3.Por Nigazhthi Manam, Engaging in Warfare and getting married.

The man who loves a girl goes to war, if any, returns victorious and the brides parents are obligated to marry their daughter to him,

4.Thunangaiyaadi Manam, Winning in a type of Martial warfare and getting married.

It is a game engaged both by men and women(Men Vs Men,Women Vs Women)) .

This is also a part of Tamil Art.

On an auspicious day the game will be played.

Both the hands are made immobile and one should play by nudging with the Elbows and other pats of the body(Parts below the waist are not to be used.

Some times wars may be fought on these days.

Both men and women engage themselves in this game and if both the girl and the man win, individually they are allowed to get married.

5.Parisam Koduthu Manmudiththal, Paying a an amount, like dowry, and getting married.

The difference between the present custom of demanding money from the Bride was not in vogue.

In Vedic times also the Dowry was to be paid by the Bridegroom and not by the bride.

In Tamil Culture., the Parisam, Dowry, may be movable or immovable assets and the Brides parents determine this.

6.Eru Thazhuvudahal,Fighting against a Bull , overpowering it and getting married.


The man who is unable to get married his loved one, smears ashes over his body,wears flowers not used generally, like ‘Erukku’-Calotropis gigantea or Calotropis makes a Horse out of Palm  leaves , gets onto a horse and rides slowly through the city. crying aloud his Love’s name.

This was regarded as the worst type of Marriage.

This can was done only when the love was mutual, one-sided affairs do not lead to this.

There was Polygamy, one man married many women.

Polyandry, woman marrying many men,is not seen.

Inter-caste marriages took place.

Traditionally marrying from one landscape in another landscape was not allowed.

One belonging to a particular landscape, say like Mountainous regions(Kurinji) marrying  one from  a different landscape like Mullai-Forest and the adjoining region.

However exceptions were made.

There were also case where men and women got married without parents’ approval.

Illicit affairs were also known.

These come under Kalavozhukkam, Tami literature deals separately on this subject.


2 thoughts on “Seven Types Of Tamil Marriages

  1. Very interesting post. Was not aware that there are so many marriage types in the Tamillian culture. In the modern day a lot many arranged marriages happen through tamil matrimonial sites. What category would these fall under?


    1. They belong, if conducted with Parent’s approval and follow tradition, sanctioned marriages as per the ancient customs.As to the type, one has to know other details of the match.


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