The Mangalsutra, literally meaning auspicious thread – mangal meaning auspicious and sutra meaning thread – is tied by the groom around the bride’s neck at the time of the wedding. This is common in most Hindu traditions, and definitely so in South Indian Weddings. Buying the mangalsutra for the wedding is a significant part of the wedding preamble, and astrological advice is sought to ensure it happens at a blessed time. This is true not only for those who buy their jewellery from their family’s trusted store, but also for those who buy their gold jewellery online
Mangalsutra: The Significance and Symbolism
A mangalsutra is a symbol of being committed to each other for life ‘till death do them apart’. In some states of South India, the mangalsutra is tied in three knots, each knot carrying a specific significance – loyalty towards the husband, dedication to the family, and devotion to the Almighty.
In addition, a mangalsutra is to remind the wearer and the rest of society of the married status of the woman, a way to ensure married woman are treated with the respect they deserves. It is also expected to make a woman be constantly reminded of her duties and responsibilities. It is believed to be the symbol of the union between Shiva and his consort Shakthi.
Mangalsutra: The Regional Variations
In Tamil Nadu, the mangalsutra tied during the wedding is a turmeric coated rope referred to as the ‘Manja Kayiru’ with the gold pendant known as ‘Thali’. The thali is unique to caste and community, and ranges from a Siva Lingam to a Tulsi plant, a leaf or Vishnu’s symbols of a namam, shankh and chakra. The modern woman often transfers the thali to a chain of her choice after the mandatory cooling period.
Christians in Kerala wear a thali with a cross, on a chain referred to as minnu. Among Telugu communities the equivalent of mangalsutra is known as Mangalasutramu, Nallapusalu, Pustelu, Maangalyamu, Ramar Thaali or Bottu. It is similar to that of Tamil communities except that they incorporate a variety of precious stones like coral and pearls. Traditional pendants include two discs or cup motifs made of gold.
The Maharashtian, Karnataka and Konkani mangalsutra is a pair of gold bowl shaped cups – vaatis – worn on a string of black beads. The chain could either be entirely made up of black beads or have two gold beads after every set of nine black ones.
Among the Coorgi community the married women wear Karthamani Pathak, a set of two separate ornaments. The Pathak is a gold coin which is surrounded by a cobra motif. The Karthamani is the necklace that holds the Pathak and is made of pearls that may or may not be adorned with gold.
Mangalsutra: The Styles, Designs and Trends
The mangalsutra has evolved. It is no longer the humble, mandatory symbol of marriage. It has become a style statement that women wear with pride and flaunt with panache. The designs of the chains and the pendants have also developed several variations and changes. Elaborate gold designs, diamond studded mangalsutras, trendy patterns in varying weights are all available for today’s fashion-aware lady to choose from.
Other than the designs, the length of the mangalsutra is also a key factor to be considered when buying a mangalsutra. The long mangalsutra designs are very popular. Long mangalsutras look charming with Indian attires such as sarees. Besides, they can be conveniently hidden when you want to wear a different necklace or choker, and don’t want your mangalsutra to clash or distract.
There are also the very progressive who wear the mangalsutra as a bracelet or a ring!!
No matter what the choice of design, the sight of a traditionally dressed bride, complete with vanki, necklaces, bangles, anklets, gold vaddanam, jhumkas, mattal and finger rings, bowing her head to receive the sacred mangalsutra around her neck, as a moist eyed father gives her away, her mother weeps in joy, and family and friends gather to soak in this momentous scene – is something that the family plans for and dreams about when a daughter is born. Beautiful, sentimental and emotional – the ritual that sets the tone for a happy and sound relationship between husband and wife.
Vaibhav Jewellers: The Ideal Mangalsutra Destination
Yes, Vaibhav Jewellers is the ideal place to find your mangalsutra. With a legacy of trust of over 25 years, at Vaibhav Jewellers one also gets lifetime exchange, free 15-day return policy, customization services, EMI facility and Smart Buy options.
With a very large range temple jewellery available on their website, you can buy not only the mangalsutra, but all gold jewellery online. Indulge in their state-of-the-art video shopping. They also offer free transit insurance on international shipments, and free domestic shipping.