Turkish Wedding Ceremony

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Turkish Wedding Ceremony

Now it’s time to talk about Turkish weddings process. This is the longest and most detailed part.

Turkish weddings get to happen in 6 months period after engagement, around autumn inasmuch as farmers have harvested, seasonal workers are back to town. Wed, Thu, Fri are most common days of wedding process. Yes, it takes minimum 2 days and maximum 10 days up to people’s budget. Big towns, it’s only Saturdays and Sundays, no choice.

Here we have 3 major customs before Turkish weddings:

1: Dowry
2: Henna night
3: Wedding day and night

1. Bride is coming with dowry

House, flat or wherever new couple will leave is arranged by groom or his family. On account of this tradition, parents with male kids save up for years to buy a flat for their son. Bride is to bring her dowry to fill a sizeable portion of the empty house. Household appliances, carpets, curtains, electronics, bathroom, etc. are included in the bride’s dowry.

Turkey Travel henna night henna in ther hands
Photo: sarkisozum.net

2. Henna Night

This ritual, maximum 3 weeks before the wedding, takes place in bride’s family house. Ladies from both families are invited, and men have to sit and enjoy the night outside. Henna is brought by bride’s side. Ladies sing, dance, and half the night passes by joy.

What about the other half?

Here things change a bit. They have to sit and cry for a while.

Turkey Travel henna night
Photo: dugun.com

They place a chair in the middle of the room and bride, in henna night dress, sits on it with a big shawl covering half of her body, blocking her view. Her traditional dress is preferably red and its called Bindallı.

Turkey Travel hanne in hand
Photo: dugun.com

Her friends, young siblings and relatives (single ladies only) holding burning candles in their both hands enter the room with a specifically heartbreaking song. Purpose of this song is to tell bride she is leaving her family forever to make her own family and for mother to understand she isn’t her tiny, little princess anymore. And they turn around bride three times till the song is over. Song is such sad that bride and her mom burst into tears. Meanwhile, they bring henna plate. Her mother, in tears, comes to immerse some henna in her palms. Then she wraps it and covers hands. She needs to place a cold coin to open her palms again. Same ritual of henna applies to groom, too. New couple is marked, linked to each other now. Later music changes and all ladies start to enjoy celebration with folk dances.

DAY 3: Wedding day and night

Muslim countries have 2 types of marriage; official and religious. In Turkey we don’t accept only religious one. In that case, signing officially is a must. Well, we certainly prefer to have both. Weddings may be any type up to couple’s will. After wedding parties are also getting popular. We don’t have bachelor’s day culture.

4. Maidenhood Belt

That’s a tradition related to virginity. As a proof of bride’s virginity, a male figure from her family (usually her brother) wraps a red ribbon three times around her waist and ties it on her wedding dress. Turkish people still has sort of obsession on virginity. They consider virgins as pure, untouched.

5. Newlyweds wedding

Turkish weddings ceremony starts with cutting the cake and then all the guests invited one by one pin their gifts(yes, all of them has to give gold coins, money or precious accessories, closer relatives must give high price gifts) on groom or bride’s chest or on ribbons hanging on their necks. Later, we like to drink and dance all night. Once the night is over bride is taken to her new home and she waits for groom there. Closest friends and relatives of groom accompanies him until he reaches home. All along the way they slightly push, pull, punch his back and finally throw him in front of his house.

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