free shipping Free Shipping and Handling
Money Back Guarantee 30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Warranty Lifetime Warranty
Gift Packaging Free Gift Packaging

History of Diamond Engagement Rings

holding hands wedding rings

Today, a diamond engagement ring has become the symbol of eternal love and commitment. Not many people question how this came to be - and whether a ring was always the exchange that locked down a lifelong partnership. Nowadays, a lot of people will consider how they want to propose, without the question of what exactly they will propose with. This is because in everyone’s minds, it’s very simple. It would have to be a diamond engagement ring - because that’s what everybody does, right? So how did this all come to be? Read on to learn about the history of the first engagement ring, and how it came to be the eternal symbol of love.

It is believed that ring exchanges date back to the ancient Egyptians who believed that circles were a symbol of eternity. However, rather than having extravagant diamond enamored metal bands, it was simply a braided reed. These were worn on the left hand ring finger, which was believe to have a vein that ran directly to the heart, later named the Vena Amoris, or the ‘vein of love’.

Fast forward to the 2nd Century BC, it was believed that rings were used by the ancient Romans as a means of ownership. This was thought to begin the tradition of giving the bride money or a valuable object in return for commitment. It was almost as if solid gold or iron rings were seen to signify a legally binding agreement rather than just love.

Diamonds weren’t actually seen on engagement rings until much later on. The first documented use of diamonds on engagement rings didn’t appear until 1477. Archduke Maximilian of Austria proposed to Mary of Burgundy with a ring set with thin pieces of diamonds in the shape of an ‘M’.

However, everything changed when diamonds were discovered in South Africa in the late 19th century. British businessmen who were operating the South African mines recognised that by maintaining the fiction that diamonds were scarce and inherently valuable, it meant that they would be able to drive up the prices and maintain their investment.

They did so by launching a South African based cartel, De Beers Consolidated Mines ltd., and spending aggressively on advertising, with the infamous slogan, ‘Diamond are Forever’ eventually being marketed in the 1940s. They entered in multiple markets around the world, making it the norm to have diamond engagement rings, and convincing people that they should spend 2 months of salary on an engagement ring.

holding a diamond ring

While the hype of ‘the biggest ring means the biggest love’ has died down significantly, with a lot of people becoming more sensible with their spend, the symbolism is unlikely to ever die down.

From the simplicity of ‘circles meaning eternity’ to ‘the value of the ring being equal to the value of your love’ - people belong on varying degrees of this spectrum. Whether you are a believer that your love is only as big as your ring, or you just believe that a small ring can be just as big of a token of your love and commitment - you can rest easy knowing that it started out as a humble circle, a symbolism of eternity.

If you’re looking for your own token of eternal love for someone special in your life - browse the GoldeNet website today. If you have any questions - don’t hesitate to contact us at 1300 361 873.