The engagement ring over time: from royalties to celebrities

The engagement ring over time: from royalties to celebrities

Did you ever wonder why diamonds are so coveted? Or even more, why they are a symbol of love? While previously only royal members and nobles declared their love with a diamond ring, now celebrities and jet set members are the ones known to get on their knee with the most amazing stones.

It is therefore not surprising that a woman´s heart beats faster when she sees a magnificent piece. Here we show you some milestones in the evolution of the engagement ring as we know it today. 

Old Egypt

The tradition of wearing an engagement ring on the third finger of the left hand is immemorial. The Egyptians wore a ring on their third finger as they believed that a vein runs through their finger which is directly connected to the heart.


In a later phase, the diamond was added to the engagement ring as an official sign of engagement. In 1477 Archduke Maximillian from Austria proposed his first fiancée Maria of Burgundy with a diamond engagement ring. Since then diamonds are a symbol to declare love.


Prince Philip proposes to Princess Elizabeth with a 3 carat diamond engagement ring, surrounded by 5 small diamonds on both sides. A strikingly simple and elegant ring for a royal wedding, but the mostly worn jewel from her extensive collection. Until today, the Queen shows in a subtle way to her staff when she has an off day, by wearing her engagement ring with the stone on the inside of her hand. 


The century fairy tale marriage was awarded with a 12 carat emerald diamond engagement ring. Grace Kelly experienced the dream of every girl by getting married with Prince Rainier of Monaco. The emerald shape was popular during the 40s as a declaration of love. The immense stone even appeared on the big screen during Grace Kelly´s last film High Society. Moreover not unnoticed, when co-actor Bing Crosby jokingly shuffled with ‘Some stone, did you mine it yourself?’.


The most expensive engagement ring ever given to a celebrity, is the one of Elizabeth Taylor. Richard Burton fell for her charms as they stood together on the set for the movie Cleopatra. He proposed her with a pear shape diamond ring of 69 carat, good for $1,100,000. And thus the trend continued in Hollywood: the bigger the bling, the better


As in fashion we also see trends in diamonds. More and more celebrities and stars choose a non-traditional design with a colored diamond. Colored diamonds are rarer and much more personal, regarding to taste. The price is therefore much higher compared with a transparent diamond. A colored diamond is probably at its best in combination with colorless diamonds. Because let´s be honest, an engagement ring in your favorite color is still the epitome of romance, right?

At BAUNAT you are at the right place when you are looking for an engagement ring. Together we search for a diamond and design which fully meets your needs.  

Author: Elke Sockeel

Inspirational insights