9 Bizarre Marriage Customs from Around the World

Marriages are such a happy occasion. Though there are several cultures with traditions so bizarre, it makes us wonder who came up with them. Here we have listed a few.

9 Bizarre Marriage Customs from Around the World

1. Kumbh Vivah | India

In India, women born with a specific astrological sign due to the position of Mars,  are forced to marry a statue of Vishnu or a tree. Manglik Dosha negatively impacts a relationship, to cancel its effects like their betrothed dying an early death, they are first married to a tree and then the tree is destroyed. This cures the curse and she can marry the person of her choice without any obstruction.

This ritual was also performed with Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai before she could marry her husband. 

2. Beating the Groom’s Feet | South Korea

This ritual takes place after the wedding ceremony in South Korea. The Groom’s friends remove his shoes and use a rope or sash to tie his feet together. This is followed by lifting his legs off the ground and beating the soles of his feet. Yellow Corvina (a kind of fish!) or a stick is used. According to the culture, this ceremony makes the groom stronger before the first wedding night. This is used to test his strength as well as knowledge. He might even be quizzed during this ritual.

3. Playing Cupid | China

Cupid, as we all know, is the God of Attraction. This ritual in China literally has the groom play cupid for his new bride. The groom actually shoots his bride three times with a bow and arrow! The arrows aren’t lethal, their heads are removed, but it is still painful. After the shooting, the groom breaks each arrow to ensure that he will love her forever.

4. Some Awkward Assistance | Africa

The honeymoon is supposed to be a very intimate time for the newlywed couple. This is not the belief in African villages, though. In the bed, the bride and groom are accompanied by an older woman to “show the bride the ropes.” It is usually the village elder, but can sometimes also be the bride’s mother. 

5. Serious Business | Congo 

Weddings are a happy time, right? The dance, the pictures, the open bar, everyone is laughing and smiling- especially the bride and groom. No, this is not the case in Congo. The bride and groom are forbidden to smile during the wedding ceremony. They have to keep a serious face for the entire wedding, even in the photos!

6. Capture the Shoe? | India

Indian weddings are filled with customs and traditions. It literally goes on for days! But don’t think that its no games. The most favorite game is “hiding the groom’s shoe”. When the groom removes his shoes to enter the altar, the bride’s family tries to grab his shoes while the groom’s family protects them. If the bride’s family succeeds, they can hold them ransom from the groom’s family.

7. Chicken? | China

If you are of Daur race and you want to get married, apart from getting your elders’ blessing, you also need to kill a baby chick together, with a knife and then inspect its liver. If the liver turns out to be unacceptable, then the process must be repeated until they find a good liver, and only then can they set their wedding date.

8. The Love Without Bathroom Breaks | Borneo

In Borneo, newlyweds are not allowed to leave homes during their wedding, not even to go through the bathroom. Talk about wedding jitters! Like most of the traditions, it is said to bring good luck to the couple.

9. Smashing Plates | Germany

One of the best parts about the wedding is – obviously getting to spend your lives together, but also, gifts! In German weddings, it is a tradition for the guests to give the couple any type of porcelain except grass and then smash them to ward off evil spirits.

The couple then cleans up the mess together. This ritual may sound silly but actually is very significant in its message, that married life will not be easy, but by working together, they can overcome any challenge.

These are a few marriage customs around the world.

Suhasini Garg

A joyous soul, with a passion for dancing and reading. I'm a Potterhead to the core. I believe the world is a human library and there is always something you can learn.

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