Traditions and Meanings
Modern wedding customs and traditions have their origins in the past, many coming from the Middle Ages. Here are some interesting explanations of why we perform those wedding traditions…
Interesting Wedding Facts…
White weddings were an invention of the Victorians. Before then, brides simply wore their best dress to get married in, sometimes with a white ribbon attached to symbolize purity.
Veils were thought to keep away evil spirits, who would be confused by not being able to see the bride.
Bouquets were originally posies of herbs, carried to ward off evil spirits.
Chimney sweeps are associated with the hearth and home, and it’s thought to be good luck to kiss one on the way to the ceremony.
The wedding ring symbolizes everlasting love. It’s thought that the ancient Egyptians started the practice of wearing one on the third finger of the left hand – they believed that the vein in that finger ran straight to the heart.
The bride stands on the left of the groom during the marriage ceremony to allow his sword arm to be free ready to fight off other men who may want her as their bride.
Throwing confetti has it’s roots in the Roman period, when guests threw almonds at newlyweds to symbolize a fruitful marriage.
The throwing of the wedding bouquet was introduced from America and it is said that who ever catches the bouquet will be next to be married.
Wedding receptions have their roots in the medieval period, when the groom had to demonstrate that he could support his wife by giving gifts of food and drink to his in-laws.
Cutting a cake at a wedding was once thought to ensure a fruitful marriage. Keeping a piece of cake is supposed to guarantee that your husband stays faithful.
The honeymoon gets its name from the tradition of newlyweds drinking honeyed mead (a symbol of life and fertility) until the waning of the moon.
It is said that if the bride stumbles while crossing the threshold to her new home, she will have a bumpy marriage. To avoid this, the groom picks her up and carries her over the threshold, thereby ensuring a happy and prosperous marriage.
Something Old, Something New…
This saying dates back to Victorian time and the full version is ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue and a silver sixpence in her shoe.
Something Old represents the link with the bride’s family and the past. A common solution many brides choose is to wear a piece of family jewellery.
Something New represents good fortune and success in the bride’s new life. The wedding dress is often chosen as the new item.
Something Borrowed is to remind the bride that friends and family will be there for her when help is needed. The borrowed object might be something such as a lace handkerchief or an item of jewellery.
Something Blue symbolises of faithfulness and loyalty and dates back to biblical times when blue represented purity. Frequently the brides garter is the blue item.
A Silver Sixpence in her Shoe is to wish the bride wealth both financial and happiness.