I want to know, what are the important criteria of marriage in Islam. What does Islam say when deciding to choose a partner?

Are these factors included in that?:

  1. Education
  2. Family Background

4 Answers 4



Prophet Muhammad said,

A woman (or man) may be married for four things: for her wealth, for her noble descent, for her beauty or for her religion. Choose the one who is religious, lest your hands be rubbed with dust! (Bukhari and Muslim) (Source)

We can also incur some very good message from this Ayah,

It may be if he divorced you (all) that his Lord will give him instead of you, wives better than you, Muslims (who submit to Allah), believers, obedient to Allah, turning to Allah in repentance, worshipping Allah sincerely, fasting or emigrants (for Allah's sake), previously married and virgins. (Qur'an 66:5).

Although the verse is pertaining to Prophet Muhammad, don't you feel greedy to marry the ones with the qualities mentioned above?

Another aspect one can consider is how well the partner will fit into the family culture. E.g. You would prefer a girl who you think can give a helping hand in serving your parents.

Also, we see that during the time of Prophet, many people married women with reason, not alone by liking. E.g. One man married a Thayyib expecting she can serve some children amongst his relatives. In another occasion, Prophet advised a man to marry until he found a wife who could make a living for him. So, this man married 4 women, and he found that the 4th wife was able to make a living and cook food for the man and also the other wives.

As far as I know, scholars say that one should choose his/her partner wisely, not just by looking at the beauty(of the bride). Because if the marriage has to sustain long enough peacefully, then wisdom (might say education) of the partner is an important criterion to consider.

Family Background, this might help one, but not always a good factor to consider. What if the bride never lived with her family and if the family is bad, what if the bride turns out to be good. Can't be a perfect measure.

Next, helpful info from the Qur'an while choosing partner is ...

This day are (all) good things made lawful for you. The food of those who have received the Scripture is lawful for you, and your food is lawful for them. And so are the virtuous women of the believers and the virtuous women of those who received the Scripture before you (lawful for you) when ye give them their marriage portions and live with them in honour, not in fornication, nor taking them as secret concubines. Whoso denieth the faith, his work is vain and he will be among the losers in the Hereafter. (Qur'an 5:5)

So, one has to make sure one picks his bride considering the above verse.

And do not marry polytheistic women until they believe. And a believing slave woman is better than a polytheist, even though she might please you. And do not marry polytheistic men [to your women] until they believe. And a believing slave is better than a polytheist, even though he might please you. Those invite [you] to the Fire, but Allah invites to Paradise and to forgiveness, by His permission. And He makes clear His verses to the people that perhaps they may remember. (Qur'an 2:221)

So, you have to choose choose wisely, not just because she's beautiful, but by pondering is she fit for you or not.

May the creator guide us all.


In Sahih Muslim, Sunan Abi Dawud and Sunan an-Nasa-i you find the following Hadith

Abu Hurairah reported the Prophet (ﷺ) as saying “Women may be married for four reasons: for her property, her ranks, her beauty and her religiosity. So get the one who is religious and prosper (lit. may your hands cleave to the dust).”

روى أبو داود والنسائي عن أبي هريرة رضي الله عنه: قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم

"تنكح المرأة لأربع لمالها ولحسبها ولجمالها ولدينها فاظفر بذات الدين تربت يداك"

Therefore her believe and faith should be above all the Number 1 criteria!

The expression: تربت يداك may your hands cleave to the dust

Has been used by Arabs to show the importance of some matter!

According to that the woman one should choose could be rich, upper class and beautiful if she is faithfull (one could say inner beauty). Maybe some important criteria could be akhlaq (Morality) and amanah (faithfullness) and she should be servile.

A short answer of your question can be found in a Hadith revealed in Musnad al Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (or Sunan an-Nasa-i) :

سئل رسول الله صلي الله عليه وسلم: أي النساء خير؟ قال: "التي تسره إذا نظر، وتطيعه إذا أمر، ولا تخالفه فيما يكره في نفسها ولا في ماله"رواه أحمد

Here is some Fatwa in Arabic!


Assalamu alaikum @servent-of-wiser said everything true, but id like to add that when getting married, one should make istikarah to see if the person they are marrying will benefit them in this world and hereafter. Sometimes looking for the perfect person is pretty hard, and so praying istikarah really helps as Allah swt knows whats best. I recently went over seas but didnt want to because i knew i might get married. (I hated the thought of marriage) While i was there, quite a few proposed to me, but i made istikara and alhamdulillah i am now engaged. If i hadnt made istikara i wouldve said no to them all, but i would of missed out on what Allah knows is best for me. I dont want to give any advice on criteria and what-not to look for in a partner, as nobody is perfect, so just pray istikarah and Inshallah Allah swt will lead you to what is best for your life, religion and the hereafter Amen


you should look for a woman who is exactly the same as you.

allah revealed

Women impure are for men impure, and men impure for women impure and women of purity are for men of purity, and men of purity are for women of purity: these are not affected by what people say: for them there is forgiveness, and a provision honourable

allah does not allow a pious man to marry a non pious woman and a not pious man to marry a pious woman

the most you can do is of course to marry a woman who is exactly the same as you.


as for background it doesn't matter but it is always better to marry the woman same ethnic background as you. as for education that doesn't always matter. if she is an English teacher still she is probably exactly the same as you.


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