Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Bells are Ringing . . .

Lil Bro is getting married in a couple of weeks. In Iowa. In November. Sigh!

He and NuLove have been planning this wedding for quite a few months, but I don’t really think they know what they are doing. I mean, getting married, good. Thumbs up! But I’m sure they’re ignorant of where all this tradition stuff comes from. In fact, would anyone do any of it if there was general knowledge about wedding customs?

I’m here to blow the lid off the multi-gazillion dollar wedding industry!

For example, this blog title refers to the custom of ringing bells for a wedding. That originated to scare off evil spirits who might mean harm to the new couple.

Tying the knot”, meaning to get married, goes back to Ancient Rome when the groom would untie the knots on the bride’s girdle to consummate the marriage.

Groomsmen? They were the kidnappers of the bride and to establish ownership of the bride, she was “carried over the threshold”. The bride stands on the left of the groom at the wedding ceremony because the groom would hold/restrain the captured bride with his left hand, leaving his right hand (sword hand) free to fight off her defenders. Nice, eh, and certainly relevant in today’s world. NOT!
Wedding rings were initially woven circlets around the woman’s ankles and wrists to keep her from running away. So apt today, right?

Giving the bride away goes back to the old custom of the bride being property transferred from father to husband--for a price. Umm, isn’t that the definition of prostitution?

The bridal bouquet was of herbs and spices and meant to frighten off evil spirits.

Tossing rice meant wishes for a bountiful harvest (very important in NYC) and many children.

The first wedding cakes were thrown at the bride, not eaten by her, to ensure her fertility since wheat is a symbol of fertility.

Bridal showers originated when the father disapproved of the groom. Because of that, he would not provide what she needed to set up her household, so her friends had to.

And of course, bridal veils. Those hid the face of the bride-never-met, I guess so he couldn’t change his mind at the last minute. Alternatively, it was so evil spirits wouldn’t ruin the ceremony.

Enough! But trust me, this is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Wow! Are you superstitious? Do you really want the happiest day of your life tied to pagan rituals? Maybe a courthouse wedding with a judge IS more in keeping with your beliefs. Dump the paraphernalia of tradition and make this day your own!

Read more. I used a lot of resources to come up with this list, including, but not limited to:

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