Wedding couples pick the ‘Devil’s date’

AMSTERDAM — More weddings than normal are being planned for 6 June in the Netherlands this year, apparently because of the reference in the Bible to 666 as the ‘Number of the Beast’.

Seventeen couples have applied to marry in the Dutch city of Enschede on 6 June 2006 so far. Normally there are only two to three weddings in the city on a Tuesday.

Fourteen weddings are planned for 6 June in the central district of Rotterdam, compared with the usual figure of six to eight weddings in the area on a Tuesday in June.

The authorities in Arnhem said nine couples have signed up for 6-6-6, far more than on any other Tuesday. “Tuesday is normally a very quiet day,” a spokesperson said.

The sixth day of June is also a popular wedding date in the cities of Utrecht, Groningen and Nijmegen this year when compared to previous years. Leeuwarden in the north expect to celebrate its first Tuesday weddings in years.

One explanation for the enthusiasm for the date is that it is easy to remember: 6-6-6.

Another has more sinister connotations: the ‘Number of the Beast’ is mentioned in the Book of Revelation of the New Testament and has long been accepted to be 666. In some interpretations the “Beast” refers to an Antichrist.

Amsterdam has not witnessed a similar rush to tie the knot on 6 June this year, though one couple in the Slotervaart district of the city wanted to marry at 6 minutes past 6 on the morning of 6 June. Local officials decided they could not perform the ceremony so early in the morning.

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(Listed if other than Religion News Blog, or if not shown above)
ANP, via, Netherlands
Jan. 3, 2006

Religion News Blog posted this on Friday January 6, 2006.
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