I love some of the traditions that marriage ceremonies have embedded within them.
How many people know that the word ‘bride’ originally comes from the olde English word that meant ‘cook’? The word ‘groom’ basically meant ‘male child’. Hence, bride and groom traditionally mean the male and his cook!! Oh dear, what would feminists do with that one?
The concept of having bridesmaids and ushers originated in Roman times, when it was thought that evil spirits abounded. It was therefore essential to have at least two witnesses, also dressed up, so evil spirits were confused about who was actually getting married. Here we are in 2008/9, and we still have the concept of witnesses to the wedding ingrained legally as well as traditionally.
The concept of ‘wed was also from Olde English and Scottish, meaning to pledge with ‘lock’ meaning the actual actions associated with the pledge. Traditionally wedlock referred to the transaction whereby property was pledged to the bride’s father as payment for his daughter. Thank goodness times have changed!
It is interesting though, to see how these traditions have changed over time, and to be thankful we don’t live in a time when we would have abided by them!

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