Traditional Irish and Celtic Bridal Jewelry
‘Mo Anam Cara’
Friend of My Soul...,
I went against tradition here and did not save my favorite traditional Irish piece for last. I decided to share the best first. This particular piece, truly represents the heart and soul of real Irish love.
- Mo Anam Cara, is translated in English to mean, “My Soul Friend.” Jewelry artifacts with this saying, dating back centuries upon centuries, have been found in archaeological digs all over Ireland. A unique aspect about this ring, is that turning it slightly around, changes the wording to read, Cara Mo Anam. Which when translated means, “Friend of My Soul.”
At six hundred million years old, Connemara Marble is one of the oldest marbles in the world. It is currently mined in the region of Connemara, found in west Ireland. For years, it was mined and then fabricated to be used as fixtures in churches and government official state buildings. Now, only small amounts of Connemara marble is mined for metal-smiting. Each piece that is quarried, has its own unique markings, and green color tones.
The Celtic warrior design, was found on the Ardagh Chalice in 1868. The chalice is said to be the finest example of eighth century metalwork, and is most Ireland’s foremost treasure. The gold filigree band on the Ardagh Chalice, and its shield decorations is what inspired the Celtic Warrior metalwork's design.
The original Ardagh Chalice was discovered by two boys named, Jim Quinn and Paddy Flanagan. They were digging in a potato field, on the Southwestern side of a rath (a ring fort). This particular ring fort is known as Reerasta. The Reerasta, is located in Ardagh, Ireland. It was found in 1868, together with a small bronze cup and four brooches.
Another absolutely beautiful, Irish bridal design, is the Trinity Knot engagement and wedding ring. Also known as the Triquetra. The magic within the trinity, can be seen in the simplistic knot style found on this tiara, and bridal set. They are stunning, and gorgeous to look at. However, their meaning is what steals the show.
Trinity Knots add depth and spirit to any bridal set, and make the wedding set a shining light of faith and loyalty. Deeply enriched in Irish tradition, the Trinity Knot symbolizes the Father, the Son, and The Holy Spirit; through the delicate curves of, the three different points. This embodies the strong faith of the Irish, and the loyalty in which they share. The Trinity knot definitely encompasses the meanings of history, love, grace and beauty.
This is the traditional, beautifully crafted “wedding coin.” Which is supposed to be presented by the groom to his bride. It’s origins as an Irish wedding tradition; is said to date back to an era, where the bride groom paid “luck money” to his lovely brides family. This was done in order to bring happiness and blessings upon her family. Most often, the coin was preserved as a family heirloom, and past from mother to eldest son on his wedding day. I just love wedding day traditions, don’t you?
Irish Claddagh ring
Man's Irish Claddagh Ring
The Wedding Ring of Ireland
The Claddagh wedding ring, originated in the township Claddagh, Ireland. It has been the selected favorite choice in bridal jewelry for centuries. The original design was created by Richard Joyce. Who was an ordinary, local merchant who had recently learned the fine art of jewelry casting.
For those who are not familiar with the Irish Claddagh ring, it's design is that of a crown that sits on top of a heart, which is held by two hands. A design, that it said to had been carried over from Richard Joyce's many travels, to the West Indies. The two hands symbolize friendship. The heart symbolizes love, and the crown symbolizes royalty. The meaning of the three symbols all together means to, "Let love & friendship reign." It is also said that when the heart's point faces towards the body, that person is said to be married. If that person is engaged the heart point faces away from the body. If they are single, they are to wear the Claddagh ring on the right hand, with the heart's point facing away from the body. However, no matter how the ring is worn today, what will always remain the same is it meanings. It truly separates itself from other Irish traditions; and when a couple is doting such rings, you know their love is a special kind of shared endearment.
- The traditional Celtic Cross, is said to have begun somewhere around the time of Saint Patrick, in middle half of the fifth century or earlier. It is written that he began to minister to the Irish people sometime after 428 ad. Rumor has it that Patrick, took the Pagan cross of the Sun, and combined it with a more traditional Catholic alter cross. It was a way to freely welcome in people of the pagan belief system, and satisfy the Christians living there as well. In the eighth century, Saint Patrick was named the Patron Saint of Ireland. He stands among the other two Patron Saints of Ireland, Colum Cille and Bridid of Kildare (which means Ireland).