Marriage’s Symbolisms

In terms of symbolism, the crowns, the rings and the candles, they all have their significance. The wedding crowns symbolize royal crowns, because the bride and groom will be queen and king in their home. After the wedding, the groom and the bride take off the crowns and put them in the wreath case. The wreath case is usually decorated above the bridal bed or near the iconostasis. By the time the priest places the crowns on the heads of the bride and groom, the crowns are in a tray filled with koufeta, the almond candies (Γάμος, ήθη και έθιμα, χ.η.).

The crowns are royal symbols. With marriage a new kingdom is created, the couple’s home and family. The priest, after blessing the crowns on the gospel, makes the sign of the cross over their heads and invokes God himself to crown them with glory and honor in their new kingdom, where they will have to rule with wisdom, prudence and justice. The wedding crowns also recall the crowns of the martyrs, emphasizing the martyrdom dimension of the Christian life and the sacrifices that need to be made in marriage. They symbolize the eternal bond of the couple in life, which is why the priest, symbolically after the end of the sacrament, ties the ribbons of the wreaths tightly together (Γάμος, ήθη και έθιμα, χ.η.).

The circle is a shape without beginning, middle and end and symbolizes eternity and thus the rings show the eternal union of the couple and symbolize eternal love. These rings have been used since ancient times, as symbols of the promise of marriage, and we often find them in the Old Testament, while in ancient times, with that ring the man gave his wife the power to be responsible as a leader in his house (Γάμος, ήθη και έθιμα, χ.η.).

The two candles around the holy table with the Gospel burn from the beginning to the end of the sacrament, representing the fiery tongues of Pentecost, the descent of the Holy Spirit who gives Divine Enlightenment to the newlyweds. The wine that the bride and groom drink is a very symbolic gesture, which means that they decide to taste the joys and sorrows of life together. The common “porter’s lodge” symbolizes the new way of life, which has nothing to do with individualism and egoism, but with a common path of life, which abolishes the ego and the individual. Symbolically also the spouses make their first steps in the new beginning of their lives guided by the Church, represented by the priest with the so-called “Isaiah’s dance” (Γάμος, ήθη και έθιμα, χ.η.).

Similarly, the rice with the rose petals symbolize the couple’s taking root, good luck and a happy and flowery life, while the guests are the presence of other Christians in the sacrament of marriage, which is meant to pray for the new couple. Finally, koufeta, the almond candies, symbolize the joys and sorrows of marriage, but also fertility and the successors that the couple will have. The number of candies is indivisible indicating that the couple will share everything and remain inseparable (Γάμος, ήθη και έθιμα, χ.η.).

The Photos are kindly offered by Ms. Kardamila Stella and Mr. Sakis Rabotas

Γάμος, ήθη και έθιμα. (χ.η.). Ιστορία-Λαογραφία. Retrieved November 15, 2022 from