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MarriageSkyrim

The marriage of two people before a priest of Mara.

Marriage is a religious ceremony wherein the traditions of a culture create a familial bond between two or more people. Marriage is practiced by almost all of the cultures of Tamriel with the teachings of the goddess Mara, and her different identities throughout various societies, being the most prevalent among Men, Mer, and Beastfolk.[1]

As well as Mara, whose marriages are centered around the religious institutions of the Eight and Nine Divines, marriage serves as a component of other cultures including Argonian, Dunmeri, and Orsimeri societies centered around various deities with different practices and for different purposes.[1]

By game

Eight and Nine Divines traditions

Ritual of Mara Official

A couple performs the Ritual of Mara.

Most of the races of Tamriel practice marriage according to the teachings and traditions of the Eight and Nine Divines, specifically according to Mara, the goddess of maternity and love and patron of marriages, known also as Morwha by the Yokudans.[1] Marriages of this kind are officiated and overseen by priests and priestesses of Mara, often in a temple of Mara where others gather to witness the vows of marriage.[2] Priests and priestesses may also provide the Pledge of Mara to couples for them to perform the Ritual of Mara.[3] It has also been reported that clans of Ayleids not affiliated with any Daedra, some Falmer before their exile from the surface and subsequent corruption, and Kothringi practiced marriages according to the traditions of Mara worship.[4][5][6][UL 1]

Altmeri culture

Marriage in Altmeri culture, mainly on the Summerset Isles, is often subject to strict social observation and traditionalism compared to external practice, as the prime focus of an Altmeri marriage is the continuation of a strong and pure lineage with a proud sense of heritage.[7] As such, Altmeri marriages are often arranged and lack any sense of passion or love.[8] The 'highborn' of Altmer society are expected to seek spiritual guidance from the stars and the gods so as to divine anything from the suitability of a future union to the very date of the wedding. This practice of religious communion to ensure the success of a marriage often lasts for years and sometimes decades.[9][10]

The massive importance placed on marriages in Altmer society creates both extreme pressure for those expected to marry as well as social stigma for those who avoid marriage or terminate an existing matrimonial relationship to the point where one may be completely ostracised from their family and community.[9] Although they are generally frowned upon by society, interclass marriages are allowed.[10] Because pureness of blood and lineage is the most important factor considered in Altmeri marriages, werewolves and vampires are not allowed to marry, either each other or a non werewolf or vampire and such married individuals have been reported to have committed suicide or murder to preserve the integrity of their family's name.[11][12]

References

Notice: The following are unlicensed references. They are not copyrighted by a ZeniMax Media company, but can still be considered part of The Elder Scrolls lore and are included for completeness.
  1. The Water-getting Girl and the Inverse Tiger