Child marriages of girls is a way out of desperate economic conditions, or simply a source of income to the parents.
Social upheavals such as wars, major military campaigns, forced religious conversion, taking natives as prisoners of war and converting them into slaves, arrest and forced migrations of people often made a suitable groom a rare commodity.
Child marriages were common throughout history for a variety of reasons including poverty, insecurity, as well as for political and financial reasons.
Today, child marriage is still fairly widespread, particularly in developing countries, such as parts of Africa, The incidence of child marriage has been falling in most parts of the world.
Bride's families would seek out any available bachelors and marry them to their daughters, before events beyond their control moved the boy away.
Persecution and displacement of Roma and Jewish people in Europe, colonial campaigns to get slaves from various ethnic groups in West Africa across the Atlantic for plantations, Islamic campaigns to get Hindu slaves from India across Afghanistan's Hindu Kush as property and for work, were some of the historical events that increased the practice of child marriage before the 19th century.
This practice intensified after the Jewish community was expelled from Spain, and resettled in the Ottoman Empire.
Child marriages among the Eastern Sephardic Jews continued through the 18th century in Islamic majority regions.
In certain countries, even when the legal marriage age is 18, cultural traditions take priority over legislative law.Child marriage has widespread and long term consequences for child brides and grooms.Child marriage is related to child betrothal, and it includes civil cohabitation and court approved early marriages after teenage pregnancy.Other fear of crime such as rape, which not only would be traumatic but may lead to less acceptance of the girl if she becomes victim of a crime.or elope causing a permanent social blemish to her siblings, or that the impoverished family may be unable to find bachelors for grown up girls in their economic social group.