Turkish Wedding Night Customs

Interested in Turkish Wedding night customs? Want to know how the bride & groom are expected to progress from the party to the nuptial room in a Turkish wedding? Read on for facts & information…

Muslim traditions dominate the union of man and wife in Turkey, although the marriage ceremony itself is not religious. Since at one time virtually all Muslim marriages were arranged by the couple’s parents, Muslim tradition does not place great importance on consummation of the marriage. The couple is under no obligation to have sex on their wedding night and, in most cases, the couple spends their first night together in a room in the hotel where the wedding ceremony took place.

Wedding Night Chambers

While European Christian tradition holds that a marriage is not valid until it is consummated, Islamic marriages are civil unions. Either party may seek a divorce, but there is no equivalent to annulment in Islamic law and non-consummation of the marriage is not an issue. In one Turkish wedding night custom the groom is led to the marriage chamber by an elderly female relative who officiates as the groom offers a gift to his bride to persuade her to remove the veil from her face. This practice is rare in modern weddings and many Turkish brides do not even cover their faces during the marriage ceremony.

Turkish Wedding Night Auctions

In some areas of Turkey, a close friend or male relative of the groom is charged with educating the young man on how to please his bride on their wedding night. Sometimes friends and relatives will vie with one another for this privilege and an auction will be held with the high bidder winning the honors. The money raised through the auction is given to the couple to help them start their new life together. In other areas of the country, the groom may spend the night before his wedding with his ankle tied to the bride’s father’s ankle as a symbol of his closeness to his new family. As with all wedding traditions, Turkish wedding night customs vary in different regions of the country.

Traditional Arranged Marriages

Many of the traditions and rituals surrounding Turkish weddings and wedding nights arose in the days when most Turkish marriages were arranged between the families of the bride and groom. In some cases, the couple may never have met prior to the wedding, but this was less common in Turkey than in many other countries. Most Turkish marriage arrangements were contracted through a fairly complex ritual where the parents of the groom would visit the parents of the bride and the two families would come to an agreement. The prospective bride and groom would see each other at this time and at subsequent meetings between the families, but private meetings between the couple were forbidden prior to the wedding.

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