Cultures from around the world and throughout time have their own marriage customs and traditions that often govern ceremonies and celebrations. The following text offers a variety of facts and trivia about marriage rituals from different parts of the world.
In Jewish wedding ceremonies, the groom stamps on the “chupah” breaking the glass to denote the fragility of love and its need to be taken care of.
Hindu, Muslim and Sikh brides often wear red garments embroidered with gold thread for the wedding ceremony. Red is meant to signify joy.
If he can support them, a Somalian man may have as many as four wives.
Traditional Egyptian weddings feature a march known as the Zaffa that takes place before the vows are made. Zaffa marches feature belly dancers, music and often flaming swords.
Fruitcake was the traditional wedding cake for the English.
After a traditional German wedding ceremony, the bride and groom often toss coins to attending children.
In Cyprus, reception guests pin money to the dancing bride and groom during their initial dance.
Swedish parents place a gold and silver coin in each of the bride’s shoes to insure that she will never suffer poverty.
Chinese brides would traditionally deliver bridal cakes to her relatives to announce her upcoming marriage.
It is a Mexican custom for the groom’s family to pay for the wedding and celebration costs.
Medieval brides might wear a piece of red jasper jewelry to signify love.
Once an Irish woman marries, she wears her Claddagh ring on her left hand.
In Ireland, brides and grooms consider St. Patrick’s Day to be the luckiest day to wed.
Diamond engagement rings stretch back to fifteenth century Italy.
Renaissance brides tended to carry herbs instead of flowers for luck.
It is considered lucky for a bride or an attending child to cry on the wedding day.
In customary Spanish weddings, the groom often wears a shirt made by his intended wife.
Traditionally, Hungarian brides would stomp an egg to signify healthy children for the couple.
Orthodox Jewish couples take part in a pre-wedding ceremony; when a bride enters the synagogue, the groom lifts her veil to make certain he will be marrying the right lady.
Sungkem is a Sudanese ceremony in which the bride and groom kiss their parents’ knees.
Traditional Moroccan weddings can last as long as seven days.
Icelandic couples frequently honor a three to four year engagement.