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Norse Weddings

Posted by Olivia Hague-Delves on

Norse wedding ceremonies have always intrigued me. Pagan weddings really. It is also the world’s fastest growing religious bodies.

My favourite spiritual tradition from Norse/Celtic is Druidry. This is a recreation of ancient Celtic practice with a strong focus on poetry and storytelling. An example druid wisdom teaching would be this Celtic traid, “Three things loveable in a person: tranquillity, wisdom and kindness.”

Now onto the ceremony!

Hand fasting. This is wedding or betrothal ceremony. In pre-Christian Europe weddings were rather straight forward, especially in Celtic Lands. Before the ceremony the two families would come together and workout owner ship of the land that these families own, trading goods and deciding what to give to the newlyweds. Once this was complete the ceremony would take place, with hand fasting and the couple would swap oaths of loyalty to each other. Like vows. Once this was complete there would be feast. The more money the families had, the larger the feast would be.

Hand fasting could be done with simple rope, fabric or, in Celtic lands, the colours or patterned tartan of the husbands clan (family). The wedding would also be performed by a Druid.

Now, on to the celebrations and party. These parties are outside, in a field, with the earth rather than indoors in a hall. Sometimes there would be a bonfire, a hog roast and burning druid symbols into logs and wood. That sounds like my type of wedding! Don’t forget the things that Vikings did! You know, throwing axes, boulders and drinking beer and cider. Maybe not at the same time though…

I imagine a few trips to A&E if that went down.


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