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Old 11-10-2012, 06:29 PM   #1
The Oracles
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Default (05) Marriage

** Matters of Names, Dowries etc are covered in LAWS OF EDOLON.

THE CEREMONY
Wedding can be performed by priests or priestesses of the Thorinistic faith. For the most part, priestesses from the Maian cults generally preside over wedding ceremonies, though priests devoted primarily to Thorin are preferred by the nobility. It is also possible that the vassal lord, regional lord, or king may stand in the stead of a priest and decree the union valid, though in terms of ceremony, this choice is not typically made.

The ceremony can take place anywhere, although ornately decorated castle halls are the standard for most noble weddings where guests will be feasted and entertained after the vows are exchanged. If one is in a hurry or the head of their household doesn't really like them that much, a small private ceremony in a private chapel or temple will suffice as long as witnesses are present.

The congregation will assemble without the bride and groom to listen to the priest's sermon. It's very boring, but as long as you don't snore you can close your eyes and pretend to be very piously contemplating the nature of love and marriage. Next the bride and groom will enter from opposite sides of the room, accompanied by their attendants, whose numbers will vary based on the standing of the family in question. Royal marriages can sometimes involve no less than half a dozen bridesmaids or groomsmen, while more modest noble ceremonies will be content with two or three. The heads of the households being joined will then stand, unless the groom is the head of his household and will thus already be standing, and meet before the presider, who uses a ceremonial knife to draw a small drop of blood from the palm of each. The blood drops into a cup of wine, which is held before the altar to receive the blessing of the gods. Once the two to be wed have exchanged their vows, they drink from the cup in turn, first the groom and then the bride.

The groom then presents his bride with a ring to be placed on her finger and a veil, which he places on her head in order to symbolize that she will now be presented to the world as a modest wife instead of an innocent maiden. In rich and noble houses, the veil can be elaborately decorated, and although it is nominally the gift of a groom to his bride, a groom's mother or other female relations will often take charge of the design.

The couple then exit the temple or the hall, followed by the presider. If the ceremony is held in a temple, there will be a procession back to the castle for the feast. If the ceremony is held in the castle itself, the guests will usually be escorted out to be entertained in the gardens or a smaller hall until the feast is laid out in the great hall. Before the feast can begin, the newlyweds will enter together and sit in the place of honor at the high table. After eating, the remains of the meal will be cleared away and the floor will be open for dancing, with the new couple as the first to dance.

When the festivities are at their height, the bride and groom will be dismissed from the hall and taken to their bedchamber. They are each escorted separately by (heavily drunk) family, friends and perhaps a player or two to keep up the ambiance. Bawdy jokes and helpful(?) bedroom tips are usually a part of the procession, and many eager well-wishers even assist in the early disrobing. The couple is eventually left alone, although some bored partygoers have been known to listen at the door if not shooed away by a more modest relative or a loyal servant.

Then the newlyweds have a polite talk about their feelings, go to sleep, and in nine months the stork might pay the couple a visit.

...just kidding, they totally have sex.
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