The Berber wedding


Among the Amazighs, the wedding celebration takes the form of a festival that lasts 7 days in a joyful and cheerful atmosphere.  On the first day, the procession makes its way to the house of the bride’s parents. It is preceded by a bronze tray filled with henna and hard-boiled eggs carried by an elderly woman and composed of carriages loaded with baskets of gifts, goats and young women singing with bendirs in their hands. Upon arrival, the guests of the bride are served a welcome drink consisting og milk, dates, honey and butter. After the henna ceremony, the bride is prepared to leave the family home. Once the wedding guests are welcomed by the groom at his home, the first ceremony begins followed by the Alaakissa ritual which forbids the groom to spend the first night with his wife. Therefore, she will sleep alone. On the second day, in the early afternoon, the groom’s parents welcome the arriving guests who come offering sheep, sugar, tea, mint, flour and other items. During this ceremony, music, singing and dancing continue. After the great feast, comes the wedding night. The guests wait outside to see the white cloth stained with blood: a sign of the man’s virility and the virginity of his wife. From the third day on, the young couple is invited four days in a row by four different families who host them with great hospitality and generosity while guaranteeing the continuity of the festivities, with feasts, singing and dancing groups, guests and gifts… On the seventh day, the bride and groom return home and offer a reception to their relatives and close friends. On the eighth day, the new life of the young couple begins.

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