163 couples married at once in Taiwan on 9/9

LOS ANGELES The 163 couples united Thursday because it was the ninth day of the ninth month of the 99th year since the founding of Taiwan.

The number nine is auspicious in /*Chinese*/, because it sounds like the word "longevity."

/*Taipei*/'s mayor served as the chief witness, and gave out his blessing at 9:09 a.m.

The couples also received blessings from area temples, where bells were rung to celebrate the event.

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