These days, many people take wedding bands and engagement rings for granted, and although they give these beautiful items of jewellery with integrity and love, they are often given with no real knowledge of meaning behind them.
Both wedding bands and engagement rings are very special items of jewellery; in fact, they are more than just jewellery - they are symbols of many emotions and promises such as:
But where - and why - did these popular and sentimental pieces of jewellery stem from?
The History Of Wedding Bands
These items of jewellery have a history that spans many centuries and passes through many countries from all around planet. Below, you will find a brief history of wedding and engagement ring, as reported from country to country.
The now-famous wedding band is thought to have originated in Ancient Egypt, where it is said that plant sections were fashioned in to circles to signify never-ending and immortal love. It was thought that fourth finger (which we now know as ring finger) contained a special vein that was connected directly to heart, and therefore this became official finger for wedding band.
The Romans also agreed with Egyptians with regards to wedding ring finger and its meaning, but rather than offering wedding bands as a symbol of love, they awarded them as a symbol of ownership. Roman men would "claim" their woman with giving of a ring.
ASIANS / ARABS
Puzzle rings were a complex type of jewellery that were once popular in Asia, and these jewels had charming knack of being able to fall apart and put back together again - if you knew how to do this, of course. Wealthy Middle Eastern men then began to use these rings as wedding bands for their wives, who were often forced to wear a puzzle ring when their husband was away. The husband would know upon his return whether any of his wives had been disloyal by removing ring whilst he was away, because ring was designed to collapse upon removal and could only be put together again if you had skill and knowledge required.
Several centuries ago, Europeans became rather taken with what we would class as an engagement ring, but was then called a Poesy Ring. This ring was given to a loved one as a form of promise, and signified fidelity and love. The Poesy Ring was offered as a pledge of eternal togetherness, much as today's engagement rings are offered as a promise of eternal marriage.
During Colonial times, all items of jewellery in America were prohibited due to their apparent moral worthlessness. Instead, a more practical thimble was given as a token of love and as a pledge of eternal togetherness. However, after they were married, women tended to remove bottom of their "engagement thimble" to form a type of ring.
History Of Engagement Rings
The engagement ring of today also has its own varied and interesting history, some of which is explored below. Engagement rings have been known by many different names, have symbolised a variety of different things and have not always been made of precious metals and stunning gems!