The first wedding rings were made more than 2,000 years ago during the reign of the Roman Empire. Over the following millennia, the tradition of ceremonial wedding rings spread throughout the world. Today, diamond rings are recognized as a traditional part of marriage in many cultures. Let’s take a look back at wedding rings dating back to the 1st Century. 1st Century Clasped hands were a common symbol found on early Roman wedding rings. In the first century, when a man married a woman, he would give her an identical gold ring as a symbol of her equal status with his wife. These rings were always worn on the third finger of the left hand because it was believed that there was a “love vein” or vena amoris in Latin, running straight from this finger to the heart.

2nd – 4th centuries
This Roman silver wedding ring with gold inside is believed to have been made between the 2nd and 4th centuries and it was sold for 700 Euros at a recent auction. The ring features a couple with the woman reaching out to the man.

3rd century
This gold wedding ring was found in the Beaurains region of France, where the Roman Empire once existed. The Beaurains Treasure is a large trove of Roman gold excavated in 1922. The treasure was found inside a ceramic jar by a pair of workers digging the ground. This ring is made of aquamarine and is engraved with the names Valerianus and Paterna. It is believed to date back to the 3rd century.

4th – 5th century
This gold ring was made between the 4th and 5th centuries during the Byzantine Empire (a continuation of the Eastern Roman Empire). On the flat ring wedding ring are the words “OMONOIA” which means “Harmony” in Greek. This ring was sold at Christie’s auction for approximately 9,700 USD (6 thousand GBP), more than double the auction estimate.

4th – 6th centuries
The Etruscan civilization was a powerful, wealthy civilization founded in ancient Italy. This exceptional Etruscan wedding ring dates from the 4th to 6th centuries. The ornate detail of a bird and a wreath resembling a bird’s nest demonstrate the power and wealth of the culture. this ancient civilization.

6th century
This early Roman/Byzantine gold wedding ring was made from gold around 500 AD. This was a popular wedding ring style around the 4th to 7th centuries. The words “VIVATIS” are spelled backwards. This allows the ring to be used as a unique seal and is extremely difficult to copy.

6th-7th centuries
The Byzantine engagement ring below was probably made in the 6th or 7th century. It has male and female figures representing the man and his wife. The inscription “OMONOIA” is visible here as it is on many other wedding rings from the Roman and Byzantine periods. This ring is now in the Metropolitan Museum of New York in the Griffin Collection.

To be continued

Related Posts