The reason brides usually stand on the left at the altar is rather disturbing

24 August 2018, 11:11 | Updated: 24 August 2018, 11:13

Picture: Getty

By Tom Eames

We attend so many weddings that we might not think too hard about why we follow certain traditions.

You've probably noticed how the groom usually stands on the right and the bride is on the left (well, unless your the vicar, in which case reverse it).

It turns out that the reason isn't very romantic at all, and dates back to the 16th century. It relates to a shocking practice called "marriage by capture". Or kidnapping.

This bride found out why you should never stick a pen in your hair

Back in this old-timey era, men would sometimes kidnap a woman to make as his bride, causing a bit of anger in the village.

As you can expect, this might have led to the bride's family or a rival suitor to come charging into the church to rescue her. To be prepared for this, the groom would need his right hand free (assuming he wasn't left-handed). This was so he could grab his sword and defend himself.

Picture: Getty

According to The Knot, most couples still follow this tradition, but probably haven't delved into its history.

This tradition also partially explains the best man's original role in the ceremony. He wasn't there to organise a stag do and come up with a cracking speech, he was there to help his pal in battle!

How romantic...