A Historical Look at the “Man Ring” & the Evolution of other Men’s Jewelry

Accessories for Men /

A Historical Look at the “Man Ring” & the Evolution of other Men’s Jewelry

The possession of high-quality jewelry has been a sign of respect and power for men throughout the ages. It has also been used as a symbol of loyalty to their wives and families. The ring has had the longest significance in male jewelry, in terms of dominance and influence. Here are a few ways the
ring (and other jewelry) has evolved as part of the luxe look of males in history:

The Signet Ring

One of the earliest examples of luxury men’s jewelry is the signet ring. Since all the way back to ancient Egypt, these rings had been used by men with authority to authenticate documents. The “Stamp of Approval” was created by the stamping the seal from their ring. Many of the mummies one can find in the pyramids have personalized signet rings on their fingers. This practice was also adopted by the Greek, Roman, Ottoman Empires alike.

The Wedding Ring

There are some men who have had mixed feelings over using wedding rings. Prior to World War 2, many men had chosen to not wear wedding rings. When American soldiers started going overseas, the vast majority of soldiers began taking wedding rings as a keepsake of their wives back home.

Since the shift during the middle of the 20th century, coinciding with the return of soldiers to their homes after wartimes, the vast majority of men now wear wedding rings as a sign of respect and loyalty. In fact, married men who do not wear wedding rings are now sometimes questioned about their fidelity.

The Expansion of Jewelry Usage by Men

In the 16th and 17th centuries, some men of nobility had experimented with liberal usage of necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and other accessories. The 18th century was when culture seemingly buried this practice to regress to a close-minded macho culture. When watches were invented, this was, for the longest time, the most socially accepted form of masculine male jewelry.

As Western Culture had become more liberal since the 1960s, men began experimenting with more flamboyant jewelry items. An example would be Elvis sporting his giant-jeweled rings while remaining a huge rock ‘n roll sex symbol. Men’s fashion has once again evolved into more experimentation as you may notice the manliest men sporting necklaces, bracelets, and other fashion accessories. At the end of the day, men’s jewelry still stands for luxury. While it’s become more common for all jewelry types to be draped on men of various cultures, the fact remains that there is no greater status symbol than a masculine piece of male jewelry – especially when it’s hand-crafted and part of a limited collection.