Mating or Courtship rituals are intended to bring two people close to each other before starting a relationship. The history of courtship is full of the strange melange of negotiation and rituals made to bring the couple together in an intimate relationship. These rituals are quite essential in those cultures with separated gender roles as this proves to be the only way of interaction. If you’re ever interested in a foreign girlfriend, make sure to read our list as thoroughly as possible.
Though human mating rituals may seem strange and confusing to us, they are quite common in different cultures around the world and even in the animal kingdom. The duration of courtship can vary considerably from one part of the world to another.
In European-influenced cultures, a date is a casual affair, while in certain traditional societies, courtship is perceived and practised as a highly structured activity with formal rules.
Top 10 – Insane Courtship Rituals From Around The World
Today, we look at the top 10 insane and crazy courtship rituals from different times across the world.
1. Sweat-Soaked Apple
This is one of the craziest courtship rituals ever heard of. A sweat-soaked apple is given to one’s crush to let them be exposed to the person’s body scent.
Imagine you go out for a dance with a peeled apple tucked under your armpit. Once you sweat for an hour or so, you take away the armpit apple and hand it over to your crush so that he/she can eat it and get to know about your scent.
This strange custom was prevalent in England and passed from generation to generation. The custom was also practised in Austria in the 19th century.
2. Love Huts
One shameful – as we would consider – the tradition of courtship prevailed in Kreung of Cambodia and some parts of Africa involves the father of teenage girls building the so-called ‘love huts’ for their daughters. The girl is allowed to spend a night with any guy she may invite and as many boys as she likes.
The boys can stay in the hut as long as the girl lets them. The fathers encourage the daughters to take in any number of boys and spend time with them until they find their true love. Though this may sound like a setup for a porn movie, the tradition minimized the incidents of rapes and divorces.
3. Night Hunting
Doing something crazy is nothing uncommon in love. A courtship ritual permits boys to sneak into a girl’s room in the middle of the night. Instead of getting angry, the fathers in Bhutan take it happily as a cultural tradition. The boy finds the house where young ladies would be sleeping and sneak up and climb the window to reach the girl’s bed.
However, the story is not as scary as it sounds. Young girls tend to sleep with their parents, and if the father of the girl sensed any protest from his daughter, the suitor would be thrown out of the house. If the boy manages to stay inside the house till the morning, he is supposed to marry the girl.
4. Purchasing a Bride
This practice of buying love has existed in the Thai province of Chiang Rai. The process involves a man approaching the girl he is interested in and flirting with her. If the girl likes him back, they go and spend the time together to know one another. Then, the boy and the girl visit the girl’s home, and the boy negotiates with the girl’s mother for the price and the time they can stay together. Once the deal is finalized, the girl can stay with the boy.
The agreement allows the girl to stay with him for a few months to years. If they like each other, the boy can choose to buy her for the lifetime.
5. Courtship Whistles
While modern boys are taught that whistling at girls is a sign of bad manners, a courtship tradition revolves around whistling. The Kickapoo tribe of Mexico make use of whistles to convey messages to their lovers.
Whistling takes place during the dusk in the village and is believed to be the way for couples to arrange their meetings in the evening. To make sure that no confusions arise, couples plan their own unique tones they would recognize easily. It is necessary that the couple codes the whistle in such a way that nobody else understands the message.
6. Beautiful Men Win
The African tribe Wodaabe practices a unique ritual whereby men dress to impress women. Men from this tribe strive to look beautiful and spend most of their time grooming and furnishing their looks to be able to impress ladies.
A week-long Courtship festival called ‘Gerewol’ invites male participants to dress to their best and dance. The audience is mostly women, and three women form the judging panel. Winners are selected on the basis of dancing skills and looks.
7. Rice Messages
The Miao ethnic group living in Southwest China follow a strange method of communicating with their lovers. The girls dress beautifully and cook some sticky rice in four colours to represent the year’s four seasons. The rice is then rolled in a handkerchief and sent to the suitors they were proposed by.
Now it is the man’s task to unwrap the handkerchief and find out the girl’s answer. The one who finds two red chopsticks amidst the rice has got good news. The girl likes him back. One chopstick means the girl has rejected him. If a girl has not yet made a decision, she puts a pine needle in the rice.
This courtship ritual talks about the thin line between intimacy and intercourse. A thick blanket plays the part. The tradition uses bundling to test a man’s patience. This practice was common in America and Europe in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Young boys and girls who liked each other were allowed to spend the night with each other at the girl’s house in the same bed. They are both wrapped in separate tight blankets, and a bundling board is often placed between them. The idea was to let the two know each other while resisting the temptations.
9. Battlefield of Love
Eligible bachelors of Tenganan, Bali, would gather every May at a local arena armed with thorny leaves of pandanus plant and a bamboo shield. They engage in combat for hours to fulfil the sole intention of impressing the single women of the village.
The ladies watch the battle with great interest, and to ensure that they get the best possible view, they are seated on a foot-operated Ferris wheel that stops only when all the men have completed the combat.
10. Some Free Love
Dai people, the followers of Buddhism, are quite popular for their courtship rituals. Premarital sex, flirts, dates, they have everything. An interesting ritual from these people living in China and Southeast Asia is worth mentioning here.
A group of people gathers at a single place where young women are seen sitting around a bonfire, turning the spinning wheels. Men are clad in red blankets and play musical instruments. Each man can approach the woman of his choice, and if she likes him, she invites him to sit beside her. The man drapes his blanket around her, and they are free to have some fun time together.
These are a few of the insane and crazy courtship rituals that are or were prevalent across the world. Do you have anything more to add? Do let us know through the comments section below.