Promise rings have been around for hundreds of years and have come in many shapes and sizes. While similar concepts have dated back as far as ancient times in the second century BC when Roman brides would wear inexpensive iron (and later gold) rings to express devotion and faithfulness, promise rings – or then more often known as “posie rings” – were first popularized during the 15th through 17th centuries in both England and France.
During these Georgian and Victorian times, young men would often give their lover a ring symbolizing their affection, and stating that they were committed but could not afford to marry their lady yet. Often times they would engrave the rings with romantic poems circling along the inside or outside of the ring, and others would spell out the word “regard” using precious gemstones such as rubies or diamonds.
It is believed that puzzle rings first appeared in Asia over 2000 years ago, but they first appeared on the European continent in the 12th century.
Puzzle rings were an interesting model of promise rings that were wildly popular in Australia in the 1970’s and are still present even in modern time, given to a romantic partner for the same purpose as a regular promise ring. It was said that Arabic chieftains gave these puzzle rings to their wives to ensure fidelity and loyalty. The stories say that if the lady decided to be unfaithful, she would have to take the ring off so other men would not know she was taken, and once off, it would fall apart. As only the one who gives the puzzle ring knows how to piece it together, it is best not to take it off or break your vows.
However, it was not until more recent events concerning young and wealthy celebrities, such as Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers, that promise rings would be re-popularized back in 2008. The celebrities would go on to state that they would wear promise rings to symbolize their intent of remaining pure until marriage, and since then, promise rings have remained – to this day – a very popular option to symbolize a vow between two people.