It has aptly been said that marriages are made in heaven and therefore, are eternal. A ring being circular, it has neither a beginning nor end which symbolizes eternity and infinity. The hole through the ring symbolizes a doorway to future events. To establish the eternality, different religions and societies adopt different traditions and rituals. But, one commonality of all religions is to perform a pre-marriage formality; ‘engagement.’
Before engagement, a man has many options for choosing a matching bride. After making the final choice, he or his family put forth a proposal of marriage to the bride-to-be or her family. And as a token of financial commitment, an ‘engagement ring’ is gifted to her.
An engagement ring symbolizes the financial status of the groom-to-be and his family. Therefore, nowadays, people prefer diamond engagement rings, which besides their high cost ensure durability, rarity, sparkle, scintillation, and brilliance. Besides diamond, an engagement ring is studded with gemstone at the center of the ring. The rings are set into gold, platinum, titanium or silver. It is worn on the left ring finger because it is believed that this finger contains the ‘vein of love.’
Wedding rings are secondary gifts that are exchanged between the bride and the groom at the time of the wedding. Usually, these rings are without diamond or gemstone. These are also known as wedding bands and consist of white or yellow gold. Moreover, a wedding ring on finger demonstrates that the wearer is married. Matching wedding rings heighten the sense of ‘unity’ between the couples. Wedding rings contain engravings like the date of marriage or a short phrase having some special meanings to the couple.
The major difference between the engagement ring and wedding ring is that while the former is worn only by the would-be bride, the latter are worn by both. The former involves ‘giving’ while the latter involves ‘exchange.’ The engagement ring is the confirmation of accepting the marriage proposal; wedding ring is the symbol of ‘continuation’ of a happy married life till death. It reminds both of the fidelity and loyalty, both of which are essential for a harmonious marital relationship.
Since women receive both; engagement ring and wedding ring, they prefer the wedding ring to be stacked underneath the engagement ring. Some women prefer to wear only one ring to represent both. The wedding rings of grooms are usually thicker in width, compared to the wedding ring for the bride.
Engagement rings mostly consist of at least one diamond, whereas the wedding rings do not contain any gemstone. Therefore, engagement rings are costlier than wedding rings. However, the style and types of both rings may be selected as per the personal taste, liking and of course, the budget.
Your fiancée wears an engagement ring after she accepts a proposal. It is symbolic of the pledge of love, commitment, and faithfulness. It tells other people that the woman wearing it is no more available because she is already engaged. The wedding ring worn by a man tells others that he is no more available as he is already married.