The tradition of bridesmaids evolved from the custom of surrounding the Bride with other richly dressed women in order to confuse the evil spirits. This is why the bridesmaids come down the aisle first, in order to throw off the evil spirits that might come after the bride.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Story Telling: Wedding Traditions, Part Two
So glad to see that I am not the only one wondering how all these wedding traditions became traditions in the first place! Sometimes couples are looking for an excuse to skip various traditions- maybe you can find some explanations to give your parents in these posts. Thanks for the feedback on the blog and on facebook! Here are some more traditions that I found explanations for…
Why do we have bridesmaids?
Why have groomsmen?
It used to be that the groom had to capture his bride on the wedding day, sometimes having to actually fend off her family. The best man was actually the best warrior that stayed by the groom's side. The rest of the groomsmen helped in the fight however they could. Whew- renting a tux doesn’t seem like that big of deal after all, right??
Why do we "give the bride away"?
In the days of arranged marriages the father, as the head of the household, would give away his daughter since daughters were considered property. It was actually the father's right to give his girl to the groom, and usually for a price.
Why does the Bride stand to the left of the groom during the ceremony?
The answer to this also goes back to the days of the captured bride. After the groom has "kidnapped" his bride, he might have to fight off other suitors that felt threatened. The groom could hold his bride with his left hand, allowing his right hand to be free to use his sword. So much potential violence!
Who started the kiss at the end of the ceremony??
The kiss at the end of the ceremony has long been considered a token of bonding. It was also seen as the exchange of spirits as each partner sends a part of their self into the new spouse's soul- I love that imagery! It was seen to seal the wedding.
Why do we decorate the getaway car?
Once again worry over evil spirits instituted a tradition. Having a noisy car (tying cans to the back) when leaving the reception was considered to frighten any evil spirits away. Also if the car was decorated, again, it might confuse evil spirits.
Well that was fun! It seems as though I need to figure out what tradition protects the photographers from the evil spirits??