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    Christenings and Weddings4 Christenings and Weddings4 Document Transcript

    • LATVIA PAVILOSTAS VIDUSSKOLA, PavilostaWill your love last forever?In Stameriena castle everything is peaceful and quiet, wooden floors do not ____doors are not_________and no ________are heard, hovever in the castle parc grows a strange tree.Vai tava mīlestība būs mūžīga?Stāmerienas pilī viss ir kluss un mierīgs, dēļu grīdas nečīkst, durvis nevirinās un nav dzirdamasnopūtas un vaidi, tomēr pils parkā aug dīvains koks......Stāmerienas muižaMīlestības ozoliTas ir Mīlestības koks. Dvīņu jeb dubultozols. Nostāsts vēsta, ka pils dārznieks bijis iemīlējiesbaronesē. Tomēr neviens nav ļāvis viņiem precēties. Dienā, kad baronesi izdeva pie vīra,skumjais dārznieks stādījis pils priekšā koku, teikdams, ka tas zaļos tik ilgi, kamēr viņš mīlēsbaronesi. Koks joprojām zaļo un ir skaistāks un pārāks par visiem citiem kokiem. Par šomīlestības koku radies arī citāds nostāsts, ka cilvēks, kas spēs izlīst cauri ozola diviem stumbriem, iegūs mīlestību, kas nekad nebeigsies. Līdz šim gan tas nevienam nav izdevies, lai arī ir mēģināts. Varbūt tādēļ retajam izdevies mīlestību nosargāt? Kā cēlusies Gūtmaņala 141
    • Lībiešu virsaitis Ringolds jājis karā. Mājās viņš atstājis skaistu sievu, piekodinādams, lai tāuzticīgi gaidot viņu pārnākam no kara. Sagatavot izdrukaiGūtmaņa alaSieva gaidījusi, gaidījusi un tomēr kļuvusi neuzticīga. Kad vīrs atgriezies, sieva visu rūgtinožēlojusi un lūgusi piedošanu. Bet Ringolds nav piedevis. Viņš licis sievu dzīvu zemē ierakt. Turpazemē raud vēl tagad joprojām nožēlošanas asaras. Avotiņā pārvērtušās tās iztek zemes virsū.Šis avotinš tecēCastle Rundale• Rundāles pils celtniecība neesot vedusies. Cik pa dienu uzcelts, tik pa nakti nogruvis. Viens nomuižniekiem ierosinājis, ka vajagot ziedot cilvēku. Izvēlējušies nabadzīgu zemnieku meitu, un,lai būtu iemesls meiteni iemūrēt, apvainojuši viņu sagrēkošanā ar augstdzimušu princi. Kopš tālaikā meitene staigājot pa pili baltā tērpā – Rietumu korpusā šķērsojot biljarda istabu, tālākdodoties uz ēdamzāli un tad uz pils Lielajām kāpnēm vai vestibili. Viņa meklējot muižnieku, laipierādītu savu nevainību.• Rundāles pilī esot arī Melnā Dāma,kura parādās noteiktās vakara stundās un slīd cauri pilsgaiteņiem, augšup pa kāpnēm uz Zubova kabinetu. Stāsta, ka Melnā Dāma bijusi kādanabadzīga meitene. Šo meiteni bija iemīlējis Valerians Zubovs. Par Zubova mīlestību pret jaunoun skaisto meiteni uzzinājusi ķeizariene Katrīna. Viņa likusi saviem kalpiem Zubovam nocirstgalvu un pasniegt to zelta bļodā. Tas ticis arī izdarīts, bet meitene izgrūsta pa pils otrā stāvalogu. Meitene no kritiena nositusies. Viņa nav apglabāta kapos un kopš tā laika klīstot pa pili,meklējot mieru.• Melno Dāmu esot redzējuši pils restaurātori. Viņa parādījusies no kolonnas, neko nerunājot,uzkāpusi pa trepēm, izgājusi cauri telpām un pēkšņi pazudusi. 142
    • Turaidas1601. gada pavasarī Poļu-zviedru kara (1600-1629) laikā zviedru karapulki ieņēma Turaidas pili.Pēc kaujas pils rakstvedis Greifs starp nogalinātajiem atrada dažas nedēļas vecu meitenīti.Greifs aiznesa meitenīti mājās un apņēmās viņu izaudzināt. Bija maija mēnesis un meitenītinosauca par Maiju. Pagāja gadi un Maija izauga par daiļu jaunavu. Viņas skaistuma dēļ Maijudēvēja par Turaidas Rozi. Gaujas pretējā krastā — Siguldas pilī — dzīvoja viņas līgavainis —dārznieks Viktors Heils. Vakaros viņi satikās pie Gūtmaņa alas. Tajā laikā pilī dienēja divi poļuarmijas dezertieri — Jakubovskis un Skudrics. Jakubovskis iekāroja Maiju un vēlējās viņuprecēt, taču meitene bildinājumu noraidīja. Tas Jakubovski tā saniknoja, ka viņš nolēma iegūtmeiteni ar varu. Viņš aizsūtīja Skudricu it kā Viktora uzdevumā pie Maijas, lai viņa atnāktuierastajā tikšanās vietā - bet neierastā laikā. Kad Maija atnāca un saprata, ka ir lamatās, viņanolēma labāk mirt, nekā tikt apkaunota. Tas bija laiks, kad cilvēki vēl ticēja burvestībām.Meitenei ap kaklu bija sarkans zīda lakatiņš, ko bija dāvinājis viņas līgavainis, tādēļ viņa teicaJakubovskim, ka šim lakatiņam piemīt burvju spējas — tā nēsātājs tiek pasargāts no zobenacirtieniem, un aicināja to pārbaudīt. Jakubovskis sākumā vilcinājās, bet tad cirta no visa spēkaun meitene saļima pie viņa kājām. Jakubovskis nobijās un šausmu pārņemts par izdarītoaizskrēja uz mežu un pakārās. Pievakarē Heils atrada Maiju alā nogalinātu un steidzās uzTuraidu pēc palīdzības. Pie alas tika atrasts Viktora cirvītis asinīs. Tiesa notika Turaidas pilī un tālēma, ka slepkava ir Viktors un viņu notiesāja uz nāvi. Notikumu gaitu mainīja Skudrics, kuršbija sekojis Jakubovskim un visu redzējis. Viņš tiesai pastāstīja, kas bija noticis īstenībā unViktors tika attaisnots, bet meitene apglabāta kapsētā pie Turaidas baznīcas. Viņas kapa vietuvar aplūkot pie Turaidas baznīcas, Turaidas pils apkārtnē, Turaidā, Siguldā. Kokneses pilsdrupas.Ceļot pili kaļķa sajaukšanai ūdens vietā esot lietots piens, ko vajadzēja piegādāt apkārtneszemniekiem. (2)...Kādā no Kokneses pils pagrabiem glabājas veca nauda, ko te savācis Velns. Viņš pats naudusargā, gulēdams uz lādes vai nu melna sunīša vai čūskas izskatā. (2)...Kokneses pilskunga meita reiz iemīlējusies pils dārzniekā. Kad pilskungs padzirdējis, ka meitagribot precēties ar vienkāršu dārznieku, viņš meitu ieslēdzis pils augstākajā tornī. Kad dārznieksnav gribējis atteikties no meitas rokas, pilskungs licis to nogalināt. Meita pa torņa logu toredzējusi un nolēkusi zemē. 143
    • Vēlāk viņu daudzkārt redzējuši sēžam Pērses krastā un uz akmens sukājot matus. Ja kādspienācis tuvāk, meitene pazudusi. Ja kāds meiteni pamanījis un bēdzis, viņa skrējusi pakaļ veltācerībā, ka ieraudzījusi savu mīļoto dārznieku. (2) Jaunpils pilsJaunpils pils ir viena no senākajām bruņinieku pilīm. Apakšējo stāvu mūru biezums pārsniedzdivus metrus. Ir stāsti, ka šajās sienās iemūrēti arī cilvēki. Divi iemūrēti akmeņi pie pils torņaizmantoti lai uz tiem sēdinātu tos, kas kaut ko noziegušies. Zem akmeņiem bija asi dzelkšņi -kad noziedznieki vairs nenoturējās uz akmeņiem un nokrita, viņi tika smagi savainoti. Šādicilvēki tika iebaidīti, lai viņiem nebūtu vēlmes dumpoties. Savukārt pilī iekšā ir slepenas durvis,kas ved uz pazemes ejām, kas iet uz baznīcu un uz Karātavu kalnu. 1905.gadā šīs ejas esotaizvērtas un vairs nav atraktas.Cēsu pilsdrupas.Zem Cēsu pils mūriem atrodoties pagrabi, kur esot noraktas visādas mantas. Vienā pagrabāesot liela dzelzs lāde, kas pilna ar zelta un sudraba lietām, bet uz lādes tupot liels, melns sunsar ugunīgām acīm un nelaižot nevienu sev klāt. No šiem pagrabiem ejot arī pazemes ejas. Reizkāds nebēdnieks nokāpis pagrabos apskatīties. Pēc ilgāka laika viņš iznācis ārā pa smilšakmensalu, kas atrodas pils parkā. Pārdrošnieks iznesis lielu sidraba lukturi, bet pats palicis mēms unnevarējis nekā izstāstīt. (3)Jaunā Šlokenbekas un Durbes barona fon der Rekes dēls Matiass iemīlējis Šlokenbekasdzirnavnieka meitu. Abi slepus tikušies uz Šlokenbekas dzirnavu dambja. Barons tomēr touzzinājis un bijis ļoti nikns. Tik nikns, ka paķēris bisi un auļojis uz ezermalu. Bijusi skaista 144
    • mēness nakts. Abi jaunieši sēdējuši uz dambja malas, kad ezera otrā krastā parādījies vecaisbarons un gribējis meiteni nošaut. Lai nāve viņus neizšķirtu, abi saķērušies rokās un ielēkušiezerā.Barons ļoti pārdzīvojis dēla bojāeju un licis uzcelt mazu piemiņas obelisku ar uzrakstu Matiass1867. Šis piemineklis joprojām stāv iepretī dzirnavām, pašā ezera krastā. Jaunlaulātie biežiatrod uz to ceļu un nelaimīgo mīlētāju piemiņai noliek ziedu pušķīti.Noslīkusī jaunava Šlokenbekas muižā spokojoties. Viņu dēvē par Balto dāmu. (2)19.gadsimta beigu pils īpašniekam Aleksandram fon Pistolkorsam un viņa sievai Eleonorai bijadivi dēli un meita. Brāļi Ēriks un Maksis bija draugi, kas kopā mācījās Bīriņu pagastskolā unvēlāk - universitātē. Maksis devās uz Kaukāzu, kur 1911.gadā gāja bojā. Brāļa nāve satrieca līdztam jautro un sabiedrisko Ēriku, kurš krita depresijā.Pateicoties radinieku rūpēm Ēriks pamazām atlaba. Ne mazums nopelnu tajā bija arī viņamāsas Renātes kalponei - jaukai un sirsnīgai meitenei. Ēriks un kalpone iemīlēja viens otru.Taču, kad Ēriks vecākiem paziņoja, ka vēlas precēties ar vienkāršu kalponi, viņa māte šāduiespēju nevēlējās pieļaut. Viņa nolēma apkaunot meiteni, lai tā atstātu muižu un, noorganizējotĒrika aizbraukšanu, atstāja viltotu Ērika vēstuli, kurā viņš it kā paziņo par savu aizbraukšanu unprecībām ar citu - savas kārtas meiteni.Ērika māte nezināja, ka kalpone šai laikā jau gaidīja bērniņu. Kalpone neizturēja apkaunojumuun pakārās.Traģēdija aptumšoja Ērika prātu un 1912.gadā viņš pils parkā nošāvās.Stāsta, ka nelaimīgās kalpones gars pilnmēness naktīs klīst pa pili.Burtnieku pilsReiz vecos laikos pie Burtnieku ezera bijusi valdnieka pils. Valdnieks ļaudis mocījis ar darbiem.Bet te piepeši Burtnieku pils nogrimusi ezerā. Dievs parādījās valdniekam un sacīja: kad saulenoies vakaros un rītos uzleks, pa to laiku viņš varēs iziet no nogrimušās pils. 145
    • LITHUANIA KAUNO M. TADO IVANAUSKO VIDURINĖ MOKYKLA, Kaunas The Christening Traditions in Lithuania Once the Christening was one of the most important family celebration. When was it celebrated? If the child was healthy, it was waited for a few days, until he/ she became stronger,and then was carried to christen. If the child was in poor health, then one was christened assoon as possible. 146
    • When the baby was born, people tried to christen him/ her as soon as possible, so why was there such a rush? Formerly, it was believed that the unchristened child was veryunsafe. Fairies can switch the human child with their one. Or, somethingelse bad might happen to such a child.The choise of the Name. Who chose the name for a child? The Christening - it is the introduction of a new, just-born personto the human community. During the christening he or she receives aname that describes a lot of things. How were godparents chosen? The selection of godparents is very important. If ones are invited to becomegodparents you mustn’t refuse without an important reason, because it is a verysignificant event. It was believed that singles couldn’t be godparents, because thechild may never start a family. Therefore, the young godparents were invitedbecause then, the child would be more caring about a job. Or already marriedpeople were invited but from different families. That is, one from the mother’s andone from the fathers side. What are the responsibilities of godparents? 147
    • Often, the godmother of a goddaughter became the matron of honor,and the godfather of his godson became a matchmaker. The godmother usuallymade up T-shirts and embroidered them. She also bought the necklase with thecross. Godfather gave money and all guests were favoured with sweets. What was the rite of the Christening? On leaving for the church, the mother of the baby whispered the name into the ear ofgodparents. Until christening ceremony nobody said the childs name publicly.After returning from the church, all ran to meet the godparents. The godfather offered sweetsand announced baby’s name loudly. Then, the godmother gave the baby to his/ her mother and the godmother tried tounswaddle him/ her immediately in order the baby would be quick. At that time the guestswere sitting at the table, and after a while, the child was shown to the guests. 148
    • The Christening traditions now…Godparents are close relatives or family friends … 149
    • Godparents take care of the childs christening outfits and a christening candle…TT 150
    • The godmother dresses up the child before the Christening ceremony… The Christening ceremony in the church… 151
    • Gifts for the Christening from godparents... A cross or a medallion. A silver spoon with the record of the childs birth date, time, weight and height.After the Christening ceremony, the parents invite guests for dinner... 152
    • During dinner all guests play games which are prepared by parents and godparents… The Christeningnewspaper says theinformation about the child,the important dates in his/ herlife. There are records of thechristening name, godparents’names, the christening dateand location. Funnygodparents’ promises are alsoappended. All guests write wishes for the child on the balloons. They are released into the sky at the end of dinner. 153
    • The end... 154
    • Wedding in LithuaniaLithuania newlyweds want to use the ancient feast of the wedding ritual items. Some of thesetraditions have survived a traditional wedding celebration, but most are adapted to todaysneeds and preferences. 155
    • The main characters are parents blessing,parental consent with bread, salt and water,the arrival of young and familyfocus transfer. 156
    • In the past, parents were in the house and waited for the returns of the young. It wasa bad luck if parents would go together. These days parents take part in the weddingceremony. Main wedding traditions are the following: • The young woman is carried over the bridges, and one of them is suspended with a lock. 157
    • • Table redemption.• Young dance (waltz).• A young woman who is placed on the head scarf, and the young man surrounded by straw hat. 158
    • • Dropped a bouquet.• Remove the cake (white).• Young escorting sleeps in their living room. 159
    • For the second day of the wedding: • bridal handling in the morning. • symbolic objects to young housewife. • matchmaker hanging. …More about some Lithuanian wedding traditions… Groom with his flock and matchmakers on arrival at the brides house the bride isoften concealed. In the past they checked the bridegroom go-between with the bridesmaidsand brides hands and tried to identify the bride. 160
    • Today, the groom are tied and he tries to find the flock of girls, and recognize hisbride. Youngs usually go toward the altar together - it is their common sign of life journey. 161
    • However, before young came to the altar, separately, each with its own entourage -the younger bridesmaids and matron of honor, groomsmen and the young. Matron ofthe young lays a white towel or cloth and a piece of lead on the young. A pieceof linen or towel is left to the priest. Waiting for the young guests in the courtyard: at the gate and the front door andplaced lights. They pluck out the red and white beets, and insert the candle inside. Now is popular to meet young with the gate-to-door shed light candles, lamps or ribbons. 162
    • Table sat requests from guests gifts to the young. Only received gifts from, they givea way to the wedding party table .Usually dressed “bride" is a man, "young" – a woman. Theirappearance and manners of conduct parodic purpose - to lead the audience laugh. Lithuania has traditional wedding cakes: karvojus and šakotis. Karvojus is baked forspecial ceremonies and the decorations symbolized the brides purity,wished wealth, fertilityand joy. Today not one, but several cakes are on the wedding table: a young, matron of honor(karvojus), and sometimes – bridesmaids. Karvojus – the cake of matron of honor: 163
    • Šakotis – a high branched hollow cake. One of the most common desserts is prepared for a wedding. On the newlyweds bed are laid new coated sheets anda doll that means fruitful. The bag with in a loaf of bread says thatyoung life is rich. Young matron of honor escorted them to bed. Today, the wedding celebration is celebrated two days. 164
    • Young also bring grain to the door and beat them , calling the metal pots, knockingon the door to bridal. In the wedding morning, the newlyweds and theirguests before wedding breakfast wash themselves with waterthat matchmaker brings. Matchmaker role in both the old and the modern wedding isone of the most important. He is the head of the wedding. 165
    • Especially popular matchmaker "hanging" custom. This performance, a go-between for the accused and sentenced to hanglies. The best way - to hide. Persons are dressed like "Judges and Prosecutors“ Matchmaker hearing, announce his "testament", which distributes all of its assets., the judge asks the brutality and mercy. Matchmaker always "hanging" ends the traditional: it saves the bride. Towards the end of a weddingneighbors of newlyweds have brought anumber of older, unnecessary, broken farmtools and old household items - a new start inlife. This is the tradition of todays wedding. Available free of charge one or a few antiques - candlesticks, serving tools, and so on. 166
    • The end… 167
    • POLANDPUBLICZNA SZKOŁA PODSTAWOWA nr 2 im.H. Ch. Andersena, Radom CHRISTENING IN POLAND NOWADAYS AND IN THE PAST 168
    • CHRISTENING IN THE PASTNEW BORN BABY’S CRADLE 169
    • IN THE PAST NEW BORN BABIES WERECHRISTENED.THEY WERE PUT IN ‘BECIK’(PHOTO BELOW) 170
    • CHRISTENINGCLOTHESCHURCH CEREMONY WITH A PRIEST,PARENTS AND GODPARENTS. 171
    • GODFATHER LIGHTS A CANDLE WHICHSYMBOLISES JESUS LIGHTGODMOTHER PUTS A ROBE ON ACHRISTENED CHILD WHICH SYMBOLISESINNOCENCE 172
    • SOUVENIR SNAPSHOTPRESENTS 173
    • WEDDING IN POLAND NOWADAYS AND IN THE PASTEngagement at the fiancee’s house. Fiance asksfiancee’s parents for her hand. Fiance givesfiancee a gold ring with a stone (symboliseshapiness). 174
    • Bridesmaid helps the bride to get dressed;Best man helps the bridegroom to get dressed.Beautiful brides 175
    • The bride and the bridegroom’s parents blessthem at the bride’s house (holy water and cross) 176
    • The bride and the bridegroom usually go to thechurch by a beautifully decorated car.In the old times they usedto go on foot or in a horse drawn-carriages. The 177
    • marriage ceremony. Priest conducts a church ceremony.After the marriage vows the married couple givethemselves the rings (right hand , the ring finger)When the ceremony is finished guests throw riceor money at the married couple to bring themhappiness. 178
    • SLOVAKIA ZÁKLADNÁ ŠKOLA S MATERSKOU ŠKOLOU ŢELIARSKA 4, Košice ChristeningPregnancy The destiny of a man was determined at birth according to folk thinking. The closestrelatives tried to foresee the most important events in his life from different accompanyingsigns and circumstances. Therefore many practical activities were focused on a pregnant woman. They wouldensure the child’s happy arrival into the world, protect the health of mothers and take careabout child’s happy life. The woman who was pregnant wasn’t allowed to go to the field on her own, to crossthe field, to look into the well, to whistle and so on. When there was a red mark on the child´s skin, the origin had to be looked for fromthe period of pregnancy. When a pregnant woman smelt a dish and could not taste it,miscarriage would happen. Nowadays pregnant women still keep some superstitions or prohibitions. But sincechildren are born in hospitals, most of the rituals, superstitions or prohibitions connected tochildbirth have passed away. 179
    • The birth of the child A midwife and a mother or the mother in law helped the young mother in labour. Theyuntied or unbound everything (hair, clothes) in the room that would help the child to come tothis world. When the husband was present, the pain would be divided between the marriedcouple. When the child was born, the accoucheuse (midwife) made a cross on his foreheadand looked him over carefully. When the child looked dead she slapped him to wake him up.After that she prepared a bath from pea leaves and stems and oat straw. If the child was redafter the bath he would live but if he was pale nothing would help him. 180
    • After birth they put the child on a sack of flour so he would be rich. They made a crosson the forehead so he would be liked by everybody. They put different working tools into hishand according to the type of job his parents wished for him: a prayer book to be pious andwise, a pen to be able to write. For a boy a maul to be able to work, an axe to be a good farmer or a whip to be able todrive horses, for a girl a wooden spoon to be a good housekeeper or a needle to be able tosew. In some villages till today when some children are born they call neighbours to drinksome alcoholic beverages or eat cakes. The period of time in which the child was born was very important. For example itwould be unfortunate to be born at twelve o´ clock, whether at night or at noon. The childborn on Wednesday would be eloquent, born on Friday would be unfortunate, born onSaturday and Sunday would be happy and rich. The worst day for birth was Great Friday, thehappiest and the luckiest day for birth was Christmas Eve. A child born in April would be foolishand unstable, in May, when trees are in bloom, the child would soon turn grey. Increasing ordecreasing Moon helped to predict life expectancy. 181
    • There were many predictions connected to the child´s appearance at birth. The childborn with a tooth would have the ability to predict the future. Hairs on limbs meant richness,long hair meant short life. When his fists were closed he would be miserly, when his fists wereopen, he would be generous. When the child was born screaming, he would become a merryman who liked singing. A child with eyebrows grown together would have an evil eye. Theseventh son would have excellent abilities to heal people and grow trees.The baby’s first bath Many traditions were bound to the baby’s first bath. So people put different items intothe bath and these items had properties which would enter the baby through the water. Veryoften people put money to ensure wealth and enough money for the child for a life time. Thenthey put holy water to the bath, for the baby not to be afraid or when it was a girl, they putsugar to be sweet and honey to be loved. They believed that where they poured the water fromthe bath had an impact too. So if they poured this water in thegarden on a red rose, the child would be nice and red. In „VyšnáLesná if they poured this water under a tree, the child wouldgrow up like that tree. After the bath they greased the child with fresh butter, smeared him with egg whitesand wrapped him into an old apron or into other old clothes, because old clothes fit betterthan new ones. They made sure that the girl was wrapped up into male dress and the boy intofemale dress. This was because the child would be liked by the opposite sex in the future. After these rituals they put the child on the bed at the mother´s right hand. They didntwant the child to be left handed. In times when beds were made of straw, if the child caughtsome straw in his hand by chance, they said he would be rich and a good farmer. The mid-wife continued giving daily baths to the infant until and including theday of christening. However, the childs ears were not washed for six weeks for fear ofcausing deafness. When the child was six weeks old, melted wax was placed into his orher navel. This was done to prevent any infection of the navel. 182
    • Breast feeding The child had his first breast feeding on the second day. He was fed firstly from theright breast to avoid being left handed. When the mother didn’t have enough milk they gavehim diluted cow’s or goat’s milk. Mothers breast-fed their children traditionally up to one year. When mothers wanted to wean their children, they wore clothes in which breastswere not noticeable. Mothers used to put salt, hot pepper, black pepper or nettle on theirbreast to wean children. A piece of bread wrapped in linen was given to the child to be sucked.On the day of his weaning they put different things on the table. The one he grabbed firstwould determine his future: book or pen meant he would study, money or bread meant hewould be rich, rosary meant he would become a priest or be religious, an egg meant he wouldbe round.Other rituals Until the child was christened, evil forces had power over him. The cradle wassprinkled with holy water before the child was put into it. They covered the child´s face with adiaper to protect him from bewitching. A red ribbon tied on the child´s wrist had the samefunction (role). It was worn until the child went to school. Until the child was christened he couldn’t stay alone, because witches would exchangehim. For an exchanged child was considered each mentally or physically disabled child. Themother had to treat this child gently, because the witch would treat her child likewise. 183
    • Nappies were made from old shirts, for girls from man´s shirts, for boys from woman´sshirts. It was not allowed to dry washed nappies out in the wind, because the child would notsleep well. It was not allowed to wash 10-13-week-old girls´ nappies in the stream (brook),because they would be mature too soon. In the past many children died within one year, so many superstitions were kept toprotect the child´s health especially in his first year. Salt and iron put into the cradle would protect from witchcraft (magic), a red ribbon onthe wrist would protect from bewitching. After sunset people were not allowed to take anything out of the house because thechild would not sleep well. When the mother crossed water with her child for the first time, she threw a piece ofbread into the water to ensure healthy sleep for her child. It was not allowed for the child to see himself in the mirror or to cut his hair within thefirst year, because he would not learn to speak. Later cutaway hair was thrown on fire. It was not allowed to cut the child´s nails within the first year, because he would be athief. The mother used to bite off her child´s nails. When the child´s teeth started to grow, bread crust or bacon skin was given to himto chew. Many boys born in one year meant war; many children born in one year meant a richyear. The number of illegitimate childbirths predicted the number of youth deaths.Christening In the past godparents were always friends of the married couple, but today they canbe brothers and sisters. Also a person that was single and over eighteen could accept being agodfather. One wasn’t allowed to refuse an offer to become a godfather because „grass wouldnot grow for seven years“. Only pregnant women were allowed to refuse becominggodmothers.In the past christening was on the nearest Sunday from the child´s birth. If the child was veryweak, parents christened him as soon as possible. The godmother dressed the child beforechristening. Girls were dressed in pink and boys in blue. 184
    • Money was put into a pillowcase by the godmother. The godmother carried the child to church to be christened.Parents weren´t at the christening. The firstborn was named after themother or father. Godparents brought a long candle and an embroidered shirtwith the child´s name, date of birth and date of christening on it. The priest christened the child with holy water that he pouredon the child´s head. The candle was lighted at christening. When the godmother and the midwife came home from the church, they said “Wetook away a pagan and have brought back a Christian.” and then put the child on the floor. Thefather had to pick him up and accept him as a member of the family. 185
    • Christening party After the christening there was a christening party in the parents´ house. A feast washeld after the christening and gifts were given to the child. The firstborn´s christening party was the richest. Guests brought gifts for the child. Traditional presents were money, clothes, laterearrings or necklace. During the party the midwife collected money from the guests for a bonnet or for apram. Some superstitions were bound to the christening party, too. When the collectedmoney was quickly counted, the child would speak early. Unfinished drinks predicted that thechild would become an orphan. If someone spilt a drink by accident, it meant an early nextpregnancy for the mother and also next christening. The next child´s sex was predictedaccording to the first male or female singing at the party. Nowadays a christening party is an event for the closest relatives where gifts are givento the child. And when the child is one year old, the godparents are expected to visit.“Vádzka” - going to church or purification After giving birth to the child the mother stayed in bed for a week. If she stayed longer,people would say she was lazy. The mother was not even at the christening. During the christening party she stayedbehind a corner sheet, because evil forces had power over her. Lying-in took usually six weeks. The mother had to stay indoors, behind the cornersheet and watch her child in order that the child not to be exchanged by a witch. She had onlycertain duties. The godmother´s visits were frequent; she brought light meals for the motherbehind the corner sheet. After six weeks of lying-in the mother went to church. She wore a piece of clothinginside out, a piece of garlic and bread hidden in her clothes to be protected from the evil eye.Before she left home, embers, a glass of water or an egg was put on the threshold to overstepit and she stepped over them. The priest made some special rituals to purge the mother, so she could go back to herdaily duties. After church if she met a woman, her next child would be a girl, if a man, it wouldbe a boy. If a mother had more girls one after another and she wanted a boy, she had to putdifferent things into the girl’s bath, for example her husband´s hat and a rooster cock. When she came home, she had to sit on a bucket of water to have enough milk. Aftergoing to church women returned back to their duties, often to the field. 186
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    • WeddingWeddings in Slovakia, just like anywhere else, vary from region to region. In traditionalcommunity, wedding was a very important event preceded by thorough preparations. Peopleslaughtered pigs, baked cakes and cleaned their houses. The wedding could be only in a certain time - during the carnival or after or beforeharvesting, also after finishing autumn works, in Lent and Advent weddings were restricted.Wedding days were Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday was a day of fast. If the wedding was onThursday, it had to finish by midnight, as Friday was a strict day of fast. No wedding could beon Saturday because of not to be sleepy or drunk at worship on Sunday.Before weddingIntermediation and matchmaking of the wedding Matchmaking of children’s wedding was always a business of a mother or of a femalepart of a family. Mother, her friends and female family members were looking for a good bridefor her son. It was the best if the both of young couple came from families of about the samelevel of prosperity. After that, the mother and the son’s godmother did a little research in the house of hisfuture spouse. Then the talks between the future bride’s in-law and groom’s parents started.At first girl’s parents were not completely willing to let their daughter to marry. They arguedthat she was too young or so, but after all they asked her whether she wanted to marry. But,this question, when the agreement was already set, was just a formality and was a practicalform of command. After the agreement, the girl with her family came to see the house and the farmyardof her future spouse and his parents. The term of the wedding was settled immediately orlater. Most weddings were in the winter, so that the preparation would not interrupt theagricultural work on fields and around the farmyard.Engagement The engagement was done at the house of the bride. It was connected with feast andthe first exchange of presents. The “starejší” (mostly the godfather) talked about the marriageand cited the Bible. Then the girl gave a scarf to his future groom, they shook their hands andfinally exchanged the wedding rings. This was a symbol of the end of their freedom. 188
    • Banns On the following Saturday they met the priest to sign the intent of the marriageso that the banns could be announced on three Sundays. Both Godfathers wererequired to attend this meeting. On the following day, Sunday, at High Mass and after the homily, the first banwas read and the date of the wedding was announced. After the names were read,people were asked if there was any reason why these people couldn´t marry. On the third ban the bride had to wear new clothes at church.Preparations for the wedding The preparations were the most intensive in the last week before the wedding. Thesepreparations were connected with many magic rituals and do’s and don’ts in order to improvethe future life of the couple. On Thursday, which was supposed to be a lucky day, women, none of them could be awidow, came to the house of the bride and put some talismans into the eiderdowns. Forexample, pigeon’s feather for love and faithfulness, some herbs, piece of sugar should protectthe couple against the spells and sorcery; coins should bring money and wealth. Theeiderdowns should not be banged, so that husband would not beat his wife and at the end ofthe whole process they sat a little boy on the eiderdowns, that the girl would bear a son. On Friday, nothing except baking was done, because Friday was considered as a day ofbad luck. On Sunday afternoon, the bridesmaids came to the bride’s house and prepared her forthe ceremony. They made a headband for the bride and three corsages. The nicest one was forthe groom and the other two for the groomsmen. They also made button holes for family andfriends who would be gathering at the brides home on the wedding day. 189
    • Later bridesmaids started to invite the guests. The guests, as they came, broughtpresents for example food and groceries for the wedding feast, wheat and grain for the bride.The bride with bridesmaids sang a leave-taking song and danced. Similar ceremony was held at the groom’s house.Wedding dayBride’s clothing The bride was dressed by bridesmaids and the bride’s godmother. The dressing wasalso connected with superstitions and magic rituals - the reversed under-skirt, bread, garlic,and parsley – all these things should protect the bride against bewitching and spells. The bride was mostly in white and had black boots (if the groom was rich enoughbecause he bought boots for the bride) or shoes. She had three to seven petticoats. The topskirt was from brocade and silk with rose pattern. The apron was white with flower pattern.The bride wore a camisole with short sleeves (finished with a collar, pleated on shoulders) anda bodice with elbow length sleeves on the top of the camisole. In winter she wore a blouse. Onthe neck she had a necklace of beads called “pacerky“. Typical for the bride were her clothes and unique things – a headband or a wreathwhich were the symbols of virginity. Veils were firstly used in the 19th century. Bridesmaids wore white kerchiefs in winter. They had embroidered whitehandkerchiefs in their hand or a prayer book. 190
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    • Groom´s clothing On Monday morning, the groom’s godmother brought him a new shirt, a corsage,cakes and distilled spirit. Men wore black shoes and socks. They wore a white shirt, black trousers and a jacket.They always wore a tie or a bow tie. On the head the groom had a black hat with a branch ofrosemary. 192
    • “Odpytavanie“ When the bride was ready, she kneeled on a scarf and “starejší“ – Best man thankedparents for bringing her up and being here for her, he told the bride to keep obeying herparents and to ask them for a blessing. Her parents made the sign of a cross on her foreheadand kissed her. This didn’t go without tears. The leave taking at the groom’s house looked the same. Then the groom with his suitewent to the bride’s house and “starejší“ asked for her. When he was accepted, the groom withhis suite and the bride with her suite went to church. 193
    • Before the marriage ceremony The groom (accompanied by his family and friends) went to the bride’s house to pickher up before the ceremony. First in the procession was the groom with his groomsmen with sticks in hands. Theysang. Next in order were the single men, married men, single and married women. Somebodyplayed the accordion as they walked to the brides home. Meanwhile a crowd gathered outside of the brides home to view who was with whomand how everyone was dressed. These on-lookers, too, were hosted outside of the home bythe women. The bride and her group waited outside the house for the arrival of the groomsprocession. Upon arrival only the groom, his Godfather and the groomsmen went inside. Theyoungest bridesmaid gave the corsages to the groom, the two groomsmen and pinned thebuttonholes on the members of the wedding party. Then the procession went to church. They all left for the chapel singing. The marriagewas performed in a small chapel a short distance from the church. The groom and the youngsingle men lead the procession. Next the bride came followed by the others. The godparentswere the last in the procession. 194
    • Parents of the bride and groom did not attend the marriage ceremony held in the chapel. Priest conducted a church ceremony. After the wedding vows the married coupleexchanged rings. The wedding ring was put on the right hand’s ring finger (now it is the lefthand). 195
    • After the marriage ceremony After the marriage ceremony the married couple received the wishes for a prosperouslife. The godmothers gave out cakes to children who gathered near the chapel. Then the guests returned to the bride’s house. There were humorous weddingcustoms before entering the house. Arriving at the brides home the group stepped aside and allowed the bride and thegroom to enter the home first as husband and wife. The brides mother gave them a teaspoonof honey - the symbol of sweet married life. When all the people were seated they prayed. Meals were served by the Best men.Wedding dinner traditionally starts with chicken noodle soup, where the newlyweds had onlyone plate and one spoon and they had to feed each other. This symbolised sharing their life. At about 5 pm the bride left to go to her husbands home. After this the mothergreeted her new daughter-in-law and son and invited them inside. Sometimes the mother-in-law greeted them with some humour. She said: "Come in my daughter-in-law. You will not berequired to do any work around here - only what I command you to do!" Again a teaspoon ofhoney was given to the new couple. It was customary for the bride to bring gifts for thegrooms family. The mother received a head scarf, the father received a shirt and also othermembers of the family received small gifts.Act of removing the headband and “bonneting” Before the dawn, bridesmaids and bride’s godmother took the bride into the pantry.The Best men removed the bride’s headband, put it up on a stick or sword and showed it tothe wedding guests. Then “starejší“ brought the groom in. The groom and the bride went tobed and all the guests went to sleep. On the third day of wedding the most important act was promoted – the act ofbonneting the bride. In the morning the guests met at the house of the newlyweds to have richbreakfast. 196
    • After breakfast, the “main” bridesmaid and young girls from the village (not thebridesmaids) made the bride a new hairdo and put a bonnet on her head. Now she became awoman and they sang to her: "From (the name of the town or village) the wind blows, Already our bridal group is blown, Today a bride, tomorrow a woman, This evening she will be capped." 197
    • The bride had to sit on a wooden bucket full of water, this should bring her fertility andshe should bear a son in one year. Then the Best men took the bride among the wedding guests. Now, she was a youngwoman. After that she started to dance with the guests – the bride went from one hand toanother. In the afternoon the guests were welcomed by the young husband and wife. The Bestman with a plate stood next to the couple. Every guest had to congratulate the newlyweds andput some money on the plate. The couple’s payback was a feast with music and dance. At the end of the wedding “starejší” thanked parents for the rich feast, guests forpresence and presents and gave everyone a piece of special wedding cake called “radostník“.Dowry There were two kinds of dowry - the first was called “vybava“. Each girl startedpreparing it as soon as she was old enough to hold a needle. She had to make clothes andhousehold textiles for herself and her future family, since once she married and the kidsstarted coming there wouldnt be much time for that until they grew up. The dowry was carried in a big procession from the brides home to her new home andeveryone in the village had a chance to see her work. The groomsmen and bridesmaids cameto help and safeguard the moving. The young men arranged for a carriage and pretty team ofhorses. The carriage was decorated with ribbons. The customary trousseau received from the brides mother consisted of the following:a chest with three drawers containing her folk dress, clothes, footwear and lingerie. Also 1 or 2eiderdowns, 4 pillows, 1-8 sheets and 2 – 4 blankets. The party played the accordion and they all sang as they left the brides former home.The bride waited at her new home for the carriage and would show the unloaders where theitems should be placed. This finalized the wedding customs. The other dowry was called “veno“ - this was a settlement given by the family of thebride. It was usually a property, maybe some cattle or a horse. 198
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    • Today´s midnight ceremony and the bridal dance An old Slovak tradition is that during the wedding ceremony and the followingfeast the bride is wearing a headband or wreath called “parta” on her head as asymbol of her purity and virginity. Becoming a young wife, just after the midnight, she has to take the wreath ortoday more commonly the veil off. There is a great ceremony where women singtraditional songs while taking the veil off the bride’s head. In some regions, the tradition is that the Best man tries to persuade the brideto let him take her veil off. With a wooden spoon in hand he dances around the brideand asks for three times: „I am asking you for the first time – will you allow to take thewreath off or I will cut off your head?“ Twice the bride replies “cut off the head“ butfor the third time she answers „take off the wreath“. After the wreath (or veil) is off, itis replaced with a beautiful hand-made handkerchief which symbolises the bride’sbecoming a woman. Then the bride leaves the reception and changes clothes, oftena traditional folklore costume or a red dress. She has a bonnet on her head. When she returns to the room with the Best man, everybody in the roomdances a special dance called “redovy“ with her. Guests give some money to the pot todance with the bride. As first the Best man dances, then godparents, parents, siblings,parent-in-law and then other guests. The last person who dances with the bride is thegroom. During the dance a special song called “Redovy is starting” is sung. 200
    • Other old traditions and rituals”The purifying bath“”The purifying bath“ was taken before the bride and the groom dressed up. It had to washaway all impure and protect them from evil in their next life.Dressing The wedding veil would protect the bride from the evil looks of strangers. It alwayswould be something red in the bride’s clothes to protect her from bewitching and magic. The bride wore an underskirt inside out in order not to be affected by the evil eye.When the bride was dressed up, she had to stand at one place; she was not allowed to move. Small coins were secretly given into the bride’s boots to ensure her richness inmarriage. Dried thyme was put under the headband to give birth to healthy children. When the bride went to her wedding, she had to put some cloves of garlic and somepieces of parsley into her boots to chase away the evil ghost. Apparently witches hated thesesmells. Wedding tree 201
    • An evergreen tree or a linden was prepared the last day before wedding. This weddingtree was decorated by ribbons. There were three golden apples decorated by rosemary andgolden flax on the tree. This tree was a sign that the bride was having her wedding. The treehad to be destroyed after the wedding ceremony because from then the bride became a wife. Sometimes the tree was burnt at the yard. As it was burning, groomsmen were singingthe song called “The linden was burning ...“Carrying over the threshold The role of the groom is to carry the bride over the threshold of the house to trick evilspirits that lurk under the threshold and guard the house. Another meaning is symbolic - it means the start of a new life.Leaving the house When the bride left the house people sang sad songs, the bride beamed with herparents and the groom had to pay for the bride to his parents-in-law. Traditions were kept there like the bride’s walking around the table, the bride’s escapeor the bride’s hiding.Arriving at the new house According to folk thinking spirits seated in the fire, stove, on the table, in the thresholdand in the corners of the house. That is why the bride did various ceremonial acts in theseplaces. For example: she walked around the table, touched the stove and threw various thingsinto all corners of the room. The bride showed several acts that had to prove her skills, forexample picking up a broom. The mother-in-law gave a spoonful honey or sugar to the couple to ensure their happylife. They poured water out of the house to ensure fertility and easy childbirth. 202
    • Bedding the newlyweds Witnesses had to be present during the ceremony. They put the newlyweds into theirbed. They usually did it in the groom’s house. Sometimes godmother put an axe under the newlyweds´ bed, bread and dry rosemaryinto the bed or a piece of iron under their feet in order not to have bad dreams. When thewedding bed was prepared, the eiderdown was smeared with drops of honey and money wasgiven under the pillow. Also a sack of grain was put under the pillow in order not to live inpoverty. The Best man accompanied the couple to their wedding bed. The married couple atecertain food, for example corn, scrambled eggs, sweets or wine before they were put down onthe wedding bed. 203
    • Other new habitsSweeping of the broken plate and carrying the bride over the threshold The tradition is that a plate is broken, the bride with the groom are supposed to sweepit up. This symbolises their cooperation and working together as a couple. Guests try to kickthe bits of broken plate around and make the cleaning up more difficult.Some Slovaks believe that the bride has to be extra careful, as the number of broken piecesleft over will be the number of children her husband will have with another woman! After the broken plate was cleaned up, the groom carried the bride over the thresholdto her place at the table.Common soup eating Newlywed’s common soup eating from oneplate at the feast symbolizes their cooperation. The second meaning, which is perhaps moresignificant, is a common symbol of equal sharing joysand problems in life. Before the wedding the noodles made of ahundred eggs were prepared by women. 204
    • Kidnapping the bride or stealing a shoe Another tradition is “kidnapping“ the bride from the party (but it was not in the past). Male guests from the bridal party often take the bride to a close-by town or to the disco from the place of the wedding. The groom has to look for her. Then he has to pay for her release. Other times only her shoe gets stolen and the groom must pay for it – with money or alcohol.Kissing At any point during the wedding feast, the wedding guests traditionally bangtheir glasses or plates with the cutlery and continue until the bride and thegroom stand up and kiss. This may be repeated several times during the wedding feast. 205
    • SPAIN C.E.I.P. JÚPITER, San José de La Rinconada, SevilleTHE RITE OF CATHOLIC BAPTISMA Catholic Baptism have origins stepped in history.For the Catholic baptism is the first of seven sacraments (baptism,confirmation, eucharist, penance, anointing of the sick, holy orders andmarriage). This sacrament is intended to liberate human beings from theoriginal sin inherited from Adam and Eve to disobey God by eating theforbidden fruit. After the baptism, human beings become Christians fromthe Catholic Church. This person´s sacrament initiates to the CatholicFaith into membership an makes him or her a member of the church.HISTORY OF CATHOLIC BAPTISMIn the year 416, the Roman Empire made compulsory Infant Baptism. ForRoman Catholic tradition centuries taught that if a baby died without beingbaptized, they would go to a place called limbo. However, in April of 2007,Pope Benedict reversed this teaching on limbo. He also declared that thechurch would not revert to St. Augustine´s teaching that who died withoutbeing infants baptized go to hell. Instead the Pope created a new doctrine:baptized infants go to heaven or not.GODPARENTSThe rite of Catholic Baptism is more than a big celebration and party withcakes and party favours. In the catholic tradition, Baptism makes take awaythe sins and one child of God´s children and a member of the CatholicChurch.In preparation for the Baptism service, Catholics parents take classes anselected sponsors known as godparents. During the rite of Baptism,godparents take part in the ceremony by holding the child and makingpromises for the child´s spiritual growth. 206
    • Godparents are expected to watch over the child´s religious well being anddevelopment throughout life. With that in mind, when your child selectinggodparents for it is wise to choose a person of: Deep faith Prayer Spirituality An active catholic.TRADITIONAL DRESSTraditionally babies wear white decorative christening gowns. Many timeschristening outfits are passed down from one generation to the next.It is customary to wear white child and sponsors are responsible fordressing before the ceremony, place a scapular or medal of the Virgin inthe childs neck as a symbol of consecrated to the Virgin. The sponsorshold a candle will be lit white during the ceremony (the candle can bedecorated and even engraved with the name).During the ceremony of baptism, when the priest pours holy water on thechilds head is covered with a white cloth, symbolizing the purity acquiredthrough the sacrament. You can give the priest a shell with which pour holywater on the childs head. 207
    • THE RITE OF BAPTISMThe rite of Catholic Baptism can be broken into four stages with eachdifferent taking place in parts of the church.Each stage symbolizes a part of the process of the child´s initiation intothe Church.WHERE WHAT HOW OR WHYIn the entry way of the The questioning It takes place outsidechurch building the church symbolizing the child is not that yet a member of the church.Entry way The exsufflation The priest breathes into the child´s face three times recalling the spirit breath of God.Entry way The sign of the cross Priest traces the Sign of the Cross with his thumb on the baby´s forehead and the chestEntry way The imposition of Priest places hand on hands the baby´s head and prays for the kindling of Faith.Entry way The imposition of salt Priest puts a few grains of salt on the baby´s mouth as a symbol of wisdom.Admission into the The exorcism The priest makes thechurch building Sign of the Cross over the child three times and prays for the exorcise of the unclean spirit in the name of the Trinity.Admission The Sign of the Cross This time the priest traces the Sign on the candidate´s forehead as a symbol of protection of the mind 208
    • from the Devil´s violation.Admission The imposition of Again, the priest lays hands his hands on the child´s head.Admission Admission in the End of historical places church building the priest´s stole on the baby´s head, symbolizing his priestly authority, and he admits the baby into the church building.In the nave The solemn exorcism Now inside the church, the priest prays for the once again exorcise unclean spirits.In the nave The renunciation of Take a oath renouncing Satan godparents for the child Satan.In the nave The anointing Priest anoints the baby with oil on the heart and between the shoulders tracing a small cross. This represents the oil of salvation in Jesus Christ.At the font The profession of faith The priest replaces his violet stole with a white one. 209
    • At the font Baptism Godparents carry the baby to the font together. The godmother holds the baby while the godfather places his right hand on the baby´s shoulder. The priest pour water three times consecrated over the baby´s forehead, baptizing in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.At the font The anointing with Anointing with a Chrism consecrated oilAt the font The white linen clothe A white linen clothe symbolizes purity which of the baby´s soul is cleaned, is placed on the child´s head.At the font The lighted candle The priest gives a candle to the godparentsAt the font Last words of good will. 210
    • SPANISH WEDDING TRADITIONSA wedding is a religious or civil ceremony, by which celebrates thebeginning of marriage . Generally a wedding is a rite that formalizes theunion of two people to a foreign authority that regulates and governs theprocedure, which generates contractual commitments between the parties.The ceremony consists of several parts, which vary depending on the ritual,the most common are: submission to authority (priest, judge, mayor, etc.)express manifestation of the bride and groom to constitute the contractualrelationship and the exchange of rings .Exchange of rings between the couple.There are many traditions that suggest what to do at each stage of awedding, from its organization, dress, and the celebration to honeymoon .Although today are changing many of these customs, being followed in manycases only a few.In the case of marriages between same sex , in force in several countries,these practices must adapt to the situation, and let the tradition verydifferent roles to be played by the bride and groom."Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue orused." In the superstitious Middle Ages said that the wedding was goodluck to use: something old, to symbolize the connection of the bride with her past and represented the continuity of their marriage (used to be a jewel in the family); something borrowed, referring to the belief that happiness could bring a friend using something to be happy. It symbolized the friendship provided the loan for happiness (used to be a gem or just a tissue); something new, because it produced best hope for a future; something blue , and represented that color fidelity of the spouses . In superstitious peoples although the couple live together, the night before the wedding have to pass each one in your home or the home of their parents.Throwing rice after the church ceremony represented the seed, theoffspring.The groom should not see the bride and her dress before the ceremony.The groom should wear properly tie on, as if carried crooked means that itwould be unfaithful to his girlfriend . 211
    • The colour of the wedding dress is a tradition White is the popular association, but originally the white brides dress was a symbol of economic power and social status, since to obtain a white dress with the typical features of wedding dress, ie lot of material, quality, and demases ornaments, worth a lot and therefore was not readily available. 212
    • The tradition that the bride used touched on her wedding day comesbecause in antiquity it was customary for the women wore a garland offlowers.Originally, the bride wore the veil as a symbol of youth. Catholic brides useit as a symbol of purity. Because of this, sometimes the bride is chosen bytwo layers to get to the altar veiled and the unveiled the groom when he isgiven by her father or an immediate family if the deceased (such as agrandparent).The flowers represent emotions and merits, carry a message of fertility,flowering and generosity. The superstition says that traps the lucky bridesbouquet will be lucky and be the next to marry.The carpet red is placed in the church at the entrance of the procession,represents honour and respect.The gifts are given to the bride and groom are usually designed tofacilitate new entry into the marital life, reason why it is common to giveaway household items. 213
    • Today it has become popular creating wedding gift lists in order tofacilitate the guests and the couple selection of gifts, which to someextent ensures that the couple will receive gifts that really will be useful .The Wedding March is a traditional hymn played when the bride to enterthe altar or place of the ceremony.For Catholic marriages, it is often a course requirement to participate inmarriage. These courses are led by priests and Catholic married coupleswho work together as volunteers to guide the bride and groom - through aregular meeting, in some cases the weekends, by evaluating the relationshipof the couple toward marriage and the commitments. 214
    • SPANISH WEDDING TRADITIONS C.E.I.P. NUESTRA SEÑORA DE AURORA, Alcabón 215
    • Weddings are big affairs in Spain and youre likely to find thewhole extended family and the entire village turn out to celebrate.Expect at least 200 guests at traditional weddings. Some of thecustoms are similar,such as throwing rice, but othersare less familiar.In line with most social events inSpain, most Spanish weddings startlate (often the ceremony wontstart until 7 p.m.) and finish very,very late (or early, depending onhow you look at it).The use of the mantilla as an everyday accessory goes back to theXVII century, but the custom has been lost and the mantilla is nowsometimes worn by older generations as part of a costume or inreligious ceremonies. However, the mantilla is making a comeback inmodern times as part of a young bride’s weddingattire: brides who want a traditional wedding are opting to wear thetraditional lace mantilla instead of a wedding veil. The 216
    • mantilla is exceptionally long and can trail several feet behindher wedding gown.A traditional wedding custom consisted in the groom presenting thebride with 13 coins known as unity coins which represent hiscommitment to support her. However, times have changed and today’sbrides and grooms exchange the coins as a symbol of the wealth andfinances they will evenly share.In Spain, the wedding ring is worn on the ring finger of theright hand.Spanish weddings do not include bridesmaids or groomsmen. Thecouple stands together at the altar with no one else inattendance. There is no Best Man or Maid of Honor. Also, thegrooms mother accompanies him down the aisle. Bridesmaids are nota traditional part of Spanish weddings, but with Hollywood’sinfluence, they are becoming so. At the reception, the head tableis traditionally set for 6: the bride, the groom and their parents.There are also no speeches.Spanish weddings can be quite noisy with plenty of loudfirecrackers going off once the happy couple emerges from thechurch. Rice is still traditionally used, along with flower petals.During the wedding feast/reception, the bride and groom circulatefrom table to table carrying a basket with small wedding favors,that they personally hand out to each guest. The men will beoffered a cigar or a mini-bottle of wine and the women a littlepresent - usually something which looks and smells nice. This may bethe time in which guests also “hand back” the preferred weddinggift: money… in envelopes. Some couples also send out the numberof a bank account along with the invitation. 217
    • The custom of cutting the grooms tie into pieces and then auctioning itoff for good luck is still actively practiced today by the groom’sclosest friends.Days after the wedding, the newlyweds present theirMarriagecertificate- for a civil wedding or their marriage book - for a religiouschurch wedding in order to receive their Family Book where theirchildren’s birth will be recorded, hence the name, “Family Book”. 218
    • TURKEY ORHANGAZI ILKÖĞRETIM OKULU, Istanbul WEDDING TRADITIONMarriageMarriage is an association that existed since the earliest times and has great importance onhuman life and society. Marriage as a term is a continuous union of a man and a woman as husbandand wife under all kinds of conditions of life. It is the foundation of the family which in turn is thecornerstone of society and carries universal importance. The marriage act has certain rules andpatterns that change around the world, shaped by different cultures and entailing traditions andcustoms that define a particular society.Marriage ceremonies incorporate a number of preparations and phases leading up to the actual act.These stages include religious and even superstitious practices. At each phase, theimplementation of a variety of common practices, customs and traditions have becomeobligatory, almost like rules and principles that govern this ritual act. Each and every society, incompliance with certain rules and practices conforming to their culture, has developed its ownparticular ways of executing this event. Here we will try to elaborate on different phases ofmarriage, complete with distinct and rich customs in every region, province and even village inTurkey, by making an attempt to generalize them along main features and aspects. 219
    • Different kinds of Marriage:In the past, marriage among relatives, such as cousins, was common in Turkey. Today such kind ofmarriage is not practiced that much any more due to impact of urbanization.Another kind of marriage is that in the case of death of a brother, where the widowed sister-inlaw is wed with a single or widower brother-in law (Levirat). This is done in order to keep theinheritance of the deceased in the family and for the children’s welfare. Similarly, it is alsopossible that a sister gets married to a deceased sister’s husband (Sororat). However, this ruraltradition too is disappearing fast.Another type of marriage is “taygeldi” marriage. In this marriage, the children from previousmarriages of a widow and widower, who get married, may get married as well. In the past,particularly in rural areas, men would “snatch” or kidnap a girl that they wanted to marry, but werenot allowed to for one reason or the other, mostly due to objection by families. It also happenedthat a girl and boy run away in mutual agreement to overcome family objection to their matrimony.In some regions, there is also a type of “snatching” called “oturakalma”, where a girl goes to thehome of the man that she loves and settles there, many times at the objection of her own family.Another type of marriage which was often practiced in the past is “beÅ¿ik kertme”. While childrenwere yet in their cradle, they were promised or “engaged” to each other by their families. In thepast, the rejection of marriage by the girl or boy once they reach marrying age, would be regardedas dishonor to the family and even could cause bloody family feuds. This type of arranged marriageis almost extinct today.Another kind of marriage arrangement or custom in Turkey is marriage of “iç güveysi”. In thismarriage, a man settles in the home where his wife lives. Usually in case of inability to pay adowry for the bride or the absence of a son on the part of the bride’s family leads to this kind ofarrangement.In another type of marriage called “Berder” or “deÄ¿iÅ¿-tokuÅ¿, deÄ¿iÅ¿ik” ( exchange,changing) two families may marry their daughter and son to another family’s son and daughter.Such kind of marriages releases the two families of an old custom to pay a dowry to the bride’sfamily, since they “even” out.A note on Baslik – dowry – is in place. This is an old custom that has nearly ceased to exist in thevast majority of Turkish society and is confined only to very underdeveloped regions.According to Turkish traditions marriage between “milk” siblings is not possible. Children whoare breastfed by a woman (a custom that was not uncommon in Turkey, when a mother could notbreastfeed due to illness or other reasons, especially in rural areas, but has nearly ceased today)other than their mother become her “milk” children and they are not supposed to marry their“milk” siblings. 220
    • In some regions marriage with more than one wife at the same time (polygamy), while outlawed andpunishable by law, is still practiced and it was more prevalent in the past when a wife could notbear children or she became ill or invalid.Age of Marriage:There is wide variation in marriage age today, with lower limits set by law. Today, men usually areexpected to marry after they complete their mandatory military service, in some moretraditional areas right before. General marriage ages are around 22 for men and around 20 forwomen, with 5-6 years variation upward. Today, more youngsters go to college, which pushes uptheir marriage age mostly until after graduation. Older siblings are usually expected to get marriedbefore younger siblings, particularly if they are of the same gender. Pressures to marry at ayounger Although age of marriage varies according to regions today in areas wheretraditions are observed.In the general procedures of marriage, the groom to be and this family usually take the lead ininitiating the steps leading up to marriage, while the courted girl’s family remains passive. Thefirst step toward marriage is expected of the man and his family.Act of go-between (Görücülük), To Ask a Girl’s Hand in Marriage:In the traditional setting, the courtship process leading up to a marriage begins with seeing andlooking for a girl. Families who want to marry their sons begin looking out for girls, starting withtheir relatives, neighbours and close friends. They get willing assistance in this “search” from theirrelatives, neighbours and friends.In larger cities of Turkey, where cultural changes have been more rapid, it is now most commonthat people meet up personally and develop a relationship directly. However, “Görücülük” has 221
    • been still the main type of interaction enabling marriages is more traditional communities andrural areas.“Görücülük” is the act of go-between of several women of a family or friends of a man who wantsto get married, who pay special visit to the home of the girl who they see as a potential fit to theman, to examine the girl closely and reveal their intentions. This procedure is called “seeing a girl,to send women to see a girl, woman sent out to inquire about a prospective bride” (“kız bakma”,“görücü çıkma”, “dünür gezme” in Turkish). After their affirmative judgment about the girl, time isgranted to the prospective bride’s family both to get more information about the prospectivegroom and his family and to make a decision. As the result of affirmative agreement by bothfamilies to pursue this first acquaintance further, the task of the go- betweeners (gorucus) comesto end. Inasmuch as the fact that the work of seeing prospective bride is done by women, they doremain engaged in the process of asking for the girls hand.In the process of asking for the girl’s hand in marriage, care is taken to include among those whowill visit the prospective bride’s family such respectful persons who could not be refused by thebride’s family, together with close relatives of the prospective bridegroom’s family. It is notuncommon that several such visits are paid to a family or girl who’s reluctant to agree to thismarriage for one reason or the other. 222
    • Agreement to Marry:Agreement to marry (söz kesimi) follows the process of asking the prospective bride’s hand inmarriage. Both families who reached an agreement by way of “Dünürcülük” (women sent out toinquire about a prospective bride) agree on marriage before crowded guests, which is called “SözKesme” (agreement to marry). Engagement is completed by attaching a ring and an embroideredkerchief bought by the prospective bridegroom’s family. In some regions “Söz kesimi” is also calledsmall engagement ceremony. Sweet dessert (aÄ¿ız tatlılıÄ¿ı) brought by prospectivebridegroom’s family is distributed to guests immediately after agreement by both parties to marrytheir children. Even today in some regions the prospective bridegroom is not present at the timeof this ceremony. According to the attitude of the prospective bride’s father the bridegroom whois present in the bride’s home and the prospective bride both kiss the hands of the elder guests.Thus, the ceremony held for agreement to marry is completed.EngagementThe step after the ceremony for agreement to marry is engagement. The engagement ceremony isheld in the bride’s home and the costs of the ceremony in some regions are borne by thebridegroom’s family, but many times by the bride’s family.After designating the date for engagement ceremony an invitation called “invitation toneighbors” is made. Guests who gather together on the day of engagement in the bridegroom’shome go to the bride’s home. In the traditional sections of the community, women and men sitseparated in the bride’s home, and after having lunch, jewelry called “takı” is given to the bride whois dressed in special engagement dress given to her by her mother-in law and relatives of thebridegroom. In some areas the bridegroom does not come to the bride’s home. In this caseengagement ring is worn by the bride via a woman coming from the bridegroom’s home. In anengagement ceremony where the bridegroom is present rings worn by the bride and bridegroom are 223
    • placed by an old man on ring fingers of their right hand with accompaniment of standard wordsand wishes.In many engagement ceremonies today, the ceremonies become more elaborate and modern,where wedding halls are rented and men and women sit together, music, mostly live, is played and theengagement is celebrated by family and friends of the prospective bride and groom.No definite rule is imposed for the length of the engagement. Rather it depends upon agreement byboth sides. While it is considered natural that engaged couples may meet each other in moremodern communities, in traditional, rural communities, such meetings are allowed only throughthe permission of the parents and usually a family members accompanies the couple. Breaking off anengagement is considered a serious matter and is frowned upon in traditional circles. If the partywho broke off the engagement is the girl, all jewelry that she received must be returned to theformer fiancé. If the man broke off the engagement, usually his former fiancée keeps thepresents. 224
    • Wedding:Let’s note at the onset that the following information on wedding ceremonies pertains to older, ruraland conservative traditions in Turkey. Weddings today in the cities and more modern circles aremuch more like western style weddings, with a wedding banquet or reception uniting family andfriends of the couple. Also, all marriages require a civil ceremony conducted andrecorded by a municipal officer to become legally effective. In many cases, the religiousceremony precedes the civil ceremony by a few days.In the traditional setting, wedding ceremonies generally start on Tuesday and end on Thursday, orstart on Friday and end on Sunday. Wedding expenses are met by the bridegroom’s family. Regionalvariances aside, traditional weddings are marked by the following passages: Planting of a weddingflag, an entertaining gathering for the women of the couple’s families on the night before thewedding day, characterized by the coloring of parts of the hands and feet with Henna (KınaGecesi), fetching the bride, and the bride’s veil.Before the wedding, as is done in the course of the engagement ceremony, formal invitations aredistributed and family, friends and neighbors are invited to the wedding. While the bride’sfamily tries to complete preparations for the trousseau, the bridegroom’s family tries tocomplete gifts for the bride to be presented to her before, during and after the wedding. Awedding flag is planted by men coming from the noon prayer and friends of bridegroom at thebridegroom’s home. In some regions, apples, onions, mirrors, etc. are placed on top of the flag.Thus the wedding is officially underway.Kına Gecesi:A traditional version and perhaps precursor of the bachelorette party, the night before the weddingis set aside for the bride to spent her last night at her family’s home in the company of women of allages who are close to the couple’s family. This ceremony get its name “Kına Gecesi”– Henna Night – from the fact that the usually the hands of the bride is adorned with Henna. Thebridegroom’s female relatives too attend this event and are hosted in the bride’s home. 225
    • Usually dry henna brought by the bridegroom’s family is broken to pieces in a silver or cuppervessel by a woman whose father and mother is still alive, and not experienced otherwiseseparation. After preparing the bride, a veil ornamented with red flake is placed over her head,and she is brought amidst the guests accompanied by songs and hymns about henna. Hands andfeet of the bride are dyed with henna. The bridegroom’s side is under the obligation to putmoney in the hand of the bride. Dying ceremony of henna is different according to regions. Thehenna so dyed has such names and types as “iplik kınası” (henna for yarn), “sıvama” (smearing),“kuÅ¿gözü” (bird eye). This ceremony, which itself can be a sad occasion, where relatives of thebride, particularly her mother lament the departure of the daughter from her parent’s home, isfollowed by joyous celebration, song and dance. After the guests leave, it is not unusual for theclosest friends of the bride to remain with her until the next morning, spending their last“single” hours together. In some regions, a similar ceremony is held for the bridegroom by hisfriends at his home.Feching the Bride (Gelin Alma):The next day is the day of “Gelin Alma” (to fetch the bride), “kız alma” (to fetch girl),“gelin götürme” (to carry the bride), etc. Everybody is invited to this ceremonial processionfrom the home of the bride to the home of the groom. Guests go to fetch the bride on foot ifnot far, or by cars if too far to go. In some regions the bridegroom has not been allowed toaccompany the bridal procession. The procession is followed by drums and pipes. In someregions the bride is prepared by elderly women (yenge) who help and attend to the bride. Butgenerally today the preparations for the bride are done at a beauty salon. Then she joins theprocession on her way to the groom’s home. Before leaving her home, a “Maidenhood Belt”(Bekaret kuÅ¿aÄ¿ı), mostly a red ribbon, is tied around the Bride’s waist by her brother or aclose relative and then the bride says good-by to those who stay at home. To lighten things up,the doorway is sometimes blocked by a male relative of the bride or a younger brother sits onthe wooden chest that carries the bride’s dowry, as to not allowing the bride to leave. A tip bythe groom’s family solves this final hurdle, and the bride leaves her parent’s home.After traveling around the village, accompanied by drums and pipes, the wedding processionarrives at the home of the groom. The bride and procession is met by the Mother-in law at thefront door, who welcomes the bride with a gift. Then the groom takes her by the arm and leadsher inside the house. After a while the groom is taken out by his friends until later in the night.While away, he is shaved, bathed and dressed and taken to the mosque for the late night prayer(Yatsı Namazı) and then he is returned home. The religious marriage ceremony is performed forthe bride and the groom who had returned to home accompanied by the hodja (preacher) of thelocal mosque. After the ceremony is performed, the bride and groom are allowed to enter thenuptial chamber. 226
    • Nuptial Chamber (Gerdek)An elder woman in the nuptial chamber asks the couple to hold each other’s hand. The groomperforms his ritual prayer, and then opens the bride’s face after giving her a present to see herunveiled face. They eat the meal offered by the bride’s family.In traditional communities virginity is extremely important and proof of it is sought bythe groom’s family. This proof is usually the bed linen where the marriage was consummated.An absence of blood on the linen can be cause for great shame for both families and may bereason for the bride to be sent back to her parent’s home. Let’s note, however, that this too isa very outdated procedure and not widely practiced today. 227
    • The End... (by now!!) 228