Toasts have been part of the wedding reception since the 17th century. Duties of the Maid of Honor and Best Man include raising a glass and saying a few words that will hopefully raise the spirits of all attending the festivities at the wedding venue. Traditionally the Father of the Bride and the Groom also offer some words in the form of a toast. The modern bride many times chooses to express herself with a salute as well.
The tradition of toasting is referenced by Shakespeare, in the Bible, and in the diaries kept by social secretaries of European royal families. Some say the act of speaking a few choice words and giving well wishes for health and happiness to the wedded couple gets its name because pieces of grilled bread (toast) was dipped in wine and consumed at the end of the speech given at the opening of the reception when the host welcomed all to the party.
Regardless of the origin of the name and who exactly started the custom of sharing verbal regards to the happy couple, the practice is alive and well today. The Father of the Bride usually gives the first toast at a wedding reception as the host of the gathering. If the newly married couple throws their wedding reception, it is perfectly acceptable for them to offer a toast welcoming and thanking guests for attending and inviting them to enjoy the time spent celebrating their nuptials.
After welcoming guests with a toast, the festivities continue and time to cut the cake arrives. Close to the time of serving the cake is when the Best Man and Maid of Honor share congratulations, best wishes, and some personal antidotes about the Bride and Groom whom they have usually known for a while, some since childhood.
The concluding toast is traditionally given by the Groom or jointly by the newly wedded couple to thank their attendants and guests for witnessing their nuptials and joining in the good wishes of their community. At the conclusion of the toast, the chiming of crystal glasses touching sends a beautiful song through the air.
Whether a toast is practiced or off the cuff, it should be something that is heartfelt, genuine, and personal. Here are some toasts offered by the above-referenced wedding party members:
Father of the Bride:
The day my daughter was born was the happiest of my life. Thank you, guests, for being here to share in her joy today. Raise a glass with me and join me in wishing this beautiful couple a life filled with fond memories, happiness, and laughter.
May your laugh, your love, and your wine be plenty. Here’s to my friend and his beautiful bride.
Maid of Honor:
To my childhood friend, may the best day of your past, be the worst day of your future.
The Bride and Groom:
Thank you, guests, from near and far who came to share in the love and laughter of our day. Blessings of safety, health, and prosperity are wished to you today and always.
Cheers to the toast givers who plan the perfect words. Are you planning the perfect wedding, business meeting, or special event? Consider Lafayette’s premier event center Le Pavillon.
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