Here’s the origin of the tradition of bridesmaids wearing matching dresses

There you are — minding your own business and living your life, when you get a call from your best friend. She excitedly tells you that she “JUST GOT ENGAGED!” Of course, you’re thrilled. In fact, you couldn’t be happier for your friend. The two of you have dreamed about this exact moment together for as long as you can remember.

She tells you how it happened, what the ring looks like and whether or not they’ve discussed a wedding date. Then she asks the question, “Will you be a bridesmaid?” Now at this point, you’re likely so caught up in the moment, you don’t even think about what being a bridesmaid entails. But once the news settles in, all you can think about is the dress. Oh, the dreadful bridesmaid dress.

Wearing matching bridesmaid dresses is an age-old tradition. Some people love them, others hate them. But where did the tradition come from? Who decided that bridesmaids should all look the same and wear dresses that may or may not be flattering (not to mention expensive)?

As it turns out, it has nothing to do with aesthetics. The origins come from warding off demons.

In a video for Buzz60, Patrick Jones explains that the custom of wearing matching bridesmaid dresses dates all the way back to ancient Rome when the entire bridal party, including the bride, wore matching dresses. The purpose was to camouflage the bride, so any suitors or evil spirits trying to make off with her would be confused as to which woman was the newlywed.

So next time one of your besties asks you to be a bridesmaid and requires you all to wear matching dresses, just know that at least you’ll be safe from being kidnapped by jealous men, women or the devil.

Watch the entire video here.