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What is the Difference Between a Wedding Ring & Engagement Ring?

29 March 2021
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The fundamental difference between an engagement ring and a wedding ring is that an engagement ring is received after a proposal.

The fundamental difference between an engagement ring and a wedding ring is that an engagement ring is received after a proposal, or when a couple decides they want to get married. However, wedding rings are typically exchanged during the wedding ceremony and represent commitment. 


But, where did this tradition come from? Here’s some history and facts behind the age old tradition of engagement rings and wedding rings. 

 

 

What is an engagement ring? 

Although a diamond engagement ring is typically the traditional choice, your engagement ring can be any ring you choose. The most important thing to remember is that you want to choose an engagement ring that your partner is going to love wearing. At Diamond Heaven, we have a range of engagement rings in different styles. From traditional round cut diamond rings to colourful gemstone engagement rings. 


Your engagement ring can also double up as your wedding ring if you like. If you would prefer to wear your engagement ring as a wedding band, then it’s all down to your personal preference. Remember that any exchange of rings is a symbol of love and commitment, so wear the ring that reminds you of your love the most. 

 

 

What is the history behind engagement rings? 

The history of the engagement ring didn’t actually start out that rosey or romantic. In fact, in Ancient Rome, engagement rings were often given as a symbol of ownership! The women of Rome wore rings of ivory and bone to represent a ‘contract’ and to confirm their obedience before marriage. 


Later in history, Pope Nicholas 1st announced that engagement rings should represent a betrothal of a man to a woman. These engagement rings were usually made from gold. Diamond engagement rings didn’t gain popularity until 1477, when the Archduke of Maxillian proposed to his loved one with a sparkly diamond ring. This trend took off and thus the romantic tradition of proposing with a diamond ring was born. 

 

 

What is a wedding ring? 

Sometimes referred to as a ‘wedding band’, wedding rings are often exchanged at the wedding itself. Both partners tend to wear the wedding rings and the styles of each ring usually match or complement each other. Platinum wedding rings are the most popular, but your wedding ring can be made from whichever metal you prefer. 

 

If your partner would prefer to have a complete matching set of engagement ring and wedding ring, then you can opt for a bridal set. A bridal set includes an engagement ring and a matching wedding ring that fit together seamlessly. It’s a great option if you want to wear your engagement ring and wedding ring at the same time. 

 

 

What is the history behind wedding rings? 

The exchange of rings has been around much longer than you might think! The first exchange of rings can be dated all the way back to ancient Egypt. The ancient Egyptians would braid hemp or reeds into beautiful bands and exchange them as a symbol of love. 

 

These organic rings were placed on the fourth finger of the left hand, just like they are today. The Egyptians also believed that circles were a symbol of eternity, representing everlasting love. 

 

Ancient Greeks also exchanged rings in this way, they were usually carved from bone or leather. This was also when metal wedding bands came into popularity. Those who were of high status and had wealth could afford gold rings for their loved one. 

 

Now you know the difference between an engagement and wedding ring, it’s time to get shopping! Whether you opt for a diamond ring like the Archduke or gemstone ring, an engagement ring represents your commitment. Check out our stunning range of engagement rings

 

When the wedding day comes around, exchange some beautiful wedding bands like the Ancient Egyptians did. Choose a pair of wedding rings that represent your eternal love.