Archive for May 11th, 2023

May 11, 2023

Plate Smashing


Plate smashing is a Greek custom involving the intentional smashing of plates or glasses during celebratory occasions. While it occurs more rarely today, it continues to be seen on certain occasions, such as weddings, although plaster plates are more likely to be used. The custom probably derives from an ancient practice of ritually ‘killing’ plates on mourning occasions, as a means of dealing with loss.

Breaking plates may also be related to the ancient practice of conspicuous consumption, a display of one’s wealth, as plates or glasses are thrown into a fireplace following a banquet instead of being washed and reused. 1969, the autocratic military dictatorship of Georgios Papadopoulos, banned plate smashing. Another modern variation on the custom is for diners at small Greek restaurants or tavernas to buy trays of flowers that they can throw at singers and each other.