Definition of dowry noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈdaʊri//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈdaʊri//
    (pl. dowries) Marriage
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  1. 1money and/or property that, in some societies, a wife or her family must pay to her husband when they get married His family hoped that his bride would bring a large dowry. See related entries: Marriage
  2. 2money and/or property that, in some societies, a husband must pay to his wife’s family when they get married
  3. Word OriginMiddle English (denoting a widow's life interest in her husband's estate): from Anglo-Norman French dowarie, from medieval Latin dotarium, from Latin dotare ‘endow’, from dos, dot- ‘dowry’; related to dare ‘give’.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: dowry