It’s practice and origins are greatly debated, with some Historians citing the Ancient Tradition of The Saber or Sword Arch, as developing in The Middle Ages. However, other cite that the Ceremony was actually 19th Century in development. The Romantic Era of re-discovering The Middle Ages in England and America may have led Persons to attach the Practice in this way. In practice, The Saber or Sword Arch is used for Military themed marriage. A Regiment’s Officer (regardless of Rank), who wished to marry, would have his fellow Officers serve as Men-in-Arms (Comrades), line up opposite (facing) each other outside of the entrance to a Church, Chapel or similar structure used for the marriage ceremony.
Upon completion of Vows, the new Couple would leave the building via the entrance. The standing Officers selected from The Regiment would draw their Swords in a Presentation movement so that each opposing blade was slightly touching (point to point), This created the illusion of a Tunnel or “walkway” of Blades. The new Couple would then walk under the blades. Known to be used mostly by Cavalry Officers, the style was also picked up by other Military Branches as a form of Marriage Honor. Later, in the 18th Century, documentation from The British Royal Navy showed the ceremony being used. The Sword Arch was also used (rarely), to signify both certain promotions to Rank or the assumption of a Command. Normally when preformed, participating Officers wear full Dress and or Ceremonial Uniforms.