Even in those deep gray days, residents of Slavic culture assigned a special place to the Ukrainian wedding, which to this day, is characterized by its symbolism and traditions.
The traditions of the Ukrainian wedding and the customs of the wedding rite permeate the entire festival, from beginning to end. Partly for this reason, the Ukrainian wedding was often held throughout the week..
Ukrainian wedding by wedding tradition It began with matchmaking, as, in principle, other Slavic weddings. Matchmakers - relatives of the groom (male) went to the potential bride. It was they who agreed with the parents of the bride, and tried not to get a "watermelon" in response.
According to the tradition of Ukrainian wedding the groom went to the bride and groom only with the matchmakers, often they were the groom's father, close relatives, who were well known and respected in the village. The matchmakers took with them a loaf of bread, sticks and went to the house of the beloved beauty. The conversation was started by a prominent man, with a well-suspended tongue, who made a traditional speech.
When the matchmakers agreed with their parents, the girl had to be present in the house, stand by the stove and bash her shamefully. If everything went well, and the matchmakers received consent, the girl, as a sign of her decision, cut the bread they brought, saying: "I cut bread, I give a vow, and you will accept me as your child." Further bread was transferred to a matchmaker on a rushnyk. They, accepting the gift, bowed and said: "Thank you to the girl for getting up early and embroidering the rushnyk." Having exchanged pleasantries, parents and matchmakers agreed on a bride and groom engagement.
Bridesmaids were already held by the whole family, they looked closely at the girl, got acquainted, learned about her affluence and dowry. The engagement was carried out with the traditional binding of hands over bread or grain. According to the tradition of the Ukrainian wedding, this rite had legal force, which was actually adopted as a mini version of the wedding.
The very same Ukrainian wedding began with the collection of flowers, weaving wreaths and wedding bouquets, separately for the bride, separately for the groom. According to tradition, a guy started picking flowers, cutting flowers, he would say: "This one is for the bride, and this one is for the bridegroom." In the place where the flowers were cut, bread lay down, which symbolized fertility and prosperity.
And, of course, no Ukrainian wedding was complete without a wedding loaf. The loaf was trusted only by women who were happy in their marriage and easy on their hands. Wedding loaf It was a wheat cake, which was decorated with various weaves of dough, flowers, petals, leaves, etc. Each decoration on the loaf carried its own specific symbolism (wealth, happiness, harmony, etc.).
The process of baking the loaf was also accompanied by rituals, songs, jokes. After the loaf was pulled out of the oven, the fate of the young was determined by it. It was believed that if the loaf was beautiful, even - the young were foreshadowed a good, happy, even married life; if it was broken, the marriage was foreshadowed unhappy; unbaked - one of the cool young people.
According to the tradition of the Ukrainian wedding, they went to the wedding personally. The bride with her friends and toastmaster walked around their relatives, entering the house, giving the owners baked shortbread in the form of a cone.
Before the wedding, the bride and girlfriends arranged hen-party, where it was customary to decorate a wedding tree with ribbons, flowers, viburnum. This tree accompanied the young throughout the celebration of the wedding.
On the wedding day, the bride was dressed in a wedding outfit, and the highlight was the braid weaving. The bride was seated on a baking tray, and the brother had to weave his sister a braid, which symbolized a change in her status. After the braid weaving ceremony, no one had the right to touch the bride.