Home' The Canberra Times : Ivory and White 2018 Contents 24 Ivory & White - 2018 Wedding Guide
Wedding traditions symbolise the
many virtues of a successful
marriage including fertility,
happiness and prosperity.
SOMETHING OLD, NEW,
BORROWED & BLUE
Something old - protects the bride and links
the wedding day with her past.
Something new - brings success and good
luck to the bride’s future life.
Something borrowed - transfers happiness
to the bride when borrowed from a happily
Something blue - Signifies loyalty
THE WEDDING CAKE
The wedding cake has been a part of
wedding celebrations since the time of the
ancient Romans who broke a thin loaf over
the bride’s head at the end of the ceremony
as a symbol of abundance. The crumbs were
eaten by the wedding guests as they were
believed to be good luck.
The ancient Greeks offered cakes made
of fruit, nuts and honey to the gods seeking
approval of the marriage and their blessings
to the couple.
In England during the Middle Ages the
bride and groom would kiss over a pile of
small wedding cakes to ensure an abundance
of healthy offspring.
In very early times the engagement ring was
given as partial payment for the bride and
was a symbol of the groom’s good intentions.
The first engagement rings were made
of grass and later from leather, stone and
crude metals. Diamonds became a feature in
engagement rings in medieval Italy as they
were the strongest gem thereby representing
The wedding ring, exchanged during
the wedding ceremony, is also a symbol of
WEARING A BRIDAL VEIL
The bridal veil originated in Greek and
Roman times and was considered a
sign of youth and virginity. The veil was
introduced into Europe with the return
of the crusaders. With the arranging of a
marriage, a bride was swathed in a veil
and revealed to her husband after the
ceremony. Anglo-Saxon brides wore their
hair hanging loose while Jewish brides
shaved their heads.
Brides in ancient Rome carried herbs such
as rosemary as a symbol of fidelity and
fertility. In Greece the brides carried ivy,
representing eternal love. Orange blossoms
were favoured by the Saracens as orange
trees bloom and bear fruit at the same time,
thereby exhibiting youth, purity and fertility
all at once.
TYING SHOES TO THE
Among the early Hebrews a sandal was
often given as a sign of good faith following
a property exchange. Later in Europe
the shoe became a symbol of domestic
authority and in Anglo-Saxon marriages
the bride’s father transferred his authority
to his new son-in-law by handing him his
THROWING OF CONFETTI
While the idea of throwing a shoe hasn’t
stuck, throwing confetti at the newly weds
as they leave the church has. The throwing
of rice originated in the Orient as a symbol
of good luck, fertility and prosperity and
evolved into the coloured, paper confetti we
WEDDING TRADITIONS EXPLAINED
Wedding traditions symbolise many things and have been a part of ceremonies across the world for centuries.
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