For centuries celtic wedding rings have been a timeless and beautiful representation of marriage and partnership. The intricate design and symbolism are a favorite among couples young and old.
Brief History of Celtic Rings and Claddaghs
When most people think of Irish and Celtic rings, they think of the wonderfully intricate knots and interwoven designs that are seen in much of Celtic artwork. Celtic knot work is predominately based on eight different types of patterns that form a decorative motif.
The knots as well as the groundwork for the Claddagh rings go back for centuries to the time of the Byzantian and Roman empires.
Originating in the village of Claddagh during the 17th century, the ring is given as a symbol of love and affection.
There are many legends surrounding the story of the Claddagh.
Symbolism Of The Rings
There are quite a few different types of Celtic wedding bands. The Claddagh’s symbolism is threefold. Portraying two hands encircling a heart with a crown on it, the hands represent friendship, the heart love, and the crown fidelity. Claddaghs can also be used as a representation of friendship or Irish pride.
The Celtic knot is another design that represents eternal love and the connection two partners share, and the bond between couples. The knots are also thought to be a representation of the never ending cycle of life and eternity.
One type of Celtic design, the Trinity knot, is a representation of the holy triad being the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost, and is associated with eternal love. Another strong symbol is the Lover’s Knot, an unbroken and interlacing loop representing the union of two souls.
The oval love knot, the square love knot, and the triple drop love knot are just a few of the examples of Celtic love knots that can be found.
What Can You Expect To Pay?
The price for Celtic wedding bands depend on the type of material used, but they are remarkably cheaper compared to most traditional wedding rings.
Celtic and Claddagh bands are usually inset with a precious stone rather than a diamond, so the cost is much more reasonable.
The Celtic bands especially are usually just a simple yet elegant band of a precious metal such as silver or gold, without stones and instead embossed with one of the many different types of Celtic knot or weaving.
Simple gold men and women’s claddagh rings start at around $500.00 and upwards.
Buyers can expect to pay at least $900.00 for rings with more intricacy and an inset stone. Engagement and wedding rings with diamonds can range anywhere from $2,000 to $4,000.
Buying The Right Ring
When shopping, look for the stamp indicating that the ring was made in Ireland. Irish law states that all jewelry made from precious metals must be stamped with a letter symbol the year it was made, called the “Official Hallmark”.
The stamp guarantees the authenticity and purity of the platinum, silver or gold, and the overall quality of the metal. It also bears the insignia of Dublin Castle Assay Office. Only traditional rings made in Ireland are allowed to be stamped with this hallmark.
It’s worth researching jewelry stores in Ireland and giving them a call to see if they import their rings to other countries. Otherwise, there are a variety of different places one can buy beautiful and genuine Celtic and Claddagh wedding bands.
Online websites are a good place to find rings, as most internet companies import their rings from Ireland so there is no question of quality. It is preferable that shoppers looking to buy online get their ring fingers sized by a professional jeweler before buying their ring from the internet so there is no question of size.
Be sure to check the website’s return policy before buying. Buyers can also browse local jewelers if they wish to see and try on the rings in person.
Well Known Brands and Shops
Boru jewelry, once known as Celtic and Heraldic, was one of the first jewelry stores to start manufacturing Celtic inspired jewelry. Irish Jewelers, a jewelry store in Dublin, has been in business since the sixties and sells a wide range of wedding bands. For those who aren’t in Ireland, their shop, and many others, will import overseas.
Those who buy claddah wedding rings will find that the quality and workmanship can last a lifetime. This, along with their unique and beautiful design, will be a favorite still for centuries to come.