The Most Famous Engagement Rings of All Time

Every engagement ring is precious to the woman who wears it, but some stand out from the crowd. We’re taking a look back through history at some of the most memorable and famous engagement rings of all time, and the women who wore them. Let’s start with the first ever diamond engagement ring…

Mary Of Burgundy

Mary Of Burgundy famous engagement ring

This famous engagement ring was commissioned in 1477 by Archduke Maximilian of Austria for his betrothed, Mary of Burgundy. It is believed that Maximilian of Austria sent Mary Of Burgundy a letter along with the ring which is now considered the worlds first engagement ring. It is the first ever recorded diamond engagement ring which started a trend among high society people, causing plain bands to drop in popularity. This ring sparked a trend for diamond engagement rings that endures to this day.

Napoleon and Joséphine

Napoleon and Joséphine's famous engagement ring

In 1796, Napoleon Bonaparte presented his bride-to-be Joséphine with a unique diamond and sapphire engagement ring as a symbol of their love. The simple gold band is set with two pear-shaped stones, a diamond and a blue sapphire that sit side by side facing in opposite directions. Each gem weighs one carat each. Empress Joséphine, had a son and daughter and was six years older than Napoleon at the time of their marriage in 1796. In 2013 the iconic ring was sold at auction for $948,000.

Elizabeth Taylor

elizabeth taylors famous engagement ring from richard burton

Elizabeth Taylor is known around the world for her love of diamonds and her famous engagement rings. Although its not the exact ring that Richard Burton proposed with (he apparently proposed marriage with a platinum pendant set with an 18.61ct Emerald surrounded by diamonds) the Krupp Asscher cut diamond ring is one of the most renowned diamonds in the world. Burton gave Elizabeth Taylor the diamond ring in 1968. The iconic white diamond is an incredible 33.19cy asscher cut and is said to be the ring she wore almost every day.


Princess Diana and Princess Kate

princess diana and duchess of cambridge famous engagement ring

The last in our list of famous engagement rings is the one Prince Charles gave to Diana. This ring sparked a revival of the trend for coloured stone engagement rings when he presented Princess Diana with an oval sapphire engagement ring in February 1981. The 12 carat Ceylon sapphire and distinctive sparkling diamond halo remains famous all over the world, and is now proudly worn by the Duchess of Cambridge. Prince William proposed to Catherine in the autumn of 2010 during the couple’s trip to Kenya. He had taken the ring out of the royal safe and carried with him in his rucksack for three weeks while in Africa, until he finally got down on one knee.


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