There are so many things that could potentially go wrong on a wedding day, or within a marriage, that naturally many superstitions and customs have developed throughout the years to help ensure a long and happy marriage.
Some traditions and superstitions have died out over time but some still remain strongly in place such as the bride throwing her bouquet into a group of her single female friends and whoever catches it will be next to marry. Another tradition is ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’ in order to bring luck to the marriage.
In Scotland it is traditional to have a ‘scramble’ where the bride’s father will throw coins out on the ground for the children present to search for as the bride gets into her car after the ceremony. This is to signify a metaphorical sharing of the wealth and to bring prosperity and happiness to the children and their future lives.
Have you ever wondered why it is traditional to kiss the bride at the end of the marriage vows? This custom derives from Roman times where a kiss was actually legally binding and so seals the wedding according to law.
Wedding favours are another custom which has survived throughout the ages and is still popular in many cultures. In Spain traditional wedding favours will be distributed by the bride and groom to their guests. The male guests are given small bottles of alcohol and the female guests are usually given toiletries.
In the past in Britain it was thought to be very unlucky for a woman to marry a man whose surname began with the same letter as hers, thankfully this superstition has now died out.
Bad weather on a wedding day is also thought to bring bad luck, signifying tough times ahead for the couple. Although in some cultures, mainly Hindu, it is believed to be good luck if it rains on a wedding day and will bring happiness to the couple.
On the other hand, good weather, especially the sun shining during the bride’s journey to the church or the bride seeing a rainbow on the way to the church is thought to bring happiness and success for the coming marriage.
Traditionally in Britain chimney sweeps were meant to bring a lot of luck to a wedding, so much so that many couples often invited chimney sweeps to the ceremony in order to bring them luck and success.
Another superstition which has now died out through time is that in previous years it was thought to be bad luck to get married on a Saturday, yet in today’s society it is possibly the most popular day to get married as it is more convenient given people’s busy working lives.
Whether you believe in superstitions like the ones listed above or not, the most important thing is to make sure you enjoy your special day and look forward to the life that you and your spouse will share together and remember, as Ernest Hemingway once said- “you make your own luck.”