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Jumping the Broom

Jumping the broom is a phrase and custom where the couple jumps over a broom. The tradition of Jumping the Broom symbolizes sweeping away the old and welcoming the new—a symbol of a new beginning.

Jumping the broom may have its roots in an African tribal marriage ritual where sticks were placed on the ground, representing the couple’s new home.

However, it became popular among African- American slaves who could not legally marry, so they created their own rituals to honor their unions. The broom was chosen because it has been the household symbol of home throughout history.

"The couple are sweeping together in a circle to signify the sweeping away of their former single lives, their past problems and their previous cares.

The broom represents a threshold between past and present, and jumping the broom symbolizes the crossing of this threshold into a new relationship.

Starting a new life with another person does require a leap of faith, and by taking this leap, the couple shows their dedication to work together through all of life’s circumstances.

The couple place broom on the floor and join hands. Everyone counts, “One, two, three . . . jump!”

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