UK Wedding Traditions - UK Honeymoons

After they leave the church to a burst of confetti and cheers (see  UK Wedding Superstitions for details), the couple will depart in their special wedding car, the back of which guests will often have tied empty cans and possibly written ‘just married’ somewhere. This tradition, rather illogically, arose from the UK wedding tradition of tying old boots to the car/cart, as in some marriages the wife was deemed to be the dominant character. Rather than the bride’s father giving the groom an old slipper and the entitlement to beat his wife if she misbehaved, a subjugated groom’s neighbours would pass the slipper on to her and called her ‘the old boot’. Quite how this led to them being attached to vehicles, your guess is as good as mine.

When the reception is finished, in UK wedding traditions the couple will head for the ‘honeymoon’. The roots of such a word lie in an arcane tradition from a time when a UK groom would steal the bride from her family to wed her. They would hide for one cycle of the moon drinking honey wine, hence the name ‘honeymoon’. Nowadays the honeymoon is less of a trial, though possibly no less wine is drunk, and is generally a holiday before the couple return to their new home. When they enter the home the husband will, providing his bride is portable which in today’s world is no guarantee, carry his new wife over the threshold to ensure more good luck. You just can’t get enough of it with marriages.

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