Goan Weddings

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Goan Weddings are replete with customs and traditions with both families of the bride and groom being actively involved in it. A typical Goan wedding is performed according to the Portuguese Civil code and registration at the civil registrar's office is mandatory in the presence of parents, close relatives and two witnesses. It is followed wedding banns being read on three consecutive Sundays informing the public of the impending marriage of the bride and groom.

Formalities of a wedding begin with an ‘utor' or a promise of marriage being made after the families of both the bride and groom have met. This is followed by the engagement ceremony which involves the exchange of rings in the presence of family members, priests, relatives and friends. Preparations for a Goan wedding begin with the selection of the fabric for the bridal gown ‘saddo' by the couple. Reading of the first ‘bann' is followed by the ‘Chuddo' ceremony. In this ceremony the bride is supposed to wear the ‘chuddo' at her maternal uncle's place. The ‘canonkar' or the bangle seller also arrives and fits the bangles in her hands. The entire ceremony is conducted with commemorative songs in the background often referred to as ‘zoti'.

Bangles worn by the bride-to-be are often green in colour with yellow lines symbolizing a blissful married life for the bride. The day before the wedding a ceremony known as the ‘roas' is held where the bride and the groom are required to bathe in coconut juice with ‘apros' at their respective residences. Coconut milk is poured even on the bridesmaid and the best men. The ‘roas' is applied to the couple by the relatives and friends of the couple attending the wedding.” Atoll” a sweet dish made of rice, coconut and jaggery is served a t the end of the ‘roas' ceremony.

A ‘Goan wedding' concludes with a lot of wining, dining and dancing along with some rocking music, making it a memorable experience for all concerned.