What do I need to make a Jewish wedding?

  • 1
    What do I need to make a Jewish wedding?
    – Double AA
    Jan 13, 2016 at 15:57

2 Answers 2


A marriage license from your state.

Two witnesses. They must be mitzva-observant, adult Jewish men, not related to each other or the bride or groom, nor otherwise disqualified due to incapacity or unsavory conduct.

A rabbi who knows what he's doing. While in theory, all that's needed is two witnesses, a rabbi should be there to make sure everything's done correctly. He also is needed (in the USA) to sign your state marriage paperwork. (The state's definition of rabbi varies from state to state, by the way.) The rabbi can be one of the witnesses.

A ring. (Could actually be another item of intrinsic value, but usually a ring). Usually gold, platinum or even silver, but make sure everyone understands what it is and what it's worth. Should be plain and unengraved (well often they have a small engraving inside, something like "14K", that's not a problem.) A simple design that doesn't cost any more and they can mass-produce is okay (so it can be plain-plain, or have a milgrain edge or the like). (Heard from Rabbi Bleich.)

A Ketubah. Need to have the right names and such to fill it out. Here's one you can download; here are some others. Oh, and a pen. Preferably a permanent, fade-resistant one.

A Tenaim document is optional, though traditional.
While the couple can determine asset allocation any way they see fit, a specialized prenup regarding Halachic divorce is strongly recommended (and required by many rabbis).

A cup of wine, for making blessings. (Some use two cups; go ahead and bring the whole bottle if you can.) White wine is increasingly popular as it's less likely to stain. Mevushal is popular as that's one less thing that can go wrong. A book containing the blessings -- the rabbi should have that.

The rabbi, groom, best man (if you have one, or any buddy of the groom's who's handy), or someone else nearby should have a handkerchief.

A chupa. The easiest version is just a Tallis and 4 poles. Most florists can provide you with a canopy, that works too.

Whenever possible, ten adult, Jewish men to be present for the event. (You already had two witnesses, so you only need eight more men.)

A cup (for breaking), a plate (for breaking, if you do the Tenaim), and some ashes (for putting on the groom's head).

Oh yeah; it would be nice if you had a groom (for putting ashes on), and a bride (for putting a ring on). Details, details ...

Anything else I'm forgetting?

  • 1
    You need a marriage license from your state in order to make a Jewish wedding? Where in Halacha is that brought?
    – Chaim
    Jan 13, 2016 at 13:33
  • 1
    @Chaim Bava Kama 113a: והאמר שמואל דינא דמלכותא דינא. "Any person who solemnizes a marriage without first reviewing the license is guilty of a misdemeanor" (California Penal Code, Section 360). Also a far better move if the wife wants equitable distribution in the event of a divorce.
    – Shalom
    Jan 13, 2016 at 13:47
  • Is it true that is there are no 10 men then there are no 7 brachot then they are forbidden to live together? If yes then it is not only whenever possible
    – hazoriz
    Jan 13, 2016 at 14:47
  • 1
    Maybe you forgot a room for privacy, and maybe another handkerchief to put on the bride
    – hazoriz
    Jan 13, 2016 at 15:15
  • 2
    It is not obvious to me that a marriage license would be within the parameters of what dina d'malchusa dina mandates. Many Rishonim limit it to matters related to land ownership and commerce. Even some of the most liberal applications are still limited to matters which affect the welfare of the state - but since living together without a marriage license is permitted, and the ritual ceremony does not impact the welfare of the state, it seems it would be beyond the parameters of DDM"D Jan 14, 2016 at 19:16

Hagaos YS

Two witnesses-And not people who are related, who eat in the street,or gamble and all the other laws of witnesses list of disqaulifications

A ring- Shava Prutah

A Ketuba- Reb Moshe Feistein text is the perfered in America

A cup of wine, for making blessings. White wine is increasingly popular- Some people want only red speak to your Rabbi

rabbi- That knows Gittn and Kiddushin (yodeah Tiv Gittin Ukiddushin)


The tradition of a best man has its origin with the Germanic Goths, when it was customary and preferable for a man to marry a woman from within his own community. When women came into short supply "locally," eligible bachelors would have to seek out and capture a bride from a neighboring community. As you might guess, this was not a one-person operation, and so the future bridegroom would be accompanied by a male companion who would help. Our custom of the best man is a throwback to that two-man, strong-armed tactic, for, of course the future groom would select only the best man he knew to come along for such an important task

and while i am at it I think the Tux is too (now I have started something let the commenting begin)

  • 2
    and back to the tux makes everyone look like a Penguin way more that Yeshivsh dreesing. Jun 23, 2010 at 3:43
  • 2
    YS -- the Gemara talks about the bride and groom having "shushbinim", close friends who attend to them. The bride and groom also each have a "shomer", a good friend who escorts them. When I said "best man", I simply meant a good friend's of the groom who's likely to be nearby. You can call him whatever you like. As far as chukas hagoyim, see mi.yodeya.com/questions/537/… and mi.yodeya.com/questions/535/what-makes-something-chukat-goyim ; a tux is decorative and not pagan, I don't see how R' Moshe would prohibit it.
    – Shalom
    Jun 23, 2010 at 12:10

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .