A Wedding is a joyful celebration of a marriage between a couple. It is a day that marks the beginning of a new life between a couple that has pledged their love and commitment to each other. Simply put, it is a celebration of shared commitment.
The word “Wedding” stems from the Old English word “weddung”, and its alternative word being “bridelope” (which literally means “bridal run”). “Wed”, the root for “wedding”, which is an Old English word meaning “to pledge oneself”.
The origin of wedding is in the ancient city of Mesopotamia. Then, couples only got married to form economic liaisons rather than for love. The first wedding recorded took place in 2350 B.C.
The concept of a wedding is different in many parts of the world. Wedding is an exceptionally respected tradition within Africa due to their deeply rooted appreciation for the notion of family. Many African communities believe marriage is solely for procreation and to build a family that will carry on the culture and “family name”.
African weddings is on another level. It involves the very cultural nature of the people. It is a mix of both culture and religion.
The first part is usually the ‘introduction’ ceremony, where the bride introduces the man to her family. It is the first official meeting of both families.
The next, which is most interesting part, is the cultural/ traditional wedding which involves dowry (or bride price payment, which is a gesture shown to the bride’s family and also to establish an alliance between both families. Lots of cultural music, dishes, outfits and display that also add to the beauty of the traditional wedding.
The next phase involves the religion of the couple and their families and is usually referred to as the “white wedding” which takes place in the church or mosque, as the case may be. Others include the legal wedding which takes place in the courthouse or a place reserved for such purpose. In addition rings can be exchanged at any point of the ceremony as a symbol.
Most of these celebrations often occurs during the weekends especially Saturday and so everywhere in Africa there’s always a wedding hence the “Saturdays are for Weddings”
Whether grand or intimate, weddings shows the significance of commitments to love and how the celebration brings joy and laughter to both families and friends.