Wedding Objections

I searched the boards and didn’t find this topic, but I apologize if it’s already out there somewhere.
What happens when someone objects at a wedding? (You know…"Does anyone see just cause…) Do they stop the wedding or what? Just curious. Has anyone ever done it?

I think that the origional intent was to warn one of the potential newlyweds at the last moment if something was wrong with their mate. Along the lines of “I love her! And she’s having my baby!”

I suppose it would depend on the affianced’s reaction to the news. If it were bad enough, the bride or groom would probably stop the wedding.

If that option didn’t exist, I suppose screenwriter Elaine May and director Mike Nichols would have had to think up another ending to The Graduate. :wink:

“Got a horse for me?”
“Looks like we’re shy one horse.”
“[Shaking his head] You brought two too many…”
Once Upon A Time In The West

I don’t know whether there ever was a time when people actually stopped weddings at that point, although I think one reason banns were originally posted was also so that people could prevent them from marrying close relatives. Nowadays most folk who object to the wedding either get it called off before then, don’t attend the wedding, or sit there fuming in silence during the ceremony. It is probably still often said due to tradition. And yes, it makes a nice plot device for movies and romance novels.

Then there was the dramatic sign-language-cum-right-hook routine in “Four Weddings and a Funeral”…

I’ve never been to a wedding in which that was a part of the ceremony. One of my close friends is getting married in June, and she says it’s not done anymore at all, and it’s mainly just a cinematic device.

The minister who performed at my wedding told my wife & I she didn’t include this in the ceremony. She said she wouldn’t know what to do if someone objected anyway, so why bother? The best explanation she could come up with as to why this was ever done was that personal records did not used to be as well-kept as they are now, and the possibility that someone might be already could not be as easily detected. This was a precaution against that, although obviously far from foolproof. My understanding is that this question is mostly left out of modern weddings, and will probably cease altogther during our lifetimes.

Thank you all for your replies. The thing is, I understand why it’s done, just don’t know what would happen if anyone had the guts to do it. I’m getting married in four months and the place we’re getting hitched at does do that. First they ask the bride and groom, then the congregation. So, I just wondered…although a lot of our guests have offered to try it just to see…

My guess is that it’s a way of getting community consent/acknowledgement of the wedding. Especially in small, intimate communities (as some churches are, for instance), getting community acknowledgement is an important ritual.

Furthermore, since almost everyone there is a friend of the bride or groom, they wouldn’t embarrass themselves by objecting.

If you are concerned, ask the minister what he/she would do if someone did object… or ask the minister not to include that in the service.

Couple nights back on one of those Jeopardy style games, a similar question was answered.

14% of the weddings have someone objecting to the wedding of the two people during the ceremony in one way or another.

The response surely varies according to the objection. The bride & groom probably ignore They can’t marry! They belong to the same race! and don’t ignore Hey! You never did sign the final divorce decree!

I’ve never seen anyone respond to the objection but I have seen a couple deliberately leave it out for fear someone would.

Never seen a wedding objected to at the ceremony, but at my best friend’s wedding, the best man and I spent the whole time saying “run, run for your life” under our breaths. Only the groom (my friend) and the ring bearer could hear. The minister didn’t ask for objections, so he married the golddigging whore, and she threw him out a year later. She’s now shacked up with the ex-best man.

“On the edge of sleep, I awoke to a sun so bright…”

See? That’s what it’s there for.

Though, it could be argued that the bachelor/ette party is there for the same reason.

Damn, I hate that gold-digger crud. :stuck_out_tongue:

I believe that technically, the ceremony is just formality. Everyone in the pews could object and it wouldn’t matter, as long as the marriage license gets completely filled out.

Of course, the minister or justice-of-the-peace has to sign it, so obviously (s)he can’t have any objections.

You don’t really “object” at a wedding the way you raise an objection at court, and then wait for the minister or priest to rule on the issue.

The real question is: “Do you know some just cause why these two should not be married?” If the groom is wanted for murdering fourteen previous wives in other states, the proceedings would be halted. On the other hand, if you knew this, you should have spoken up long before now.

By the way, if the option did not exist, Elaine May and Mike Nichols would not have to think up another ending to THE GRADUATE. Dustin Hoffman’s character arrives too late to interrupt the ceremony. What he manages to do is get the attention of Elaine (Katherine Ross), who then decides to run away with him, despite the fact that she has just been married to someone else.

OK, here’s the real answer. It’s there to give a last chance for someone to point out that the prospective marriage is illegal. (The usual reasons would be bigamy or incest, but there are others, such as a relationship by marriage, a relationship through godparents [this one can be dispensed with by a bishop], or conspiracy by the couple to murder a prior spouse.) A “last” chance, because that is also the reason for the ancient tradition of reading banns (announcing that the marriage will be taking place in the church for several previous Sundays).

So if someone objected on those grounds, the marriage would most certainly be stopped, unless the objector were a known lunatic.

With modern record keeping, it’s unlikely that anyone trying to be married under any of these conditions would choose a church to do it in, of course.

John W. Kennedy
“Compact is becoming contract; man only earns and pays.”
– Charles Williams

Oh, and on another point, no. A license to be married is just that, a license to be married. It doesn’t make you married.

Historically, a license was something you got from a bishop to be married without the preliminary banns. There was also a “special license” from an archbishop to be married in a church that is not the parish church of either party. (Again, note the care being taken to avoid incest and bigamy.) I believe this is still true in the Church of England.

John W. Kennedy
“Compact is becoming contract; man only earns and pays.”
– Charles Williams