Scientific Information Agency
12 September 2022

The role of culmination in the structure of the cycle of wedding rite

Sumy Historical and Archival Journal
The role of culmination in the structure of the cycle of wedding rite

The purpose of the study is to find the culminating episodes and determine their significance for the created structure of the cycle of wedding rites. The structure of the cycle is a kind of scheme in which the large ritual cycle is divided into three small (pre-wedding, wedding and post-wedding), each of them consists of separate rites (7+6+4), which should also be divided into episodes. And among these episodes it is necessary to determine the culmination and explore what role they play in each specific rite and in the whole structure. As a result of the research, it was found that the culminations of the rites of engagement, wedding and komora (rites of passage) change the statuses of the main characters from a young man/girl to a bride/groom, newlywed, a man/woman. In this case, the first and last pair contain profane statuses, and the second and third — sacred or ritual, which are temporary and necessary only to make the transition from the initial profane to the final profane. Also, in the culminating episodes of the said rites, the boundaries of division of the great wedding cycle into four stages are formed, which are characterized by the existing in them certain statuses of the characters. The culminations of other rites do not contain transitions, but are aimed at the transition to take place in the specified places, to enter the ritual actions, the sacralization is brought to the level necessary for the transitions and to prepare the exit from the rite. Thus, two types of culmination are determined: after which there is a transition and changes in the statuses of the characters and the culmination of other rites that do not affect the change of social statuses. Prologues of the wedding and post-wedding cycles of rites, although considered full-fledged rites, do not contain culminating episodes.

Source: Kukharenko O.O. (2022) The role of culmination in the structure of the cycle of wedding rite. Sumy Historical and Archival Journal. №XXXVIII: 27-33

Source web-site:

Number of views: 806