Romanian Bride Poses With Mock Kidnappers Holding Toy Weapons

Romanian Bride Poses With Mock Kidnappers Holding Toy Weapons
Tue 04-09-2012

A Romanian bride poses with mock kidnappers holding a toy weapons at the Triumph Arch in Bucharest, Romania.
The arch is a rendezvous place for brides on the wedding night for the bride stealing ritual. The ancient Romanian tradition of bride stealing is getting more and more popular.

Every Saturday night, brides from Bucharest and beyond are dragged away in a mock abduction by friends and driven to a top tourist spot where they are "held hostage" all the while pouting, dancing and striking poses for the cameras.

The ransom could be a public declaration of love from the abandoned groom. The kidnappers negotiate by phone, working out the details of the payoff.

Mock abductions of brides are part of marriage ceremonies across the former Soviet Union. In some countries, guests lock up a bride or have her hide in a backroom during celebrations, demanding that the bridegroom delivers a "ransom" like singing a song, dancing or sometimes paying real money.