• Even the ancient Romans gave an engagement ring to their fiancées.
  • Due to the economic depression in the 30s, people bought more modest jewellery.
  • A simple slogan changed the tradition of the engagement ring.

Even the ancient Romans gave engagement rings to their fiancées. Later, these iron engagement rings were replaced with gold ones. It was only in the twelfth century that Pope Innocent III set up rules about marriage. For example, marriages had to take place in a church and the bride needed to receive a ring. The gold ring with diamonds, however, only became popular in the nineteenth century. Today, the choice is not limited to a yellow gold ring with diamonds. You can also choose a white gold ring with diamonds or a red gold ring with diamonds. But, do you know how the connection between the engagement ring and the diamond came about?

Although the tradition of the engagement ring has existed for years, using a gold ring with diamonds as an engagement ring was introduced much later. This is because diamonds were very rare. In 1870, diamond mines were discovered in South Africa and made diamonds famous all over the world. The tradition of proposing with a gold ring with diamonds came about in around 1938 and was nothing more than a successful marketing plan from the diamond jeweller De ‘Beers’.

Due to the economic depression in the 30s, people mostly bought modest jewellery. ‘De Beers’ was in need of a new plan to bring their diamonds into the spotlight. They collaborated with an agency that encouraged Hollywood’s celebrities to wear rings with diamonds. This was a smart move because diamond sales rose 50% in the next 3 years. However, the tradition of using a gold ring with diamonds as an engagement ring was not born yet.

This only happened in 1947 when copywriter Francis Gerety came up with the slogan “A diamond is forever”. This slogan underlined the significance of a diamond as an unbreakable symbol of love. This turned out to be highly successful, boosting the sales of gold rings with diamonds as engagement rings. Within 20 years after the creation of the slogan, 80% of all American brides wore a gold ring with diamonds. This engagement ring remains a tradition today. On which hand you traditionally wear your engagement or wedding ring often depends on where you live, your beliefs and your culture.

The history of engagement rings is fascinating. Or are you more interested in the jewels themselves? Take a look at our extensive collection of engagement rings, or contact us for more information.

Share on: