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Men's Gold Wedding Rings: Their History and Tradition
Although wedding bands originated with the ancient Egyptians, men did not adopt the custom of wearing a wedding ring until well into the 20th century. Men's gold wedding bands became popular during World War II as a remembrance when couples were separated, but the trend began with an advertising campaign in the 1920s.
The practice of wearing wedding bands began with the ancient Egyptians who saw the circular ring with a hole in the center as a representation of unending love and hope for the future. Only women wore wedding rings at that time, and the rings were probably made of natural materials, such as woven plants, bone or wood. The custom of the wedding ring traveled to Rome -- probably after Caesar's conquest -- where the gift of a ring became a legally-binding contract between a man and a woman. At this time, however, they were still not worn by men.
Gold Wedding Bands
Metal wedding rings became popular during the Middle Ages. They were mostly made of gold, but silver rings inscribed with sayings or poetry were popular for a time as well. Although men's gold wedding bands were not a common thing, the Irish believed that anything other than gold for a wedding ring was unlucky, and that became the metal of choice for weddings.
Men's wedding bands did not become popular until after around World War II. Jewelry retailers had tried to get men to purchase rings before the war, but wedding bands were considered too feminine. There were restrictions on gold during World War I, but jewelers lobbied to have that lifted, and then began a concerted effort to create a market for men's gold wedding bands. The Jewelry Industry Publicity Board designed a campaign to popularize the double ring ceremony. Movies, radio programs and newsreels were used to show people getting married using two rings instead of one, and by 1943, 80% of couples had adopted the custom.
World War II
World War II really cemented the tradition of wedding rings for men. Many couples got married before the men were shipping out, and the practice of men wearing rings became commonplace. Men wanted a symbol to remember their wives back home, and men's gold wedding bands fit the bill perfectly. The Catholic Church gave its blessing to double ring ceremonies in the 1950s, and the tradition continues through today.
When it's time to purchase wedding bands, remember that Juno Jewelry has many designs for men and women. All of our pieces are manufactured in house by skilled craftsmen using the best quality materials. We sell only certified natural, conflict-free gemstones and metals that have been sustainably mined. If wedding bells will be ringing in your future, contact Juno Jewelry to see our selection of men's gold wedding bands.