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A wife was also seen as being of high value, and was therefore, usually, carefully looked after.

Early nomadic communities practised a form of marriage known as beena, in which a wife would own a tent of her own, within which she retains complete independence from her husband; this principle appears to survive in parts of early Israelite society, as some early passages of the bible appear to portray certain wives as each owning a tent as a personal possession (specifically, Jael, Sarah, and Jacob’s wives).

In later times, the bible describes wives as being given the innermost room(s) of the husband’s house, as her own private area to which men were not permitted; in the case of wealthy husbands, the bible describes their wives as having each been given an entire house for this purpose.