They say getting married is always good news, but before you can step into your own happily ever after, there are things you need to take care of. No matter the religion you practice, the region you live in, certain wedding traditions might be a must, and for some of us, they are far away from being simple.
When it comes to wedding traditions, there are quite a few you can omit when drawing your perfect wedding, but including the ones that resonate with you can give your special day a charming touch. At some point, a compilation of details regarding each makes you wonder how it all began. Starting with wedding rings and concluding with a traditional honeymoon, we bring you the evolution of universal wedding traditions and what they served for in the past.
Read on, and find out the tales, the changes, and the current way these traditions are honored.
Before Romans came to an idea to use iron, and eventually gold, wedding rings were made from papyrus. The idea of a ring was to signify the unbreakable union between two, but also to show the status of a female in the ancient society. However, Egyptians were the ones who insisted on it being worn on a fourth finger, as according to their belief, the fourth finger contains a vein which is directly connected to a heart.
Addition of diamond, another symbol of eternity came after, by Archduke Maximilian of Austria who presented a diamond ring to his betrothed, Mary of Burgundy.
Today, we wear wedding rings made of gold or other metals as a sign of devotion to each other, but also to show off our marital status in society.
Unlike the romantic reason behind wearing rings, wedding veil carries a darker tale of origin. Dating back to the practice of arranged marriages, wedding veils served to hide the bride until the wedding in order to marry her off regardless of her looks. A groom wouldn’t see his bride until after the wedding was concluded. This was to ensure a treaty between families which was often the reason behind the arrangement.
Today, there is a romanticized version which keeps on the tradition of the veil as it heightens the suspense and the emotion for the couple on the day of the wedding. Keeping the veil as a part of your wedding attire does make it special in a way, but some till choose to disregard a tradition due to the dark tale.
Started out by Romans, the idea of the wedding cake was to promote fertility. The ceremony included wheat cake which groom would break in half above bride’s head. Yet, as years passed, the tradition was replaced by the kiss over the pile of cakes. The symbol changed as well, given that now, if they managed to kiss without knocking over the cake tower, they’d have a chance for happily ever after.
Today, a tradition is still maintained, although completely modified. The couple cuts the cake together as a symbol of them being now, as well as a symbol of the work they are to do together in a future life.
In ancient Rome, bridesmaids were tasked with protecting the bride . The bride and her bridesmaids would wear similar clothing to protect the bride from the curses of the evil eye, whom was believed to be partially blind.
Today, bridesmaids are viewed as the main support for the bride. Whether it’s financial help or simply word of advice, they play one of the major roles prior to a wedding. There’s still sometimes a dress code to be honored, but only in to preserve aesthetics.
Unlike the innocent protective role bridesmaids had in ancient times, groomsmen played a more dangerous role. The tradition comes from times when the bride was kidnapped by the groom, and held hostage. Her family would then attack the site, and groomsmen would have the task of keeping the couple hidden. The man whom the groom trusted this task to, would have the same importance as a best man has at weddings nowadays.
Today, Groomsmen are simply grooms’ best friends, and their role is minimized to organizing bachelor party and standing beside the groom during the ceremony.
The tradition of a honeymoon is tied to a period when countries used moon cycles as their time orientation guide. Couple’s first moon was the hardest one, which is why it was usual for that time to supply newlyweds with an alcoholic beverage. Since honey was the main ingredient of alcoholic beverages in that time, the term honeymoon came to use.
Today, it represents the period just after the wedding when most couples take time off to enjoy the beginning of their new life together.