1,035. The Chuppah

147:3 The custom when a virgin gets married is for the important people of the city to spread the veil over her head and to bless her, saying, “Our sister, may you be the mother of thousands and ten of thousands.” After this, we spread a canopy over poles and the couple publicly enter it – this is called the “chuppah.” The ceremony is held there, including the blessings on the two stages of marriage: eirusin and kiddushin. The main part of the “chuppah” is actually the couple’s seclusion together, which will be discussed in the next chapter.

147:4 The groom’s attendants dress him in a kittel (a white linen robe) so that he will think about his mortality and be stirred towards repentance. It is also customary to place ashes on the groom’s head in the place where his tefillin go. Also, the fathers, relatives and important men bless the couple and pray that the marriage should go well.