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The Kadazans Wedding

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The Kadazans are the largest single indigenous group in Sabah. Most of them are found in western part of the country. The Kadazan Weddings are a simple affair, they don’t need a grand ballroom to show how rich they are or how happy they are. Marriage customs amongst the Kadazans vary a little from one district to another but in general are the same. For example, before the wedding, the family members and the couples will prepare for the wedding stuff and cost. Besides that, there also will be a discussion about the wedding place and date. Furthermore, the young man’s parents have to visit the girl’s family to arrange the engagements. Both parties will then agree to the bride price, which consists of 15 buffaloes, 10 ancient brass canons, 3 large Chinese jars and one brass gong. Before the ceremony started, relatives and friends will gather and enjoy a late breakfast at the groom’s house. After the breakfast, whether the parents of the groom will stay in their own house or not joining the wedding ceremony and held at the young man’s house gongs are played when the congregation drives at grooms house.

Before the couples enter the house, the groom has to put one foot on a round stone at the bottom of the staircase. This is a symbol for their strong and long-lasting marriage. During the ceremony, the wedding couple is seated in the center of the house and will be served with rice. The rice has to be served in a kuali or a wok so that there will be enough rice for the couple to eat. A rice ball will be given for both bride and groom and they to feed each other which symbolized that they had once different blood but now they are united. After the wedding, the husband will take his bride to his parents home, and they have to stay at the groom’s until the husband has built their own house. If he succeeds the mission, he will then bring a pig along and then eaten by the family, signifying that they are blood relatives. In a nutshell, as the young generation, we must keep and continue this ritual. Even though it is simple, the Kadazan’s weddings are very superstitious about their customs and very strict in following it.

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