Monday, December 7, 2009

Dulor Biya...A Glimpse Of A Traditional Assamese Hindu Kalita Marriage

Across the length and breadth of our country India we see many similarities as well as variations in the customs followed during a wedding.Last two weeks have been very hectic for us as Dul was getting married.Now let me take this opportunity to introduce you to Dul(a pet name),our families have been neighbours as well as friends for the last three generations.Once the invitation list is prepared the family starts inviting people personally,so it takes about a month or so to carry out the process.The wedding cards are very simply designed and written mostly in Assamese language and sometimes an additional English translation is added too.Traditionally the card or CHHITHI is presented along with two Paan Leaves (Betel leaf) and a Tamul(Tambul or Betel Nut) placed on a Horai or Bota(a brass metal stand) as shown above.
.Let me explain you that a wedding out here is a whole neighbourhood affair....for the last two weeks we all worked together and had fun together like a big happy family.Now a days most of the families book a Banquet or a Marriage Hall but it has been Burrah Da's(Dul's dad,he is popularly known by this name but i prefer calling him Uncle) dream to solemnise this marriage right from their home as they are fortunate to have a very large open compound .A big tent was erected a week ahead to accommodate 800 -900 guests for the reception after the weeding.
The tent was divided in two parts one was the sitting area and the another for serving the Buffet i.e. the eating area.It took two days to complete this structure.You can see these men working on it from such a height with out any support.Bamboo was used for the frame work and thick cotton cloth strips to hold them together,later it was covered by a water proof covering and interior was done just three days before the wedding.
This whole week i will bring to you different pre -wedding and post wedding rituals observed during DUL'S BIYA meaning Dul's Marriage.See you all in my next post.


  1. waiting with real genuine impatience;it would be nice if for this "biya" it could be a hourly post..........."give me more". it's already a great 'prologue'.

  2. really waiting, the pics are so like kolkata, actually very much like the neighbourhood of the house where my mother lives in right now, they got me all nostalgic, esp the erection of the tent and the coconut trees and the lovely soothing greenery!!

  3. Weddings..WHOOooo!

    I'll be waiting...

  4. Wow....the pic looked like a typical Kerala one.
    Counting down for next post .

    To come to your blog is like returning to my belove INDIA.....but this time I went to MALASIA and BORNEO, my new post tells the story....

  6. Waiting for more pics, reminds me of my marriage... That's such a nice custom of inviting ppl...,

    In addition to the post man, we call n email the relatives n go house visiting those who are really old n the senior of every family...

  7. Thanks, Thats so much like our own kerala version. even the landscape is very typical. Nice post as usual.

  8. vallah..impatient..anywy..will have to wait to c your interesting wedding posts..:)

  9. Wow it looks like it does take a lot of planning and work. I will be waiting to see more photos. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Wow! I loved the way the card is given... beautiful... waiting for other photos

    Heartiest congratulations to Dul!

  11. nice pics, as usual. But, I am confused. Is the tent only for the party (reception) after the wedding? Or does the wedding take place there also?

    Why is the wedding (exchange of vows) not in a temple?

    Can't wait for more pics and information.

  12. interesting, especially the invite and the!

  13. is always a pleasure to see you here,bus thoda sa intezaar karo !

    @sujata...Thanks.I still remember your post on MAMA BARI,the first time i visited your is kinda nice that we share many similar moments.

    @BLASE...Thank you.

    @BHAVYA B...Thanks.Yes,it is said that both the states have lots of similarities.

    @HELENA...Welcome back..i know you had a splendid trip to BORNEO,i checked it right after reading your comment.i spent a good thirty minutes reading your wonderful post on this....specially the details of life and writings of Agnes Keith and her husband.Thanks for letting me know about it.

  14. PNA...Thanks.Here too we need to go personally to invite the guests.I am glad that this reminds you of one of the most important day of your life.


    RAMESH...Thanks. does need a lot of planning.

    PRIYANKA...Thanks from me as well as Dul.

  15. GIGI....the tent is mainly for the reception but is used to carry out other rituals too.We call priests to perform the rituals to our home and the marriage venue...very few people choose to get married at a temple .The main ceremony takes place at the Bride's house .


  16. That is the problem with bloggers. I will not invite you in my marriage. Pata chala mere shadi pe hi ek blog post bana dala.

    Just kidding, nice post. And it was a good idea to give a detailed description.

  17. Weddings are always a big deal in India no matter which part of India we represent! Look forward to read more on the subsequent proceedings :)

  18. @PRAMATHESH...Even if you don't invite me i am going to force in.Wow..i will add some video clips too.

    @MOHAN..You are absolutely right ,weddings are a big affair in our country.

  19. The area looks like our home town, Udupi with so many coconut treet around. Waiting to read more about this type of wedding, Kavita!

  20. As Sujata has already said, the place reminds me of our home in Kolkata, the coconut trees, the greenery, the tent...very familiar.
    I am looking forward to the rest of the story. I feel it is going to be very similar to my big, fat, bengali wedding!

  21. So nice of you Kavita, thanks for sharing, this reminds me the marriage prepartions in our native in Tanjore, we call this tent build with bamboo stick as Pandhal. They decorate a lot with color papers and cloths!!

  22. This is my first visit to your site.
    Very interesting and look forward to reading newer posts soon.

  23. Got the invite. Ready for the wedding.:)

  24. Wow! Such a sweet relationship :) We hv such friends too and cherish such moments :)

    A very happy married life to Dul :)

    Its so nice to have such a big courtyard na :) Have a gr8 time and b bk with lots to tell :)

  25. Waiting to read more about the post,kavi come soon with the new post :)

    Loved the place with so much greenery :)

  26. Oh wow!! Will get to know the Assamese wedding traditions!! Waiting...
    And best wishes to Dul! :)

  27. Lovely lovely ....just what i need while we have cold spell here in Seattle/Kirkland..28 degrees F and a sunny frosty freeze... a virtual wedding to attend from my office....awaiting eagerly ....please do include pics of your festive attire ...everyone including your elders!


  28. @SANDHYA...Thanks...yes unity in diversity fits very well here.

    @APARNA...Thanks...i guess you are right !

    @SUFFIX...Thanks,oh how nice to see you here.Thanks for providing the right term PANDHAL...we too call it the same.

    @BK CHOWLA...Thanks.Welcome here.

    @HOLY LAMA...Thanks and yeah get ready maam.

    @SWARAM...Thanks,nice to see you here Swaram.

    @VARUNAVI...Thanks dear,it gets difficult to choose pictures out of so many of them but i am trying to get my posts prepared in time.

    @SHILPA...Thanks .I hope you like it.

    @CHITRA..Thanks.Your enthusiasm is very encouraging and motivating .Dear,get your hot coffee and cookies ready ,next post is already out.

  29. Nice to see the good old way of doing things. Even this day making a tent and having the party... instead of a banquet hall in a hotel or a party hall elsewhere.
    Caterers have taken over the foodservice or do you still have the cook comming over and the family members doing the serving. thats the way we had in the North east while we were kids!!!

  30. the tent reminds me the marigold eating Dubey. hope the tent will be waterproof.