Matchmaking(redirected from Matchmake)
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(in Russian, svatovstvo), a custom involving the proposal of marriage; different forms of matchmaking are characteristic of various peoples. In the past, matchmaking in Russia began with a private family council at the prospective bridegroom’s house, after which a female matchmaker (svakha) or male matchmakers (svaty) were sent to the prospective bride’s house. In the villages matchmakers were usually the groom’s godparents or his closest relatives, for example, an uncle or older brother. The proposal to the girl’s parents was presented in a half-jesting, half-solemn allegorical form. Upon obtaining the parent’s consent, the first ritual gathering was held at the bride’s house, either immediately following the matchmaking or several days later. During the gathering, news of the betrothal was announced to the closest relatives on both sides.