Basic Wedding Words and Phrases in English

by | Last updated Jan 8, 2024 | English Learning

Explore these useful English wedding terms, phrases, and expressions in preparation for the significant event.

Whether you’re an upcoming bride, a delighted groom, or just someone who appreciates the English language, we are here to ensure you possess the perfect words to articulate the love and happiness permeating the atmosphere on your special day.

From sincere vows to captivating toasts, the language used in weddings holds substantial importance in crafting memorable moments that will be treasured for a lifetime. Let’s immerse ourselves in the wedding realm and discover the delightful collection of English wedding expressions that will enhance the enchantment of your celebration.

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Basic wedding words and phrases in English

  • Engagement ring/wedding ring: A valuable symbol of love and dedication, typically worn on the ring finger. The tradition of exchanging these rings during the wedding ceremony is a cherished practice.
  • Will you marry me? (usually spoken by the man): A timeless inquiry expressed by the man as he communicates his wish to spend the rest of his life with his beloved.
  • Proposal: A sincere moment when one partner asks the other to marry them, conveying their love and commitment. It signifies the commencement of their journey toward marital happiness.
  • Engagement: The duration between the proposal and the wedding, representing the commitment and intention to marry. It is a period of excitement and anticipation, marked by preparations and planning for the forthcoming celebration of love.
  • Fiancé/fiancée (status after engagement but before the wedding): The terms employed to denote an individual who is betrothed and preparing for marriage. These terms convey the unique connection and commitment between two individuals as they get ready for their impending union.
  • Bridal shower: A joyous occasion organized in honor of the bride-to-be before her wedding day. It is a gathering filled with affection, joy, and good wishes, where friends and family come together to bestow gifts upon the bride and partake in the excitement of her approaching marriage.



  • Husband: The designation given to the male partner in a marital union, symbolizing the enduring commitment, love, and partnership he shares with his wife.
  • Wife: The title assigned to the female partner in a marriage, embodying the profound love, dedication, and partnership she shares with her husband.
  • Flower girl: A young girl who walks down the aisle before the bride, scattering flower petals. The flower girl introduces an element of innocence and charm to the ceremony.
  • Newlyweds: The term used to describe a couple who has recently entered into matrimony.
  • Registry office: A governmental establishment where civil weddings take place. Couples can legally marry at a registry office, making it a significant venue for exchanging wedding vows and formally registering their union.
  • Honeymoon: A romantic retreat embarked upon by the recently married couple after their wedding. It is a period of relaxation, adventure, and intimacy, providing the couple with an opportunity to savor the post-wedding glow.
  • Wedding bouquet: An intricately arranged assortment of flowers held by the bride as she proceeds down the aisle.
  • Tossing the bouquet: A longstanding custom in which the bride throws her bouquet into a gathering of single women. It is believed that the woman catching the bouquet will be the next to marry, introducing an element of excitement and anticipation to the festivities.
  • Wedding cake: A delightful centerpiece at the wedding reception, the wedding cake is a sweet treat that brings everyone together to commemorate the couple’s union. The tradition of cutting the cake and sharing a slice marks the commencement of their shared life.
  • Bridal Waltz: A traditional dance performed by the newlyweds as their initial dance together as a married couple. Although waltzing is less common nowadays, couples often choreograph their own dance routines to a song of their choosing.
  • Wedding party: The collective term for the individuals involved in the wedding, encompassing bridesmaids, groomsmen, maid of honor, best man, and other close friends and family members who support and celebrate the couple’s special day.


  • Throwing rice, confetti, or coins: A joyous custom where guests shower the newlyweds with rice, confetti, or coins as they depart from the ceremony venue. These celebratory gestures are intended to bestow good luck and blessings upon the couple as they embark on their married life.
  • Breaking glass: A symbolic gesture often associated with Jewish weddings, where the groom shatters a glass with his foot. This act is followed by joyful shouts and signifies the conclusion of the ceremony and the commencement of the celebrations.
  • Wedding suit/tuxedo: The stylish ensemble worn by the groom on his wedding day. Whether it’s a classic tuxedo or a tailored suit, the groom’s attire is selected to complement the bride’s gown.
  • Ceremony (at a church or outdoors): The formal segment of the wedding where the couple publicly declares their love and commitment to each other.
  • Wedding vows: The sincere promises exchanged by the couple during the wedding ceremony. These personalized expressions of commitment reflect their love and aspirations for their future life together.
  • Exchange the rings: The moment in the wedding ceremony when the couple symbolically swaps their wedding rings. It is a poignant act that signifies their commitment and the commencement of their journey as husband and wife.
  • Groom: The man preparing for marriage, the partner of the bride. He stands proudly at the altar, ready to express words of love and commitment to his beloved, marking the commencement of their married life together.
  • Best man: The groom’s most trusted friend or family member who plays a crucial role in supporting him throughout the wedding planning process. The best man stands beside the groom, offering encouragement, assistance, and delivering a heartfelt speech during the reception.
  • Groomsman: Male friends or family members selected by the groom to be part of his wedding party. These loyal companions stand alongside the groom, providing support and camaraderie during the wedding festivities.
  • Wedding gown/wedding dress: The exquisite attire worn by the bride on her wedding day. This beautiful garment is meticulously chosen to reflect the bride’s style and personality, making her feel like a princess as she walks down the aisle to express her vows of love.
  • Bride: The central figure in a wedding, the woman preparing for marriage. She emanates beauty and grace as she walks down the aisle, adorned in her wedding gown, ready to embark on a lifelong journey of love and partnership.
  • Maid of honor: The bride’s closest female friend or family member who plays a significant role in supporting and assisting her throughout the wedding planning process. This special person stands by the bride’s side, offering emotional support and sharing in her joy as she expresses her vows.
  • Bridesmaids: Close friends or family members chosen by the bride to be part of her wedding party. These lovely ladies stand beside the bride, adding charm and support as they participate in various pre-wedding events and celebrations.

Colour of the dress

In Asian cultures, the attire is typically required to be red or orange. This contrasts with Western traditions, where brides often opt for white or pastel-colored dresses. White is traditionally seen as a symbol of purity and innocence in Western cultures.

Wearing a wedding ring

In countries such as the United States, Germany, and France, the wedding ring is traditionally worn on the third finger (ring finger) of the left hand. However, in Russia, it is customary to wear the wedding ring on the ring finger of the right hand.

What every bride needs

In the United States, there’s a popular saying that every bride should have the following items before her wedding:

“Something old,
Something new,
Something borrowed,
Something blue.”

Additionally, an insightful quote by Antoine de Saint-Exupery suggests that love is not merely about gazing at each other but looking together in the same direction.

Do you have knowledge of any unique or unusual wedding ceremonies or traditions from various countries?

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We trust that this article has provided a peek into the language of love and marriage. Whether it’s a sincere proposal or a festive celebration, the words associated with weddings have the profound ability to stir emotions and craft enduring memories.

Therefore, as you commence your personal wedding journey, may your words brim with love and sincerity. Here’s to a lifetime filled with happiness and indelible moments!

What is your English level?

Find out your A1 A2 B1 B2 C1 C2 level of English with our quick, free online test.

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