on myrtle in judaism


The myrtle was, in ancient times, the symbol of love, the plant of the bride, When going out to invite his friends to the wedding, the groom would carry myrtle sprigs in his hands. At the wedding ceremony it was customary in some places to recite the blessing over the myrtle. An overhead awning of myrtle was erected for the bride, while the groom wore a garland of roses or myrtles. It was customary to perform a dance with myrtle branches before the bride 

—Abraham Joshua Heschel, the Sabbath