Engagement rings are a symbol of a promise to wed and are accompanied with proposals that mark the beginning of the engagement.
Most couples who plan to walk down the aisle make it a point to have one partner ask the the for their hand in marriage while offering a ring as a symbol of their love.
The proposal's jewelry item has a rich history with how it became a part of a romantic tradition. The ring is now considered a staple item to wear for engaged women and it has interesting origins that date back to 2800 B.C.
The earliest record of an engagement ring being used is in 2800 B.C. when Egyptians were buried with silver or gold wires around the ring finger of their left hand.
Although engagement rings have been used for several centuries, it wasn't until 1477 when Archduke Maximilian proposed to Mary of Burgundy with a diamond ring that the style of the band was established with a precious stone. The diamond was in the shape of an "M" initial and set the precedent on the engagement ring having a high value. During the 2nd Century B.C., a gold ring began to be used to wear until the wedding night when the bride was then given an iron ring to wear, marking the beginning of the marriage.
In the early 1700s, engagement rings began to evolve in Europe with their design when silver posy rings increased in popularity. Many women began to receive silver rings that had romantic verses written on the band for a gesture that was less about ownership and more about wooing the bride-to-be with a beautiful item.
At one point, the Puritans used silver thimbles to signify the engagement ring but they were eventually cut off to resort back to a traditional style of a ring. Even still, engagement rings with precious stones were only used by royal couples who were married.
Diamonds began to re-emerge with engagement rings in the mid-1800s when they were discovered in the Cape Colony where a large diamond supply became available. Just 13 years later, a mining company that was owned by Cecil Rhodes took over the supply with other investors. Today, this same mining company now owns 90 percent of the world's diamond production.
The Depression caused diamonds to go unseen during World War I until the economy began to recover. In the 1940s, engagement rings began to re-emerge and become sought after. Today, they are a symbol that has endured for couples year after year, generation to generation.
Visit John S. Cryan Jewelers today and see what we have in stock that represents the best in engagement rings today.