1500 B.C. - A.D. 1800

Though it is difficult to say at which specific point of time deterioration in the status of women began, still there would be probably little disagreement among the experts if it is stated that women enjoyed a relatively -higher status in the early Vedic period.

From about 1500 B.C. started the change in women's status due to various reasons, among which the most important was a denial of education. Traces of deterioration are found in all periods following 1500 B.C. But it became much more marked after the beginning of the Christian era and reached its peak after the Mughul invasion in sixteenth century. In short, the role of women conformed to the dictum laid down by Manu, the great law giver of second century that "a woman does not deserve freedom" and that her life should throughout be one of dependence on man. Another similar dictum laid down by Manu was that woman should be subservient in all stages of her life- "in childhood to the father, in youth to the husband and his elderly kins and to the son when widowed".Among the traditional Hindu families the fate of a woman, especially of the daughter-in-law, was always of subordination to all other members.