May 10, 2011

{Did You Know?} No. 4: "The Origin of the Words Bride & Groom"

[Did You Know? is a series of posts highlighting facts and folklore about brides, weddings & courtship. To read other Did You Know? posts, click on the Labels list below.]

Did you know that the words “bride” and “groom” come from ancient goddess legends? Brighid or Brigit, the Celtic goddess of healing and the arts, according Kathy Jones in her book The Ancient British Goddess, is also known as Bride in its Gaelic form—“the maiden goddess of springtime”—and its pet version of Bridie.

Or as wiccaweb.UK explains: Brigit, one of the Triple Goddesses, “is in her maiden aspect as the Celtic Goddess Bride.” The story goes that “the young god approaches Bride with desire. Through their union new life will come into being. Bride is symbolically a horse goddess and her consort, the young god, is depicted as her groom, lavishly attending her. The ‘bride and her groom’ will soon consummate their union, in their forthcoming ‘marriage.’”

Lady Diana Spencer was called by some as the “return of the goddess bride” on her wedding day. In my upcoming book, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride, I explain how this “princess bride” became the “goddess queen” and how Catherine, the new Duchess of Cambridge, is perhaps Diana's greatest royal legacy. ~

[To read other Did You Know? posts in this series, click on “Did You Know?” in the Labels list below. Another one coming soon....]

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