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Hungarian Wedding Ceremonies

For traditional Hungarian weddings, the best man sent invitations to the wedding by personally visiting every guest and asking them to come. Paper invitations were not common but oral invitations were the norm. It was also  the best man’s responsibility to organize the wedding festivities that lasted up to three days. Nowadays, the bride and groom visit relatives, close friends and neighbors to invite them to their wedding as this is considered good manners. Customarily, an entire village used to form wedding processions that escorted the bride right from her home to either the groom’s home or the church. They used colorfully painted carts that were extravagantly decorated. The procession would toast the bride on the way to the church repeatedly, wishing her well. Sometimes, groups of cheerful women and men would ‘kidnap’ the bride. The groom was then expected to ‘rescue’ his bride before the commencement of the ceremony, sometimes expected to pay a fee to get her back.

Traditionally, wedding rings in Hungary are worn on the left hand throughout the engagement. When the church ceremony is over, the rings are switched to the right hand. The bride traditionally offers her new husband a present, usually three or seven handkerchiefs as a gift since both numbers are considered lucky. The groom on the other hand presents his bride with a gift in form of a small bag of coins. Gifts from guests can be presented to the couple as they leave the church or afterward in their new home. The couple gives similar gifts in return to their guests when the guests have their own special occasion. On reaching the grooms home, the bride was greeted with a glass of local beer from the groom’s parents. She would take the glass and toss it over her shoulder, letting it fall and break. If an egg was placed on the floor, she was expected to break it to signify that her children would be healthy. Some small coins would then be thrown on the floor, and the couple was asked to break plates on the same floor. The new bride then swept the plate shards and coins, separating coins from the shards. This was proof of her industriousness.

For Hungarian weddings to be legal, they had to be civil and conducted inside the courthouse before the church ceremony. Apart from the bride and groom, two witnesses attended a short ceremony where the couple signs their names in a registry book. Then, the religious part of the wedding, where the wedding procession follows the couple from the courthouse to church for the religious ceremony. During Hungarian church ceremonies, the bride and groom sit at the front of the church on a platform. Guests customarily come forward and offer poetry readings, sing songs and wish the couple well. At the wedding reception, foods flavored with paprika and other spices are served. There is a lot of singing, dancing and drinking. Folk dances are popular in Hungarian weddings. The violin is the preferred musical instrument during receptions. The bride dances the money dance where male guests who dance with her pin money to her dress or drop the money in the bride’s shoes that are placed in the middle of the dance floor. The couple spends the money during their honeymoon as is the custom.

For your traditional Hungarian wedding, why not hire Babylon to help? For over 25 years Babylon productions has been servicing traditional wedding ceremonies and wedding receptions. We want to make sure your wedding goes smoothly and without a problem. For your wedding DVD production, Babylon will make sure your memories are stored in a quality DVD production for you and your loved ones to enjoy. First, they will film your entire day. Then, they will edit the you wedding video production to your liking; they can even add traditional Hungarian love songs on the soundtrack of your DVD! We can also provide entertainers that will perform in your native language. We can provide Hungarian-speaking wedding DJs, wedding singers, and live bands! Your choice, all you have to do is ask. Trust the best in the wedding and wedding photography business. Trust Babylon.