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A wife’s dowry was administered by her husband as part of the family assets.
He had no say, however, in its ultimate disposal; and legally, the dowry had to be kept separate for it was expected to support the wife and her children.
Bridewealth circulates property and women, and is typical of societies where property is limited.
Dowry concentrates property and is found in property owning classes or commercial or landed pastoral peoples.
In case of divorce without reason, a man was required to give his wife the dowry she brought as well as the bride price the husband gave.