IELTS Listening: Gap-fill Summary Completion

Listen to this talk on the history of marriage and fill in the gaps in the summary below. This talk is typical of Part 4 in the IELTS Listening test, where a talk will be given by one person in an academic setting.

Write NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS for each answer.


Most of the things said about marriage are trying to convey an 1)___________ truth. But definitions change with culture and values.

10,000 years ago, marriage was a way of establishing rights to 2)___________ by the process of designating certain children as heirs. Marriage later became an official institution run by 3)___________ authorities. By 2100 BC, there were already legal regulations governing marriage. Simultaneous marriage was permitted in some societies. In the himalayas a woman could have 4)___________.

The types of people in marriages also varied, and sometimes included two people of the same sex. Of these arrangements, the first to officially be called marriages appeared in 5)___________, where two famous emperors both married men. This was banned in 342 A.D.

There were even “ghost marriages”, which were arranged in China to continue family lineages or appease 6)___________.

For most of history, marriage has depended on practicality. Marriage for love and companionship only became common in the last 7)___________. As society’s 8)___________ change, the understanding of marriage means will change with them.