The Iranian Times

Wednesday, December 2, 1998 / Azar 11, 1377, No. 617

Sehaty Foreign Exchange

Shahin & Sepehr

    Baba Taher


Tonboon-e faati
With so few rights, Iranian brides-to-be are extra cautious

By Nasim Bagheri

Mr. Soroosh:

I read your article "Marrying an Iranian woman" with interest. There are two faces to a coin, the Persian saying goes. Although you are very much attached to your heritage, I am surprised at your naivete when approaching such a delicate subject as marriage with an Iranian woman. Perhaps it is the idealism and the romantic in you that beckoned your loved one to let go of all the traditions and the "strings" that hold her to her roots, and to join you in the land of the free. Things are not that easy in the real world and especially in today's Iran. In the words of Hafez:

... Eshgh aassaan nemood avval, vali oftaad moshkel-haa!

Under Iranian law (which incidentally predates the current regime) a woman has limited rights to her husband's assets either during her marriage to him or in the event of divorce or death. In case of his death a woman will inherit one eighth of her husband's cash assets (excluding land, building or stocks). After the belongings are all divvied up among the man's offsprings, siblings and parents, the wife's share comes LAST. A woman's only "security" in case her husband decides to divorce her or dies is her mahriyeh (dowry)... GO TO FEATURE


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If you missed it yesterday, you've go to check out this cartoon. It's an all-time classic.

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* Compliments

Here are some kind words from our readers:

Pouya Rahimi writes: We love your internet site. It is very informative and entertaining especially for those who have not recieved the chance to see Iran very well, e.g. me in New Zealand. Dast-e shomaa dard nakoneh!

Cutee writes: I am an Iranian mother with 3 kids from Virginia. I would like to give many thanks to you for the infromation you gave us. It's great to know someone out there is keeping Iran alive. Thanks (merci) ... More compliments

* Women: International conference

The Tenth International Conference of the Iranian Women's Studies Foundation (IWSF) "The Iranian Woman at the Threshold of the Year 2000" will be held at the University of Montreal on July 2-5,1999 in Montreal, Canada.

Foundation: IWSF, PO Box 380882, Cambridge, MA 02238-0882, USA, Tel: 617-492-9001, Fax: 617-492-0111, Email:

Local Committee: IWSF, PO Box 354 Station "H", Montreal (QC), H3G 2L1, CANADA, Tel: 514-735-7776, Fax: 514-934-9912, Email:

Book of the Week

The Assassin Legends : Myths of the Isma'Ilis

By Farhad Daftary

Since the twelfth century fantastical tales of the Assassins, their mysterious leader and their remote mountain strongholds in Syria and northern Iran have captured the European imagination. These legends first emerged when European Crusaders in the Levant came into contact with the Syrian branch of the Nizari Ismailis, who at the behest of their leader were sent on dangerous missions to kill their enemies. Elaborated over the years, the legends culminated in Marco Polo's account according to which the Nizari leader, described as the 'Old Man of the Mountain', was said to have controlled the behaviour of his devotees through the use of hashish and a secret garden of paradise.

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AIDS & the United Nations

As the main advocate for global action on HIV/AIDS, UNAIDS leads, strengthens and supports an expanded response aimed at preventing the transmission of HIV, providing care and support, reducing the vulnerability of individuals and communities to HIV/AIDS, and alleviating the impact of the epidemic.

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Quote Unquote

Just in case

The mahriyeh (dowry), will not make a good person out of an ill-intentioned individual but perhaps may be viewed as a token of good will. If the laws in this country were similar to those in Iran, I dare say, you would witness very few women rushing to the altar without a pre-nuptial agreement.

Nasim Bagheri
"Tonboon-e faati"
The Iranian
December 2, 1998

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