There are cultures for which the observance of traditions – coming from the depths of centuries and preserved unchanged – the most important part of the wedding. When a person really perceives a wedding celebration as a sacred ceremony full of special meaning, then traditions associate it even more tightly with the cultural code and genetic memory of his people.
As for modern Russia, the current wedding traditions – controversial thing. Both in semantic and aesthetic terms.
Ransom of the bride
Oh, these shabby narrow porches in three hundred out of a thousand photographs! Homemade posters, balloons, dubious contests, frantic bridesmaids who suddenly tasted the delightful power of matriarchy and harass the unfortunate groom, and he, poor fellow, is ready to fall through the earth from embarrassment.
Yes, the tradition of ransom is really old. Yes, in Russia it was customary to give fabrics, jewelry and cattle for the bride to show respect for her and her parents – and at the same time demonstrate their wealth.
Only in those distant times it was a festivities on a grand scale and it took place not in a miserable entrance and a cramped apartment, but rushed by a wedding train through the whole village, from the groom’s house to the bride’s house. “Obstacles” were rather ritual in nature, were filled with respect for the groom and ended with a blessing from the parents of the young.
Quite a nice patriarchal tradition. The bride should have bitten off an exponentially small piece in order to immediately prioritize roles in the family: the husband dominates, the wife obeys.
Nowadays, the episode with biting off a loaf sometimes turns into a competition “open the jaw at an obtuse angle”, which does not particularly paint a lovely newlywed.
And attempts to change this tradition into a fashionable and modern way … Popcake loaf, vegan eco loaf with chia seeds, mirror glazed loaf with the image of Orion … too much, don’t you think?
Well, here we will not find fault too much, especially if the young really know how to dance. Then the eternal classics – ballroom dancing, and techno to the adapted adagio from “Swan Lake”, and the dance of loving zombies against the background of frames from “Corpse of the Bride” will look great and perky.
It is worse when the couple does not have any special dance talents, but loves to be original. And instead of a simple and elegant waltz, it tries to portray something described above. It turns out ridiculous and even stupid.
The bride’s bouquet
Carefully! Unmarried bridesmaids are sometimes ready to cling to each other’s hair, just to take possession of the coveted bouquet. Stay away!
And how beautifully this tradition began. In ancient times, the groom himself collected the bouquet, and he chose only special flowers, which were considered amulets for a strong family, fidelity, childbearing, etc.
At the end of the wedding, unmarried girls took a round dance around the bride, and at a certain moment she, blindfolded, held out a bouquet to some lucky woman.
The tradition of throwing a bouquet from behind came to us from Europe, and immediately turned into a fun, but devoid of any special meaning, and sometimes even aggressive action.
The European answer to the bouquet. Indeed: we have “appointed” a quick wedding to the lucky woman who caught the flowers, now let’s take care of the male gene pool.
But if a hunt is arranged for a bouquet, then unmarried men often shy away from an abandoned garter like the devil from incense.
And to crawl under the hem of a newlywed, to pull off her garter in front of everyone – there is something vulgar in this, is not it?
Some do it – oh horror! – teeth. No comment here.
In general, traditions are a necessary phenomenon, but it is better to include them in a wedding celebration wisely and asking questions: why are we doing this and will we be pleased to remember this after years?