Why is there a flower girl at a wedding?

There are a lot of wedding customs, like carrying a wedding bouquet or the strewing of rose petals by a flower girl. Although we can all agree that these flower girls look incredibly adorable – we were wondering where this particular tradition found its origin?

Wheat girls

Like with many traditions, it isn’t completely sure when it first started. Most sources say that the flower girl tradition took shape in the Roman Era, although they didn’t use rose petals back then. These Roman weddings featured a young girl that would walk down the aisle before the bride while scattering wheat and herbs. They did this out of the belief that it would ward off evil spirits and bless the bride with a fertile life. Even until the Middle Ages, little girls would play the role of ‘wheat’ girl.

 

flower girl

Victorian Era

Later on this tradition found its way to Great Britain when the carrying of flower baskets made its first appearance during the Victorian Era. You might wonder why they chose to use young girls for this task? It is said that these girls symbolise the transformation that the bride goes through, after the ceremony she is a real woman and her innocence will fade away.  In those times the flower girls also started wearing white dresses to represent purity.

 

flower girl

Rose petals

Creating offspring was still important in the Victorian Era. That is why they scattered red rose petals because they thought it would grant the happy couple a fertile life. Nowadays other coloured rose petals are also used during wedding ceremonies. Sometimes these colours bear a specific meaning, like pink roses, if they wish to symbolise sweetness. While yellow petals should ensure faithfulness in a marriage.

 

Now you know why there is a flower girl at a wedding you might also wonder why brides carry a bridal bouquet? And toss it at the end of the day?

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