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Wedding Celebrations, Presents For Any And Every Occasion
At Yourcounty we have been publishing anniversary pages with present recommendations and suggestions for over a decade. We feature links to our most popular pages and general gift advice below. If you would like gift recommendations for other events this link leads to our main gift pages. If you know someone who is celebrating a 60th, 65th or 70th wedding anniversary (and all others after this point) you can arrange for a telegram to be sent to them from the Queen by applying to Buckingham Palace. In our descriptions below we include modern and traditional gifts as well as the gem (in some cases a precious metal), flower and Latin term.
There are 12 so called landmark anniversaries, these are traditionally the most celebrated. Follow these links if you are looking for specific suggestions, full details of presents for all anniversaries featured further down the page:
In reality the 60th, 65th and 70th and every successive anniversary are landmarks although they are relatively rare occurrences.
The Origins Of Wedding Anniversaries
The origins of wedding anniversary presents in Britain are medieval. Traditionally a husband would honour his wife with a silver token after 25 years of marriage and a gold present after 50 years. All the anniversaries of the wedding could be celebrated with a banquet or feast. There are varied traditions in different countries but the most common anniversaries to be celebrated seem to be the multiples of five.
Over the last 600 years more presents have been added to the traditional list and a 'modern' list has been developed. There are however wide regional and national variations to the presents that can be given on any particular anniversary, and our list is just a guide for information purposes.
Modern Anniversary Presents
Some sources state that there were no traditional gifts for anniversaries other than the; 1st, 5th, 10th, 15th, 20th, 25th, 50th and 75th until the American National Retail Jeweler Association formulated their own list in 1937. But there is some anecdotal evidence that there were traditions being made and broken before the 20th century. Today there is a present list and even a flower list for most anniversaries
The Perfect Gift
What is the ideal wedding anniversary gift for the; partner, relative, friend, husband, wife or couple in your life? Looking for some inspiration for a wedding anniversary surprise? It doesn't matter whether you're seeking a 1st, 10th, 20th or 50th wedding anniversary present, the secret to a good gift is taking the time to get something the person really wants or would appreciate.
Traditional & Modern Wedding Anniversary Present Ideas
The 'first' is traditionally celebrated with a paper gift, the modern equivalent is a clock or a timepiece and the flower associated with this landmark is a single carnation. The traditional present is something made out of paper, literally or symbolically. The modern equivalent is a clock or a watch or something connected with the passage of time. The flower to give is a carnation, possibly white. The Latin term is annual.
If you're looking for second anniversary present ideas you might like to know that the traditional present them is cotton the modern equivalent is china and the flower most closely associated with the event is the lily of the valley. The typical way of celebrating the second anniversary is with a cotton gift, something for the home like an item of clothing or handkerchiefs. Today items of china are more common and these might be ornaments or crockery. The anniversary flower is Lily of the Valley. Biennial is the Latin term.
The traditional gift associated with the third is leather, modern gifts tend to be of crystal. For many years a popular leather leather gift to exchange were a purse and a wallet. Now shoes, belts and handbags are also given. Crystal gifts are usually glasses, ornaments or perhaps a vase. The flower if the sunflower and the Latin term Triennial.
A linen theme is the usual gift for the 'fourth', a modern alternative gift might be an electrical appliance. Linen gifts that could be given were typically table linen or bed linen. In The UK fruit was also seen as an appropriate gift. The modern option of electrical goods is usually centered around home and kitchen appliances, such as a food processor or a juicer. The Latin term is Quadrennial and the flower Hydrangea.
After five years of wedded bliss couples were traditionally given wooden themed presents, in more recent years silverware has also become popular. Wooden gifts could have a very regional flavour and might include anything from clogs to picture frames. In more affluent times items of furniture may be given. Silverware is the modern alternative and the traditional gift to a spouse could be an item of jewellery. Daisy is the flower and the Latin term is Quinquennial.
If you're looking for a present for the sixth anniversary the traditional present was iron, the modern equivalent is wood. There's a limited range of consumer durables in iron (it wasn't always the case). The modern equivalent is much more flexible offering a wide range of gift choices. If you get stuck the anniversary gem is an Amethyst. The Latin term is Sexennial and flower Calla.
After seven years a woollen present was traditionally given, desk sets the modern equivalent. Woolen gifts including gloves scarves and pullovers are the traditional present. Modern alternatives are desk sets - writing implements, pens and other writing accessories. The flower is Freesia and the Latin term Septennial.
The present traditionally given after eight years of marriage was something made from bronze, often a statue or ornament or bronze coloured object. The modern gift of lace can be items of clothing, curtains or tablecloths. The Latin term is Octennial and the flower Lilac.
The ninth anniversary traditional gifts are described as 'pottery' and include all manner of crockery and china, some sources suggest that gifts should be copper. The flower is the exotic Bird of Paradise and the Latin term Novennial.
Tin or aluminium is the traditional themes for the anniversary gift after ten years, but most silver coloured metal is regarded as in keeping with 'tradition'. Modern alternative is a 'girl's best friend'. The flower is the daffodil and the Latin term Decennial.
Eleven years of marriage was not much celebrated but when gifts were exchanged more often than not they were of stainless steel, sometimes something as ambitious as a canteen of cutlery. The contemporary option is an item of jewellery. The Latin term for 11th wedding anniversary is Undecennial.
Silk is the established 12th anniversary gift, items of clothing, scarves being particularly popular. The modern alternative is pearl. The anniversary flower is Peony and it's known in Latin as the Duodecennial.
Lace clothing, lace tableware and even bedspreads can be given for this anniversary. Textile is the flexible modern alternative. The Latin for 13th is Tredecennial and the flower is Chrysanthemum.
The traditional gift using actual ivory gift is thankfully almost extinct, hopefully the elephants won't be! For traditionalists the colour ivory can be used or to be innovative a charitable donation to a wildlife charity. Gold jewellery always a good stand by. The flower is Dahlia and Quattuordecennia is the Latin term for fourteenth.
Crystal glasses, ornaments and pendent are amongst the present ideas associated with this anniversary. Wristwatches and pocket watches the contemporary option. The Latin is Quindecennial and the anniversary flower is the Rose.
Feedback & Disclaimer
If you'd like to share your own present ideas, or gift recommendations, why not email your thought and feedback to Yourcouunty, where possible we'll publish them here.
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