London: Ladies around the world please take note: Scientists have announced the mathematical formula for the perfect wife which includes -- the bride should be five years younger than her groom, should come from the same cultural background, and be the more intelligent of the pair.

After analyses, the team from the Geneva School of Business concluded that abiding by the formula would increase a couple's chances of a long and happy marriage by a fifth, reports daily.

The academic study has been published in the European Journal of Operational Research.

To reach the conclusion, boffins looked at 1,074 couples aged between 19 and 75 years.

The experts added that a wife should be at least 27 per cent more intelligent than her husband. She should also hold a degree, while he should not.

Nguyen Vi Cao, who led the research, promised: "If people follow these guidelines in choosing their partners they can increase their chances of a happy, long marriage by up to 20 per cent."

Kate Figes, who interviewed 120 people for her recent book on understanding relationship, couples, said, "Aren't most women the more intelligent in a relationship anyway? That's my first reaction.

"It's the only finding that rings true, from what I've found. Because it's women who tend to determine the emotional landscape of a relationship," she said.

"So I don't find it surprising that women should be more intelligent."

However, Christine Northam, a marriage counsellor for Relate, said dismissively of the findings: "There are lies, lies and statistics."
"Modern marriage is about both of you having an input in the relationship," said Mrs Northam, who has been married for 41 years.
"It is about teamwork. It's not about one being dominant over the other."