A Brief History Of Wedding Rings (And How To Wear Them)

Traditionally, wedding bands are worn on the fourth finger of the left hand. However, some like to wear theirs on the right hand. While there is no right or wrong way to do this, we’ll get to the history behind this. Most of all, we’ll let you decide.

weddings-rings-and-their-history-Why Do We Wear Our Wedding Ring on the Left Hand

Myth & Legend

The practice of exchanging rings as a form of promise or bond started in Roman times, where this symbolic practice was first carried out. The rings themselves were 3fashioned out of iron in the beginning, and then progressed into other polished metals.

The shape of the ring itself is said to signify an eternal love – there it has no beginning or end, and goes on forever. In fact, the Greeks (and Romans) believed that there exists a vein that, from the ring finger, goes all the way to the heart. It was called the “vena amoris” which loosely translates to “vein of love.” While there’s no scientific backing to this claim, it still makes for a nice thought.


How The World Wears Its Rings

Some of the western world has stuck with Roman tradition – both engagement and wedding rings are to be worn on the left hand. On the other hand, many European – especially Scandinavian – as well as Asian countries wear their rings on the right hand.

Some, wear the engagement ring on the left hand, and then wear their rings on the right hand after marriage. By and large, there are no rules around wearing both wedding and engagement rings, and many only wear a wedding band post marriage.

What The Law Says

In fact, many permutations and combinations of how and on which finger to wear the wedding ring exist. There is no law in any country that specifies exactly how, when, where or on which hand to wear the rings. It’s a matter of choice, really.

A Gigantic Industry

The-Designer-Industry-Why Do We Wear Our Wedding Ring on the Left Hand

With time, wedding rings have established themselves and opened up in to a billion dollar industry. The angle seemed for a long time to imply that the costlier the ring, the stronger the emotion being expressed. However, today, this trend too seems to be bucking. While we can’t recommend putting your life’s savings into a pair of wedding rings, we’re compelled to agree that it must feel pretty special.

Fun Theories

The Chinese have an interesting theory in which each finger represents some part of your family. The index finger is for your siblings, the thumb for your parents, the middle finger is you, the pinkie finger is for your children and the fourth finger, the ring finger, is your life partner. That’s why when you lay your hand flat on a table, the ring finger is the hardest to get off the table just by itself!

Another alternative that is a fairly common practise is to tattoo your spouse’s initials on your ring finger to symbolize love and marriage.

To Conclude

There is no ‘correct’ theory as such when it comes to how to wear a wedding ring. What you do or intend to do is probably down to your experience and upbringing, just like it is for most others. However, if any of the above explanations or ways of wearing a wedding ring appeals to you, feel free to adopt it. There is no correct way, there is only your way.

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