Wedding Divination – Yorkshire

Okay so Yorkshire isn’t Lancashire, but since Lancashire Folk is almost in the bookshops, it’s on to the next in the series. Strictly speaking, Greater Manchester will be the next book, but I happened to find this the other day and found it intriguing. This is not a custom I had come across before. It would be interesting to know if modern young marrieds still throw plates of cake out of the window!

Manchester Courier and Lancashire General Advertiser – Saturday 02 July 1853

“Wedding Divination.—Being lately present on the occasion of a wedding, at a town in the East Riding Yorkshire, I was witness to the following custom, which seems to take rank as a genuine scrap of folk-lore. On the bride alighting from her carriage at her father’s door, a plate covered with morsels of Bride-cake flung from a window of the second storey upon the heads of the crowd congregated in the street below, and the divination, I was told, consists in observing the fate which attends its downfall. If it reach the ground in safety, without being broken, the omen is most unfavourable one. If, on the other hand, the plate be shattered to pieces, the better, and the auspices are looked upon as most happy.”— Notes and Queries.

About LancashireFolk

Lancashire folklore, legends, ghosts, local history - author of 'Lancashire Folk' published by Schiffer Publishing 2016 - 9780764349836 £19.50. Please visit to see upcoming books. The Enchanted Valley and Manchester Folk will be published in 2020. Cumbria Folk almost ready!
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2 Responses to Wedding Divination – Yorkshire

  1. Tell me about it. Amazon is a law unto itself. I work for the distribution company who handles Schiffer Publishing and we also handle Amazon. Changing details manually sometimes works – and sometimes doesn’t. It will all change when stock is here. Here’s a link to the book on our own website – – click the ‘Email Me’ button under the image and leave your email address – you’ll receive an automated email the minute stock arrives in our warehouse, telling you it’s now available.


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