Dubrovnik Littoral Wedding

Weddings in the chain of upper villages along Dubrovnik's northern littoral began on the Thursday before the Sunday wedding ceremony and finished on the Monday with the bride at her new home...

Dubrovnik Littoral Wedding

The beginning of preparations is announced after sunrise with shots fired from ancient ram-rodded pistols announcing the hoisting of the national flag on the bridegroom's house. Accompanying the gun shots throughout the five-day wedding cycle by the males, a chorus of female singers (pjevalice) sing verses predicting wedding moments, such as the arrival and presenting of wedding gifts, announcing the baking of a special wedding bread that is decorated with olive branches and ribbons, the preparation of foods for feasting in the coming days, and so on. The wedding itself bursts with symbolism, such as the bride's headdress made with flowers, ribbons and feathers that are later referred to in speeches when she is presented to the groom's men, who wear matching feathers in their caps, bride's well wishing with a throw of sweets to the crowd in front of the church, the wearing of weapons as obligatory items of men's wedding outfits (symbolizing the presence of enemy threats from the Littoral's nearby borderland), the colors of sashes and kerchiefs, and toasting speeches and songs filled with wisdom of life, good wishes and advice to the young ones for their new life.
Observing many of the vital elements of the traditional heritage, but taken out of their village context, the 'Dubrovnik Littoral Wedding' is shown in six segments:
1. The separate arrival of male and female wedding parties and their meeting in front of the church.
2. The ritual passing of the bride from her family to the groom's family with characteristic bargaining dialog, the ceremony with two 'fake' brides, and a turning dance movement to assure that the bride is healthy and not lame.
3. Upon the arrival of the newlyweds from the church, there is gifting, the mock bargaining for the purchase of the bride's wedding chest and the blessing of the chest with wine, toasts, and tossing of sweets.
4. The encircling and knocking of the wedding table for best wishes.
5. Return to the space in front of the church for dancing LINĐO first by the bride's and groom's families, followed by an invitation to onlooking townspeople and visitors to join into the dance.
Why don't you join in?
6. In preparation for processional leave-taking of the groom's men with the bride, there is an offering by local townspeople of wine drinking in exchange for apples from the groom's men who sing for good health and happiness in life.

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