White wedding dresses are actually a modern practice rather than an ancient tradition supposedly symbolizing the virginity of the bride. Before the twentieth century, wedding dresses came in all kinds of color, even black. Often, this would be because women would simply wear their best dress to be married, or if they did have a dress made, it would become their best dress thereafter. Queen Victoria really started the trend with her wedding to Prince Albert. Even afterwards, it wasn’t until the twentieth century that wedding dresses became uniformly white. I’m not exactly sure why colored wedding dresses pretty much disappear after 1900, but I do have a few theories. Basically, my best guess is that the increased wealth of the middle class as well as cheaper and quicker means of production meant that more and more women could afford to buy a seperate dress just to be their wedding dress, and the specialness of that dress leant to the increase of the theory of the symbol of virginity. But that’s entirely my guess. What do you all think?