Negotiations between two families were sometimes sealed until the bride reached puberty and a suitable dowry could be amassed.Dowries, which consisted of goods such as clothing and jewelry as well as money or property, were among the greatest financial obligations that families with female children faced.Relations between male youths and older men were regarded as fairly routine, particularly in humanist circles, in which ancient Greece provided a respected model.And, of course, the large number of very young brides corresponded to a large number of widows.You may wonder how Italian families pay for these extravagant weddings and receptions.
Kress Collection Image courtesy of the Board of Trustees, National Gallery of Art" src=" width="248" height="300" /Florentine 15th or 16th century, probably after a model by Andrea del Verrocchio and Orsino Benintendi Lorenzo de’ Medici, 1478/1521Painted terra-cotta, 65.8 x 59.1 x 32.7 cm (25 7/8 x 23 1/4 x 12 7/8 in.)National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, Samuel H.
The wedding itself is usually held at a morning mass, followed by a day-long feast and reception.
The bride and groom walk to the church together, and in some traditions they saw through a log together with a double-handled saw.
Kress Collection Image courtesy of the Board of Trustees, National Gallery of Art time and energy.
Marriage not only reflected order, it was a civilizing influence on which the whole of society depended.