Fun Fact: The first engagement rings date back to prehistoric times when cavemen would claim their mates’ spirit by wrapping the cavewoman’s wrists, ankles, and waist with braided grass.
Obviously something changed, because you don’t see that today. Maybe the Egyptians should get the credit for beginning our tradition of the ring. They wore simple strands of gold or silver on their left hand, because it was believed that there was a vein in the ring finger leading directly to the heart. The vein became known as the vena amoris, vein of love, because of the connection people believed.
Engagement rings are a way to symbolize the upcoming event where the couple will come together in marriage. You might wonder why it is important to even have an engagement. I can think of two reasons: planning and tradition! Pope Innocent III of the Middle Ages created this “period of engagement.” He made it mandatory for a couple to set aside a time to publicize your notion to marry, to the church, before actually doing so. Since the engagement ring is an easily visible way of letting others know you are soon to be wed, they are the perfect way to satisfy tradition.
Now let’s talk about the rock! There are mainly four stones that people choose for engagement rings: diamonds, emeralds, rubies, and sapphires. These are the best fit for such an important icon because of their symbolism. Also, these are of the strongest of stones, making them perfect for everyday wear and tear. The weakest being the emerald with an 8 on the Mohs scale, which is still pretty tough.
It’s clear that any of these four stones are appropriate for the ring; their meanings prove it. All you need to do is decide what you want the ring to say about your love!
1. Diamonds are considered a symbol of love, excellence, and purity. Each of these contribute to the image of a young couple committing to each other during their engagement.
2. Emeralds have stood for a large number of things, all of which can be easily related to engagements and the feelings they hold. Just a few of them are domestic bliss, harmony romance, truth, and love.
3. Rubies are a sign of courage, love, and passion. Those three things are so important to an engagement. It takes courage to express love for another and to be truly passionate about them.
4. Sapphires represent faithfulness, truth, loyalty, and devotion. Where would a couple be without any of these traits? The whole idea of marriage is based around the true, loving relationship between two people who are loyal to one another at all times.
Now we need to talk cost. According to the New York Times, in 2012 the average cost of an engagement and wedding ring together was around $5,000. The bulk of that is the engagement portion at a hefty $4,000. That stinks, because the majority of the expense comes before “she says yes.” On the bright side, savings can grow as your love grows!
You might be thinking, how does the engagement ring fit with the wedding band technically? It is normally accepted that the wedding ring is to be closest to your heart; therefore it must go on your finger first. During the ceremony, the best to achieve this is to have both the engagement ring and wedding band together. The groom must then simply place them on the bride’s finger at the same time.
And if you haven’t noticed, rings are circles. Circle have no end; they follow a continuous journey for ever and ever. There’s just yet another reason that rings are significant. Think about that every time you look at a wedding/engagement ring. Think about the love that is shared between two people, until death do them part.
An engagement ring is more than just a band of metal with a pretty stone; it’s a symbol of love and devotion that should speak to your hearts. Choose carefully with all your heart!