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Iconic signet ring: traditional signifier of old wealth and breeding

Adored by powerful Egyptian kings and ancient rulers of the world, the conventional signet ring is today an essential piece of jewelry. History tells us that signets used to be traditional symbols of wealth. People wore them on the little finger and at some point in history the crest was used to seal important documents and letters. Some families still give signet rings to their sons as heritage. This iconic piece of jewelry bears many meanings – power, authority, status in society, and more.


A ring made for practical purposes

The signet ring was the first ring ever created to have a practical purpose. Dating from the ancient times – centuries before writing became widespread – legal documents and royal proclamations had to be marked and authenticated. Signets were used to seal envelopes and the only person entitled to apply the seal was the king. These two-dimensional “badges” had a special carving on the crest, and before marking anything it had to be pressed in clay or warm wax. Also known as emblems, signets were a symbol of supreme power and status in society. Soon enough they became indispensable in marking sales bills, commerce, and other documents.

Wealthy people owned signets made of gold, which increased the general value of the carving. Following their practical purpose, these bands started having a much more important role. Worn by men only, in some societies they were meant to emphasize someone’s rank. This trend ended in the 18th century when increasingly more people started wearing signets as jewelry.


A gentleman’s ring

In the 19th century signet rings became essential fashion pieces. Men wanted the bands to be bigger, bolder and heavier. The carved emblem was meant to emphasize a person’s position in society. The best rings had stones made of garnet, ruby, cornelian, bloodstone and amethyst materials. The most expensive and at the same time, elegant signet, was the one with a swivel bezel design. All-metal rings had to be manufactured from gold or platinum. The raised bezel came with an emblem or symbol; oval or square-shaped bezels were the most common. At the end of the 19th century men started asking for a diversified design. They began thriving for signets with raised designs; some however, preferred intaglio engravings or sunken designs.

Signet rings in the modern days

Things have changed a lot over the years, and right now even women wear signet rings; however, they like to call them statement rings. Even engagement and wedding rings can be signets because they look different, extravagant and out-of-the-ordinary; which by the way, is exactly what every woman wants. Do you crave an original sense of style? Make it! Include a fascinating signet ring into your collection and have it custom made. When it comes to the metal, three types are the best: silver, gold and brass. The latter type mentioned is in trend this season due to its old-fashioned, vintage-like allure.


Men can wear signet rings as well; even their wedding bands can have a crest. But then again, choose an elegant model and stay away from gypsy-like models with colorful stones and too much gold. Wear your band on whichever finger you want and be proud of it; of its significance. Even though today’s signet is just a fashion piece, it can still have the most meaningful significance to you and your family. We love these jewelry items because they can many any outfit stands out; this statement is addressed to women who love to make an impression. Pair the most extravagant gold signet & pink diamonds with a sheer, simple white dress. It will instantly make you stand above the crowd anywhere you go.

Today’s jewelry is created to have an impact. Avant-garde women with a personal sense of style will love this trend. Signet rings have had a long and tumultuous history. For some people, they’re still a symbol of power (although it’s more inner than outer power); for others, they’re merely a really cool item to wear when you want to impress. Embrace the fascinating signet ring, its historical past and significance. Wear it with the greatest pride and choose metals, stones and carvings that mean something to you. The final piece will give you the most reassuring boost of confidence.

By Christopher Austin and MyFamilySilver.com!

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