It is believed that eternity rings were first offered as love tokens by the ancient Egyptians 4,000 years ago. However, more recently in the 1960s, the idea of an eternity ring was introduced by a diamond merchant who wanted to encourage customers to buy smaller gems instead of only large solitaire diamonds. By creating a ring with smaller stones going all the way around, the merchant came up with an alternative ring design that has since been known as the eternity ring.
Eternity rings are made of precious metal and traditionally have diamonds embedded into the ring. There are many designs on the market, including a "half eternity", where the bands have stones across the front half only. The 14k White Gold Zig Zag Pave Diamond Ring is a half eternity with a unique zigzag shape at the front.
Eternity means forever, and as a ring has no ending, it is considered the ultimate romantic gift because it represents an eternal promise between the giver and the receiver and demonstrates commitment, trust and love.
When Calvin Klein bought his wife Kelly Rector an eternity ring in 1987, he had it inscribed with the word "Eternity". This later inspired one of his most successful and well-known perfume scents ever, Eternity by Calvin Klein.
When to give an eternity ring
Eternity rings are often given to represent an occasion or milestone, such as to commemorate the birth of a child or a wedding anniversary. Some people might also want to give a ring as an upgrade to an existing wedding ring. For example, they might buy one if their current financial position is better than it was when they got married and the original ring has become worn or tarnished.
If giving an eternity ring to represent a birth or significant birthday, some buyers may want to include birthstone gems along with the diamonds. Alternatively, the ring could be engraved on the inside with a date, word or name to make it even more special.
Eternity rings don’t always have to be diamonds. Although this is traditional, customers can also opt for rings with different stones, such as rubies, emeralds and sapphires.
An eternity ring can be worn on any finger, but traditionally it is worn on the wedding ring finger, either along with the engagement ring and wedding band or instead of it. History tells us that the ancient Egyptians believed there was a blood vessel that connected the ring finger to the heart, and even though this has never been biologically proven to be true, some still believe it and continue to wear their ring on this finger for this reason.
Eternity rings have been worn by countless celebrities over the years, including Hollywood icons such as Audrey Hepburn, who was presented with a ring by her fiancée, actor Mel Ferrer. Marilyn Monroe also famously chose an eternity ring as a combined wedding and engagement ring when she married baseball star Joe DiMaggio. The 14k Gold Round Halo Diamond Engagement Ring is the ideal look for anyone wanting two rings in one. Designed with diamonds all the way around and a feature diamond in the middle, this beautiful piece is made in 14k polished white gold.
Marilyn’s original ring sold at auction in 1999 for $772,500, despite it having a missing stone. In 2011, Elizabeth Taylor’s two eternity rings, both bought for her by husband Richard Burton, sold for $1,022,500.
How much to spend
How much to spend on an eternity ring is very much an individual's choice and depends on personal circumstances. If the wearer is planning on wearing it on the same finger as other rings and will wear two or three rings together at the same time, it is advisable to choose a ring that is the same type of metal.
Whether you are approaching a significant anniversary or occasion or you want to mark an event or special time in a relationship, an eternity ring is a piece of jewelry that will last a lifetime and will most likely be worn every day, so it is worth investing in. Eternity rings are a symbol of love and commitment. They are the perfect gift to celebrate a relationship and demonstrate how much a special person in your life means to you, and they also show the world how much you mean to each other.