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Behind the Tradition: The Right Time to Marry PDF Print


There is an old folk saying that goes, ”Choose not alone a proper mate, but a proper time to marry”. If you don’t need to contemplate practical considerations as part of choosing the month you will marry, there is a folklore, myth, and tradition to guide you!

The Victorian loved attributing meaning to everything and many paid close attention to wedding rhymes that suggests certain results from certain wedding dates.

January            Marry when the year is new, he’ll be loving , kind, and true.

February          When February birds do mate, you wed nor dread your fate.

March               If you wed when March winds blow, joy and sorrow both you’ll know.

April                  Marry in April if you can, joy for maiden and for man.

May                   Marry in the month of May, you will surely rue the day.

June                 Marry when June roses grow and over land and sea you’ll go.

July                  Those who in July do wed must labour for their daily bread.

August             Whoever wed in August be, many a change is sure to see.

September     Marry in September’s shine so that your life is rich and fine.

October           If in October you do marry, love will come but riches tarry.

November       If you wed in bleak November, only joys will come, remember!

December      When December’s snows fall fast, marry, and your love will last.


In actuality, these rhymes had a foundation that went beyond the fanciful. For example, the dire predictions for May weddings come from the custom of observing the Feast of the Dead during this month, when everyone worked hard to appease the souls of the departed. Queen Victoria took this so seriously that she permitted no royal weddings in the month of May. What made January a sure thing for a marriage to the ancient Greeks? This month was dedicated to Hera, defender of women and wife of Zeus. Anyone marrying in January received an extra blessing under Hera’s power. In addition, this was the time for fertility rites, the results of which just might be passed on to the bride marrying then! September was recommended for fertility, too, because of the benefits of the full harvest moon. If love mattered most, then April was the month to marry, for it was the favoured month of Venus, the Roman goddess of love.


Still undecided about when to be married? There is always the Victorian assurance that the luckiest time of all to be married is on the same day of the week that the groom was born, regardless of fertility rites, harvest moons, or when the goddess of love might be looking on. It is better yet to marry on his birthday.



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