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shiveree \'shih-vur-'ee\ n - A loud and purposefully frightening community party, forced upon newlyweds a short time after their wedding; "Earl 'n' Suzie musta been some tired last night... they slept right through the shiveree!" The term may be a concatenation of the Gaelic "sibh a ri," meaning "regarding you two," although Merriam-Webster suggests a (perhaps related) Greek etymology. In the typical shiveree, family and friends quietly gather in the early morning, brandishing shotguns (usu. with blanks), chain-saws (usu. without blades,) pots, pans, and various other noise-making devices. On cue, the crowd begins making as much noise as possible, with the sole purpose of scaring the lovebirds out of their peaceful sleep. Once this is accomplished, the newlyweds are obliged to come outside and party with the crowd, providing candy, or sometimes booze and cigars (usu. the revellers bring their own). To truly satisfy the crowd, the bride is expected to appear in her wedding dress. An Old-Irish tradition, the shiveree remains a popular custom throughout the area, although the term can also refer to any sort of gathering. NEXT»

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