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Tea Ceremony (敬茶)

Tea Ceremony (敬茶)

Tea ceremony is a Chinese custom where the bride is formally introduced to and accepted into the groom’s family. Kneeling down, the groom and bride will offer tea to their elders. Using the tea set in the bride’s dowry, tea will first be served to the groom’s parents, followed by his paternal grandparents and uncles and aunts, and his maternal grandparents and uncles and aunts, and finally elder siblings. The elder relatives will offer them blessings for their blissful union by giving them jewellery or red packets. During tea serving, the couple must address their relatives by their formal titles. After the elders are served, younger siblings and cousins will in turn, serve tea to the groom and the bride and receive red packets from the newlyweds.

Before the tea ceremony, the couple is served with glutinous rice balls (汤圆) in their bridal room (新房). This practice is known as 结房圆, representing a happy and fulfilling marriage. A young boy is also invited to roll on the couple’s bed, to wish them a life blessed with children.