Common Myths about Weddings
We have all heard various tall tales and myths about weddings. Some true, some less so, but today we are not out to hunt down some witches and test them! We are here to list some of the most common myths about weddings and it will be up to you if you decide to follow them like a bible or throw them to the wayside.
It is bad luck to see the Bride Before the Wedding
It is perhaps the most famous myth about weddings, but where did this tale originate from? This tradition has been around for a while, with the weddings of affluent people and nobility often having arranged marriages to strengthen their political and social ties. It was custom as such to not meet your betrothed until on the day of the wedding. This was even more true if the families of the bride and groom did not want the betrothed to back out of the arrangement if they did not like the look or manner of the person.
The myth around ‘bad luck’ likely spawned as a result of this tradition becoming a common part of western weddings. By the 17th century, it was not just nobility that upheld this belief as even those lower-class people that married for love practiced it. Nowadays, it is used as a way to give the bride and groom a private moment with their loved ones to enjoy the anticipation and excitement before the big event.
Rain on your Wedding day is a Foreboding sign
You might’ve been once told that rain on your wedding day is bad luck and often couples will make arrangements to postpone if the outlook turns sour. Where did this belief come from? Although its hard to pinpoint exactly where it came from, many cultures believe it represents the start of a string of bad luck. Stop right there.
Nowadays, more people are starting to see this line of thinking is wrong. Instead of seeing the rain as a ‘sign of bad luck’, they see the day of wetness as a way to strengthen the bond when you tie the knot. It will make it harder to break and thus make your union stronger as well. Furthermore, it cleanses the bodies of the people and prepares them for a fresh start.
A man must walk the Bride Down the Aisle
Getting back to the formal traditions of nobility and old ways of looking at the world wedding still uphold many of these traditions. A bride is often walked down the aisle by a male of her family, most often a father or brother as a symbolic handing-over of the daughter or sister to her future husband. It is a symbolic request from the family to her future confidant to cherish and care for the bride.
In the ‘old days’ children were seen as objects of ownership by their parents and held political, social, or monetary values. This ownership of daughters fell largely to the males of the family and so if a man wanted to marry their daughter it would be up to the father to agree to the arrangement. Then during the marriage, this ownership would be transferred to the groom.
Something old, new, borrowed, and blue.
This saying is based on an English 19th-century rhyme from Lancashire that describes the very things a bride must bring to her wedding. What each of these trinkets represents is unclear, but people have come up with their own theories.
What does the ‘old’ mean? The hope is that you carry something with you so you don’t forget where you came from.
What about ‘new’? That you look forward to the future and embrace change as you make your way into this exciting moment in your life.
And something borrowed? A gift from a friend or family member to give good luck, fertility, and well-wishes to the union.
Something… blue? This color wards off evil and symbolizes love and purity.
The Groom Carrying the Bride over the Threshold
This age-old custom is practiced by many cultures around the world. Some believed the threshold was home to bad spirits and so the husband needs to carry his wife over it to ensure she does not catch these nasty things.
In Western Europe, these associations with bad luck came from the tripping hazard dresses became for women. It was a common belief that if she were to trip into her future family home it would bring bad luck to the marriage and house.
Why this tradition continues today is unknown. But many still believe in the superstitions around bad luck if certain rites are not performed and this is just one of many on this list.
A Spider on a Dress is a Good Omen
All we can find about this myth comes from old English folklore. So why exactly would a spider be considered good luck? Looking more generally at what spiders mean can give us a better understanding of how this tale might have become a common belief held today.
Spiders are considered symbols of good luck and if you cross one it is a sign that something important is about to happen. Putting them together and placing the spider on a wedding dress you can see that the spider represents good luck for an important event. It is like nature is self-consciously aware that your wedding is an important one for you and is giving you good vibes for the special day.
Breaking a Glass at a Wedding will Say how long you will stay wedded
In Jewish weddings, the groom might smash a glass wrapped in a cloth as part of the ceremony with his foot. If one were to count the number of shards of glass you would be able to know the exact number of years you will stay together. The origins of this tradition are very complex and heavily rooted in the Jewish belief system.
The breaking of glass commemorates the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem about 2,000 years ago which is the moment Jerusalem fell. To Jews, it represents the shattering of their temple and their souls.
The soul of a man and a woman are halves of the same broken soul and by becoming wedded they have unified as one soul again. By representing a metaphorical shattering of souls with a physical object they acknowledge the pain of breaking and make means to heal through marriage.
A Bride that Crosses the path of a nun or Monk will have bad luck
A bride that crosses the path of a nun or monk, any religious official for that matter, on her way to the wedding will bring bad luck to your union with her groom. This tale at roots in Medieval England, although where and when is hazy. So why would such an encounter be bad luck? It is said she will become barren and dependent on charity.
I would say this can be safely ignored as if you go to any wedding with a church involved it is hard to get inside without seeing a religious official!
Cry Tears of joy at your Wedding will mean you shed no more during your happy marriage
It is said that if you try tears of joy at your wedding you will not shed any more tears after that day because you will have such a happy marriage. Yes, we would all love to never be sad again, but the likelihood of this being true is… unfortunately zilch.
A Tight Wedding Ring can Spark Jealousy
Here is a fun ring-relevant myth related to weddings. So, does a tight wedding ring spark jealousy? Likely not, but it would certainly piss anyone off. This is why we would always recommend that before you pick the perfect wedding band you get a sizer or get sized so you know you won't feel these negative energies towards a ring that would make you happy!
So where could this myth have come from? I have not been able to find the origins of this myth, but if someone is comparing themselves to others they might feel inferior. Often the first signs of jealousy have roots in a physical thing we feel we are lacking. Maybe their ring was not as they desired? One way to avoid this is to ensure your wedding is right for you.
Check out these to find the perfect ring:
- How can I find out my partner's ring size? – Thorum
- Your guide to buying men's wedding bands – Thorum
- What color wedding ring should I get? – Thorum
- What is comfort fit ring sizing, and why is it better than standard fi – Thorum
Weddings are an age-old tradition so of course, there will be many myths and superstitions around what to do and what not to do. What you choose to believe and embrace is up to you, and by understanding the origins of these myths you can help create the perfect wedding. Even just having some of this knowledge can also help you spread the word to teach others about the origins of everyday rituals we sometimes take for granted.