maid of honor / bridesmaid [same?]

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  • Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    Made (sp?...maybe it's 'maid'?) of honor and bridesmaid?
    Hello, xorchid.

    The words are maid of honor and bridesmaid. They are listed as synonyms in the WR dictionary, but actually, the maid of honor is the main or "chief" bridesmaid.

    You may want to look at the Wiki article on Wedding ceremonies which explains this in more detail.

    We require context with our questions, which means that you should include some information about where you found the words, the sentences that use them, and so on. If you tell us that, we may be able to be more helpful.

    Also, please take the time to explain what your question is. I guessed, but I may have guessed wrong.
     

    Brioche

    Senior Member
    Australia English
    I am not acquainted with "maid of honour" at a wedding.
    A "maid of honour" is either an attendant on the Queen, or a type of small cheese and lemon tart.

    In my neck of the woods, a "bridesmaid" is a single woman, and a "matron of honour" is married woman.

    The roles of a "matron of honour" and a "bridesmaid" are identical.
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    According to the Wiki article, the custom of referring to the principal bridesmaid as "maid of honor" is American. A maid of honor would not be married; a matron of honor would.

    Do you have a special term for the principal bridesmaid?
     

    FRANFLANEUSE

    New Member
    English - British
    In Australia, a 'mail of honour' is a married woman. A bridesmaid is single. They both perform the same role. If there are multiple attendants to the bride, the maid of honour is not the 'lead'. The term simply refers to her marital status.
     

    bluegiraffe

    Senior Member
    English - England
    In Britain we have bridesmaids. You can also have a maid of honour who is an unmarried chief bridesmaid or a matron of honour who is a married chief bridesmaid. There are also flower girls - young girls who used to carry baskets of petals which they threw in front of the bride. Traditionally you would have 1 maid/matron of honour and some bridesmaids. In practice, these days, you can have whatever you like!

    I speak from experience being in the middle of planning my wedding and having trouble with bridesmaids (but not the maid of honour) as we speak.
     

    cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    EEUU-inglés
    I speak from experience being in the middle of planning my wedding and having trouble with bridesmaids (but not the maid of honour) as we speak.
    As the original poster hasn't yet clarified the question, I suggest you put the troublesome ones in the pastry: " A "maid of honour" is either an attendant on the Queen, or a type of small cheese and lemon tart."
     

    xorchid

    New Member
    slovene
    Thank you very much everyone for your replies. Cagey thank you too for the links, checked the wikipedia article and I understand the meaning now.

    I think you got my question right. I just wanted to know if the words are the same thing or not, so I figured now in a way they are, but maid of honor is usually the chief bridesmaid. And maid of honor also is an attendant of the Queen, or a type of small cheese and lemon tart.
    in short, the word maid of honor can have 3 different meanings.

    so I guess I got it all correctly?
     

    mplsray

    Senior Member
    As the original poster hasn't yet clarified the question, I suggest you put the troublesome ones in the pastry: " A "maid of honour" is either an attendant on the Queen, or a type of small cheese and lemon tart."
    I find many examples via Google of maid of honour used in connection to a wedding-related function, which I take to be a Canadian spelling of a term used with the same sense as the US maid of honor.
     

    bluegiraffe

    Senior Member
    English - England
    in short, the word maid of honor can have 3 different meanings.

    so I guess I got it all correctly?
    I think so. Though I wouldn't talk about the pie versions of Maid of Honour in the UK as we'll think you want to eat a Chief Bridesmaid - I've never heard of a foodstuff with this name in the UK.
    I find many examples via Google of maid of honour used in connection to a wedding-related function, which I take to be a Canadian spelling of a term used with the same sense as the US maid of honor.
    It's certainly spelt with "u" in BrE, so maybe Canadian English too? There is often this spelling difference between BrE and AE.
     

    liliput

    Senior Member
    U.K. English
    The Maid or Matron of Honour (when present) in the UK is the bride's equivalent to the groom's Best Man.
     
    Last edited:

    bluegiraffe

    Senior Member
    English - England
    The Maid or Matron of Honour in the UK is the bride's equivalent to the groom's Best Man.
    Except not all brides have a Maid/Matron of Honour. Mind you, I suppose there might be grooms that don't have a best man, though I've been to several weddings where there are bridesmaids but no Maid/Matron of Honour.
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    I think so. Though I wouldn't talk about the pie versions of Maid of Honour in the UK as we'll think you want to eat a Chief Bridesmaid - I've never heard of a foodstuff with this name in the UK.
    [....]
    It appears that Maids of Honour Tarts are a British invention. The Old Foodie traces various stories about their origin, beginning with various associations with Henry VII and Anne Bolyn, and wanders through to the conclusion that it is impossible to know the source of their name. She includes a recipe from 1792.

    Nonetheless, I will heed your advice. I understand that cannibals are not well received in certain parts of the UK.
     

    bluegiraffe

    Senior Member
    English - England
    It appears that Maids of Honour Tarts are a British invention. The Old Foodie traces various stories about their origin, beginning with various associations with Henry VII and Anne Bolyn, and wanders through to the conclusion that it is impossible to know the source of their name. She includes a recipe from 1792.

    Nonetheless, I will heed your advice. I understand that cannibals are not well received in certain parts of the UK.
    I'm obviously dining in the wrong establishments and now I'm fascinated as it sounds disgusting! I'll keep my eye out...
     
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