The suffix "-gamy" refers specifically to the number of spouses, as in bi-gamy two spouses, generally illegal in most nations , and poly-gamy more than one spouse. On the marriage of cousins, Catholic policy has evolved from initial acceptance, through a long period of general prohibition, to the contemporary requirement for a dispensation. Bob Simpson notes that in the British case, serial monogamy creates an "extended family" — a number of households tied together in this way, including mobile children possible exes may include an ex-wife, an ex-brother-in-law, etc. Tracking the occurrence of polygamy is further complicated in jurisdictions where it has been banned, but continues to be practiced de facto polygamy. Twelve years later, in , John filed for divorce. They do explicitly prohibit polygyny today. In some cases couples living together do not wish to be recognized as married. We'wha , one of the most revered Zuni elders an Ihamana, spiritual leader served as an emissary of the Zuni to Washington, where he met President Grover Cleveland. Polygynous systems have the advantage that they can promise, as did the Mormons, a home and family for every woman.
The relationships are considered polygynous, not polyandrous, because the female husband is in fact assuming masculine gendered political roles. The de facto form of polygyny is found in other parts of the world as well including some Mormon sects and Muslim families in the United States. Societies show variable acceptance of polygamy as a cultural ideal and practice. Although it does not involve multiple now illegal formal marriages, the domestic and personal arrangements follow old polygynous patterns. More recent studies have found 53 societies outside the 28 found in the Himalayans which practice polyandry. Child marriage was common throughout history, even up until the s in the United States, where in CE, in the state of Delaware , the age of consent for marriage was 7 years old. Concubinage Polygyny usually grants wives equal status, although the husband may have personal preferences. The actual practice of polygamy in a tolerant society may actually be low, with the majority of aspirant polygamists practicing monogamous marriage. This rule may be expressed by anthropologists using a "descriptive" kinship term, such as a "man's mother's brother's daughter" also known as a "cross-cousin". Those who remarry do so on average three times. Some cultures include third gender two-spirit or transgender individuals, such as the berdache of the Zuni in New Mexico. However, in this context, some nations reserve the right to define the relationship as marital, or otherwise to regulate the relation, even if the relation has not been registered with the state or a religious institution. In Europe, this was prevented through the social practice of impartible inheritance the dis-inheriting of most siblings, some of whom went on to become celibate monks and priests. We'wha had a husband who was generally recognized as such. There have been calls for the abolition of polygamy in developing countries. This pattern was found in a broad swath of Eurasian societies from Japan to Ireland. Twelve years later, in , John filed for divorce. Such marriages have also been increasingly common in Beijing. There is variation in the degree to which partner selection is an individual decision by the partners or a collective decision by the partners' kin groups, and there is variation in the rules regulating which partners are valid choices. In a wide array of lineage-based societies with a classificatory kinship system , potential spouses are sought from a specific class of relative as determined by a prescriptive marriage rule. Often, however, it is difficult to draw a hard and fast line between the two. Several studies have suggested that the wive's relationship with other women, including co-wives and husband's female kin, are more critical relationships than that with her husband for her productive, reproductive and personal achievement. Another kind of marriage selection is the levirate marriage in which widows are obligated to marry their husband's brother, mostly found in societies where kinship is based on endogamous clan groups. Anthropologist Jack Goody 's comparative study of marriage around the world utilizing the Ethnographic Atlas found a strong correlation between intensive plough agriculture, dowry and monogamy. However, a small number of countries have legalized it, including Argentina, Australia, Austria, Malaysia ,  and Russia.
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