Years ago, yours truly had a job as a transport dispatcher for a large wholesale outfit in the Home Counties. Because they did not pay well, all the drivers were women between 20 and 30, so over the years it happened that many interesting conversations were overheard.
One such conversation pertained to the forthcoming nuptials of one of the drivers. One day while the girls were preparing for a hen night, one of them asked where was the spanking taking place? Apparently, it was part of the local tradition that the prospective bride should get a spanking before her wedding. Not all the women had heard of this and the bride herself was not keen, no kidding, although she admitted that she had heard of the practice.
One of the girls piped up that on her hen night she had been ambushed at the back of the sports club that they agreed to meet at. She was bundled into a room at the back and her friends took turns to spank her.
“Did they take your knickers down?” One of them asked her.
“No but my cousin had hers taken down.” The first woman replied laughing.
That is about all that was overheard. However, it is worth pointing out that at the time the depot was near the boundary with another county. Half the girls were from one county and the others from another. This seemed to be reason for the differing customs.
This little snippet was brought to mind by a TV programme that included a mention of the custom among British and American forces of spanking the bride at a military wedding. Usually this is done by swatting her rear with the flat side of a sword as she passes the guard of honour.
A little bit of research among my files and online revealed some more on this.
Most hen spankings appear to be consensual fun. The web is full of such images, usually of one drunken girl spanking another. But the custom must have some cultural routes.
Twice at weddings, the groom was given a hairbrush by the bride’s father to keep her in line and on another occasion by the bride’s sister who was keen that it was really used. The last conversation was not for general consumption like the more jokey father-of-the-bride speeches. It was just overheard.
The tradition of spanking the bride by the father and then husband is also well known at Russian weddings. Polish girls are sometimes spanked at their engagement party, You Tube features some instances of this, although usually mislabelled 18th birthday spankings.
However it is clearly a tradition that has its routes in England and is still carried on in parts of modern America.
The following was taken from the web.
First of all my family, including myself, is really old-fashioned. We believe that the husband is the head of the household and a wife should submit and obey.
I’m about to get married and our family has this tradition, after I get my gown on before the ceremony my mom and dad will come in. My dad will have a hairbrush then I’ll lay across his lap, he’ll pull my dress up and spank me with the brush as a last sign of authority over me and my last spanking from him. And it’s not a light spanking either; mom says it’ll hurt.
Then after the ceremony but before the reception mom and dad will take me and my husband into a room then it’s my husband’s turn to take me over his lap, pull up my dress and spank me with the same hairbrush as a sign that he is in charge of me now and as my husband it is now his job and duty to discipline me when needed.
After my spanking, if my dad thinks my new husband has sufficiently spanked me and did a good job, my husband is officially given the brush which has been passed down and was used on my mom by dad on their wedding day, so my husband can use it on me in the future when I need it.
I’m kind of nervous but I’ll get through it. Mom said I’ll probably just have a sore bottom on our honeymoon. I just hope I don’t get out of line and do anything to get a spanking for a while after that, cause my fiancé spanks hard, and that hairbrush really hurts.
I’ll have to Love, Honour, and definitely Obey.
This is not the only such account.
Mary Collins, Shropshire, England, wrote:
Before I got married, my mother took me to one side and gave me a good talking to. Then she produced a hairbrush and took me over her knee. I had not been spanked for a few years, although she had spanked me once or twice when I was 19 or 20. I asked her what I had done and she said nothing. But she said it was the last time that she would ever spank me and it was important.
I had no idea what she was talking about, she just said her mother did the same thing. I was a bit embarrassed as she bared my bottom to spank me, a thing not done since I was in the Sixth Form. It really hurt. No, I mean it I howled. Then she just hugged me and said that she would always love me.
I felt very close to her afterwards, but thought the whole thing was a bit strange. Has anyone ever heard of this?
On crosschecking bridal spanking for Shropshire, there was one reference, now sadly deleted to ‘tupping the bride’. Apparently, this involved men not being present as the bride’s skirts were raised.
There was also an unsubstantiated reference to Thomas More, the sainted one. He is supposed to have lifted the bedclothes to reveal his two naked daughters to a prospective bridegroom and asked him to choose a wife.
“They both have tails ripe for a whipping as they shall soon find out ‘pon their nuptials.” He is reputed to have said.
This may be apocryphal, but it is another clear suggestion of bridal chastisement.
There are two more references in this vein.
The first is a reference to ‘chasing the maiden’. Apparently a bride-to-be was chased by her jealous unmarried friends and when caught was stripped and thrown to the ground and whipped with ‘apple switches’ on her bare bottom to make her fruitful. ‘Nor was this done in jest and a maiden could expect more than cats scratches upon her posteriors afterwards. Also it must be said, she was scarce likely to behold a pew come Sunday.’
Another was an alleged New England custom dating to the 17th century. Before her nuptials it was said that a maiden would be taken into the orchard (another pagan fertility connection perhaps) and made to bare her bottom and bend over a fence rail. Then she was whipped across the bare bottom with a rod or a switch.
This was done slowly and with force. The more strokes she could accept before ‘begging off’ was supposed to indicate how many years of happiness she would have when married.
A variant on this was the more strokes the more healthy children.
One imagines that among tough settler women there was fun and kudos to be had.
There you have it. Anyone know more?
Filed under: articles, discussion, history, real life, web round-up, workplace | 29 Comments
Tags: can't sit down, cutoms, hairbrush, marriage, public humiliation, real life spanking, spanking, spanking adult daughters, wedding