Marriage: Offer and acceptance

قال الصدر الشريعة الأصغر في النقاية مختصر الوقاية: ينعقد بإيجاب وقبول لفظهما ماض ك زوجتُ و تزوجتُ أو أمر و ماضٍ ك زوِّجْني فقال زوَّجتُ و إن لم يعلما معناه قولهما دادُ وپذيرُفت بلا ميم بعد دادي و پذيرفتي كبيع و شراء. لا بقولهما عند الشهود: ما زن و شوييم. و يصح بلفظ نكاح و تزويج و ما وضع لتمليك العين حالا.

Translation

[Marriage] becomes binding1 through offer2 and acceptance. Both the words3 must be in past tense4 such as zawwajtu and tazawwatu (I have married you) or it should be an imperative (amr)5 and a past tense such as zawwijni (marry me)6 and then he responds, zawwajtu (I married you). [Marriage occurs] even if they did not understand the meaning.7 Marriage will occur8 from their statement, ’Given’9 and ‘Accepted’ without [the pronoun] ‘I’10 after [the proposer says] ‘You gave’11 or ‘You accepted’12 like the case of buying and selling13.

توضيح النقاية

(ينعقد) أي يرتبط عقد النكاح شرعا (بإيجاب) وهو ما يقال أولا من الزوج أو زوجة (وقبول) وهو ما يقال ثانيا. (لفظهما) أي أن تكون صيغة الإيجاب والقبول كلاهما (ماض) لأن جعله الشرع إنشاء للنكاح (ك) أي مثلا أحدهما أجاب بلفظ (زوجتُ) أو أنكحتُ نفسي منك (و) أخر يقبل بلفظ (تزوجتُ) أو قبلت أو رضيت.

(أو) تكون صيغة الإيجاب والقبول أولهما (أمر) والآخر (ماضٍ) قيل لفظ الأمر في النكاح إيجاب اهـ الأمر هنا بالحقيقة التوكيل ولفظ ماض بمنزلة الإيجاب والقبول من شطري العقد (ك) أي مثلا أجاب أو وكَّل أحدهما أولًا بلفظ الأمر (زوِّجْني) أي نفسَك أو زوّجني ابنتك (فقال) الآخر (زوَّجتُ) نفسي منك أو ابنتي فيضح النكاح بخلاف البيع لأن الوكيل في النكاح سفير محض و في البيع أصيل فلا يتولى واحد طرفي البيع.

وينعقد بلفظهما (و إن لم يعلما) أي العاقدان (معناه) أي معني لفظ ما عقد به من التزوج مثلا قال الرجل بعد إيجاب المرأة بتلقين صاحبه في مجلس نكحت فلانة بالعربية و لم يعرف معناه فيصح النكاح.

وينعقد النكاح بإيجاب وقبول (قولهما) ماض بغير صيغة المتكلم في القبول إن كان جوابا للخطاب. مثلا قال باللغة الفارسية (دادُ وپذيرُفت بلا ميم) أي حذفت الميم المتكلم من دادم وپذيرُفتم فمع هذا معناه أعطيتُ وقبلتُ إن كان (بعد) إيجاب الخاطب لأن مراده معلوم بسياق الكلام. مثلا قال الرجل للمرأة (دادي) أي أعطيتَ فقالت داد بحذف الميم متكلم (و) هكذا قالت المرأة للرجل (پذيرفتي) أي قبلتَ فقال پذيرُفت فيصح النكاح. هذه المسألة (كبيع و شراء) أي إن قال للبائع "فروختي" يعني يعتَ فقال "فرخت" بلا ميم يعني بعتُ بغير صراحة صيغة المتكلم و هكذا قال للمشتري "خريدي" يعني اشتريتَ و قال "خريد" بلا ميم فيصح البيع.

(لا) ينعقد النكاح (بقولهما عند الشهود) أي الشاهدان (ما زن و شوييم) أي نحن زوجة و زوج لأنه إخبار لا الإنشاء.

(و يصح) عند النكاح الإيجاب والقبول (بلفظ نكاح و تزويج) بلا خلاف بل هو أصرح. (و) ويصح بلفظ (ما وضع لتمليك العين) كلها كالتمليك و الهبة و الصدقة و البيع و الشراء خلافا للشافعي و لا يصح بلفظ الإجارة و الإعارة و إطلاق و الإباحة (حالا) فلا يصح النكاح بلفظ الوصية لان التكليك العين لا في الحال بل بعد الموت.

  • 1. Meaning the relationship of husband and wife is formed pending the other conditions. Hence, it now cannot be terminated without divorce or death of a spouse.
  • 2. When two parties or individuals form a contract, the one who presents the terms first is considered to have made the offer irrespective if it was the groom or the bride. This is known as ijab. To accept the ijab without any amendment will be acceptance and naturally, one will say this after an offer is made. This is known as qabul. For instance, if a Muslim woman in the presence of two qualified male witnesses says to the man, ‘I have married you’ and then he, in turn, responds in that gathering by saying, ‘I have married you’. The bride will be the one considered to have made the offer due to saying it first and the groom would have done acceptance despite the fact that both uttered identical statements.
  • 3. Ijab and qabul.
  • 4. The objective is to unequivocally convey to onlookers present the formation (insha) of a relationship. The Shariah has reserved the past tense or that which represents past tense for it. Their intention does not matter so long as the average believer listening to their words assumes it so. Marriage is not to be mocked or to be taken lightly, so the believer would automatically assume that marriage has been formed and it would be so even if it is apparent that it was done in jest.
  • 5. In some books, such as Wiqayah, they write present tense (mustaqbil) in place of amr but what is meant by this is amr.
  • 6. In the case of an amr and past tense, the amr must be said first. Qadhi Khan mentions that amr is the offer. However, Sadr Shariah clarifies that amr here in fact is tawkil (representation). As in the proposer make the person accepting their representative to trigger their offer. Hence, the offer and acceptance are triggered concurrently with the utterance of the past tense. This is possible in marriage and not in sales because in marriage the wakil (representative) is a mere messenger and not a party to the contract, hence, they can represent both sides. Conversely, in sales the wakil is in fact an asil as in an actual party to the contract, hence, cannot act as both parties.
  • 7. It is not necessary that those making the offer and giving acceptance understand the exact meaning for the marriage to be complete. If the words are coached and in a gathering they utter it whilst the other requisite of marriage is found, the marriage will be considered done.
  • 8. Here the author is presenting the point that if the first-person pronoun such as ‘I’ is dropped, it has no impact on the ruling so long as it possible to infer from the context of the dialogue. For example, when we are asked in a rush ‘are you leaving?’, we are likely are to respond with by saying ‘leaving’ rather than utter the entire sentence such ‘I am leaving’. It is naturally inferred from the sentence.
  • 9. Sadr al-Shariah uses the Farsi word Dadu which means ‘given’ and in this context, it is a short form of dadam which means ‘I have given’ as in ‘I have given myself in marriage’ when asked if she has given herself in marriage. The same is case for ‘Yazruft’ which means ‘accepted’ as in ‘I have accepted the marriage’ when asked if she has given herself marriage.
  • 10. The book uses the Farsi word mim which means ‘I’. By adding a mim at the end of a word, you introduce a first-person pronoun to the words yazruft, dadu, farukht, and kharid which now become yazruftam, dadam, farukhtam and kharidam respectively meaning I have accepted, I have given, I have bought and I have sold accordingly.
  • 11. Sadr al-Shariah uses the Farsi word Dadi which means ‘you gave’ as in ‘you gave yourself in marriage’. Similarly, he uses the Persian word Yazrufti which means ‘you accepted’ as in ‘you accepted the marriage’.
  • 12. The author uses examples in Farsi as it is not possible to omit the pronoun ‘I’ in Arabic when saying “I have given”, “I have accepted”, “I have sold” or “I have bought” without it being sounding nonsensical; it is perfectly common in Farsi and English.
  • 13. An intermediary in the presence of a potential buyer and seller who have agreed on the merchandise and settled on a price. The intermediary closing the deal, says to the seller, ‘You have sold’ to which the seller says, ‘Sold’. Then he turns to the buyer and says, ‘You have bought’ to which the buyer says, ‘bought’. The sale will be valid and the deal will be binding. This is even though they do not say, ‘I’ or state the full sentence such as ‘I bought the item’. The reason, it is clear from the context and does not need elaboration to those of sound mind.