When did weddings begin?

Marriage, as a custom, goes back to the very earliest history of man. It has passed through three stages. The first was marriage by capture. Primitive man simply stole the woman he wanted for his wife.

Then came marriage by contract or purchase. A bride was bought by a man. Finally came the marriage based on mutual love. But even today we still have traces of the first two stages.

‘Giving the bride away’ is a relic of the time when the bride was really sold. The ‘best man’ at the weddings today probably goes back to the strong-armed warrior who helped primitive man carry off his captured bride. And the honeymoon itself symbolizes the period during which the bridegroom was forced to hide his captured bride until her kinsmen grew tired of searching for her.

Today we have weddings without realizing that this very word goes back to one of the early stages of marriage. Among the Anglo-Saxons, the ‘wed’ was the money, horses, or cattle which the groom gave as security for the purchase of his bride from her father.

Fact File:

The custom of tying shoes on the back of newlyweds’ cars, is believed to go back to the exchanging or giving away of shoes to indicate that authority had been exchanged. So the shoe suggests that the husband has authority over the bride.


Picture Credit : Google