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Glossary


Aadyaraathri

A result of the joining of two Malayalam words, "Aadya" (first) and "Rathri" (night), this is Malayalam, for the "first night" in Malayalam weddings


Aarsimashaf

A term, which means reading the Holy Quran during Muslim weddings


Aarti

A prayer which is said to the accompaniment of fire which is kept burning in a container specially made for the purpose.


Aashirwad

Blessings


Aathgath

Pertaining to Kashmiri Weddings, this indicates a gift of cash and salt


Acharya

Priest


Achkan

A long gown, worn by men, especially during weddings


Adapradhaman

A special "Payasam" or desert offered during the weddings in Kerala


Adravanu

The engagement function in Malayalam weddings


Agarbatti

Incense sticks


Agni Sakshi

The act of getting married keeping the fire as a witness


Aliyan

A term used for the "brother in law" in the weddings of the Christian community in Kerala


Amaavasi

No moon night


Ambalam

A term used to indicate a "Temple" in Malayalam


Ambalappuzha

A special temple dedicated to Sree Krishna, the God of Love in Kerala


Antham chaarthu

A special wedding function in Kerala


Arasanikkal

Making a stand with bamboo branches to sanctify the place where the marriage will be taking place


Arundhati Nakshatra

Offering prayers to Arundhati and Vashisht


Athiraathram

A special prayer offered during the marriage ceremony


Babul

The father of the bride


Bachelor Party

A special party arranged on the night before the wedding by the grooms' friends as a symbolic end to bachelorhood


Bahu Bhaat

A traditional ceremony on the second day of the wedding


Bandhu Veedu

The husband's family in case of the wife and vice versa for the husband


Banshi Biye

A Bengali ceremony which rakes place on the day after the wedding


Basar ghar

A Bengali ceremony which takes place on the night of the wedding


Bhabhi

Sister in law


Bhagwan

A name to call God


Bidaai

A traditional ceremony in which the bride leaves her paternal home for her husband's home


Bou bhat

A Bengali ceremony in which the new bride serves rice to the new family


Brahma

The creator of the universe and a part of the Hindu Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwar (Shiva)


Chaitra

The first month of the Hindu calendar


Chandan

Sandalwood, an important ingredient for Hindu weddings


Chautanan

Traditional ceremonies which take place after the wedding


Cheka

The engagement ceremony


Choli

The upper part or blouse for the traditional wedding garments for women


Chudi

Bangles


Chunni

Veil


Daan

The act of offering charity


Dahej

Dowry


Dampathi

The newly married couple


Devar Samardhne

A special ceremony in order to seek blessings from the Almighty for a happy future together


Devtas

God


Dhashina

Gifts which the newly married couple give to the elders after the ceremony


Dhoti

The loose lower garment worn by Indian men


Doli

The vehicle on which the bride leaves for her husband's home


Dulha

The groom


Dulhan

The bride

Ek Jot Doe Murti

A traditional saying which can be literally translated to one spirit in two bodies

Engagement

An important ceremony which precedes marriage, being held with immense regard in many of the religions in India


Eswar

God


Gae Halud Tattava

A traditional Bengali ceremony in which gifts are sent to the bride's house on the morning of the wedding


Galsedi

A ceremony to welcome the bride in her new home


Ganesh Pooja

A ceremony in which homage is paid to Lord Ganesha


Garhi - Bukhi

A special ceremony which offers prayers to the groom's and the bride's mothers


Ghidhari

A prayer ceremony through which the dead ancestors of the family are invited to the wedding


Grahapravesam

The ceremony which marks the bride entering her new home


Grihasta

A term which indicates married status


Gurdwara

A Sikh place of worship


Guru Granth Sahib

The holy book of the Sikhs


Haldi Ceremony

A ceremony to beautify the bride


Haligandun

A typically Kashmiri belt worn during the wedding ceremony


Halwa

A celebratory sweet dish


Havan kund

A vessel in which fire is lit for a sacrifice


Henna

A greenish paste made of natural herbs which is applied on parts of the human body


Homam

A sacred fire for worship and sacrifice


Jaathakam

Horoscope in Malayalam


Jaggo

A Sikh wedding ceremony that takes place on the eve of the wedding


Janampatri

Horoscope, a must for most Indian weddings

Kalayana Mandapam

The marriage hall


Kaleechairs

Special rings given to the bride's sisters by the groom


Kaleva

The brother of the bride invites the bride to her maternal home


Kaliras

Ornaments generally made of silver and gold, worn by brides from North India


Kalyanamau

A word which means marriage in Malayalam


Kangna

Bracelet


Kangna Bandhana

A ceremony in which bracelets are put on the married couple


Kangna Kholna

A ceremony in which the bracelets are taken off


Kanishran

A ceremony in which the bride is bathed in milk, while prayers are chanted


Kankana Shastra

A prayer to ask for divine blessings


Kanya Daan

A ceremony in which the bride is given off by her father or a member of her paternal clan


Karva Chauth

A festival in which wives pry for the long lives of their husbands


Kashi Yatra

A mock pilgrimage undertaken during weddings in southern India


Kohvar

The wedding bed


Kumar pet ka bhaat

A traditional ceremony in which the mother of the to be bride feeds her daughter


Kuvardhoti

A ceremonial gift given to the new bride by her in laws



Laadi

Bride


Laaja- havan

A ceremony in which the maternal uncle puts toe rings on the bride


Ladis

Rows


Lagan

The actual wedding ceremony


Lagan mahurat

The auspicious time within which the marriage should be started


Lajahom

The act of offering puffed rice into the sacrificial fire


Laung

An ornament for the nose


Lava Chidakna

The seven sacred steps which the couple take around the fire


Maala

Garlands


Maang

A parting made in the hair of women for vermillion


Maanziraat

A ritual in which the hands of the bride to be are decorated with mehendi


Magha

A certain month in the Indian calendar


Magni

Engagement


Mahurat

The specific time within which the marriage has to begin


Maika

The paternal home of the bride


Mala Badal

A Bengali ritual in which the garlands of the bride and the groom are exchanged between the two


Manamal

A golden thread which is tied to the foreheads of both, the bride as well as the groom


Mandap

The special place where the wedding rituals take place


Mangal Ghot

A small vessel used for storing sacred water


Mangal Sutra

A special necklace with black beads which is regarded as the wedding necklace


Mangalayam

The act of stringing the wedding necklace


Manglik

A special condition in an individual's horoscope


Mantra

Chanting special hymns


Matha Tekna

Bowing down to elders to ask for their blessings


Mauli

A red colored thread scared thread


Maulvi

A Muslim cleric


Mehandi

Henna


Meher

Dowry paid to the bride's family by the groom's family during the wedding


Milni

Receiving the groom and his family at the bride's home


Minji

A ritual in which the toe of the groom is adorned with rings


Mithai

Sweets


Mooh Dikhai ki Rasam

A ritual through which the bride is introduced to her new family


Moti ki Sehra

A veil made of pearls for the groom


Murthasaese

A ceremony in which the newly weds receive the blessings of their families


Naandi

A pre wedding pooja in which the bride and the groom are given a ritualistic bath


Nagoli vasthra

A ritual in which the bride's family welcomes their new son in law


Nai Badya

A special homage offered to the divine powers


Nalagu

The wedding ceremony


Namaskaram

Paying homage to the elders of the family after which they would bless the bride and groom


Narivan

A scared necklace made of multi colored threads of cotton


Nariyal

Coconut, a must for most Indian weddings


Nath

A special ornament for the nose worn traditionally by brides


Navagraha Pooja

A special pooja for appeasing the Gods of the nine planets of the universe


Nikaah

A Muslim wedding in which a contract is signed between the bride and the groom


Nikasi

A ritual following which the groom leaves for the wedding venue


Oonjal

Malabodol or exchange of garlands between the bride and the groom

Paath

Special prayers which are recited during the marriage ceremony


Panchang

A Hindu almanac which provides wedding dates for most communities of India


Pandit

A Hindu priest


Patrika

A marriage contract for Hindus


Phool Sajja

The marriage bed decorated with flowers for Bengali weddings


Poojari

The main priest at a Hindu wedding


Pradhishanam

The three journeys of the bride around the wedding mandap holding the hands of the groom


Puhiyaapla

A term pertaining to Muslim weddings, this indicates a newly married man


Quwwali

A special form of music pertaining to Muslim weddings


Qoran or Koran

The holy book for Muslims


Reception

A special dinner to celebrate the wedding


Rumalla Sahib

Referred to indicate the four pieces of cloth used to cover the Holy Book


Saali

Sister in law or the wife's sister


Sacrament

An important ritual of religion


Sadaya

A special treat served in honor of the wedding


Saagai

The engagement ceremony


Samooha Vivaham

A number of weddings taking place at the same venue


Sangeet

A special ceremony which precedes the wedding


Shagan

The formal engagement of a wedding for Sikhs


Sindhooram

Vermillion, a mark of which on the forehead of the bride signifies her married status


Sthreedhanam

Dowry

Tanchoi

A special fabric, famous for making saris


Tangail

A special cotton material, found predominantly in West Bengal and used for making saris and other handlooms


Tappas

A repertoire of wedding songs


Tattava

A Bengali ritual in which elaborate gifts which are exchanged between the families of the groom and the bride


Thaali

A special necklace which is considered sacred and which the groom puts on the bride


Thaalikettu

The ceremony in which the Thaali is put on the bride

Uptaan

A ceremony in which the bride to be is beautified with a turmeric paste


Urdha-morthu

A special, religious ritual in which daal or lentils are grinded


Uroos

A term used to refer to a Muslim bride

Vaana

A term used to denote a formal commitment


Vadava Vanu

A ceremony in which the bride is sent off to her husband's home


Vadhu pravesh

A ceremony after which the bride enters her husband's home


Vag

Gold strings


Valeena

A Muslim wedding reception


Valima

A wedding reception to celebrate Islamic marriages


Vanwa

A ritualistic oil ceremony


Var ponke

A ceremony through which the groom is welcomed to the bride's home


Vara pooja

A pooja to honor the groom


Varmaala

Wedding garlands


Varghodo

The procession which arrives at the wedding venue with the groom


Variv

The husband's home as referred to in Kashmiri


Varova

A special ceremony which takes place 8 days after the wedding


Vidai

The ceremony following which the bride leaves her paternal home for her husband's home


Vivaha

The actual marriage ceremony


Vivaha Hawan

The sacred fire around which a marriage takes place


Vridhdhi

A Bengali ceremony in which homage is paid to the dead ancestors of both the families

Wachuns

Traditional songs, which are sung during Kashmiri weddings


Wadio

A special neck ornament


Wari

Gifts which are given to the bride from the groom's house during the wedding

Yedur Kansani

A ceremony in which women from both the sides meet and exchange greetings


Yegnopavit

A ceremony in which the groom wears the sacred thread which is a must wear for all Brahmin men


Yoni

A term denoting the source or origin


Zang

A gift which is given as a symbol or as a good omen