Asking the Bride's Parents for her Hand in Marriage

Anillos de Matrimonio, Aros de Matrimonio

Image via Wikipedia

Origin of Asking for the Parents' Permission for the Bride's Hand in Marriage

This formality has its origin, in the consent from their parents that the future bride and groom required in olden days to be able to marry.  It would be traditional for the fiancee's parents somehow to “negotiate” or “arrange” the marriage of the daughter. At present, although we often go through this formality, it is normally only an act of respect with no real pretence of a request for actual permission to wed.

Meeting of the Families

The meeting of the families pror to the marriage is used for each  family to gain an ampler and deeper knowledge of each other (although, nowadays, the two families may indeed know each other generally, far better than olden times when often the fiance could not even step inside his future bride's home before the wedding). The future bride and groom are in charge of presenting their two families to each other, using the normal norms of Protocol for the introductions.

Where should the request for the Bride's Hand in marriage be made? Whilst out or at home?

The meeting may be around a meal table, at a snack or simply whilst enjoying a cup of tea or coffee. It is equally acceptable for the encounter to be at home or  in  a restaurant (particularly if the number of members in the family is high). Generally, the discussion will deal with aspects the actual wedding itself - whether it will be a church wedding, the size and scope of the wedding. Although many of these things have already been considered, usually discussions about the married future, prospects, hopes and aims of the couple are discussed. It is prudent to ensure that the meeting does not get out of hand with too many people talking over each other.  This is a particular risk if relations other than the direct family attend the meeting, although this should not happen. Only the parents and possibly brothers and sisters should normally attend the meeting .

Requesting the Brides Hand in Marriage around a Table

If the hand request is around a table, the parents of the bride are those that preside over the act, and those of the future groom are placed to their respective right.  The mother of the groom should be seated to the right of the father of the bride, and the father of the groom should sit to the right of the mother of the bride. If any of the parents are widowed or a single parent for any reason, the positioning only varies based on the spouse who is missing being replaced by the person who follows to him or her in the seating order. Speaking of widows and widowers, if either the intended bride or groom have previously been widowed, it is a polite detail to write a letter to the parents of the previous spouse announcing the news to them.

Gifts in Requesting the Hand of Marriage

Although the main reason, at present, of requesting the bride's hand in marriage from her father and family is the mutual understanding and harmony of the families, there is also a tradition of echanging of gifts between the bride and groom. However, only the bride and groom exchange gifts. Any type of gift on the part of parents or siblings should not be given. The traditional gift for the bride usually consists of small (or large if one can) brightly shining ring, or any other type of ring. The usual gift for the groom is a good watch or clock, although there are other less traditional possibilities like binoculars or an elegant necktie-pin, although  necktie pins are continuing to be less used as time goes by these days.

When the Gifts are Given

The exchange of gifts between the bride and groom is made in the presence of the rest of their families and never just between the two of them. When the gift is bought is necessary to think about the partner's purchasing abilities in respect of the gift they will give, not to make it less or, conversely not to try to give a gift of at a certain level at which the partner cannot similarly give. It is not the cost of the gift that matters but the thought, efort and consideration of giving that counts. Although are no particular norms on the matter, the gifts are usually exhanged prior to the meal or celebration, although they can also be exchanged at dessert time or when the coffee is served.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

No comments have been provided.

Your Name:

Your Location:

Country (flag):


Please leave a comment.

Security check *

security image

Parse error: syntax error, unexpected '"' (T_CONSTANT_ENCAPSED_STRING), expecting identifier (T_STRING) in /home/piglette/public_html/paulsscripts/includes/links/weddingtraditionlinks.php on line 351