Wedding Ceremonies in Sri Lanka
Professional Writers and Translators

Wedding Ceremonies in Sri Lanka


Marriage is an event to begin a new life of a new family and wedding ceremony is to celebrate this event.

The traditions followed at a wedding ceremony is different form country to county from area to area but there are general aspects too can be visible in all wedding ceremonies. In Sri Lanka religion of the majority of the population is Buddhism and as a result Sri Lankan marriage ceremonies are influenced by the Buddhist values and culture.

All religious activities of a wedding focus on invoking blessings on the couple by both their families and friends. In Sri Lankan weddings prominence place is given to Astrology. Auspicious times are derived from the horoscopes of the bride and the bridegroom. Horoscopes are made by an Astrologer at the birth of every individual.

Many traditional events are associated with Sri Lankan weddings. “Poruwa ceremony” is the most important one therefore it is strictly guided by auspicious times. Prouwa is a stage crafted beautifully according to the traditions. This “Poruwa ceremony has existed in Sri Lanka since the time Buddhism was brought to Sri Lanka in 3rd century B.C. Through the ages many innovations have been introduced to the Poruwa ceremony. The bridegroom and his relatives are assembled on the left of the Poruwa and bride’s family gathered at the right. The bride and bridegroom enter the poruwa leading with the right foot fist. Person who conduct the marriage ceromany presents betel leaves to the couple which they accept and hand back to him to be placed on the Poruwa

The bride’s father places the right hand of the bride on that of the bridegroom as a symbolic gesture of handing over the bride to the bridegroom. The bridegroom’s brother hands over a tray with seven sheaves of betel leaves with a coin placed in each. The bridegroom holds the tray while the bride takes on sheaf at a time and drops it on the Poruwa. The bridegroom also repeats this process. The bridegroom’s brother hands a gold chain to the bridegroom who in turn places it on the bride’s neck. The maternal uncle enters the Prouwa and ties the small fingers of the bride and bridegroom with a thread and then pours water over the fingers. Bridegroom presents to his bride a white cloth which in turn is presented to the bride’s mother. This is an expression of bridegroom’s gratitude to his mother- in- law.

The bride’s mother will then present a plate of milk rice and sweets specially cooked for the occasion to the bride who feeds a piece of each to the bridegroom The bridegroom feeds the bride. As the newly married couple steps down from the Poruwa, bridegrooms family member breaks a coconut in to two.

After the Poruwa ceremony, wedding feast begins. Even in five star hotels these traditions are practiced in wedding ceremonies. If you do visit Sri Lanka, do not forget to watch a Sri Lankan traditional marriage ceremony which symbolizes the Buddhist values blended with Sri Lankan culture.


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