Weddings – A Brief History on How They Came to Be

Wedding couple holding handsNobody really knows where the very first wedding ceremony took place, but it is definitely certain that whenever that event occurred, history changed when it came to the word family. In ancient history, crowds of nomads and other indigenous cultures would gather together forming a group to defend themselves from external danger (wild animals and the likes of other indigenous crowds), forming what we know today as “families”.

Historians believe that this is how the first weddings naturally occurred. It was more about loyalty by “tying the knot” as a group and becoming stronger as opposed to dealing with life as individuals. As time went by these tribes got bigger and larger and started to form what we know today as societies.

Egypt is the place where historians believe first marriages between men and women took place. At the time, brothers would take sisters to the altar (they could also marry many other women) making sure that way that the bloodline stayed within the family (and with bloodline staying, money and power would also remain closely within the family). Some people believe that “divorce” is rather a modern term but the women in ancient Egypt could actually divorce their husbands if they wished to do so.

The engagement, as we know it today, was also part of the “getting together” in ancient Egypt. The reason for engagements to take place was for the bride and groom to get to know each other better before committing for life. It could be said that this practice is similar to what happens to couples nowadays, as brides and grooms do take “their time” before committing getting to know each others’ habits and ways of living. So, marriage became a “contract”, a “social business” where the couple would know their rights and duties before taking on the vows.

In order for the parents of the bride to know that the groom was “more than capable of supporting their daughter”, the groom would visit them and offer money to demonstrate his monetary powers. Along with the money, he would also offer the girl a gift which was usually made of an expensive metal or a stone, which eventually came to be the well known engagement ring (which also displays expensive gemstones).

On a last note, I would like to point out that “white weddings” only came to be after the reign of Queen Victoria. Before, brides were supposed to wear blue as a symbol of chastity and purity and cakes used to be made with meat instead of sponge!


Patri Truman is an expert on general wedding decor and history, and recommends reading beautiful wedding centerpieces and wedding favors ideas for great tips and ideas.

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