(Borrowed from Elsewhere) Put A Ring On It: The Tradition of Engagement Rings

Another spot-on post from ShoutOut!

ShoutOut! JMU

I’ve thought (read: fantasized) a lot about my engagement, from the location to the surprise to the magazine-worthy pictures that will be posted on Facebook the next day. And in this fantasy, the proposal always includes an engagement ring (vintage, with a unique stone in the middle surrounded by diamonds. I haven’t thought about it too much though…). I’ve always considered an engagement ring to be a promise of a future life-long commitment, as well as a really pretty piece of jewelry. But where did this tradition even come from? And is a ring a commitment statement or something a little more misogynistic?

Flickr.com, CC

The tradition of diamond engagement rings actually began as a marketing scheme launched by the De Beers diamond company in the 1930s. Because De Beers diamond sales had been dropping throughout the 1920s, the company hired the advertising firm N.W. Ayer to create a promotional…

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