June has become synonymous with weddings in the United States and in most parts of the world. In fact, the popularity of June weddings dates all the way back the time of the Roman Empire. The word “June” comes from the Roman goddess, Juno, who was in charge of everything concerning marriage, children and family. Her feast day was the first of June.
About June Weddings
In the Middle Ages, June weddings were preferred because they were likely to produce children born after the cold winter months, increasing the babies’ chances for survival in those times before central heating, antibiotics and birth control. These offspring would also be born well before the harvest time when all family members, including the women, were needed to gather the crops and preserve the food so that the family would have adequate food for the long winter. Therefore, it was only natural to get married during June…and the tradition has held for more than 2,000 years.
The month of June is also the time of the summer solstice, a period associated with fertility in ancient Celtic and Norse lore. In fact, the term, “honeymoon” comes from the Celtic name for the first moon after the summer solstice.
In modern times, June weddings are easier for many couples, as they can be coordinated with family and friend’s vacation schedules. In addition, this is when the weather is warm and sunny in most of the northern hemisphere.
Other Wedding Traditions With Historic Roots
The popularity of June weddings isn’t the only wedding tradition to survive the centuries. Below are a few other wedding practices that date from the Middle Ages and beyond:
- Flowers. The practice of having flowers at a wedding began when hygiene standards were not as stringent as they are today. In the Middle Ages, few people bathed regularly. Therefore, the flowers were designed to mask any body order.
- Giving the bride away. Today, it’s sentimental to have the bride’s father “give her away” during the ceremony. However, this tradition stems from the days when daughters were considered property and a father would pay a handsome dowry to the groom’s family as part of the marriage contract.
- Bridesmaids’ dresses. Weddings in medieval times could be dangerous affairs. There was a chance that a wealthy bride could be kidnapped on her way to the wedding for her dowry. Therefore, the attendants began dressing like the bride so as to confuse potential kidnappers.
- Groom on the right. Speaking of danger: that’s also why the groom stands at the right of the bride when the couple faces the altar. That way he would be able to draw his sword quickly, if needed.
Weddings at the Morris House Hotel
Weddings are magical at the historic Morris House Hotel–in June as well as during the rest of the year. Built in 1787, the Morris House offers architectural features like brick fireplaces, mullioned windows and real wood moldings and wainscoting. Particularly popular for weddings is the hotel’s 4,800-square-foot, brick, Colonial-era courtyard garden. It just doesn’t get more romantic than this.
Our award-winning kitchen will customize your wedding feast, whether you have ten guests or a hundred or more. We understand that no two weddings are alike, so we don’t try to pigeonhole the menu for your special day into a pre-set menu.