Thirty eight years ago this very week, I was a bride. I recall having several of those girly occasions called bridal showers. This womanly gathering owe owes its roots to a Dutch maiden three hundred years ago whose wealthy papa pooh-poohed her marital choice of a lowly miller. His refusal of a dowry had her friends and neighbors “shower” her with enough household goods to start life with her true love.
In the 1890’s, gifts for the bride were actually placed into a Japanese parasol which was later opened over her head. Hopefully there wasn’t a cast iron frying pan or meat cleaver knife in there.
(This pic is my friends and me, lower right, at my July 1974 shower. Talk about a vintage photograph!)
Bridesmaids (not the movie LOL!!) got their got their start during the bride-stealing days of the Anglo-Saxons. The gaggle of lovelies usually dressed identical to the bride even to their veils to confuse marauders and act as decoys. Later, the flock of bridesmaids was believed to ward off evil spirits who might curse the happy couple.
In the good ole days of bride-stealing and kidnapping, the groom of course had to surround himself with pals ready to assist in abducting his woman. Sometimes the “groomsmen” snatched brides of their own from the herd of bridesmaids. Romantic? Can't decide if there's a historical romance plot in there somewhere. WDYT?
Here are some helpful proverbs for any superstitious brides out there.
1. If you find a spider on your wedding gown, you’ll come into money.
2. If you see a flock of birds, your marriage will be blessed with fertility.
3. If it snows on your wedding day, you’ll be wealthy.
4. If the sun is out, you’ll be happy.
5. If you marry as the hands of the clock move up (after the half hour), you’ll have good fortune.
6. If you drop the ring during the ceremony, it’s best to start the whole thing over.
7. If you look in the mirror before walking down the aisle, you’ll leave a part of yourself behind.
8. If you cry on your wedding day, especially before the kiss, you’ll prevent tears during the marriage.
Well, as I leave you with these pearls of wisdom, I can positively say that I did not cry on my wedding day, and Hubby and I are still going strong. It did not snow, and while we’re never been wealthy, we’ve never been in want. The sun shined bright, though, so that adage works. And of course I looked in the mirror. If any part of me got left behind, I haven’t missed it!
Love to all,