A dowry (also known as trousseau or tocher) is the money, goods, or estate that is given to a woman at the time of her marriage. A dowry creates a fund for her support in case her husband dies. The dowry eventually goes to her sons and daughters of this marriage. At times a dowry was required to validate a marriage.

Dowry started as gifts that were handed out to the bride at the time of marriage to make her stay at in-laws place more comfortable. It has hence taken an ugly turn, many parts of India still have a high incidence of dowry demands.


Dowry Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.