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svayaṃvara


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For the daughter of a royal or a kṣatriya family, a way of selecting a husband which takes the form of either of a public contest between her suitors, or an assembly at which the bride-to-be simply chooses between them. Perhaps the best-known instances occur in the Mahābhārata, where Arjuna wins Draupadī by this method, and Damayantī prefers Nala to any of the assembled gods.

Subjects: Hinduism.


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