And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah his maid for a handmaid.
All Commentaries on Genesis 29:24 Go To Genesis 29
George Leo Haydock
A handmaid, by way of dowry, as he did afterwards to Rachel. Both sisters considered it so small, as to say they had nothing, chap. xxxi. 14.
Lia, who committed a great sin of adultery, though she was more excusable than Laban; inasmuch as she obeyed his order. (Menochius)
Jacob might justly have refused to marry her; and then what a dishonour would have been entailed upon her for life! In consequence of this imposition, the legitimacy of Ruben's conception was rendered doubtful. We may suppose, that shame hindered Lia from opening her mouth; so that Jacob had no means of discovering the cheat till day-break, having gone into the nuptial chamber after it was dark, according to custom, and the woman being also covered with a veil, Tobias viii. 1. Hence Jacob was guilty of no fault, as his mistake was involuntary. (Haydock)
He afterwards consented to marry her, (Calmet) probably on the second day of the feast. (Haydock)