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Powstańcza panna młoda. O romantycznym charakterze strojów ślubnych w czasie powstań 1863 i 1944 roku

Anna Straszewska

AN UPRISING BRIDE. ON THE ROMANTIC CHARACTER OF WEDDING DRESSES IN THE TIMES OF UPRISINGS – 1863 AND 1944

In the times of Polish Uprisings 1863 and 1944, when life and luck was inseparably connected with the current situation of the nation, political events had a great impact on life decisions. Young people, faced with Siberian exile, imprisonment or death, made decisions about fast marriage. The unique character of such weddings was enhanced by brides’ dresses. The characteristic feature of wedding dresses during the January Uprising and the Warsaw Uprising was attachment of patriotic and national elements, as well as their exceptionally modest look. It resulted not only from financial reasons – worsened economical situation of the society, which had to reduce expenses on luxury good, but mainly the resignation from rich look was an outcome of reluctance towards showing off with riches. This was perceived as the patriotic attitude and national solidarity, which was typical of the times of the January Uprising and national mourning which allowed only brides to wear white, but with cheaper fabrics and without any jewelry. In the Austrian quarter, wedding clothes acquired qualities of Polish national clothes, wearing of which was forbidden by Russian authorities. During the Warsaw Uprising, because of fast decisions about marriage, there was no time to prepare elaborate garments, and young couples, especially men, got married in their army uniforms, in which they fought. Brides often wore patriotic elements like a white and red band, the scout lily to show their contribution in the struggle, the red-cross symbol. In the Uprising ’44, the only wedding element in the wedding dress was a bunch of flowers. In both cases the wedding dresses highlighted the solemn atmosphere of 1863 and 1944.