Say Forever With Eternity and Antique Rings

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Whatever you do, do not confuse Eternity Rings with Purity Rings. Just do not.  

Not So “Pure…”

Despite the puritanical sound and nature of “Purity Ring,” it’s wholly a hypocritical construct of U.S. faith-based conservatism, begun only in the 1990s. Consider the clearly traditional-morality challenged celebrity proponents of Purity Rings  -Miley Cyrus, Selena Gomez, Demi Lavato and Jessica Simpson – to realize the concept is simply ludicrous. There’s no historical content, whatsoever.

Long-lasting and Long-standing Love

On the (literal) other hand, Eternity Rings have been around and held significance for people in love since the 18th Century, when the rings were made with a variety of stones, white topaz and even simply, paste gems (faux).

Precious Metal and Stone

Today’s Eternity Ring (find one at a sought-after present, is most often given by a husband to wife (or man to woman) to mark a significant anniversary. The ring is a band of yellow or white gold (most popular) or platinum, featuring a continuous line of diamonds (or other gemstones) symbolizing eternal love. It celebrates undying love, eternal devotion and a pledge for being committed forever.

Definitely “For Richer”

The Eternity Ring celebrated a resurgence in the 1960s, thanks to legendary jewellers’ DeBeers. One of several of DeBeers campaigns boasts “She married you for richer or poorer. Let her know how it’s going.” That rather poorly written slogan aside, an investigative journalist uncovered a perhaps more sinister motivation for the popularity of the rings: DeBeers was looking for a way to use small, low carat (0.25) diamonds from the Soviet Union, with whom the diamond company had a secret agreement.

Proof of Love

Most engagement rings at the time featured the simple classic single diamond. “Love” was expressed based on the size of the carat, and rules emerged. For example, the cost of an engagement ring should be the equivalent to three months’ salary. If you think about it, it was fairly ingenious for DeBeers to bring back the Eternity Ring. It was a win-win situation – the company found a profitable outlet for diamonds that would otherwise have little use (but to signify poverty and/or a tightwad). It was a boon to the ad industry (although that aforementioned slogan lacks sparkle) because there was something to promote, something in which a man could “prove” his love through the gift of jewellery. A woman of the 1960s, who might feel competitive towards her peers, could conceivably (based on ad indoctrination) interpret an eternity ring as the ultimate validation. 

Size Really Matters

These days, an Eternity Ring maintains its original meaning and intent. One extremely important factor to remember is that an eternity ring, given the nature of the surround of diamonds (or other gemstones) can never be sized. The ring must fit the wearer. It cannot be cut and reshaped. Or, if you want to keep with the entire theme of an Eternity Ring, it must remain unchanged and unbroken.

Diamonds are Forever

While you are very likely to find the more common all-diamond band, you can certainly order a custom made ring, interchanging whatever gemstone you choose, alternating between two or three stones, whatever you like. One popular sentiment to impose on a gifted Eternity Ring is for each stone to be designated with meaning (i.e. one for: first kiss, the engagement, the wedding date, Valentine’s Day, anniversaries, or, for each child). Diamonds are an Eternity Ring’s mainstay. If the promotion is to be believed, for centuries, the diamond means “unwavering and undying devotion, love, fidelity, partnership, commitment and friendship.”

Diamonds, given the stone’s hardness, are often considered as one of the world’s hardest substances, nearly impossible to break. Diamonds lined up in a continuous band further symbolize closeness, and togetherness don’t forget that the nature of a round band is never-ending, an eternal circle. And what married couple doesn’t want to leave that circle unbroken? 

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