Wedding ceremonies have been around for thousands of years and exist in all human cultures. It’s little wonder that they have produced a number of interesting traditions, sayings and statistics over that period of time. While there have been innumerable changes, there have also been a number of traditions that have survived even if their meanings have changed over the years.
Saying “I Do”, throwing the bouquet, doffing the garter belt and the use of flowers at weddings all have their own unique histories. What follows are just some of the traditions, sayings and interesting statistics that are part of wedding ceremonies being held today.
Traditions of Good Luck
Each culture has their own unique traditions to provide good luck to the happy couple. In Greece, brides will place a sugar cube in their gloves in order to “sweeten” the marriage. Muslim brides will paint henna on their hands and feet as a form of protection from guests who may be jealous. One of the most interesting is that Hindu couples view raining on their wedding day as a sign of good luck as well.
“Request Your Presence”
This is the common phrase used in wedding invitations that most people may interpret as a fancy way of saying “We Invite You”. However, the actual tradition behind the phrase is that the term “request your presence” is one used to invite you to a ceremony in a house of worship. Conversely, the phrase “pleasure of your company” is used when the ceremony is being held outside of a place of worship.
The Engagement Ring
It is believed that the Ancient Egyptians were the first to use wedding rings in their marriage ceremonies, although the tradition is not nearly as strong as it is today. Diamond engagement rings for example which are very common now was first used in 1477 in Vienna as the Archduke Maximilian of Austria presented his new bride Mary of Burgundy with a diamond wedding ring. For the next several centuries, diamond wedding rings were the very popular among the rich and well to do. However, in the Western world engagement rings did not become popular until the latter half of the 19th century and in the US diamond engagement rings did not become popular until the Great Depression years of the 1930s.
The Price of Weddings
Overall, the average wedding in Australia costs about $48,082 according to a 2012 survey. Most of the money actually goes towards paying for the venue and catering services with only a small fraction going towards decorations, dresses and other aspects of the wedding itself. Many couples can expect to pay roughly $10,500 just to have everything reserved for the big day. What is the least expensive aspect of marriage? It is the marriage license which usually costs around $70.
The traditions of marriage have certainly undergone a number of changes over the years which have made them interesting and unique among different cultures. For many, today’s wedding traditions carry different meanings today than in the past, but they are still honored and followed in traditional weddings.