I've heard reports about women being sold into marriage, in both Nigeria and Iraq.

This question talks about forced marriage, but does Islam say anything about either someone buying a bride, or someone selling a woman into marriage?


3 Answers 3


First of all, selling someone into marriage, is like selling someone into slavery after which the master decides to marry the slave. Although there's a very narrow scale of people who can be sold into slavery:

Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_views_on_slavery#Slavery_in_the_Quran

A freeborn woman cannot be sold as a slave, therefore she cannot be bought for marriage.


Simply No, Why because Islam gives rights to females as well including the right of freedom and right to choose their fiance.

What you have heard doesn't comply with Islamic teachings and may be a result of cultural interference, as in pre Islamic period women were considered inferior and treated more like commodities.

The buying thing has to do with slavery and not wife. If someone marries his slave, the slave is no longer a slave and is promoted to the status of a free human and a wife.(In context of your Question I adapted the gender)

Source - Womens rights in Islam I cannot mention sources in my answer because such a topic would require multiple Ahadith and their explanations and interpretation.


If you are asking for right now. Then now is to be forced into a marriage.

If you are asking for 1400 years ago. I am not sure about my answer but I guess: for maids who didn't have a husband, they could have been forced into a marriage, yet it was subject to:

  1. not had her married to another ( if she was married, and her owner would have slept with her, then the owner should have been whipped... though I am not sure if that is applicable exactly now)
  2. not gifted her to another
  3. she isn't in her عده period
  4. she isn't being shared in between several owners
  5. The son or the father of the owner hasn't slept with her.
  6. the owner should have full authority
  7. There shouldn't be a deal struck in between that if she pays an amount, she shall be freed. (I personally don't know what this means)

some side notes that make Islam stand out

  • This was all at a time where these women were being held as slaves and have lost in battle and letting them go would have them killed easily. They wouldn't have been able to find a house/shelter/safe place/food, etc. WHICH THIS IS NOT THE CURRENT SITUATION IN IRAQ OR NIGERIA!!! Those people are doing this for their own joy and are a disgrace to humans, I don't think they would have liked this to happen to their own families!! So their best chance was to have a just and kindcaretaker...
  • If the bear child, they would have had more rights...
  • That freeing a slave was among the best deeds
  • That USA, which calls itself the most just country, still had slaves until 70 years ago,
  • The prophet of Islam said: ان اکرمکم عند الله اتقاکم as simple as that!

And they had rights...

From the grandson of the prophet:

وَأمَّا حَقُّ رَعِيَّتِكَ بمِلْكِ اليَمِينِ فَأَنْ تَعْلَمَ أنَهُ خَلْقُ رَبكَ، وَلَحْمُكَ وَدَمُكَ وَأَنَّكَ تَمْلِكُهُ لا أنْتَ صَنَعْتَهُ دُونَ اللَّهِ وَلا خَلَقْتَ لَهُ سَمْعًا وَلا بَصَرًا وَلا أَجْرَيتَ لَهُ رِزْقًا وَلَكِنَّ اللَّهَ كَفَاكَ ذَلِكَ، ثُمَّ سَخَّرَهُ لَكَ وَائْتَمَنَكَ عَلَيْهِ وَاسْتَوْدَعَكَ إيَّاهُ لِتَحْفَظَهُ فِيهِ وتَسِيرَ فِيهِ بسِيرَتِهِ فَتُطْعِمَهُ مِمَّا تَأْكُلُ وَتُلْبسَهُ مِمَّا تَلْبَسُ وَلا تُكَلِّفَهُ مَا لا يُطِيقُ، فَإنْ كَرِهْتَ[هُ] خَرَجْتَ إلَى اللَّهِ مِنْهُ وَاسْتَبْدَلْتَ بهِ وَلَمْ تُعَذِّبْ خَلْقَ اللَّهِ وَلا قُوَّةَ إلا باللهِ.

And the right of your subject through being your slave is that you should know that he is a creature of your Lord and is made of the same flesh and blood as you. And you only own him, but you have not created him apart from God. And you have not created his hearing and sight, nor do you provide his daily sustenance; rather it is God who gives you sufficiency for that.

Then He subjugated him to you, entrusted him to you, and provisionally consigned him to you so that you may protect him there,1 and treat him as well as He has treated you. So feed him with what you eat yourself, and clothe him with what you clothe yourself. And do not burden him with what he cannot withstand. And if you dislike him, you ought to let him go and replace him, but do not torment God’s creature. And there is no power but in God.

A beautiful line from the prophet:

لا يَقُلْ أَحَدُكُمْ: هَذا عَبْدي وَهَذِهِ أَمَتي. وَلْيَقُلْ: فَتايَ وَفَتاتِي. “No one is allowed to say this is my slave or that is my maid. You should say this is my young man, and that is my young lady


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