People Used to Get Married in Cemeteries to Fend off the Plague and Other Diseases

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The weddings we know and love today follow a pretty predictable formula. The bride wears a white dress, there are bouquets of flowers everywhere, people sit in chairs to watch the proceedings, there’s some sort of officiant at the front of the room — the list goes on.

But throughout history, this hasn’t always been the case. In fact, people used to get married in some pretty unlikely places. Chiefly, cemeteries.

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Why cemeteries, where hundreds of dead people are rotting beneath the ground all around the happy couple? Getting married in a cemetery was thought to help ward off diseases and the plague.

The tradition dates back to the 19th century, when cholera was making its way through Europe.

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These so-called black weddings, mostly hosted by Jewish people, were supposed to bring the couple and their guests closer to God, thus encouraging the big man upstairs to help keep them safe and healthy.

There’s nothing in the Bible to support this theory but, hey, if everyone around you is dying anyway, it’s worth a shot, right?

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Another theory suggests that these cemetery weddings were meant to encourage God to take pity on poor humans and end whatever pandemic was currently ravaging the world.

What’s on quirky or interesting wedding tradition that your family has?

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