Words You’d Find in the Nigerian Wedding Dictionary & What They Really Mean

Nigerian Wedding Dictionary LoveweddingsNG feat

Hello fam, we woke up one morning with a question – ‘If there ever was a thing such as the Nigerian Wedding Dictionary, what words/phrases would you find and we decided to write about it.

We brainstormed for a little while and came up with some words/phrases, which we believe are unique to Nigerian weddings. We’re keen to build this up and update the post regularly so share your ideas in the comment field below. Let us know if we’ve missed something.


  • Aso-ebi – This literally means “Family Clothes” in Yoruba. However, this term is used when family members, friends of the couple, or wedding guests decide to wear identical colors and/or fabrics to an event or wedding to identify themselves in groups. It is very common to have different aso-ebi’s at the same wedding for various groups such as friends of the bride, friends of the groom, friends of the bride’s parents, colleagues of the couple. The aso-ebi is usually announced months before the wedding so guests can purchase the fabrics and sew them into individual styles.
  • Engagement – This usually means ‘Traditional wedding’ as opposed to ‘a formal agreement (acceptance of a proposal) to get married’
  • Eru Iyawo – Gifts for the bride from the groom and his family usually presented at the traditional wedding
  • Item 7 – Time for food. A lot of Nigerian guests look forward to this
  • Owambe – A term usually used by Yoruba’s to describe a large, grandiose party thrown by Nigerians anywhere in the world. The party usually involves a lot of food, dancing, loud music, and spraying.
  • Pre-wedding – Engagement Shoot, which is usually organised before the wedding ceremony.
  • Small ChopsFinger foods usually served at a wedding reception before the main meals are served.
  • Spray – A Nigerian term used to describe the act of throwing money on a dancing person. Wedding guests are known to spray the couple or other wedding guests with money usually notes at Nigerian weddings.
  • Swallow/Solid – This is the posh term for traditional Nigerian dishes such as ‘eba, amala, pounded/pando yam, semovita, fufu, tuwo, etc’

We will continue to update this post as we identify more Nigerian wedding terms. Let us know if you know any you’d like us to add to the list above. 🙂





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