Important English vocabulary words for celebrations

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Celebrating events: weddings, birth ceremonies, funerals, graduations

Love relationships and weddings

Vocabulary

Explanation

Example

A best man

The groom’s male person who accompanies him.

James’ best man had a very special humor.

A blossoming romance

A developing love between two people

We were the witnesses of their blossoming romance.

A bow tie

A bow-shaped necktie.

Steve’s pink bow tie was sensational.

A bride

The girl/woman who is getting married.

The gown of the bride is stunning.

A bridesmaid

A woman/girl who belongs to the very close group of the bride.

All the bridesmaids were wearing the same color.

A flower girl

A girl who is in charge of throwing petals or flowers.

The flower girls were so charming.

A gown

A wedding dress.

Your gown is breathtaking!

A groom

The boy/man who is getting married.

I love the suit the groom wore.

A honeymoon

The holiday after the wedding.

Their honeymoon in Santorini was fabulous.

A reception venue

The place where the party and celebration will be held.

We loved visiting all the potential reception venues.

A tuxedo

A man’s formal jacket.

Tuxedos are mandatory at her wedding.

A vow

A promise made between two people during a wedding.

The couple was very proud to wrote their own vows.

A wedding

The celebration of the union of two people.

You always have to be well-dressed when you go to a wedding.

A wedding organizer/planner

A person whose role is to plan/prepare everything for a wedding.

Wedding organizers enable people to feel relaxed on their important day.

An altar

Raised structure, table in a church.

The altar is a very sacred place in a church.

An anniversary

The day of your wedding, celebrated by married couples.

I really wonder what we’ll do to celebrate our 30th wedding anniversary.

An officiant

The person who performs the marriage (sometimes a priest, vicar or church official).

Our officiant was just perfect.

An usher

A man/boy who belongs to the very close group of the groom.

The ushers are so elegant and helpful.

Brother-in-Law (Sister-in-Law, Father-in-Law …)

A relative by marriage.

My brother-in-law is really exceptional!

Groomsmen

 Men who stand up at a wedding in support of the groom.

The groomsmen are extremely elegant.

Love at first sight

What happens when someone falls in love the first time they see someone.

I don’t believe in love at first sight.

Newlywed(s)

People who have just married.

Newlyweds usually enjoy their honeymoon.

The maid of honor

The woman selected by the bride to assist in the wedding ceremony and help the bride.

Elsa was so happy to be Flora’s maid of honor.

The Registry Office

The offical place where the civil wedding happens.

The civil ceremony was conducted at the Registry Office.

To be engaged

To commit to get married (usually within a year)

Stan and Patricia are now engaged.

To be well matched

To be similar to.

This couple is very well matched, it’s nice to see.

To congratulate on

To express your happiness for the person.

The bride was congratulated on her ceremony.

To congratulate the bride

To say to the bride how happy you are for her.

Everybody queues to congratulate the bride.

To draw up a guest list

To shortlist the people you want to invite at your wedding.

One of the hardest parts was to draw up a guest list.

To drift apart

To separate gradually.

By making time for each other, we know we are not drifting apart.

To drink a toast

To present an honour drink.

The toast we drank was incredible.

To fall for someone

To fall in love with someone.

Isabel fell for Peter.

To fall heard over heels in love

To fall deeply in love with someone, especially suddenly.

They were so surprised to fall heard over heels in love.

To fall in love

To find someone that you love.

They immediately fell in love.

To fall out with someone

To have a disagreement and stop being friends.

With time, they fell out with Ben.

To get married to a person

To marry someone.

The day she got married to him will always stay in her mind.

To get on like a house on fire

To like someone’s company very much indeed.

It’s so nice to see that Oly and Shane get on like a house on fire.

To go back years

To have known someone for a long time.

With Caly, we have gone back for years.

To go down on one knee

To position yourself with one leg on the floor (tradition position to propose)

She thought she was going to cry when he went down on one knee.

To go steady

To date regularly over a long period of time.

My mum was surprised when I finally went steady with Stacy.

To have cold feet

To have second thoughts about getting married.

The bride was very long to get to the church so we were wondering whether she was having cold feet.

To have ups and downs

To go through difficulties and good times.

Despite our ups and downs, we still got on extremely well.

To hit it off

To quickly become good friends with.

We are very happy as Sarah and James quickly hit off.

To pop the question

To say the question “Will you marry me?”

He popped the question in a very romantic atmosphere.

To propose

To ask someone to marry you.

She couldn’t believe it when he proposed to her.

To rise to one’s feet

To stand up from a seated position.

When the bride walks down the aisle, all the guests rise to their feet.

To say “I do”

The sentence to agree to marry the other person at a wedding.

We were moved when she said “I do”.

To see eye to eye

To agree on a subject.

They see eye to eye on how to bring up children.

To settle down

To give up the single life and start a family.

You we so surprised when Eric sid he wanted to settle down.

To sign the marriage register

To put your signature on the official document.

Signing the marriage register was a very important act.

To tie the knot

To get married.

Some commitment phobic people will never tie the knot.

To walk down the aisle

To walk next to the bride/groom to the altar.

Her father was so proud to walk down the aisle.

To wear matching dresses

To wear dresses from the same style but with different details.

All the bridesmaids were wearing matching dresses.

To work at a relationship

To try to maintain a positive relationship with someone.

As we love each other very much, we keep on working at our relationship.

Wedlock

The state of being married (used less commonly than ‘marriage’).

It can be difficult to be born out of wedlock.

Ceremonies involving children

Vocabulary

Explanation

Example

A baptism/christening

A celebration to celebrate the entry of one child in God’s community.

The date of the baptism was finally decided.

A bridal shower

A party where female friends all gather to celebrate the future birth of a baby.

My friends organized a great bridal shower.

A godparent

A sponsor of one who is baptized to assist the newly baptized person in the practice of the Christian faith.

They chose their son’s godparents yesterday.

A sponsor

A baptized, confirmed, and practicing Catholic who presents a child or adult for Baptism or Confirmation .

The sponsor prayed for our child and will help for his religious instruction.

Observance

A part of a religious or official ceremony

Religious observance is important.

Funerals

Vocabulary

Explanation

Example

A beneficiary

Any recipient of the proceeds of a will or insurance policy.

The beneficiaries were a surprise to everyone.

A bequest

Any gift of property made in a will.

The bequest was incredibly huge.

A bier

A wooden structure for putting a coffin (=a container for a dead body) on.

We chose a nice bier for Donald.

A burial

The process of putting a dead body into a grave in the ground at a funeral.

Burials can be hard to bear.

A casket

A coffin for a dead body (American word)

Choosing a casket a difficult process.

A coffin

Where the dead person in put before going down.

There are so many types of coffins.

A columbarium

A granite wall for placing an urn containing cremated remains.

The columbarium was engraved.

A commemoration

Something intended to honour and remember an important person or event

The commemoration was very moving.

A cortège

A line of people and cars taking part in a funeral.

The cortège was so long.

A crematorium

A building where the bodies of dead people are cremated.

We all met at the crematorium.

A death notice

In the classified section of a newspaper/Internet, publicizing the death of a person.

I was so shocked to get a death notice for the first time.

A dirge

A slow sad song often sung at a funeral.

I cried during the dirge.

A eulogy

A speech at a funeral about the person who has died.

The eulogy was so touching.

A funeral (service)

The religious or other rites conducted immediately before final disposition of the dead human body.

He won’t be at work as I need to attend a funeral.

A grave

An excavation in the earth for the purpose of burying the deceased .

She goes to her grandmother’s grave every year.

A gravedigger

Someone whose job is to dig graves.

Being a gradedigger is not easy every day.

A heir

Someone who is chosen to get the inheritance.

How many heirs did he choose?

A letter/message/book of condolence

A letter that you write or a book that you write

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