From the Latin meaning confiar entrust the engagement was for a couple a declaration of intention of marriage. The term engagement means on the day of the declaration and the time between that day of the marriage. This is not necessarily a religious act, and an engagement ring often materialize this decision.
The wrongful termination of engagement
In principle, because of the freedom of marriage, the break is free and has no legal consequences: the break is not a fault in itself.
The circumstances of the broken engagement, however, can cause injury compensable on the basis of Article 1382, the tort would apply. It requires three conditions;
* Fault: This may result from the failure without reasonable cause or circumstances surrounding the break when it is wrong, abusive or brutal.
* Injury: The injury suffered by the groom abandoned may be both moral (defamation, disrespect) and material (cost for the wedding expenses for the future married life). But the lost profit or loss of a chance of situation does not constitute a compensable injury.
* The proof of fault: The most important requirement, because not only must prove the fault of (the) fiance (e), but must show a link between two lovers.
The return of gifts
The return of gifts is governed by section 1088 of the Civil Code which provides that "any donation made in support of marriage will be void if the marriage does not follow"
Thus, the gifts must be returned, wrongful termination or not. However there are exceptions:
* Sometimes the Court may decide that these gifts will be kept under repair if there was fault of the author of rupture or death.
* These sets use the case of Sacha Guitry December 30, 1952 (Present offered a special opportunity whose value is low given the wealth and lifestyle of the donor) is retained.
* If the engagement ring is of little value, it is kept by the bride. If it has significant value, shall be refunded. It remains an exception in case of death of the bridegroom or if wrongful termination, no refund.
Finally, if the engagement ring is a family jewel defined by Case June 20, 1961 (a precious commodity, real value and a family origin), it must be repaid regardless of fault and the author's fault.
In the tradition
In general, it is a promise of marriage for a wedding about a year later.
The engagement is not necessarily a religious act. Number of people not believing this ritual practice, often become a family tradition.
The betrothal often give rise to a party for which the two families come together.
Joseph Michel Francois Noel (1756-1841) and L. J. Mr. Carroll, in the article "Engagement" New dictionary of their origins, inventions and discoveries in the arts, sciences, published in 1827, evoked the question of engagement in these terms:
"In the past, said Furgault, promises of marriage a few days before the marriage and wedding. When the boy's father and that of the daughter had agreed among themselves on the dot, they asked the mutual consent of both spouses and unanimity among all the contractors was usually the engagement. But often they wrote the articles and the conventions of marriage on a public register that each sealed with his seal, as Juvenal said. This kind of contract is your night going, and sometimes at daybreak. It will give custody to the engagement in cloudy or stormy weather, it was a bad omen. The ceremony over, the groom gave the bride a deposit that consisted of a few pieces of gold or silver, shortly after he sent an iron ring while wearing what united the second finger of his left hand. This ring called pronobum. It was promised or betrothed a girl as young as ten years, but he was forbidden by the laws of marriage before twelve years."
In the Catholic tradition
The betrothal is a step toward marriage. They mark the start of a reflection of the couple to the final commitment. This commitment is traditional to families and can lead to a blessing by an established ritual. This blessing may take place during a mass involving the families of one and another. It may also be given during an office in a parish community with or without the participation of the family engaged.
It was after this first step towards marriage, the new engaged couple are planning a Catholic marriage preparation.
In other countries
In Britain and Germany, the two lovers can wear an engagement ring in his left hand.
In Brazil, the couple are recovering each future alliances of their marriage, each engraved inside the surname of groom or bride. Either the door while the ring finger right until their wedding day, in token of their love and commitment.