In China, three days of mourning precede a wedding. The belief is that the parents of the couple to be married are reminded of their own eventual death!
In Scotland, a strange method of bethrothal was in vogue at one time. Once the girl accepted her lover’s proposal, the couple went at night to the nearest stream, where , after washing their hands in the current, they sealed their engagement by clasping hands across the stream, with the moon as witness.
In the interiors of Africa, the newly married couple is always disturbed towards the morning of their honeymoon by women who assemble to inspect the nuptial sheet and dance around it. This virginity check ceremony is thought indispensable and the marriage is not considered valid without it!
A strange Burmese custom goes that on the night of a marriage, parties of lads gather around the house of the newly married couple. They are armed with stones and other objects suitable for use as missiles, inflicting damage to the building and its contents all through the night!
In Wales, wife beating was allowed in the ancient times. If a woman called her husband opprobrious names, squandered his money, got into debt, pulled his beard in rage or was discovered making love to another man, the injured spouse was justifies in giving her as many as three bllows with a stick on any part of her head!
In England, incest became a punishable offence with the passing of the Punishment of Incest Act 1908, which provides that intercourse by any male person with his mother, sister, daughter or granddaughter is punishable with imprisonment. The fact that the female was a willing party and feathers of a screech owl!
Love potion ingredients used by the ancient Greeks included hair from a wolf’s tail, the blood of doves, bones of snakes and feathers of a screech owl!
In Germany, the period of pregnency and the time of parturition were alike considered dangerous. It was formerly held that every woman experiencing either of these ordeals was in danger of being kidnapped by fairies at noon to nurse fairy children!
In ancient Singhalese community, the couple lived together for two weeks and at the end of this period, if they were in mutual agreement that a continuance of the union was desirable, a strange ceremony was carried out. The man poured water upon the woman’s head, they exchanged rings, had their little fingers tied together and were unitied for life.