Because the sexes generally were unable to mix socially, young men and women enjoyed few acquaintances among the opposite sex.
The 1973 census, the last for which complete data were available in mid-1987, showed that the typical household consisted of five to six individuals and that about 12 percent of the households were made up of eight or more members.
Unions between the children of brothers were customarily preferred, or at least matches between close relatives or within the same tribe.
The pattern was about the same as that reported from the 1964 census, and a 1978 Tripoli newspaper article called attention to the continued strength of the extended family.
Individuals subordinated their personal interests to those of the family and considered themselves to be members of a group whose importance outweighed their own.
Libya Table of Contents Libyans reckon kinship patrilineally, and the household is based on blood ties between men.