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When defined broadly, marriage is considered a cultural universal. Individuals may marry for several reasons, including legal, social, libidinal, emotional, financial, spiritual, and religious purposes.
Whom they marry may be influenced by socially determined rules of incest, prescriptive marriage rules, parental choice and individual desire.
This in turn is derived from Old French, marier (to marry), and ultimately Latin, marītāre, meaning to provide with a husband or wife and marītāri meaning to get married.
When a marriage is performed with religious content under the auspices of a religious institution it is a religious marriage.
Religious marriage recognizes and creates the rights and obligations intrinsic to matrimony before that religion.
The adjective marīt-us -a, -um meaning matrimonial or nuptial could also be used in the masculine form as a noun for "husband" and in the feminine form for "wife".
The related word "matrimony" derives from the Old French word matremoine, which appears around 1300 CE and ultimately derives from Latin mātrimōnium, which combines the two concepts: mater meaning "mother" and the suffix -monium signifying "action, state, or condition".