Greek weddings, especially in the countryside, continue to be celebrated in centuries-old traditions. Like many years ago, everything begins long before the celebration itself. Matchmakers, chosen from among the groom's relatives, go to the bride's parents to discuss the future ceremony.
Matchmakers and parents enter into a preliminary agreement, the main issue of which is the dowry. The prestige of the spouses depends on its type and size. Poor couples have long found a way to get around the dowry issue, and even completely protect themselves from wedding expenses. This was done with the help of a fictitious abduction of the bride with her consent. However, in such cases, the subsequent reconciliation of the parents may not have occurred.
Well, the next step after the Greek matchmaking is the betrothal, which takes place a year or several months before the wedding, mainly in the bride's house. Parents at this moment conclude a marriage contract, and the church becomes the guarantor of the strength of future marriage bonds. From the moment of the betrothal, the groom has the right to visit his bride, but he cannot be alone with her.
The wedding itself begins on the Sunday closest to the wedding day. On this day, a young man sends or brings gifts to his beloved himself and announces that a wedding will take place in a week. The brides of northern Greece give brides henna, which on Monday they dye their hair to a ritual song.
Thursday and Friday are the main days of pre-wedding preparations. At this time, the relatives of the bride and groom bake bread in their homes.
The three-day wedding cycle and feast begins on Saturday. On this day, everywhere in Greece, the groom is shaved, and the bride is washed in the bath. On the day of the wedding, the girl, early in the morning, cleans her father's house for the last time, after which she takes care of the wedding dress. Sisters and girlfriends help in this, collecting silver coins for good luck, with which relatives shower the bride. Then she puts on the wedding dress sent by the groom the day before and goes to the "bride's corner", decorated with a carpet and plants according to the season. Here, the bride during the ceremony should be modest - motionless and silent.
At this time, the groom sends the guys to find out if the bride is ready, after which the procession of guests goes to her house, the doors of which will probably close in front of the guests. Girlfriends will demand ransom, make them sing or dance. Just like that, guests will not enter the house.
The bride, leaving, must show in every possible way that she is opposed to this, and she is taken away by force. A very important moment in a Greek wedding is the bride's entrance to the groom's house. There are many signs associated with it. The entire route from the courtyard to the top of the stairs consists of symbolic objects.
In the new house, the newlywed kisses the hands of her husband's parents, who are clenching gold coins in their teeth. The girl should take these coins with her mouth as a sign that henceforth everyone in this house will say "words of gold" to each other. The list of dowries is announced and signed by the priest. The groom and witnesses from among those present also put their signatures on the document. This is done in case the bride dies prematurely so that her father can claim the dowry back.
On the day of the wedding, a large feast is held at the groom's house. They do not shout "bitterly", because the Greek newlyweds do not kiss in public.