Wedding traditions and rituals vary greatly between different cultures, ethnic groups, religions etc. But some wedding rituals beat oddity by a mile due to their extremely bizarre yet entertaining rituals. So here is a list of the top 8 strangest and quirkiest wedding rituals from around the world:
7) In France, Newlyweds drink out of the toilet aka “La Soupe”:
Yes, because the true way to prove your love is to deal with your significant other’s shit. No but seriously newlyweds in France were forced to drink “Leftovers” (sort of scared of what this really means) from their wedding out of a toilet bowl. Why? well presumably to fuel the beginning of their marital life by imparting strength and vitality for their wedding night and well because nothing says “I want you” more than a toilet bowl full of leftover waste from your overpriced wedding.
Though nowadays, chocolate and champagne are used as a substitute, they are still served out of the good ol’ shithole.
6) In Sparta, brides shaved their head and cross dress:
Long before “This is Sparta!” became a catchphrase, brides in Spartan culture shaved their hair off and dressed in men’s clothing and footwear. They didn’t just do that, but also, instead having grand celebrations or expensive affairs they’d just lay in the dark on a pallet, waiting for their groom to come at night and steal them away. Once the groom had his way with the bride, he’d bring the bride back to her house in all her bald glory. Why would anyone want a shiny head, sunburns and endless waiting in a lonely dark place just to get kidnapped only to be returned after a few hours? because according to some historians, men in sparta were largely homosexual due to the extreme disregard of women and their unequality to men. However (after presumable failed attempts) Spartan men realized that women were important for reproduction and got married solely to procreate. To help otherwise homosexuals ease into heterosexuality, the brides were made to look masculine.
5) In Germany, your guests break plates for you, for good luck aka Polterabend:
The German wedding ritual of Polterabend, is one wherein the night before the wedding the guests
break porcelain to bring luck to the couple’s marriage. The belief in the effectiveness of this custom is expressed by the old adage: “Shards bring luck”. Why? because some Germanic tribes may have thrown shards to drive off evil spirits which would help maintain harmony, love and peace in a marriage.
4) In India, you don’t just marry a human, you marry a tree:
Yes, an old Indian custom requires people who are “manglik” to marry a tree before marrying their significant other in order to ward of any form of bad luck. Symbolic marital union of a person with a tree is said to be infused with supernatural life which would help the couple cure or enhance fertility, provide a balanced and wholesome married life and most of all bring good luck (or psychosis depends on what perspective you choose).
3) In China, brides don’t just cry…they cry for weeks aka Zuo Tang:
A friend of my sister’s cried for two days straight because she didn’t want to leave her parents’ house after marriage and I thought that was being a big baby, but apparently in the Sichuan province of Southwest China has a surreal ritual wherein the bride cries for an hour every night for a full month before her marriage. If that’s not enough ten days into the ritual the bride’s mother joins in and sobs with her. Ten days after that the grandmother enters this sob-fest and slowly literally all women folk of that family are expected to wail their loudest. The custom is called Zuo Tang, or “Sitting in the Hall.”
2) In Scotland, grooms (and at times brides too!) get “Blackened” before their wedding:
This ritual named “Blackening” is performed mostly on grooms but also on brides in some parts of Scotland. The groom/bride is captured by his/her friends and is stripped to the waist before being bound and “blackened” using substances such as feathers, treacle, soot, and flour. They are then paraded through the village while their friends make as much noise as possible in order to embarrass the groom/bride to be until they don’t nearly die of embarrassment.
1)In Western Bulgaria, the bride’s uncle cross dresses and plays the fool aka Strashnik:
The moment the bride emerges from her room dressed in her fineries, a special wedding parsonage (usually her uncle) would appear from nowhere with a blackened face, carrying an animal bone for a gun, a bag of ashes for powder, a long Turkish pipe filled with dung, and well other alarming items (because all that isn’t looney enough). This was the strashnik or the “frightening one” and his role was precisely that. Why would anyone in their right mind do that? well because the strashnik is supposed to shock those present into gazing at him instead of the bride so that she is protected from the evil eye.