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2015-04-02    来源:网络    【      美国外教 在线口语培训


Since ancient times, marriage has been regarded as most blessed events in the life of a Chinese passing the imperial examination and the birth of one's children. one of the three The other firvo are Marriage was solemnized with lots of interesting customs performed to this day.

It was very important to follow a basic principle of the "Three Letters and Six Etiquettes" in the past. Even now some customs are still followed.

Three Letters

The "Three Letters" include the Betrothal letter, Gift Letter and Wedding Letter.The Betrothal Letter is the formal document of the engagement,a must in a marriage. Next is the Gift Letter,which would be given to the identified girl's family.Within the letter will be a list of the types and quantity of gifts designated for the wedding. Once both parties accept the marriage,the Wedding Letter is prepared and presented to the bride's family on the day of the wedding and is a document that confirmed and commemorated the formal acceptance of the bride into the bridegroom's family, with some adaptations of course.

Six Etiquettes

Proposal:If an unmarried boy's parents identify a girl as their future daughter-in-law, they will then locate a matchmaker. The matchmaker will formally present his or her client's request to the identified girl's parents.

Birthday matching:If the potential bride's parents do not object to the marriage, the matchmaker will then ask for the girl's birthday and birth-hour to assure the compatibility of the potential bride and bridegroom.  If the couple's birthdays and birth-hours do not conflict according to astrology,the marriage will continue onto the next stage. If there is any sign of astrological conflict, which meant the marriage will bring disasters upon both families,the proposed marriage is immediately quashed.

Presenting betrothal gifts:Once both birthdays matched,the bridegroom's family will then arrange for the matchmaker to present betrothal gifts,including the betrothal letter, to the bride's family.

Presenting wedding gifts:After the betrothal letter and betrothal gifts are accepted,the bridegroom's family will later formally send wedding gifts to the bride's family. Usually,gifts may include tea,lotus seeds, longan,red beans,green beans,red dates,oranges,pomegranate,and other delicacies,depending on local customs and family wealth.

Picking a wedding date:An astrologist or astrology book will be consulted to select an auspicious date to hold the wedding ceremony.

Wedding ceremony:Before the wedding,a“good luck woman" who has a nice family will arrange the bridal bed and scatter symbolic fruits on the bed. Nobody is allowed to touch the bed until the couple enters the bridal chamber after the wedding ceremony,except Children who are invited onto the bed to bless the couple with fertility.

Usually the bride's dowry shall be sent to the bridegroom's family by the day before the wedding day. Sometimes the dowry will be brought by the bride's estorts. Q traditional dowry normally consists of valuable items such as jewellery embroidered beddings,kitchen utensils and furniture. The type of the dowry is constantly changing except for the basic,symbolic items.  For example,in 1980s,a sewing machine, a bicycle,and a recorder were musts in a marriage. Now, they are totally out of fashion.

Unlike Western tradition,the colour red dominates traditional Chinese weddings. Chinese people tend to use or wear red to add a joyful atmosphere to such a festive occasion.,

At dawn on the wedding day, the bride puts on new dothes, wears a pair of red shoes and waits for the so called "good luck woman" to dress her hair in the style of a married woman. Her head would be covered with a red silk veil with tassels or bead strings that hang from the phoenix crown. She waits for her future husband to escort her home, with married women talking around her about how to be a good wife.

On the other hand,the bridegroom prepares himself to receive his wife. He gets dressed in a long gown,red shoes and a red silk sash with a silk ball on his chest. The groom kneels at the ancestral altar as his father puts a cap decorated with cypress leaves on his head to declare his adulthood and his family responsibilitier.

Then the bridegroom sets out to receive his bride. Usually a crowd of friends escorts the bridegroom and musicians play joyful tunes during the entire trip.

The most interesting part of the reception really takes place at the doorstep of the bride's residence,which is heavily guarded by the bridesmaid or the bride's sisters. It is customary for the bridesmaid to give the bridegroom a difficult time before he is allowed to enter. Usually wisdom,courage and his friends will help the bridegroom to succeed in his "trial".However, there is one more situation he has to negotiate with the bridesmaid and sisters of the bride-to distribute among them red packets containing money-in order to take his bride home.

Before the bride departs to the bridegroom's home,the“good luck woman" will lead her to the sedan chair. On her way to the chair, one of her sisters will shield her with a red parasol,while another sister will throw rice at the sedan chair. At the back of the sedan hang a sieve and metallic mirror that are believed to protect the bride from evil. The bride has to cry to show that she does not want to leave her parents.

Then firecrackers will be set off to drive away evil spirits as the bride sits into the sedan chair. All along the way people make great efforts to avoid any inauspicious influence. For instance,the sedan chair is heavily curtained to prevent the bride from seeing an unlucky sight(e. g. a widow, a well or even a cat). When the parading troop arrives at the bridegroom's,firecrackers will be set off to hail the bride's arrival. Before the sedan chair a red mat is placed so that the bride will not touch the bare earth. By the threshold,a flaming stove and saddle will be set up and the bride is required to sidestep or step over them to avoid evils.

The bride and bridegroom are then led to an altar, where the couple kowtows to Heaven and Earth,the family ancestors and parents successively.  They then  Afterwards, a grand feast is held for relatives and those who helped with the wedding. The newlyweds will resume drinking wedding wine. Generally they are required to cross their arms to sip wine. They also will toast their guests. Guests voice their good wishes for the couple.

After night falls, the teasing games start. Usually all young men can participate except for the bride's married brothers-in-laws. These funny and silly games help ease the tension,since in ancient times the newlyweds never met each other before the wedding!Most of the games require the shy couple to ad like wife and husband. The festive atmosphere also promotes closeness among all the family members and the community beyond. There also will be other activities conducted by the bridegroom's mother after the roaring laughter fades into the darkness.
Traditionally,the newlyweds are to return to visit the bride's parents one or three days after the wedding. They will be hailed with a banquet and it is the bridegroom's turn to suffer the well-intentioned teasing of the bride's relatives and friends.
Traditional marriage customs lost their popularity due to the collapse of the feudal arranged marriage and its complexity. However, traditional marriage can still be seen in the countryside,despite innovations. Now, traditional marriage customs are being revived in some places and they are attracting many prospective couples.

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