The father of the bride traditionally gives a wedding speech at the wedding reception held after the wedding ceremony. It culminates in a toast to the bride and groom.
The social custom of drinking a toast dates back to antiquity. One person raises a glass and expresses some sentiment about another person or some significant event, and invites the others present to share in that thought by also raising their glasses and taking a sip.
As part of raising the glass during a toast it's common practice to clink glasses with your immediate neighbors, which reinforces the shared feelings, and adds sound to the sensations of sight, touch, smell and taste that go with taking a sip from the glass.
A toast can take many forms. On formal occasions it is often customary for a toast to be proposed in honor of the head of state.
At the other extreme, a group of friends having a drink at the end of a working day will often celebrate their first sip with a brief toast such as "cheers", "all the best", "skol", "prosit" and many other language and cultural variations.
The feelings behind a toast can range from a celebration of success, high spirits, best wishes and hopes for the future, loyalty to a cause, deep emotional feelings about someone or something, and admiration. A toast is usually brief and to the point, although it can be accompanied by a lengthy speech leading up to the toast. Spoken loudly and enthusiastically, the toast is an invitation for others present to share in the sentiment being expressed.
The words used to propose a toast have almost become a form of poetry in their own right. They can be sentimental, witty, defiant, emotional, cynical or thoughtful. Through the ages many clever authors have written succinct, pithy and memorable toasts for different occasions.
The father of the bride traditionally ends his wedding speech with a toast to the bride and groom. Usually this toast expresses a wish that the newlywed couple will enjoy a long and happy life together. Here is one simple example from many that might be suitable to adapt for a toast to the bride and groom:
"Good health to you,
And wealth to you,
And the best that life can give to you.
May fortune still be kind to you,
And life be long and good to you,
Is the toast of all your friends to you. "