Love. Jumping the broom, tying the knot, the special day every little princess dreams of, the final ‘I do’- the big wedding day. Many love cultures have their own traditions and customs for this wonderful and important day. Some of them may seem a bit strange but we have selected two that might be the most unusual of them all. Let’s see what the most strange love cultures are!
African Love Culture
There are many African tribes and therefore, numerous African wedding traditions.
Egyptian weddings, for example, are often arranged, it’s a common thing in the area. The interesting part is that the bride-to-be buys her engagement ring herself! The groom-to-be gives her Mahr (money to be used for the ring and furniture). So not only is she buying the ring herself, she’s also making all the preparations at their new home. The bride also needs to get ready for the pinching on her wedding day. It’s believed the pinching brings good luck!
The ceremony in Egypt starts with Zaffa music, this is like an African Wedding March. The bride arrives at a mosque or a church, wearing her beautiful gown and brilliant henna tattoos on her hands and feet. When it’s time for the wedding feast, the newlyweds sit on Kosha chairs which are raised on a platform.
In Kenya, the Masai nation also has a rather strange tradition that involves more than just pinching. At the wedding ceremony, the father of the bride needs to give his blessing. To do so, he spits on the bride’s chest and her head. Then she needs to leave with her husband, never looking back.
If you think the spiting would be awkward, wait until you read this! The Swahili nation in Kenya takes things a bit further. The bride is bathed in sandalwood oils before she can receive the henna tattoos on her hands and feet. While she’s getting these marks drawn, a somo (an older woman from the tribe), educates her on how to satisfy her new husband. If that’s not weird enough, the somo also hides under the bed, just in case something goes wrong during the first wedding night.
Kenya is truly full of love cultures! A Samburu nation also lives here, and their preparations for a wedding are a bit more complex.
The groom is expected to give presents: two goatskins, a milk container, two copper earrings, and a sheep. This is very important for both families and this step mustn’t be skipped.
Another peculiar Kenyan love culture is the polygamous Wodabee nation. Their tradition goes like this:
The groom’s family offers a price for the bride and presents it to her family. If the price is accepted by the bride’s family, the couple may get married. They live together until the pregnancy- when this happens, the bride moves back with her parents where she will live for the next three or four years. With the birth of the baby, the bride becomes a boofeydo- this literally translates to ‘someone who has made a mistake or an error’. This means the women cannot see or speak to her husband, and the husband mustn’t express any interest for her or their baby.
Finally, after the baby turns two or three years, the woman can visit her husband, but they still can’t live together. This will happen only when the woman’s mother buys everything needed for the bride’s home. It is only then that she may return to her husband with her baby.
Korean Love Culture
In Korea, there are no engagements and proposals! In this love culture, everything about the wedding is decided jointly- the couple with their parents. Although the older generations of Korean couples don’t wear wedding rings at all, young couples are ‘breaking tradition’ and so thy wear wedding rings.
Because there aren’t any engagement rings, the only telltale sign of the future wedding is an occasion! It’s when the two families meet. This is due to the belief that marriage binds not only the couple, but the two families as well.
Korean weddings are big! Thy are usually attended by more than 500 guests. But there is a twist! The families don’t send out any invitations. It’s expected that if you’re a friend of the couple of a family friend, you’d just appear at the wedding. As simple as that! This is why their weddings are huge!
During a Korean wedding, the emphasis is not on the happy couple but the guests! Imagine that! And unlike the rest of the world, this love culture allows only a few guests to spend the whole day at the wedding.
There are usually no bridesmaids or groomsmen, flower girls, or even a ring bearer. Thre is no fuss and the wedding consists of a speech, a shot musical performance, and the kiss. That’s it!
To make the groom stronger for the first wedding night, there is an old love culture tradition. After the ceremony, his friends take off his socks, tie him up with a rope around his ankles, and beat the soles of his feet with dried yellow corvine (a type of fish)!
To see if their first-born is going to be a girl or a boy, the groom’s parents throw nuts and plums to the bride. If she takes some nuts, they’re going to have a son! It’s also believed if the groom is smiling a lot during the wedding, they’re going to have a daughter.
Not only does the bride gets stuff thrown at her, but the groom as well! The happy couple must be prepared for any objects that may be thrown at them. The guests throw chestnuts to show respect and jujubes or dried red dates to symbolize diligence.
All money gifts must be in odd numbers! This is due to the Korean belief that they are associated with the positive yang energy.
All this is to prepare the couple for the future and wish them all the luck of the world. What a wonderful and strange love culture!