13/01/2023 General News, Jewellery & Gems
Each year on February 14th, we celebrate Valentine’s Day and our love and appreciation for one another – but where did this tradition come from and did we always shower our loved ones with gifts?
St. Valentine is the patron saint of happy marriages and also of engaged couples, so it is no wonder his association is with the celebration of love. The holiday has been celebrated as early as the 5th century, while its namesake died almost 250 years previous. As legend goes, the Roman emperor, Claudius II, banned engagements and marriage as he was having trouble enlisting men into his army; Valentine was a priest and assisted couples to marry in secret. When he was found out, Valentine was beheaded and became a martyr for love.
In the Middle Ages, Valentines were chosen out of a bowl and fate decided your partner; you could also get an insight into your future relationships by eating unusual foods and ‘dreaming’ of your future husband. By the time the 17th century came around, gifting flowers became commonplace, followed by chocolates and other sweet treats. The 19th century was when the idea of gifting jewellery rose to the forefront. Jewellery was becoming more easily accessible to the general public, and buying pieces with rubies and diamonds were a great signifier of the eternal love people shared for their Valentine.
Other stones that are associated with love are
Sapphires: Used to pledge your love to your significant other
Image of lot 282
A SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND CLUSTER RING, the oval sapphire with round brilliant cut diamond surround, mounted in 18ct yellow gold. Estimated: weight of diamond: 1.50 ct, weight of sapphire: 2.74 ct. Size: L - M
Amethyst: Allows you to open your heart and embrace love
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A DIAMOND AND AMETHYST RING, set with a heart shaped amethyst and a brilliant cut diamond, mounted in yellow gold, size J
Garnet: Symbolises commitment between a couple
Image of lot 314
A GARNET AND DIAMOND DRESS RING, the oval garnet to diamond shoulders, mounted in rose gold. Estimated: weight of diamonds: 0.21 ct, garnet 3.09 ct. Size N