Bride’s daily greetings to her parents-in-law
Custom in which the bride expresses her respect for the parents-in-law every morning or evening after hyeongugorye (Kor. 현구고례, Chin. 見舅姑禮, bride’s greeting to parents-in-law and other relatives after the wedding).
After hyeongugorye, a bride spends the night at her husband’s home, gets up early in the morning, changes into clean clothes, and goes to greet her parents-in-law as a sign of respect. Depending on the family, the bride repeats this greeting in the evening before the parents-in-law go to sleep. This custom is called as munaninsa or sagwandeurigi.
Sometimes the groom accompanies the bride, but mostly she goes alone. Through these greetings she shows the proper propriety and expresses respect for her parents-in-law. As for the parents-inlaw, the greetings allow them to judge whether the bride, a new family member, is properly behaved. The period for munaninsa differs from family to family. It lasts until the parents-in-law tell the bride to stop, from at least three days to a month to three years. Generally, it ends after three days.
When the bride goes to greet her parentsin- law, she sometimes prepares a table of simple treats: sweet rice punch or water, Korean taffy (yeot), cakes made with flour, sesame oil, honey, rice wine, cinnamon and ginger juice (yakgwa), ripe persimmons, or rice cake that she has brought from her maiden home. Offering taffy contains two meanings: one is to ask her parents-in-law not to complain or speak ill of her and not to scold her severely even if she makes a mistake; the other is to build a close relationship between the two families, emphasizing the characteristics of yeot, which is sticky.
Sometimes before or after the daily greetings, the bride conducts a quiet ritual to announce that she has become a new member of the family. She wakes up early in the morning, goes to the kitchen, and pours water from the well at her maiden home, which she had brought with her at sinhaeng (Kor. 신행, Chin. 新行, post-wedding journey of the bride to the groom’s home), into a water jar or the well at her husband’s house. She may also make her first batch of steamed rice with the well water brought from her maiden home. Before cooking it, she may mix rice brought from her home with the rice from her husband’s house. These acts imply that as water mixes naturally, the bride will be harmoniously integrated with her husband’s family. In addition, as water steers past any obstacle, the bride from outside shall naturally become a member of the family and the community without conflict.