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Page:A book of folk-lore (1913).djvu/259

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When Ruth's kinsman refused to marry her, and resigned all authority and rights over her, "as it was the custom in Israel concerning redeeming and concerning changing, a man plucked off his shoe and delivered it to his neighbour" (Ruth iv. 7, 8).

In Yorkshire. in some Darts it is the custom to pour a kettleful of boiling water over the doorstep just after the bride has left her old home; and they say that before it dries up another marriage is sure to be agreed on. But I have seen in Devonshire the doorstep well scrubbed with water and soap directly the bride has left; and this was to wash away the impress of her foot, and show that the old home was to be no more a home to her, as she had chosen another.

Another symbolical act indicative of a change of life is the placing of a bench or stool at the church door, over which the bride and bridegroom are constrained to leap.

I have several times in Yorkshire seen at a wedding a race for a ribbon. Properly speaking, it should be the bride's garter which is claimed. She stands at the winning-post, and the lads race to see who can reach her first and get the ribbon and a kiss. But the ribbon is a substitute for the garter,