In every country, the customs and rituals of getting married are different. There is something in every wedding that involves a custom that symbolises good luck vibes. There is a beloved wedding ritual in most of the countries pretty much every other countries, among which some are sweet and simple, while some others are weird and perplexing. What lies common in all these customs is one simple thing, which is the unifying of two souls.
Armenia: Break Bread
The Break Bread is a wedding ritual in Armenia observed to ward off evil spirits away from your marriage. The newly wedded Armenian couples will balance lavish flatbread on their shoulders. The Armenian wedding custom also includes the couple breaking a plate for good luck as they enter the wedding reception at the groom’s house. The groom’s mother gave them lavish and honey. While the ritual of balancing bread on their shoulders is done to keep away the evil spirit, the spoonful of honey they eat is to symbolise happiness. The wedding party starts soon after these rituals are done.
Greece: A Close Shave
On the morning of the wedding ceremony the Greek groomsman, also known as koumbaro will shave the groom for signifying trust. The koumbaro becomes the groom’s barber as he pulls out a razor and shaves his face. The groom’s new mother-in-law will feed him with honey and almonds after he has been freshly shaved. This is followed by the groom’s close friends helping to dress him. In the same, the bride is helped in getting dressed for the ceremony by the bridesmaids of honour who are known as koumbara. The children of the couple will have the koumbaro and koumbara as their godparents.
Guatemala: Ring My Bell
In Guatemalan weddings, it is customary to hang a white ceramic bell on the entrance of the home, which the groom’s mother breaks as the married couple enters. The bell will be filled with rice, flour and other grains which will fall over the couples. This traditional custom is followed as a sign of wishing abundance and prosperity for the couple. During the wedding reception, the groom’s parents who are the host can do whatever they want, including smashing things.
India: Shoe thievery
It is customary in India, for women from the bride’s family to steal and carry off the shoes of the groom when he removes it at the door where the ceremony takes place. This is in connection with the tradition of the groom to have cold feet just before he ties the knot. It is the task of the groom’s family to find hidden shoes. The groom is not allowed to leave without shoes and if his family couldn’t find the shoes, the groom has to barter for them with money, sweets or other gifts. This traditional custom is followed as a symbol of the joining of two families, and as a sign of their willingness to share a lifetime of laughter and happiness together.
Germany: Smashing Dishes
Polterabend is a common tradition in German weddings in which guests throw porcelain dishes, pots and other breakables in front of the bride and groom’s home to ward off any evil spirits. This event which is also a sign of bringing good luck and happiness for the couple will soon turn into a small, candid party. The interesting part of the ritual is that the bride and groom will clean up the piles of dishes they are thrown by their guest. The ritual of working together for a bit of housekeeping is a symbol of facing any challenge that comes in their married life.
Romania: Kidnapping the Bride
This wedding ritual in Romania is something that can get you arrested in many countries. The bride is playfully “abducted” by the wedding guests for her own wedding ceremony, and hostages in an undisclosed location. The more interesting part of the custom is that for her return the groom has to barter the guests with bottles of alcohol or wine, or a public declaration of love in front of the entire party. This mock kidnapping will add a little fun and excitement to the wedding.
Indonesia: No Bathroom Allowed
The wedding ritual of the Tidong tribe in Indonesia would sound the weirdest in the list. Newlywed couples are housebound for three days and three nights after the wedding. Spending the first three days confined to their home sounds great except the fact that they are not allowed to use the bathroom and watched over by friends and family. The couples are given with limited food and drink to make this possible. This practice is followed with the belief of bringing a happy married life with healthy babies as well as to strengthen their bond. A couple failing to accomplish the ritual is believed to bring bad luck, infidelity or the untimely death of future children.
Most of these wedding practises believed to bring eternal joy in married life. The rituals like brides first marrying a tree in India and grooms having to tolerate getting their feet whipped by family and friends in South Korean are all believed to be for good reason. The best part of these wedding rituals is that brides and grooms will have to get into the bond of love and happiness ever after.