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Marriage in Other Countries Essay

This paper will be about a traditional dress from my native land and other countries. The traditional dress I will be writing about is called a wedding dress. A wedding dress is used throughout the world in various countries including China, Japan, India, and Vietnam. This paper will also detail different cultures, religions, types and colors of wedding gowns that symbolize the bride or groom wealth, occupation and or belief.

In the Americas, weddings performed during and immediately following the middle ages were often more than just a union between two people. They could be a union between two families, two businesses or even two countries. Many weddings were more a matter of business than love, particularly among the wealthy people. Brides were therefore expected to dress in a manner that made their family seem more presentable, for they were not representing only themselves during the ceremony. Brides from wealthy families often wore rich colors and exclusive fabrics. The amount of material a wedding dress contained also was a reflection of the bride’s social standing and indicated the extent of the family’s wealth to wedding guests.

In the 1920s, wedding dresses were typically short in the front with a longer train in the back and were worn with cloche-style wedding veils. Today, Americas traditional wedding color is white because of the marriage of Queen Victoria to Albert of Saxe-Coburg. Victoria wore a white gown for the event to incorporate some lace she prized. Before then, white was a mourning color, it represented a bride whom had recently lost a loved one. Black was actually a color that was worn by the lower class because it was more favorable and could be worn again on many occasions.

In the eastern cultures, the traditional wedding color was red, the color red symbolizes good luck and favorable. In modern Chinese weddings, the bride will opt for Western style dresses and traditional costumes for the official tea ceremony. In India a choice for a bride is a wedding sari, which is a traditional garment for Indian women. Over time color options and wedding fabrics have changed throughout the eastern countries. Fabrics have expanded and today, fabrics like crepe, georgette, tissue, silk, and satin have been used. Colors such as gold, pink, maroon, brown and yellow have also expanded. It seems as if the other countries around the world are starting to adopt the western tradition. At Japanese weddings, brides will often wear three or more dresses throughout the ceremony and subsequent celebrations with a traditional kimono, white and color dress combination being popular. The Javanese people of Indonesia wear a kebaya, a traditional kind of blouse, along with batik.

The Native Americans have traditions different from most other countries. A Hopi (A Native American tribe) bride traditionally would have her garments woven by the groom and any men in the village who wished to participate. The garments consisted of a large belt, two all-white wedding robes, a white wedding robe with red stripes at top and bottom, white buckskin leggings and moccasins, a string for tying the hair, and a reed mat in which to wrap the outfit. A Pueblo bride wore a cotton garment tied above the right shoulder, secured with a belt around the waist. In the traditions of the Delaware, a bride would wear a knee-length skirt of deerskin and a band of wampum beads around her forehead.

Wedding dresses are very diverse and unique. There are a few things that all weddings dresses have in common among all cultures. The most important thing is that bride’s want to look and feel beautiful. The wedding dress is plays a significant part in the wedding ceremony. The wedding dress gives the bride the opportunity to stand out. A wedding dress represents one of the most precious garments that a woman will wear in her lifetime. It represents religions, cultures and family traditions. Although it’s just material, the wedding dress is very important because it symbolize marriage, the union of two people who love each other.


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