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Renaissance and Medieval Wedding Invitations

Invitations are not one of the first things need to worry about when planning a wedding but from my research on the internet it seems to be a very popular subject.

A Little Information:

Print invitations on heavy parchment paper using a font that imitates calligraphy. There are a number of free web sites for Renaissance Images and clipart that allow you to used the images for free as long as they are not used to make a profit. If there are no clipart images to your liking you might find a nice Renaissance type border instead.

Sealing wax; Yeah I know its really cool looking but the post office does not want blobs of wax falling off and clogging the machines. So if you decide to use wax to seal the invitations be sure to put them inside another envelope.

If you are artistically inclined you could draw your own design and then scan it into a computer. Or if you know someone that can do calligraphy you can get them to write an invitation for you and then you can scan the invitation into the computer and print on heavy parchment. Just be sure the person who does the calligraphy gives you permission to copy the work.

Some people like the idea of using a scroll for the invitations but you will have to deliver these by hand or spend extra money for mailing tubes.   Keep in mind that if you go to the trouble of hand writing the invitations or use calligraphy you will probably want to put the envelope with the invitation inside another envelope for mailing. That way the recipient can keep the invitation as a keepsake.

How about a poem announcing the wedding, or a sonnet.

There are no set rules:

If you are the bride then the invitations should be worded to your liking.

If you are the groom then your job is to simply agree with the bride. You may as well start now because this will prove to be a valuable skill later on. Practice makes perfect. A few suggestions for the groom…”That’s a great idea!” or “I never would have thought of wording them that way but I REALLY like it (note the emphasis on the REALLY). I was once told “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear". So with that I will share “Your creativity is one of the things I love about you the most. I know the invitations are important but you are so much better at this type of thing than I am”.   All kidding aside, now back to the task at hand.

How to Word the Invitation

These are some examples of Renaissance and/or Medieval wedding invitations. Typically these have three sections so you can tri-fold a single piece of paper to capture all the information.

The RSVP card is shown separately.

I have printed these examples in regular typeface instead of printing them in some hard to find typeface that you probably wouldn't have on your computer anyway.

I have included the first example here. This was saved as an image file so it will show properly even if you don't have the same font (Called Olde English)

EXAMPLE #1: A version of this example can be seen here.

Lady Nicolette Kaye Hunt
and
Sir Raymond da Vinci
request the honour of thy presence
at their marriage
on Saturday, the thirty first of August
in the year of our Lord Two thousand and four

End of the first section

The ceremony will begin at
four o’clock in the afternoon at

Note: If the ceremony is to be held at the home of the bride or groom, use:

The Hunt’s Lair
1234 Nice Neighborhood Road
San Diego, California

 

Interesting Renaissance fact here: Renaissance marriages were often held at the bride's parents house. Couples belonging to the nobility would have their weddings in medieval castles.

If the ceremony is to be held in a park you can use “meadow” in front of the parks name like:

Ceremony to be held in the meadow known as Forest Park    

Note: Any ceremony in a home can be a lair and don’t forget about the “land of” or “shire”.

Medieval/Renaissance style attire is recommended
but not required.
Feasting and merriment will follow the ceremony

Note, depending on how strongly you feel about having the guests in Renaissance/Medieval attire you may want to emphasize the word “recommended”.  

EXAMPLE #2

In the name of the baron Hunt,
father of Lady Nicolette
In the name of the countess Da Vinci,
mother of Sir Raymond
With this present letter,

We request the honour of celebrating
in thy kind and noble presence
and that of your household,
the marriage of Lady Nicolette,
Daughter of Elizabeth and Heiress of Walter,
and
Sir Raymond, Son of Vanessa and Heir of James,
in the fief [land or shire] of San Diego

The ceremony will begin at four o’clock
in the afternoon at
(Same as above)    

 

EXAMPLE #3

HEAR YE! HEAR YE!

The honour of thy presence is hereby
requested at the marriage of
Lady Nicolette Kay Hunt and
Sir Raymond da Vinci
on the thirtieth of August in the year
of our Lord two thousand and four
in a medieval wedding ceremony
at half-past the seventh hour in the eventide

The ceremony will begin
at four o’clock in the afternoon  

Same as above from here          

 

Example #4

HEAR YE      HEAR YE  

Let it be known that on the
thirtieth day of August in the year
of our Lord two thousand and four
the house of Hunt
pledged its firstborn daughter
Nicolette
to the house of da Vinci in marriage
to the firstborn son
Raymond

Ceremony to held at

Same as above from here    

 

Example #5

On the eve of August the thirtieth,
in the year of our lord two thousand and five
at half past the seventh hour,
the heads of Houses Hunt and da Vinci
invite you to bear witness to the joining of
Lady Nicolette to Sir Raymond
in the bonds of matrimony and to share in the
celebration of the joining of these two houses

Celebration to be held at  

Same as above from here

 

DIRECTIONS:

A separate card showing the exact directions to the ceremony, along with telephone numbers of the facility is always a great help.

This is for the benefit of those riding with someone who can’t, or won’t, follow maps or ask for directions (It’s a man thing, what can I say). That way the man can hand the cell phone to the woman and SHE can call and ask for directions. This always sets a really good mood for attending the ceremony. 

It’s your wedding so do what you want. These are just examples to help get your brain in gear.

 

   
 

Weddings are very personal things and Renaissance weddings, along with their close cousin, the Medieval wedding, are becoming more and more popular.

For those of you who have decided to have a Renaissance or Medieval theme wedding, you have already gone "outside of the box". With the decision to have a theme wedding you have already pretty much thrown tradition to the wind.

So this section is just to help you get a little creative.

Remember there are no hard and fast rules. It's your wedding and you need to have it your way (kinda sounds like an advertisement for a burger joint doesn't it?).

 

 

 

 

 

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