Marriage in Astoria Tradition / Ritual in Tamaris | World Anvil

Marriage in Astoria

Courtship in Astoria is fairly stringent. Women and men are expected to live in fairly separate spheres. Outside of planned social functions, the two genders stay apart. Unmarried people cannot talk to each other without being introduced by a third party, and men cannot visit a woman without her invitation. Couples are also not allowed to be alone together until they are married. If a couple is planning on getting married, the man sets aside some money or assets as proof that he is financially stable enough to take care of a woman. Among the upper class, it is typical to draw up a contract stipulating when the money transfers into the wife's possession. In the lower classes, the money is often paid shortly after the wedding ceremony. A week before the wedding, the bride and groom do not see each other but keep a candle lighted constantly in their windows. It is considered bad luck for the couple to interact, and the candles represent their faithfulness to one another. Gifts are not an acceptable way of courting.   Preparation for the wedding is commonly handled by the bride's family. The future husband is offered little say in how the wedding will go, though he is expected to draw up his own invitation list. The ceremony itself happens in a church and is overseen by a priest. The bride and groom wear crowns that are tied together as part of the ceremony. It represents them being the king and queen of a new household.   Afterwards, there is typically a large reception to congratulate the newly wed couple. There is often an elaborate dinner and dance. There is no exchange of gifts from one family to the next outside of possibly the dowry. That night, the couple consummate their marriage while being watched by the mothers of the bride and groom. Red flowers thrown out the window tell everyone else that the consummation was successful.   While marriage traditionally was quite loveless, new romantic ideas of love support the idea of marrying for love and not political or strategic importance. However, it is still looked down upon for people to marry much outside of their social class.

Cover image: by Alishahr


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