First the banns must be asked
>> note 1 three
several Sundays or holy days, in the time
of service, the people being present after
the accustomed manner.
And if the persons that would be married
dwell in divers parishes, the banns must
be asked in both parishes, and the curate
of the one parish shall not solemnize matrimony
betwixt them without a certificate of the
banns being thrice asked from the curate
of the other parish. At the day appointed
for Solemnization of Matrimony, the persons
to be married shall come into the body of
the church, with their friends and neighbors.
And there the priest shall thus say.
beloved friends, we are gathered together
here in the sight of God, and in the face
of his congregation, to join together this
man and this woman in holy matrimony, which
is an honorable estate, instituted of God
in paradise in the time of man's innocency,
signifying unto us the mystical union,
that is betwixt Christ and his Church:
which holy estate Christ adorned and beautified
with his presence and first miracle that
he wrought in Cana of Galilee, and is commended
of Saint Paul to be honorable among all
men, and therefore is not to be enterprised
nor taken in hand unadvisedly, lightly,
or wantonly, to satisfy men's carnal
lusts and appetites, like brute beasts
that have no understanding, but reverently,
discreetly, advisedly, soberly, and in
the fear of God, duly considering the causes
for which matrimony was ordained. One was,
the procreation of children to be brought
up in the fear and nurture of the Lord,
and praise of God. Secondly, it was ordained
for a remedy against sin, and to avoid
fornication, that such persons as have
not the gift of continency might marry,
and keep themselves undefiled members of
Christ's body. Thirdly, for the mutual
society, help, and comfort, that the one
ought to have of the other, both in prosperity
and adversity: into the which holy estate
these two persons present come now to be
joined. Therefore, if any man can show
any just cause why they may not lawfully
be joined together, let him now speak,
or else hereafter forever hold his peace.
And also speaking to the persons that shall
be married, he shall say.
require and charge you (as you will answer
at the dreadful day of judgment, when all
the secrets of all hearts shall be disclosed)
that if either of you do know any impediment
>> note 2 why
ye may not be lawfully joined together
in matrimony, that ye confess it. For be
ye well assured, that so many as be coupled
together otherwise than God's word
doth allow, are not joined together by
God, neither is their matrimony lawful.
At which day of marriage, if any man do
allege and declare any impediment why they
may not be coupled together in matrimony,
by God's law or the laws of this realm,
and will be bound, and sufficient sureties
with him, to the parties, or else put in
a caution to the full value of such charges
as the persons to be married doth sustain
to prove his allegation:
>> note 3 then
the Solemnization must be deferred unto such time as the truth to be tried.
If no impediment be alleged, then shall the curate say unto the man.
wilt thou have this woman to thy wedded
wife, to live together after God's
ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony?
Wilt thou love her, comfort her, honor
and keep her, in sickness, and in health?
And forsaking all other, keep thee only
to her, so long as you both shall live?
The man shall answer.
Then shall the priest say to the woman.
wilt thou have this man to thy wedded husband,
to live together after God's ordinance
in the holy estate of matrimony? Wilt thou
obey him and serve him, love, honor, and
keep him, in sickness, and in health? And
forsaking all other, keep thee only unto
him, so long as you both shall live?
Then shall the minister say.
giveth this woman to be married unto this
And the minister receiving the woman at
her father or friend's hand, shall cause
the man to take the woman by the right hand,
and so either to give their troth to other.
The man first saying.
N. take thee N. to be my wedded wife, to
have and to hold from this day forth, for
better, for worse, for richer, for poorer,
in sickness, and in health, to love and
to cherish, till death us depart,
>> note 4 according
to God's holy ordinance: And thereto
I plight thee my troth.
Then shall they loose their hands, and the
woman taking again the man by the right hand
N. take thee N. to be my wedded husband,
to have and to hold from this day forth,
for better, for worse, for richer, for
poorer, in sickness, and in health, to
love, cherish, and to obey, till death
us depart, according to God's holy
ordinance: And thereto I give thee my troth.
Then shall they again loose their hands,
and the man shall give unto the woman a ring,
laying the same upon the book with the accustomed
>> note 5 to
the priest and clerk. And the priest taking
the ring, shall deliver it unto the man,
to put it upon the fourth finger of the
woman's left hand. And the man taught
by the priest shall say.
this ring I thee wed: with my body I thee
worship: and with all my worldly goods
I thee endow. In the name of the Father,
and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
Then the man leaving the ring upon the fourth
finger of the woman's left hand, the
minister shall say.
eternal God, creator and preserver of all
mankind, giver of all spiritual grace,
the author of everlasting life: Send thy
blessing upon these thy servants, this
man and this woman, whom we bless in thy
name, that as Isaac and Rebecca lived faithfully
together, so these persons may surely perform
and keep the vow and covenant betwixt them
made, whereof this ring given and received
is a token and pledge, and may ever remain
in perfect love and peace together, and
live according unto thy laws, through Jesus
Christ our Lord. Amen.
Then shall the priest join their right hands
together, and say.
whom God hath joined together, let no man
Then shall the minister speak unto the people.
as N. and N. have consented in holy wedlock,
and have witnessed the same before God
and this company, and thereto have given
and pledged their troth either to other,
and have declared the same by giving and
receiving of a ring, and by joining of
hands: I pronounce that they be man and
wife together. In the name of the Father,
and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.
All ye which be married, or which intend
to take the holy estate of matrimony upon
you, hear what Holy Scripture doth say, as
touching the duty of husbands toward their
wives, and wives toward their husbands. Saint
Paul (in his Epistle to the Ephesians, the
fifth chapter) doth give this commandment
to all married men.
"Ye husbands love your wives, even
as Christ loved the Church, and hath given
himself for it, to sanctify it, purging it
in the fountain of water, through thy Word,
that he might make it unto himself a glorious
congregation, not having spot or wrinkle,
or any such thing, but that it should be
holy and blameless. So men are bound to love
their own wives as their own bodies. He that
loveth his own wife, loveth himself. For
never did any man hate his own flesh, but
nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the
Lord doth the congregation: for we are members
of his body, of his flesh and of his bones.
For this cause shall a man leave father
and mother, and shall be joined unto his
wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This
mystery is great, but I speak of Christ and
of the congregation. Nevertheless, let any
one of you so love his own wife, even as
Like wise the same Saint Paul (writing to
the Colossians) speaketh thus to all men
that be married. "Ye men love your wives,
and be not bitter unto them." (Col.
Hear also what Saint Peter the Apostle unto
Christ, which was himself a married man,
saith unto all men that are married. "Ye
husbands, dwell with your wives according
to knowledge, giving honor unto the wife
as the weaker vessel, and as heirs together
of the grace of life, so that your prayers
be not hindered." (1 Pet. 3.)
Hitherto ye have heard the duty of the husband
toward the wife.
Now likewise ye wives hear and learn your
duty toward your husbands, even as it is
plainly set forth in Holy Scripture.
Saint Paul (in the forenamed Epistle to
the Ephesians) teacheth you thus, "Ye
women submit yourselves unto your own husbands
as unto the Lord, for the husband is the
wife's head even as Christ is the head
of the Church. And he is also the savior
of the whole body. Therefore as the church
or congregation is subject unto Christ, so
likewise let the wives also be in subjection
unto their husbands in all things." And
again he saith, "Let the wife reverence
her husband." And (in his Epistle to
the Colossians) Saint Paul giveth you this
short lesson, "Ye wives submit yourselves
unto your own husbands, as it is convenient
in the Lord." (Col. 3.)
Saint Peter also doth instruct you very
godly, thus saying, "Let wives be subject
to their own husbands, so that if any obey
not the Word, they may be won without the
Word, by the conversation
>> note 6 of
the wives, while they behold your chaste
conversation coupled with fear, whose apparel
let it not be outward, with broided
>> note 7 hair
and trimming about with gold, either in
putting on of gorgeous apparel, but let
the hid man which is in the heart, be without
all corruption, so that the spirit be mild
and quiet, which is a precious thing in
the sight of God. For after this manner
(in the old time) did the holy women which
trusted in God apparel themselves, being
subject to their own husbands, as Sarah
obeyed Abraham calling him lord; whose
daughters ye are made, doing well, and
being not dismayed with any fear." (1