Weddings in Victorian era used to be extremely special. In fact, it used to be the most important event in a Victorian girl’s life. It was the day for which her mother prepared her right from the time she was born. Victorian girls knew no other ambition than to marry and marry well.
June was the most popular wedding month as it was believed that June was named after the Roman Goddess of marriage, Juno. She was to bring prosperity and happiness to those who wed in her month. October was considered an auspicious month signifying a generous harvest. However, marrying in May was considered unlucky. It was not just the months, but brides were also superstitious about the days of the week.
Victorian wedding ceremony positions
Maid/matron/man of honour
The man or maid of honour is the man or a woman who was present in bride’s and the groom’s lives even before they both of them were together in picture. The person was the head in charge of the bridesmaids and would be responsible for planning important events like the bachelorette party. The bride relied most heavily on her maid of honour. On the wedding day she accompanied the bride to the ceremony and before the couple left for honeymoon, she helped the bride change and took care of her dress and bouquet.
Original story for the bridesmaid tradition is biblical. Earlier, brides used to have their personal servants as maids with them. However, eventually it turned into bouquet holding bridesmaids. Bridesmaid’s gown had to be beautiful and they used to cover their heads with short veils.
Bridesmaids were the favourite ladies of the bride and their main job was to make the bride look and feel her best. This ensured everything went smoothly on the big day.
Best man or woman used to be the right hand of the groom or bride on the D-Day. Their biggest responsibility was to take care of the rings and offer the groom at the right moment. Before the wedding, the best man’s role was to organize the bachelor’s party, pick up the groom’s attire before the wedding, orchestrate the toast at the rehearsal party and confirm the honeymoon travel arrangements for the newly married couple.
The role of groomsman was to support the groom, advise him and help him stay organized along with helping in any wedding planning details. Usually the groomsman was a close friend, brother or cousin who also listened to pre-wedding nervousness. He was the one who took care of almost everything related to the wedding ceremony along with helping the groom relax and get dressed on the wedding.
Ring bearer was the man who carried the expensive and sentimental rings on the satin pillow down the aisle. The rings were taken by maid of honour and best man which they gave to the bride and the groom. However, nowadays this responsibility is being carried on by the best man or woman.
Flower girl, who is usually generally between the age of three and eight, walks behind the maid of honour. Her appearance indicates the arrival of the bride. She wore the miniature version of the bridesmaids’ dresses. She walks ahead of the bride and scattered flower petals on the path or simply carried a pretty bouquet or basket.