Page:MKGandhi patriot.djvu/47

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At least two events worth noting marked the school-days of Mohandas. The one was his marriage, the other, a crisis in his religious life.

At the age of twelve, the boy was married. The betrothal had taken place some four years before, in the home at Porbandar, and in Porbandar, too, the marriage ceremony was carried out. Frequently, in India, the bride and bridegroom are strangers to each other until the wedding-day, and sometimes it happens, when the veil is lifted for the first time, life together begins with a shock of revulsion. In this case, however, custom was ignored. One imagines that the parents involved must have been more liberal in their views than their strict observance of Hindu Ritual would suggest. At any rate, the little bride-elect was brought to Rajkot some time before the marriage, and the two children became playmates in the Gandhi's home.

The wedding-day was very merry. Mohandas, his brother, and a cousin were married at the same time. Numbers of relatives were present, flowers