Our friends got married at a civil ceremony in the Valle d'Aosta. They actually live in another part of Italy, but were able to give "personale" as their reason for choosing a different commune for their wedding. The legal part of the ceremony was quite short: the mayor confirmed the identities of the couple and their witnesses, read out the relevant legislation (3 articles), then read out the wedding vows as "Do you ... ?" questions, to which they only had to answer "Yes". They then signed the register and the mayor summarised what had been said and signed. I've found the legalese read out at other weddings a bit dull, but I liked the fact that the articles from Italian law focused very much on making choices in the best interests of the couple and any children they might have, including giving the children an upbringing appropriate to their capacities, natural inclinations and aspirations. After that there were two readings chosen by the couple, one in English and one in Italian and the bride's sister sang a song. (These were not allowed to have any religious content) Our friends also chose read out the English wedding vows to each other, but obviously that didn't have any legal significance. After that there was time for a few photos, then we all had to leave before the next wedding party came in.
As the couple exited the town hall, we all threw confetti ... but only in the English sense. The actual Italian meaning of confetti is the sugared almonds that guests are given as wedding favours in a little bag or box called a bomboniera much later on. If you threw Italian confetti at the happy couple, they might not stay happy for much longer!
|This was just the beginning!|
Our friends' wedding ended with music, dancing and more drinking for those who could take it, but that part was definitely more British. The band did a great job of performing covers of English-language songs, even although they had admitted beforehand that they weren't very sure of some of the words. And so ended a very special day that combined all the best of Italian and British tradition!
*If you would like to hear more about Italian weddings from someone who knows what they're talking about, Leanne at From Australia to Italy has a whole series of posts on the subject that gave me a good idea of what to expect!