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By David Levinson

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But by 1615, when he reached India, English visitors were becoming commonplace due to expanding trade with the Mogul Empire. While there is no evidence that Swithelm left any progeny in India, many later European visitors did. It was customary in Indian inns in the Middle Ages to provide a female companion for the pleasure of distinguished travelers. By the nineteenth century, the number of British residents was into the thousands, and most were male. Until the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869 it was common for unmarried Britons to keep an Indian mistress/housekeeper who would raise their children.

Domestic Unit. The typical unit is made up of a husband and wife, together with their children. However, a number of variations in basic Minyong family composition have been noted. Absolute authority resides with the male head of the household. Joint families are rare because the allegiance of male and female offspring is transferred, first to the male and female dormitories, then to their own families, as the life cycle progresses. While monogamous unions are the Abor norm, polygynous arrangements are known.

Hypergamy is also practiced. This system permits a woman to marry a man of a higher but not a lower social status than her own. Anavil Brahmans have a preference for patrilocality, patrilineal systems of inheritance, and residence in joint family groups. Brahmanic ideals lead to a pref erence for dowry marriage. The laws of Manu distinguish eight different forms of marriage, of which four are actually variations of the dowry marriage; and it is these four that are theoretically recommended to Brahmans.

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