Without Benefit of Clergy (1921)

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John Holden, an English engineer living in Lahore, India, (Thomas Holding) sees pretty Ameera (Virginia Brown Faire) being mistreated by a money-lender (Otto Lederer). He rescues her and finds out that she and her mother (Evelyn Selbie) are very poor. It seems like the only way for them to keep from starving is for Ameera to marry a repugnant old native. Holden, who is enchanted by Ameera, offers to marry her himself and provide a large dowry to the mother. A native wedding ceremony is performed (with no minister present, hence the picture's title), and Ameera and her mother go to live with Holden. They are happy for six years, until their son, Tota (Philippe DeLacy), dies. Ameera is grief-stricken. Then, while Holden is away overseeing some railroad construction, cholera breaks out and Ameera is taken ill. Holden rushes home, but she dies, leaving the Englishman alone and broken-hearted.



death, engineering, marriage, son