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On the fiftieth anniversary of a wedding the wife was presented with a wreath of gold.Hence arose 'silver wedding' and 'golden wedding.' This practice, borrowed from the Germans, has been elaborated upon in modern times."Source: George Stimpson, , Elegant Anniversary.com"In the medieval times only milestone anniversaries like 25th and 50th were celebrated.To mark the occasion of Silver or 25th wedding anniversary a husband would crown his wife with a wreath of silver.
Although no one is certain how the traditional list of symbolic anniversary gifts originated, it is likely that the Victorians made the custom popular ...
Early anniversary symbolism included only a few of the anniversaries we recognize today."Source: Robin A.
King, , page xi."The Victorians, so fond of cataloging and classifying, were likely the first to adapt ancient customs into a prescribed list of gifts for each wedding anniversary."Source: Gretchen Scoble and Ann Field, , page 7."The earliest reference we have found other than the Silver or gold is to the 5th anniversary (Wood) which implies this became the material for that anniversary around 1875."Source: uk"Emily Post listed "eight anniversaries know to all" in her 1922 [listing 1st, 5th, 10th, 15th, 20th, 25th, 50th, and 75th anniversaries]. Post then went on to report that "until comparatively modern times, the eight anniversaries were all that were acknowledged." She then recognized the trend toward celebrating additonal anniversaries and listed a symbolic anniversary gift for each of the first fifteen years of marriage and one for every five years after that.
We are often asked about the history of the wedding anniversary gift lists.
Although the anniversary gift lists on this website are based on the lists provided by the Chicago Public Library, the tradition of giving specific anniversary gifts based on the number of years a couple has been married dates back to the Middle Ages."The practice of observing the wedding anniversary, while primarily an excuse for gift-giving, probably has underlying it a belief in the correspondence of certain luck-bringing substances with a distinct number of years." Source: "The passing of another year together marks a deepening of the couple's commitment, an accumulation of time irreplaceable.
To help in celebrating these occasions are special gifts, one assigned to each anniversary and each with its own material and symbolic value.In the United States, the wedding anniversary symbols begin simply, with paper and flowers, and gradually increase in substance and value., page 7."According to Hallmark research, the custom of associating silver with the 25th wedding anniversary and gold with the 50th wedding anniversary appear to have originated in the Germanic region of Middle Europe.The silver anniversary included a husband giving his wife a silver garland when they had been married 25 years."Source: Hallmark.com"The practice of giving peculiar gifts on various wedding anniversaries originated in Central Europe.Among the medieval Germans it was customary for friends to present a wife with a wreath of silver when she had lived with her husband twenty-five years.The silver symbolized the harmony that was assumed to be necessary to make so many years of matrimony possible.