So, I know the ages of marriage are generally young and there are rules for when the ritual for actual marriage begins, but are there rules as to when procreation can begin? Furthermore, why do epics generally describe women with developed physic when they marry historically Ramunajacharya married at 16 to his wife as per multiple sources like The Hindu and here https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/ramanuja, why is this contrary to dharmashastras?

  • Would you consider Sushrut Samhita as Dharmshastra? I consider them as they are one of Upveda.
    – madhurkant
    Mar 28 at 16:31
  • @madhurkant I won't consider it Dharmashastra, but if it answers don't hesitate to share it!! :)
    – Haridasa
    Mar 30 at 15:52
  • Sorry for late reply btw.
    – Haridasa
    Mar 30 at 15:52
  • As per Suśruta, women attain full reproductive development at 16 yrs of age, so them having intercourse and/or pregnancy (intercourse implies pregnancy) before 16 is strictly not allowed from medical perspective, as that's unsafe for both baby and the mother. However, vivāha doesn't necessarily need to concur with the consummation. In other words, a couple needn't have their consummation just after the vivāha, they can have it many years later too.
    – Bingming
    Mar 30 at 17:17
  • In the olden times, when people married early, (in many families, as told to me orally by my elders) the couple didn't stay together until they came of age, usually women didn't stay in their husband's home until they turned at least 16 yrs of age (as told to me by my grandma).
    – Bingming
    Mar 30 at 17:18

1 Answer 1


The question first ask about:

are there rules as to when procreation can begin?

Yes and rules of procreation are given by Ayurveda as the health of newborn is of utmost importance. Here is what Sushrut Samhita says:

अथास्मै पञ्चविंशतिवर्षाय षोडशदशवर्षां पत्नीमावहेत् पित्र्यधर्मार्थकामप्रजाः प्राप्स्यतीति। (शारीरस्थाने दशमोऽध्याये त्रिपञ्चाशत् श्लोकः)

Transliteration: athāsmai pañcaviṃśativarṣāya ṣoḍaśadaśavarṣāṃ patnīmāvahet pitryadharmārthakāmaprajāḥ prāpsyatīti| (śārīrasthāne daśamo'dhyāye tripañcāśat ślokaḥ)

The above translate to:

After the child had studied when boy had attend age of 25. Marry him to a girl of age 16…

After the Shloka Sushruta tells us that if people below recommend age carry out procreation then the child will be dead in womb and, if somehow such child is born he will not attain a long age, if such child attains long age his senses will be very weak. Hence do not impregnant a girl of small age (तस्मादत्यन्तबालायां गर्भाधानं न कारयेत्).

Additionally, Vagbhata has also mentioned same age limit for girl (for boy he admits 21, maybe). However I have cannot recall where has he mentioned such.

Another question is regarding Ramunajacharya‘s marriage being contrary to Dharmshastra. Two different reasons can be thought of here:

  1. Ayurveda deals with impregnantation its rule does not need align with age of marriage. However since the purpose of marriage in Hinduism is procreation and carry out Dharma rituals this point has very less chance to be true.
  2. In many local culture there is provision of early marriage or child marriage and that could be the reason of Ramanujacharya’s early marriage.
  • Who is Vagbhata and is their any Dharmashastra, Purana or Ithihasa which supports this Vedanga. If not what about works by commentators or dharmacharyas. Also indirectly in the Ithihasas brides like Sita Mata seem to have been described with mature anatomy. My question is was during the times of Manu time calculated differently from today.
    – Haridasa
    Mar 30 at 17:39
  • Also can you provide a verse based on this: wisdomlib.org/ayurveda
    – Haridasa
    Mar 30 at 18:02
  • Nevermind I found it lol if you need for reference: wisdomlib.org/hinduism/book/…
    – Haridasa
    Apr 2 at 22:43

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