How does Igbo Traditional Marriage Work | All You Need to Know

Do you want to know how Igbo traditional marriage works? If yes, then this is the right place for you.

How Does Igbo Traditional Marriage Work

Igbo, one of Nigeria’s major ethnic groups has a rich culture that is expressed in various aspects of their life, including their traditional marriage ceremonies. This article aims to provide information about the Igbo traditional marriage, its significance, and frequently added questions.

How Does Igbo Traditional Marriage Work

Igbo traditional marriage is a high-held or cherished event that brings families and communities together to celebrate the union of a man and a woman. here are tips on how Igbo traditional marriage works;

  • The journey of an Igbo traditional marriage begins with courtship, the interested man approaches the woman’s family to express his intentions. If his intentions are accepted, they get started with the marriage preparation process.
  • An important aspect of Igbo traditional marriage is the formal introduction between both families. This ceremony takes place in the bride’s family home.
  • The groom and his family bring gifts, including kola nuts, palm wine, and items of value to the bride’s family as a symbol of respect. The bride’s family reciprocates by accepting the gifts and offering their blessings for the union.

About Igbo Traditional Marriage

  • The bride price is a symbolic and important gesture offered by the groom’s family. Both families discuss and agree on the amount and items to be included in the bride’s price.
  • The traditional engagement ceremony is the climax of the Igbo traditional marriage, which usually takes place at the bride’s family compound or the chosen venue. The traditional engagement ceremony is characterized by cultural displays, music, and traditional dances.
  • During the ceremony, the groom accompanied by his family and friends, presents the agreed-upon bride price to the bride’s family. The bride is presented to the groom’s family symbolizing acceptance and the official union of the union.
  • Various rituals and customs are performed, such as the sharing of a ceremonial drink, and the exchange of marriage vows.

After all these, family members, friends, and well-wishers come together to rejoice in the union of the couple. Traditional Igbo delicacies, such as pounded yam, oha soup, and palm wines are prepared and shared among guests.

Igbo Bride Price

Generally, the bride price in Igbo land has no specific price or amount as it varies from state, town, village, and family. The bride price basically depends on what the bride’s family asks for, especially the father.

The bride’s price can sometimes be very high or low based on what the bride’s family is requesting. However, here are some items that are most times included as part of the bride price;

  • Tubers of Yam
  • Palm wine
  • Kola nuts
  • Wrappers
  • Bottle of hot drinks
  • Jewelry
  • Cartons of soft drink
  • Bags of rice
  • Goat

Other items are also included by the bride’s family.

Is Igbo traditional marriage still practiced today?

Yes. Igbo traditional marriage is still widely practiced today. Despite the influence of modernization, Igbo people still value their culture and continue to uphold their traditional marriage customs.

Can non-Igbo individuals marry into an Igbo family?

Yes. It is possible for non-Igbo individuals to marry into an Igbo family. However, they must respect and participate in their traditional marriage ceremonies and customs.


Igbo traditional marriage is a beautiful event that demonstrates the depth of Igbo customs and traditions. It represents the joining of both families and the beginning of a lifelong commitment between a man and a woman. The ceremonies, customs, and rituals not only serve as a celebration of love but also a means of preserving the culture of the Igbo people.

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