Last time we bought to you a few of the best wedding traditions and the meanings behind them. As I find this a very interesting subject, I’ve decided to include a few more traditions for you all to enjoy.
Just me and a few best peeps
During the wedding ceremony, the bride, traditionally, is always on the groom’s left side, as he needed his sword hand to fend off other potential suitors or other objectors. Stemming from the days of lore, when marriage was by capture, the bride’s family other suitors would kidnap the bride and whisk her off for revenge, even at the very last minute. Nowadays, this decision is right down to personal preference. Unless, of course, you’re expecting a sword fight.. Kiana has yet to see one of those! The role of the groomsmen started during the old kidnapping days as well. They would assist the groom in the capture of his bride and protect her until the moment she was wed, and the marriage was consummated. The role of bridesmaids have nearly always been present in various roles. What gave rise to the role of the wedding party popularity, is due mostly to the requirement of ten witnesses for a wedding during the roman empire. The wedding party would dress like the bride and groom to confuse kidnappers and those who wished to do the couple harm.
If you like it, put a ring on it
Wedding rings were invented by the Egyptians who exchanged rings made of reeds or papyrus. The circle symbolized eternity and therefore, the couples never ending love for one another. The ring was placed on the fourth finger of the left hand because they believed that it held a vein that led directly to the heart, later being named the vein of love by the Romans. The first rings of metal were made by the Romans and were given as a part of the bride’s dowry as a symbol of betrothal. Rings that included jewel settings were a part of Venetian betrothal culture in the 15th century. Traditionally, only the bride wore a wedding ring. Men wearing wedding rings did not become popular until the 1950’s in America.
Let them eat cake
Originally considered a luxury item, the tradition of the wedding cake actually started in Roman times as a loaf of bread that was broken over the bride’s head to symbolize the end of her virginity and to wish her fortune and fertility. The attending guests would then grab a piece, as it was to bring them luck as well. What eventually developed into the tiered wedding cake started as a game where the couple would have to kiss over the top of a pile of sweet rolls, without knocking them over. This type of cake, called Croquembouche, became widely popular in France in Medieval times, and still continues today. White-tiered fruitcakes developed during Victorian times, when white became a symbol of wealth and prosperity. The more tiers you had, the wealthier you were considered to be. It was the bride’s responsibility to cut and pass the cake originally, but as the cakes grew in size and shape, the groom became the assistant to the bride. They would cut the cake and serve it to their guests together.
Friends don’t let friends drink bad wine
What began as an assurance that people weren’t drinking poisoned wine in Greek and Roman culture, friends would wish one another health as they clinked together their filled wine glasses. The wine would spill over into each others glasses, and they would drink to show that it was untainted. The Romans later developed this idea by adding a piece of stale bread, or toast, to their wine. The bread would not only taste better, but it would reduce the acidity of the wine. The person being wished health would eat the saturated piece of bread. At wedding celebrations, the father was the first to drink from the communal wine pitcher in order to ensure that it wasn’t poisoned. He would, in turn, wish the couple health and to the health of their future children. Thus, the wedding “toast” was born! Don’t worry, we won’t be putting bread in your champagne flute anytime soon.
Wedding traditions are, to say the least, interesting. Though every wedding is different, they are largely the same in the grand scheme of things. Transitioning from past to present, most wedding traditions were born out of superstitions or a grand display of wealth. They have become such an integral part of weddings today -we just can’t imagine a wedding without.