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Businessman Clemson Reade (Grant) breaks his engagement with workaholic U.S. diplomat girlfriend Effie (Kerr) for an adoring "old-fashioned" girl from the fictional country of Bukistan, Princess Tarji (St. John). Reade wants a wife who can "just find having babies and taking care of a man" pleasurable.While Reade tries to get closer to his bride-to-be, Effie, who has been assigned by the State Department to see that the marriage does not disturb a major oil deal with Bukistan, ends up educating the Princess about such Western ideas of the role of a wife and women's emancipation, while, simultaneously moderating some of her own ideas about making the happiness of her "man" (i.e. Grant) a primary concern.Grant's courtship of the Princess, which he attempts to conduct by "American" customs, must be adjusted to Bukistanian tradition, to protect the proposed oil deal.Effie explains to him that the marriage, called "hufi," is followed by a prolonged period of celebration called "bruchah." These terms are borrowed for comedic effect from the Jewish terms "huppah"—the canopy beneath which the marriage ceremony takes place (thus the ceremony itself is sometimes called "hupah") and "Sheva 'bruchis' or 'sheva brachot'" - 7 blessings ("bruchah" means "blessing," in the Ashkenazic pronunciation) that are recited as part of both the ceremony and a week-long celebration that follows.