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Wedding Traditions around the world Essay

Attention Getter- Wasn’t the day of your wedding one of the most special days of your life? I got married last year, a big full traditional wedding, and it was definitely very special and very memorable, and if you’re not married yet I’m sure you’ll want your wedding to be memorable. Connection to Audience- First of all, what is it that makes a wedding memorable? Is it the fact that two people are pledging their love for each other? Or maybe the reception with lots of yummy food, and great music? Well I believe that it’s the traditions that make a wedding memorable, because each person puts their own special twist into each tradition. Credibility Material- But have you ever wondered whether the rest of the world shares the same traditions or rituals as you? Well, after extensive research and personal experience the answer is no. Thesis and Preview: Each country among with each culture that resides in that country has its own unique rituals including bridal attire, gifts, and length of ceremonies. Insert Transition #1:

Around the globe, brides embrace all kinds of colors and adornments for their big day. According to Wikipedia here in America brides will typically wear a white gown, maybe with some color to match the decorations and brides maid’s dresses. In bliss weddings shows us that Chinese bridal gowns are called qipao and are usually one piece embroidered in red silk with designs in gold an silver. Brides wear a red veil that covers their face and shoulders. The color Red is believed to drive away evil spirits and bring good fortune. Only the groom can remove the veil and traditionally he won’t take it off until the wedding night. Red is also the color for Indian weddings, while white is reserved for funerals. Elaborate 22-24kt gold jewelry and red saris are draped around the bride adding dramatic sparkle to her outfit. Each province of Indonesia has its own traditional costume and ceremony. Here are just a few examples of the diversity of this region.

The most striking feature of Indonesian ceremonial garments according to In bliss weddings is the crown that the bride wears that can be one headpiece or many small combs placed into the plaited hair. Flowers are incorporated to add softness and color. Most brides in Morocco celebrate with an Islamic ceremony according to wikipedia. Many brides wear bright yellow in hopes of scaring away the evil eye. Elaborate takchitas, which are long, sashed robes are embellished with jewels and beading. Brides have at least four changes throughout their ceremony. Brides are carried into the ceremony on an amaria carried by four men. Depending where the Muslim bride resides the traditions vary slightly, but the numbers of ceremonies and 5 changes of clothing are still the same around the world. The bridal wear for the Nikkah (religious wedding ceremony) and Reception and her 24kt jewelry, diamonds, shoes, and purses are given by the groom’s family.

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The second topic I found very interesting were the gifts given to the bride. I know we all love those. In the American culture the gift is not specifically given to just the bride. There’s an exchange of gifts between the bride and the groom according to the knot. A few examples I found were a classic pearl necklace, earrings, perfume, and a heart locket for the bride. The groom usually receives an engraved watch, a leather desk set, an engraved picture frame, a handkerchief, or an engraved money clip. According to Wikipedia, in China before the wedding date has been decided the groom’s family sends an elaborate array of food, cakes, religious items, tea sets, jewelry but they all have to be sent in even numbers for the meaning of couple and in pairs. These gifts symbolize prosperity and good luck. Once the gifts have been delivered the families select a special date for the wedding. In India once the date has been set the groom’s family visits the girl’s house.

The sister or sister-in-law of the boy presents the Chunni or the red sari along with jewelry, accessories and a variety of sweets to the girl as she would be wearing this sari and jewelry on her wedding day according to wedding details. The sweets are given to sweeten the mouth in any auspicious occasion. On the day of the wedding she is also given a mangalsutra which is a necklace that symbolizes she is married, and she would have to wear this necklace for the rest of her life. In Indonesia, and I found this very different and interesting through wikipedia, the groom gives the bride 13 gold coins which symbolize the groom’s intention to look after his bride and their children. The bride is also presented with Indonesian flower arrangements. Hey Morocco shows us that the Moroccan marriage traditions start with the payment of a dowry from the groom to the bride.

The dowry includes a lot of precious jewelry, cars, houses, and or even property. Other gifts are more symbolic such as sugar to represent happy life, milk for purity, dates, water, orange flower and henna. The Muslim marriage traditions require the groom’s family to shower the bride with 24K gold jewelry, 7 pairs of traditional clothing with matching accessories, 7 pairs of western clothing with matching accessories (if the bride doesn’t live in a Muslim country), 7 pairs of nuptial clothing, 7 pairs of shoes, makeup, purses, house furnishings, kitchen utensils and any other need the bride might have. There are also symbolic gifts given, a lot of sweets to start life with sweetness, milk and almonds for fertility and fruits symbolize kids (the fruit of the marriage).

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Another topic that struck me was the length of all these weddings. We all have one thing in mind wedding day=1 day, which takes months if not years to plan that special day. What if your wedding would take, let’s say a week? Let’s look at these cultures and see how long their weddings take. The American wedding consists of two days, the rehearsal dinner and the wedding day. Nice and simple. The Chinese wedding day similarly also takes one day; however the bride has to change 3 dresses according to In Bliss Weddings. The Indian wedding takes 7 days to complete according to Wedding Details. The Indonesian wedding takes 3-7 days, depending on the financial situation of the family according to Wikipedia. The Moroccan wedding takes up to 7 days; but the pre-wedding rituals last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years according to Hey Morocco. The Muslim Wedding also takes 3-7 days, depending on the financial situation of the family, and the amount of traditions, rituals and ceremonies you’d like to include.

Finally, after going around the world and exploring how diverse our world is we can see that a wedding ceremony is one of the most important occasions around the world. We saw how traditions are taken seriously and still followed by most. Although every country, culture, or region differs in tradition, attire, gift exchange, and length of ceremonies we all tie the knot in our own unique ways, and we make sure to make this day one of the most memorable and enjoyable time of our life. Fulfilling traditions can be hard, but in the end it will be all worth it. “Marriage brings one into fatal connection with custom and tradition, and traditions and customs are like the wind and weather, altogether incalculable.” (Kierkegaard, Soren)

Works Cited

In Bliss Weddings 2014 .
Google Images 2014 .
The knot
WikipediA 2009-2014
HeyMorocco 2008-2013
Mariam Aziz 1995. How to arrange a wedding. Wedding details. Soren Kierkegaard quotes. (Danish Philosopher and Theologian, 1813-1855). Web source.

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