Families of Montenegro



Montenegrins to this day have preserved a lot of ancient customs and many of them are very beautiful and attract the eye. To one of such traditions, from which Montenegrins can not refuse is the wedding ceremony.

In Montenegro, for a long time, large families were kept, which consisted not only of parents, children, but from several couples with children. When a young wife marries she enters the husband’s house not as the mistress, but as the wife of the master’s son. She obeys her mother-in-law and lives with other daughters-in-law and sister-in-law.


The household master and family issues are always decided by the owner of the house, and the role of the woman is secondary. Only the wife of the owner has rights in the house, and during her life, the daughter-in-law will always be dependent, because she always has the most difficult worries.

Montenegrins usually get married at the age of 20 to 30 years. This is a fairly wise age, when both young people have already realized on what a serious step they are taking.

However, apart from this, there are some principles on which girls can get married, and young people get married. A woman in Montenegro can get married only if she can sew a shirt to her husband, shear a sheep, and a young man must be able to jump on a horse from the ground and independently make wood.

Young people get married only if they are from the same village, because strict Montenegrin rules do not allow young people to see for no reason, they are found only in public works, for example, when harvesting bread, flaxing, and so on.

A real holiday in Montenegro is a visit to the church where the fair of brides is held: young people look at each other, and their parents look for a suitable couple for their children.

Although this does not mean that the young are obliged to obey the will of the parents implicitly, if the matchmaker’s girlfriend refuses, then no one will insist, although the matchmakers can come again and again ask the girl’s hands. Sometimes it happens that after the second time they get a positive answer.

There are also many different entertainments and ceremonies in which young people in Montenegro take an active part. For example, Christmas, carnival, Ivanov is the day when bonfires are burning, dancing and playing.

The main figure in the pre-wedding rituals in Montenegro is the matchmaker, in the role of which stands one of the nearest relatives of the groom. Matchmaking takes place in two stages: self-matchmaking and betrothal.

Wants to go out at night or at dusk, imperceptibly, albeit solemnly. The matchmakers are invited to sit down, without undressing at the table, and they begin a conversation on abstract topics. Only after this, negotiations begin on matchmaking.

Visiting matchmakers in Montenegro is an honor for the family, so they are received very well and hospitably. If during such negotiations the girl, the potential bride is not invited into the room, this can only mean a refusal.

If the offer of the matchmaker is going to be accepted and answered positively, then the guests are offered to undress. Then the matchmaker lays out a ransom, which can be a ring, money or another gift.

The purpose of the first stage of matchmaking in Montenegro is to obtain consent, unless, of course, there was already a refusal. If the girl refused to buy out or as it was called a mortgage, and does not take gifts – this is also considered a refusal. If it takes, it means that the proposal will be considered.

A girl never takes a pledge or ransom in her hands, she smacks him in an apron or basket. For matchmakers it is necessary that the handkerchief touch the girl’s body with a pledge, because it is believed that after this the girl will not be able to refuse.

The main thing that everyone could decide is the visit of the groom’s bride to the bride. Usually the girl stays in the groom’s house for a week, doing some work at the same time.

For example, she must sew a shirt or trousers for the groom, and so on. If after such a visit the girl decided to marry, then the matchmakers come to the bride’s house repeatedly, but already for the betrothal.

Betrothal can take place in different ways. Most often, the bride receives a gift from the groom, and gives him in return any thing that she made herself, and the bride’s parents receive money, which is, as it were, reimbursed for their expenses for fostering the bride. Betrothal is the final stage, after which the marriage is already in the church. Before the wedding, the groom’s father visits the bride’s family, and hands her shoes.

The wedding ritual in Montenegro is different from the venue and the characteristics of the family situation. Also, customs vary by the time of the rituals and from the areas of residence. There are several types of wedding ceremonies.

For example, there is such a custom in Montenegro, when the bride is put on his knees during the wedding to a small boy as the wish that the family has many children. After the wedding night, the newlyweds are noisily awakened, and they bring water for washing.


After that, the young couple is put on clothes that should be worn by a married woman. At the end of ceremonies and ceremonies, the bride must carry all the relatives gifts.

There is also a custom in Montenegro when a bride is worn on the crown, which indicates that the girl is innocent. However, such a crown is rather heavy, and it has to be worn by a girl, sometimes even two days without removing, sleeping in it, dancing, and there are times that the bride loses consciousness from fatigue from wearing such weight.

Another characteristic of weddings in Montenegro can be attributed to this custom, when the wedding is divided into three parts: church wedding, a meal and dancing. All this is done in the same house, as well as the wedding, that is, the priest is summoned to the house for the ritual of marriage.

During the wedding, a young couple observes many signs and performs many wards of action. A festive dinner is plentiful, and can last quite a long time up to four hours and even more. All wedding participants take part in wedding dances.



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