A marriage license is a document issued, either by a church or state authority, authorizing a couple to marry. The procedure for obtaining a license varies between countries and has changed over time. Marriage licenses began to be issued in the Middle Ages, to permit a marriage which would otherwise be illegal, for instance, if the necessary period of notice for the marriage (see banns) had not been given.
|This Help-related article is a stub. You can help by expanding it.|