Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Byzantine Ring

This stunning piece of history dating back Byzantine period is next up on our Historic Gold segment. The Byzantine Ring was given “almost 900 years before the first diamond engagement ring was recorded. “

The World Gold Council states:

“It is solid and simple in design, prefiguring the modest authority of the classic gold band of today. This comparative lack of ornamentation makes the eye focus upon a single image; the ring is deeply engraved with a portrayal of the nimbate (floating, as on a cloud) figure of Christ joining the hands of a man and woman in marriage. It also bears a one word inscription – OMONIA – which translates as ‘harmony’ or ‘unity’.”

The ancient Byzantine Wedding Ring of the past followed by a Modern Wedding Ring of today.

Wedding rings have been traditionally viewed as one of the most widely worn objects requiring the use of gold. Gold has traditional and cultural value in its use for wedding rings with some cultures even fearing bad luck or bad omens associated with wearing non-golden wedding rings. But gold also has a practical reason for its use in the precious golden ring, and that is its durability and strong natural defense from corrosion. The fact that the Byzantine Ring used gold hundreds of years ago and the modern wedding rings of today still use the same precious metal signify the powerful and long lasting properties of gold that allow the valuable metal to stand the test of time.

Pictures and sources from: and

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