The tradition of the giving of a ring can be dated back as far as the Egyptian times, around 5000 years ago, when the poor wanted to give presents to their partners.
Rings were crafted out of reeds and other organic materials, woven and then dried so they became hard and quite strong.
To the Egyptians, the circle was a very important symbol of eternity and immortal love with no beginning and no end, and possibly also viewed as a gateway into another realm.
Rings were later made in many different materials including wood, bone, and bronze.
The very wealthy and powerful viewed these pieces as status symbols and made them out of the most precious metal, gold.
The Romans took up the tradition of ring giving and made them even more elaborate, with stones and very intricate engraving. They were given to the Roman women as a show of love, but also as a symbol of ownership. It meant that the woman was now taken and no longer available to others.
Rings in the early times were mainly given as symbols of love and friendship and were given on any occasion, but the Christian religion used the tradition of ring giving at the point of communion between a couple, the modern day marriage. The rings were engraved with symbols of the faith such as doves, crosses and flowers.
The 13th century saw yet another change, to a simpler look which possibly came around due to the need for a durable ring. The engravings of previous times were fine for occasional use, but for everyday use, the engraving would wear far too quickly.
Today women’s wedding rings come in precious metals such as gold and platinum. They are often set with diamonds or other gemstones, but there are also couples who still prefer the traditional look of a plain gold band.
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