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The Agikuyu dowry process part two

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Rum

Village Elder
#1
Kũracia

Assuming the groom’s family is ready with the dowry, the men (athuri) proceed to give the required items in succession and await concurrence by elders from the bride’s family after each item in theindo cia athurilist
Then the women (atumia) proceed to give the items to the women from the bride’s family after each item in the Indo cia atumia list
Kũonio itara

This is a visit by the bride (accompanied by her family) to the groom’s homestead. She is meant to see the new kitchen where she will be cooking from and be guided by her new mother (mother in-law) on how she has set it up. Itara was the place in the traditional kitchen where firewood was stored. Some explain the itara (which also means nest) as the bride’s new homestead or nesting place. This visit is designed to enable the two families to interact in a celebratory atmosphere and get to know each other better.
The catering costs for this visit are covered by the father of the groom who is the hostandKũonio itaraprocess begins

Kũguraria / Gũtinia kiande

This is called ‘ngurario’ or ‘gũtinia kiande’ (cutting of one of the front limbs of a fattened ram). It takes place at the bride’s family home. It is ordinarily done by couples who are already married and have lived together for a number of years. In a few cases, the groom might decide to visit the brides home and finalize Ngurario before the Christian wedding takes place.
The husband, after staying with the wife for some time – may be after the wife has given birth to a few children – will decide to perform this ceremony popularly known as ngurario or gũtinia kiande. The husband accompanied by some friends and relatives makes a visit to the father in laws homestead so as to be told what items to bring before the ngurario day. This will ordinarily be items that remained unfulfilled during the earlier rũracio. In fact, a rũracio (kũingera kũracia) is scheduled to take place during the ngurario. The list of items will be read out as the secretary from the husband’s sides writes the items down –although theNgurariorequirements are standard.

Ruracio Standards

Young men today are having a hard time because there are no rules and some people have become very greedy. The dowry is still negotiated in terms of cows, goats, and honey. Once the price has been determined, it is now converted into cash. The elders leave a major down payment and a day is then set for the wedding. Dowry negotiations are usually done over several weeks or months. The balance can take years to pay. Usually the family never asks for the balance. If the man doesn’t finish paying the balance then he begets a daughter, she cannot be married unless he finishes paying the balance. (This is very embarrassing, and most people avoid this). If they never have children, then the man’s family is left with a “stain” that they never honor their word and this becomes common knowledge. For this reasons, the bride price “loan” is always paid up. When the bride price is finally paid up, there is a ceremony done. This in the olden days signified a marriage. The family of the bride usually kill a goat and they give the front legs to the husband. This signified that he was now the husband of the woman and that he and not her father bears the full responsibility for her. This practice is still done even today.

The Christian Marriage Ceremony

For Christians, the Ngurario ceremony has been replaced by the Christian marriage. However, some may opt to conduct the Ngurario either before the Christian wedding or wait until much later after they have settled down with the wife. The Ngurario may be considered as a celebration of marriage and some people do it on their fifth to tenth year anniversary.
The whole community usually gets involved. The women team up and organize the menu, and they contribute the food. The young men and women team up and raise funds for the wedding. This is done through a “pre wedding party”. The young men arrange for transportation and refreshments.
 

Rum

Village Elder
#6
btw is there any difference between ruracio and uthoni?
There is a slight difference. Ruracio is where you go to negotiate the dowry price n other issues that may arise. Uthoni is like a house party thingy where both inlaw families get to know each other. More of a bash. But the two are closely tied
 
#7
There is a slight difference. Ruracio is where you go to negotiate the dowry price n other issues that may arise. Uthoni is like a house party thingy where both inlaw families get to know each other. More of a bash. But the two are closely tied
cool men cz I heard mathira guys saying they have gone to uthoni whereas actual dowry was goin to be paid, so i got confused.
 
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