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Curiosity & Superstitions

Leaving home
Bride should exit her house from the front door and step out right foot first.
Why bride and groom avoid seeing each other on the morning of the wedding day? Perhaps has something to do with the period of arranging marriages! The bride's father, probably, feared the groom would stop the engagement if his fiancé wasn't beauty.

Getting to the church

Walking was thought to be the best way of getting to Church, as there was more chance to see lucky omens. Meeting a black cat, seeing a rainbow, having the sun shine on the Bride meant all lucky things to come. Bad omens were seeing a pig crossing the road or meet a funeral procession.

Getting to the new house
Have you ever wondered why the bride is carried over the threshold of her new house? Tradition tells that the new bride must enter home by the main door, and to avoid bad luck must never fall.

Bridal Gown Superstition
Other superstitions are that the bride should never make her own dress, that the final stitch should not be completed until she is departing for the Church. The bride should never try on the entire outfit before the wedding day. Usually, brides would put their gowns in sections: looking at herself fully dressed was considered unlucky. Even on the wedding day it was advised to leave off a part of the bridal outfit, such as a glove, when the bride checked her appearance in the mirror.

Bridesmaids and best men originate from the Roman law that demanded ten witnesses to be present at a wedding. In ancient times it was also believed that evil spirits could attend marriages with the purpose to cause mischief and disharmony. The attendants all dressed in identical clothing to the bride and groom so that the evil spirits wouldn't know who was getting married. That's why today bridesmaids and best men wear clothes that are similar to the bride's and groom's.

The Bouquet or Toss Bouquet
The bouquet was considered a symbol of happiness. Today the practice of tossing the bouquet is a derivative of throwing the garter. The single woman who catches the bouquet is believed to be the next to marry.

Bridal flowers
In ancient times bouquets were made with herbs and spices, because it was thought that strong smelling herbs would ward off and drive away evil spirits, bad luck and ill health. Garlic and chives were also popular for the same reason. During Victorian times, flowers took on an additional significance, due to the fashion of the flower language.

Throwing the garter
Throwing the garter began in France, when the bride would throw the garter to the guests at the wedding and whoever caught it could expect good luck. Today the groom traditionally removes the garter from the bride and throws it to the unmarried men. The man who catches it is thought to be the next to marry. The garter is placed on the bride's right leg, just above the knee.

Why the bride stands on the left
Brides stand on the left because in ancient times grooms used to capture their bride by kidnapping her. If the groom had to fight off other men who also wanted the same woman, he would hold his bride-to-be with his left hand and fight with his sword in the right.

Wedding cake

There is an old tradition that isn't practiced today: breaking the cake over the bride's head; its origin dates back to the Roman empire.
The groom would eat part of a loaf of barley bread baked for the occasion and break the rest over the head of the bride. This symbolized the dominance of the groom over the bride. The guests would grab for the crumbs that fell to the ground as catalysts for fertility.
Colour: The white colour of the icing on a wedding cake has come to symbolize purity and virginal attributes, because of the association of the cake with the bride.
The fashion of the white cake started in Victorian times. The white icing was also a symbol of affluence because it was made with refined sugar, which was very expensive.

Cutting the Cake
Cutting the cake has come to symbolize the first task in the couple's life together.
Immediately after the cutting, the bride and groom feed each other the first slice.
This action symbolizes the commitment to provide for each other that the bride and groom have undertaken. Today the first slice is cut by both bride and groom, but in the past this task was performed by the bride only: she had to show her ability in distributing food without waste, thus proving herself a good housekeeper.

Giving Pieces of Cake as Gifts
This tradition started as far back as the Roman empire, but it is still carried on today. The idea of sleeping with a piece of cake underneath your pillow dates back to the 17th century.
It is said that you will dream of your future spouse if you sleep with a piece of wedding cake underneath your pillow.

Wedding favors
Today, the tradition of wedding favours has evolved to giving each guest five sugar coated almonds (Italian confetti) as a symbol of health, fertility, wealth, joy and long-life. Why almonds? A Greek legend tells the story of a young man called Demophon, who fell in love with a Tracian princess, Phyllis. Before the marriage ceremony Demophon is informed that his father has died in Athens and he must return for the funeral. He promises to come back by a certain day but cannot return until three months later. By this time Phyllis is sure that she will never see her lover again and hangs herself. The Gods, touched by her love, transform her into an almond tree. The desperate Demophon offers a sacrifice to the almond tree, declaring his undying love. In response, the almond tree blossoms.
Therefore the almond came to symbolize impetuous youth and immortal love.

The Wedding Rings
The circle is the symbol of the sun, love, the earth, the universe and perfection. It is worn on the left third finger because of an ancient Greek belief that a vein from that finger goes directly to the heart.

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