Nationality: German and English
Residence: Palo Alto, California
Date of Performance/Collection: March 10, 2019
Primary Language: English
The below folklore is something my informant noticed while at Italian American weddings. My informant will be referred to as D, and is a mid 40s white man.
D: At many Italian American weddings, and maybe some others, when they tap their glasses it calls for the bride and groom to kiss.
Me: Do you have any idea why this is or how it came to be?
D: No I have no idea.
Context: D has told me this a few times, especially when we are discussing weddings. It is often a funny story he tells, because to this day it still catches him off guard. This is because he had always grown up with the belief that tapping your glasses means you want to give a toast. But when he’s been to Italian American weddings, people would always tap their glass and D would expect a toast, but instead see the bride and the groom kiss each other. He often laughs about it when he thinks about it and remembers it because it caught him so off guard and was so surprised by it.
Analysis: This folklore is most important because it demonstrates different cultures different wedding traditions. That is what made it interesting to both my D and I, as we thought tapping your glass at weddings meant giving a toast, not that the bride and the groom should kiss. Also, the Italians have a reputation for a very romantic culture, so them encouraging romance at a wedding is no surprise. Other forms of this tradition say that the clinking of the glasses scares the devil away, and therefore the bride and groom should kiss while the devil is gone (1). All in all, it is a fun tradition that was good for me to learn about as I had never heard it before.
Longobardi, Alfonso. “Wedding Customs and Traditions for Your Wedding in Italy.” Italian Wedding Photographers | Weddings in Italy, 27 Apr. 2015, www.alfonsolongobardi.com/italian-wedding-customs-wedding-traditions/.