Sunday, January 8, 2012

Behind the "Fiancé"

In the past 8 days my mind has wondered from weddings, jobs, love, money, kids, plans, and timing. But one this  have LOVED saying these past 8 days is i have a fiancé!!! no longer juts a plan old boyfriend but my fiancé. and it got me thinking, where does this word some from? where did it start? why does it really mean etc. I know you all are dieing with answers like i am so here it all is. 

An engagement or betrothal is a promise to marry, and also the period of time between proposal and marriage – which may be lengthy or trivial. During this period, a couple is said to be betrothed, affianced, engaged to be married, or simply engaged. Future brides and grooms may be called the betrothed, a wife-to-be or husband-to-be, fiancées or fiancés, respectively (from the French word fiancé). The duration of the courtship varies vastly. French, from Middle French, from past participle of fiancer to promise, betroth, from Old French fiancier, from fiance promise, trust, from fier to trust, from. Firist known use was 1838

The origin of European engagement in marriage practice is found in the Jewish law, first exemplified by Abraham, and outlined in the last Talmudic tractate of the Women order, where marriage consists of two separate acts, called erusin (meaning sanctification), which is the betrothal ceremony, and nissu'in or chupah, the actual ceremony for the marriage.  This was later adopted in Ancient Greece as the gamos and engeysis rituals, although unlike in Judaism the contract made in front of witness was only verbal. The giving of a ring was eventually borrowed from Judaism by Roman marriage law, with the fiancé presenting it after swearing the oath of marriage intent, and presenting of the gifts at the engagement party.

Customs for engagement rings vary according to time, place, and culture. An engagement ring has historically been uncommon, and when such a gift was given, it was separate from the wedding ring. The tradition of giving a ring for marriage engagement originated from Judaism that was originally a golden nose ring  given by Eliezer to Rebecca. The latter case refers to betrothal rather than engagement; one of the three ways in which betrothal may be accomplished in Judaism is by the husband giving the bride money or an object of at value. In fact, it is a long-standing practice within Judaism to contract the betrothal with a ring.

Romantic rings from the time of the Roman Empire sometimes bore clasped hands symbolizing contract. Romans believed the circle was a bond between the two people who were to be married and signified eternity, but was first practiced on the fourth finger/ring finger by the Romans, who believed this finger to be the beginning of the vena amoris ("vein of love"), the vein that leads to the heart. The custom in Continental Europe and other countries is to wear it on the right hand. One historical exception arose in monarchical regimes, in which a nobleman entering into morganatic marriage, a marriage in which the person, usually the woman, of lower rank stayed at the same rank instead of rising ranks, would present his left hand to receive the ring, hence the alternative term 'marriage with the left hand'  the offspring of such marriages considered to be disinherited from birth.

In the modern era, some women's wedding rings are made into two separate pieces. One part is given to her to wear as an engagement ring when she accepts the marriage proposal and the other during the wedding ceremony. When worn together, the two rings look like one piece of jewelry.

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