Found a great post in the blogsphere about the history of weddings.
During the middle ages, we saw the rise of marriage laws. In 1076, The Council of Westminster made it a law that marriage must be blessed by a priest, and in the 16th century it was said that the marriage must be performed by a priest with witnesses present. Contracts and legal documents started to be drawn up, similar to today’s prenuptial agreements, marriage contracts and licenses. Dowry, property, rights, etc… would be contained in these documents.
Check out History Undressed for the rest of this article.