Wedding ceremonies of the Slavs as part of the common culture of the people
Wedding in Russia since ancient times was considered the brightest anda significant event in the life of each person. If we turn to the ancient chronicles, we will see that the traditions of marriage common to all Slavs did not exist as such, each tribe individually had its own customs and traditions. For example, northerners and drevlyane traditionally abducted their brides from their parents and without committing any ceremony began to share with them shelter, life and bed. In the tribes of glades, on the contrary, the ties of marriage were treated with great respect, the union of a man and a woman was considered sacred, the spouses had to respect and appreciate each other throughout their entire life together. Wedding ceremonies in Russia did not differ modesty, wedding, as a rule, celebrated by the whole tribe for several days. The expression "to play a wedding" refers to us in those distant times, when all the holidays were called a play, namely, in the period of pre-Christian Russia.
Today the traditions and wedding rites of the Slavsattract the attention of many historians. According to some scientists, they reveal the whole moral essence of this or that people. However, one can not fully agree with this statement, since Ancient Rus is represented by a large number of tribes who lived in the neighborhood and who were married in various ways. Some extant wedding rites have been borrowed from tribes of glades. For example, it was their custom to bring a bride to the groom's house, and not vice versa. In other tribes traditionally flourished so-called marriage-abduction, and in some, polygamy. In the families of glade, as a rule, the male role was assigned to the male, the consent of the parents played a big role in the marriage. Often, parents could marry their daughter without her consent. From history, we see that a similar tradition was also inherent in the medieval nobility (Domostroi's rule).
And now let us turn directly to the traditions andrituals. Some of them may seem ridiculous and even cruel to the modern person. For example, the ritual of "peeling off a wife" that existed in medieval Rus aroused real horror among foreigners visiting the country. It included undressing the young, as well as scourging her with a whip, or boot top. This test testified to complete obedience and submission to the future spouse. One can only guess what kind of humiliation the young girl experienced at that moment.
During the time of paganism, many wedding ceremonies wereare associated with the worship of the higher forces of nature, the marriage was usually held near rivers, lakes and streams. The young people had to go around the lake three times, only then their marriage was considered valid. This custom lasted quite a long time and only with the adoption of Christianity was replaced by a wedding.
In Kostroma for several centuriesthere was a rather amusing custom. On the Red Hill (the first Sunday after Easter), the young guys had fun on the hill and poured water on the girls they liked. Marry was taken on the one that was poured.
Many wedding ceremonies associated with the elementswater, were based on mythological representations of the Slavs in antiquity. Water was revered by them as an element of the world, without which the existence of man and everything around him is impossible. That's why they splashed and poured water at the time of marriage and celebration of the celebration.
Modern ideas about the weddings of the Slavsare somewhat blurred, since to date there is not a single preserved and authentically narrating source. All our ideas about the traditions and rites of our ancestors are based on historical materials, preserved annals and archaeological finds. It is possible that they are all wrong. Historian and writer Nikolai Karamzin, for example, wrote that the ceremony of marriage of the Slavs did not exist at all, and their wedding rites were very cruel, the wife was bought by a husband and was treated as a slave in rights. The bride got to the man immaculate and had to obey his whims and whims until the end of his life. In the event of the death of a spouse, a woman should burn herself at the stake. In case of disobedience, the custom of shame and dishonor fell on her entire family.
Birth, wedding and funeral werethree major events in the life of a man of pre-Christian Russia. However, with the adoption of Orthodoxy, little has changed. Only some traditions and rituals have undergone changes or began to be perceived in a different way. Studying the culture of their ancestors is necessary. Perhaps it gives us an opportunity to better understand ourselves.