Marriage in Ancient Roman Culture

1193 Words 5 Pages
Every culture has marriage rituals that help differentiate them from each other. Traditions and customs in ancient Roman wedding etiquette was not very different from bridal etiquette today. Their wedding customs have actually set the basis for many modern weddings today. However, there were some customs that were very important to the Romans that do not completely relate to modern customs. An engagement ring, the choice of which date and location, the dressing of the bride, and the legalizing of the marriage itself were all important to the Ancient Roman culture.
Before the actual wedding took place, several things had to happen. The bride had to get engaged. Engagement before the wedding was considered a good manner but wasn’t always
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It's also thought that the Romans were the first to engrave their rings.
The day of the wedding was chosen with great care, to prevent any bad omens. The Romans were very superstitious, and had to assure that no bad luck should fall on the date of marriage. The months of May and February were considered months of mourning, so no marriages took place during those months. Specific days were forbidden as well. Kalends (the first of the month), Nones (the fifth of the month), and Ides (the fifteenth of the month) were horrible days for weddings. Many people have heard the expression, “Beware the Ides of March.” It is known for being an ill-fated day because Julius Caesar was assassinated on this date in 44 B.C.
The morning of the wedding day, the bride had to rise early to pick flowers from her parent’s garden to weave a crown to hold her veil in place. The flowers were said to be a symbol of innocence and purity. She would wear a flammeum (the wedding veil), which was considered to be a part of the wedding dress. The flammeum was the bride's rectangular, enveloping veil, which left her face uncovered. ‘Flammeum’ means flame, so some believed it was red. However, the veil was dyed a very deep yellow, much like the flame of a candle. The wedding dress was very special and only worn once, much like the modern customs today. The bride would wear a wool robe of pure white. Wool was chosen as a lucky fabric to ward off evil. Around the waist
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