The conclusion of a Jewish wedding, with its layers of symbolic practices, often ends with the groom crushing a wine glass under his heel.
Like many traditions in Jewish weddings, such as standing under the Chuppah and the bride circling the groom seven times, the breaking of the glass can symbolize many things. But the chief connotation is that the breaking of the glass serves as a reminder of the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem, the most holy place in all of Jewish history. Another connotation is that it reminds the couple of the fragility of the relationship and the need to preserve it.
In some cases, modern couples may find the practice a somewhat oppressive burden in its reminder of thousands of years of history. But then, isn't that what tradition is for?
For more wedding and tradition articles, check out the links below.
- 10 Strange American Traditions
- 10 Native American Music Traditions
- 5 Family Traditions for Daughters
- How Marriage Works
- How Diamonds Work
- How a Sand Ceremony Works
- How to Celebrate Your Family Heritage
- How to Build Family Traditions
- Are family traditions important?
- What is the history of the wedding garter tradition?
- Where did the traditional birthstones come from?
- Choron, Sandra and Choron, Henry. "Planet Wedding: A Nuptial-Pedia." Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. 2010.
- Howard, Vicki. "Brides Inc.: American Weddings and the Business of Tradition." University of Pennsylvania Press. 2006.
- Patrick, Bethanne Kelly; Thompson, John; and Petroski, Henry. "An Uncommon History of Common Things." National Geographic Books. 2009.
Santa Fe, New Mexico, celebrates the fiery tradition of burning Zozobra each fall. HowStuffWorks joins the hottest party of the year for a look.