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Rings Are Jewelry for Many Occasions

Updated on June 26, 2015
Engagement and wedding ring.
Engagement and wedding ring. | Source

The History of Rings

Historically, rings were worn on the finger to symbolize specific meanings relative to romantic relationships, religious expressions, and social status. Today’s society upholds no faux pas rules about which finger to wear rings. People wear rings on any finger they desire, without regard to symbolism. However, when it comes to romantic expressions of love and relationships, many people in today’s society still uphold historic tradition when wearing jewelry, especially rings.

Different Types of Rings

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Engagement RingWedding RingEternity RingFriendship RingPromise RingPurity RingMother's RingSchool Ring
Engagement Ring
Engagement Ring | Source
Wedding Ring
Wedding Ring | Source
Eternity Ring
Eternity Ring | Source
Friendship Ring
Friendship Ring | Source
Promise Ring
Promise Ring | Source
Purity Ring
Purity Ring | Source
Mother's Ring
Mother's Ring | Source
School Ring
School Ring | Source

The vein of love.

With regard to engagement or wedding rings, they were placed on the third finger of the left hand because, ancient Egyptians believed that this finger contained the “vena amoris”, meaning, “the vein of love”.

Eternity Rings

Eternity rings are available either as half eternity rings or as full eternity rings. Half eternity rings are designed with the diamonds or gems halfway around the ring. Full eternity rings are designed with the diamonds or gems all the way around the ring

Symbolism of Jewelry Worn as Rings

The tradition of wearing the engagement and wedding ring on the fourth finger of the left hand stems from an old Grecian fable, which indicated that the artery from this finger flows directly to the heart. The fourth finger is also referred to as the "ring" finger.

Engagement Rings

Engagement rings, in some customs, are given as a betrothal present, prior to the wedding. Often, engagement rings are given as a proclamation of intended marriage. Engagement rings symbolize devotion toward one another and the love the couple hopes to share forever in their marriage.

Wedding Rngs

In some cultures, the wedding ring is a symbol of possession. Western society views wedding rings as a symbol that two people have promised to love one another and remain united in love together forever. On the wedding day, the engagement ring is removed and transferred to the right hand. The ring can also be kept safely in the care of the matron of honor or simply kept somewhere safe until after the ceremony. The reason is that on the wedding day, the wedding ring finger is left bare so that it is the only ring on that finger during the wedding ceremony. The wedding ring is worn closest to the heart. So, first place the wedding ring on and then the engagement ring follows.

Eternity Rings
Eternity rings symbolize eternal life and love. Eternity rings are a continuous circle of metal studded with stones either halfway or all the way around the band. Eternity rings can be given for any momentous occasion, such as the birth of a child; however, eternity rings are commonly given as wedding or anniversary rings.

Eternity rings are also known as anniversary rings, infinity rings, or special occasion rings, which makes eternity rings a gift to be given almost any time to symbolize your love, devotion, and honor of your special someone.

As well as with couples in a relationship, some single women select eternity rings for themselves, simply for the beauty of the ring itself. Eternity rings are a beautiful and classic design, and, in many families, eternity rings are used as heirlooms, passed down through generations.

When not used as traditional wedding or engagement rings, eternity rings can be worn on any finger.

Friendship Rings
Friendship rings are a symbol a close relationship. The relationship may not necessarily be a romantic relationship and is exchanged between friends to symbolize their friendship. Traditionally, friendship rings are worn on the little finger.

Promise Rings
Promise rings are a symbol of love, faith, and commitment. Promise rings do not symbolize that the couple is engaged, instead, promise rings are an informal proclamation of a couples desire to be together. Promise rings are usually worn on the ring finger of the left hand.

Purity Rings
Purity rings, also called chastity rings are a symbol of a person’s commitment to abstain from sex until marriage. Purity rings are worn on the fourth finger of the left hand. In some religious cultures, when a couple becomes engaged, the bride-to-be wears the purity ring along with her engagement ring. Upon marriage, the purity ring is removed.

Mother's Rings
Mother’s rings symbolize the birth months of a mother’s children. In a specialized setting, each birth is represented by a birthstone. Mother's rings can be worn on any finger.

School Rings
School rings symbolize the year of graduation and the activities in which students are involved. While in school, students wear the school ring with the insignia facing inward toward them. After graduation, the alumnus wears the ring so that the insignia faces away from them. School rings are traditionally worn on the fourth finger of the right hand.

No Solid Rules for Jewelry - Wear Your Rings Your Way

As with anything in today’s world, you will not be out casted if you do not follow what has been known as tradition. Many people wear any kind of jewelry simply for its beauty without regard to tradition.


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    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 4 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Hi Rajan. My husband and I owned a jewelry store for a while and I had to learn all the different ways and meanings about rings. I learned a lot, too. Thank you for reading and for commenting.

    • rajan jolly profile image

      Rajan Singh Jolly 4 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

      Marlene, I had no idea there were rings for all these occasions. It was a very useful and interesting read. Thanks for sharing.

      Voted up and interesting.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Hi alocsin, I have a thing for rings. I enjoy knowing the symbolism behind each type of ring. It makes wearing them more fun.

    • alocsin profile image

      alocsin 5 years ago from Orange County, CA

      I knew very little about rings until reading this hub. Thanks for the info Voting this Up and Useful.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Hello Brett! When I was younger, I didn't like wearing rings because I felt like they were a hinderance. Now that I am older and understand the significance of rings, I love and appreciate the symbolism of it all.

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 5 years ago from Thailand

      Up and interesting. Now I know why the ring finger is what it is ... makes sense.

      Shared, pinned, tweeted.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Thank you for your comment, EuroNinila. I am happy you like the hub.

    • EuroNinila profile image

      Fotinoula Gypsyy 5 years ago from NYC BABY

      Beautiful hub!

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Hi dwachira, so sorry for the delayed response. I'm in Hawaii celebrating my 25th wedding anniversary. My husband proposed again. We were married again on the beach... another ring! :) By the way, thank you for your feedback.

    • dwachira profile image

      [ Danson Wachira ] 5 years ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      The society has a lot of attachment to rings and in most cases we can not do without them. I enjoyed reading this, voted up and shared.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Hi Nora411, rings have become my favorite piece of jewelry, too. I do have a lot of them - so many that it makes it difficult to choose which one to wear.

    • Nora411 profile image

      Nora411 5 years ago from Chicago, IL

      Rings are my favorite piece of jewelry! I have way too many, and yet all your pictures are making me want more haha! Great hub!

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Hi breathing, thank you for reading this hub. I enjoy looking at rings and I like the way they make my fingers look better by having them on. :)

    • breathing profile image

      Sajib 5 years ago from Bangladesh

      Ring is a beautiful things when it is shown in a gorgeous woman's finger.

      I myself like the "wedding Ring." Your photo collection is good.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Hi Kaili, thank you for your positive feedback. I'm starting to also like the big statement rings. The bigger the better. But, it's all just for fun.

    • Kaili Bisson profile image

      Kaili Bisson 5 years ago from Canada

      Really great Hub Marlene...I like rings too :-)

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 5 years ago from Northern California, USA

      Thank you catmalone. I think rings are my favorite piece of jewelry. Then, necklaces. But, by far rings are most fascinating to me.

    • catmalone profile image

      catmalone 5 years ago

      Very beautiful and well put together hub!