Promise rings are also known as pre-engagement rings. They are often seen as a precursor to an engagement ring, but they may also have other symbolic meanings, some of which date back to the 16th century.
First, let me begin with some history. Promise rings supposedly date back to the 16<sup>th</sup> century. There is an illustration from 1576 which is showing how a promise ring is given to a beautiful girl, so it is obvious that the tradition existed at that early date. In those days, a man, who could not afford to get married, often gave his bride-to-be a promise ring as a placeholder until marriage became possible. During Shakespeare’s age another variation of the promise ring became popular –the poesy ring. Its bands were engraved with the words vous et nul autres (you and no others) or a ma vie de coeur entier (for my whole life, all of my heart).
This romantic and beautiful gesture becomes more and more popular nowadays. It is even not uncommon for women to give a promise ring to their chosen ones. It is usually a surprise offering and the man should decide whether to accept or to deny it. Traditionally young couples give such rings because it is normal for them not to be able to afford marriage and children.
Nowadays promise rings may symbolize a lot of things, but they mainly stand for the commitment of one person to another. By giving you such jewelry, your man may want to tell you that he is going to be faithful to you or that he has really serious plans for your future together. A promise ring may also be given by men or women before separation for a long time. In this case, it means that they will wait for their better half and won’t give up on their relationship. Anyway, when you choose a promise ring, you should communicate the specific meaning you give to it in order to avoid misunderstandings.
The tradition of giving a promise ring may be old, but it definitely isn’t out of fashion. It is the perfect way for you to communicate your feelings to your man or woman.