Irish Marriage and Irish Wedding Blessings reveal the Celtic take on love-often sensitive or funny and sometimes both at the same time. Below is a list of short Irish blessings inspired by Cupid.
In general, Irish people do not like formality and there is no set way to give a blessing. It's about choosing the right time. (Some of these blessings can also serve as wedding toasts.) You may choose to say give a blessing quietly to one or both of the married couple or in a more public setting.
Some couples will also put a Celtic wedding blessing on their wedding invitations, place settings at the reception or as part of the wedding ceremony itself.
A word of warning, I include an approximate pronunciation of the versions of the Gaelic blessings below. Just remember that 'ch' in Gaelic is like the 'ch' in 'loch', not as in chalk. If you can't manage that, pronounce as a 'k' to be understood.
Help and deliverance and friendship of God on you both. God grant you a gradle of joy.
(Gradle means a lot)
Health and life to you
The woman of your choice for you
A child every year for you
And may you die in Ireland.
May you both live as long as you want, And never want as long as you live.
May your neighbors respect you
May trouble neglect you
May the angels protect you
And may heaven accept you
You for me and I for thee and never another. Your face turned to mine and away from all others.
(Said in private by a woman to her man)
Health to the men and may the women live forever
Sláinte na bhfear agus go maire na mná go deo
(This traditional and old Irish wedding blessing is pronounced Slawn-cheh na var agus guh mara na min-aw guh joh)
That your love knot be sealed with heaven's wax
(blessed with luck)
May there be a generation of children on your children's children
Sliocht sleachta ar shliocht bhur sleachta
(This tongue-twister Irish wedding blessing is not to be tried after a few drinks! Pronounced Sluch(k)t slawch(k)-tah ar shluch(k)t bhur slawch(k)ta)
May you know nothing but happiness from this day forward.
Love, life and happiness; may your troubles be few and your blessings plenty
May your bodies please each other like the stars do their Master
(A simple though suggestive Celtic Wedding blessing)
May you sleep in your man's dirty nightshirt and not rue it.
(Was meant to be the way to ensuring the man's love)
May you marry an orphan.
(The way to avoid trouble with in-laws)
Sláinte agus saol agat
Bean ar do mhian agat
Leanbh gach bliain agat
Agus bás in Éirinn.
(Pronounced Slaw-in-cheh agus say-ol og-ut
Ban er duh veen ogg-ut
Lan-iv gawch(k) blee-en ogg-ut
Ogg-uss bawss in Aye-rinn
May you never be sent to the gander paddock.
(May you never be sent to the doghouse by your wife)
Sweet be her hand on you as if it came from a pot of honey.
That your wife may knit for infants and may her needles always click after dark
(It was thought best to knit after dark because the sheep were asleep and wouldn't be offended!)
That you may never marry a whistling woman.
(regarded as bad or evil!)
May you enjoy your new life
Go maire sibh bhur saol nua
(Pronounced Guh mwir-eh shiv voor say-ol nu-ah)
We have also a great Irish Wedding toasts page which you should have a look at. There can be some overlap but you will find many more great wedding wishes by clicking on the link.
There are also some really suitable and funny marriage and wedding sayings on our Irish love Sayings page.
If you haven't found a suitable blessing here, try our other Irish blessings page. There are many more there that might better fit your purpose.
We have created a special Irish Birthday Toasts and Blessings page here.