Are Meghan Markle & Prince Harry's Rings Passed Down? This Century Long Wedding Tradition Is Going Strong
With all the interest around Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding, people have constantly inquired about the British royal family's traditions. From the venue to deciding who is in the wedding party, there's not a single aspect of the royal wedding that has gone unnoticed. Now, people are wondering: are Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's rings passed down?
After the happy couple originally announced their engagement in November 2017, people were eager to see Markle's engagement ring and it didn't disappoint! Markle was seen wearing a trilogy ring with a large central diamond flanked on either side by two smaller jewels set on a gold band. The stones were specifically selected by the Prince himself and had plenty of significance, according to Hello! US.
The central diamond is from Botswana, where the couple had once vacationed together, but what really made people gush was the story behind the flanking diamonds. Those jewels were taken from the personal collection of the Prince's later mother, Princess Diana, according to Hello! US. Seeing Prince Harry bringing his late mother into his current engagement, by giving Markle jewels from her collection, made the ring essentially priceless.
And, so, it's fair to wonder if a similar sentiment goes into designing the actual wedding bands.
For almost a century, the royal family has traditionally made their wedding bands out of Welsh gold, according to Kitco. The gold was mined from the Snowdonia's Clogau St David's mine located in Bontddu, North Wales. The tradition began after the royal family was given a Clogau gold nugget as a gift in the 1920s.
"I anticipate that it was initially used by the royal family because the mine itself, the Clogau St. David's Mine, was the most productive mine in the whole of the country and it still remains in the Guinness Book of World Records for that reason," Clogau Managing Director Ben Roberts said, according to AOL. "And, of course, the royals were looking for any gold that they could use from the country, so it would have been a natural selection."
Gold from that nugget was used to make wedding rings for the Queen Mother in 1923, according to Kitco. The tradition then carried on, as the nugget was used to make a ring for the Queen in 1947; Princess Margaret in 1960; Anne, Princess Royal, in 1973; and Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1981.
After a tradition spanning more than 80 years, the stock of the original Clogau gift was largely believed to be exhausted, according to the BBC. It was rumored that the stock had been replenished throughout the years with donations from several other Welsh mines.
In preparation of Prince William and Kate Middleton's wedding, the palace announced, according to the BBC: "The wedding ring that Catherine Middleton will wear will be made of Welsh gold. The gold was given to Prince William by The Queen shortly after the couple were engaged. It has been in the family's possession for some years and has been in the care of the royal jewelers. There are no further details on which mine the gold was mined from."
It's fair to assume, since the gold stock was reportedly used for Kate Middleton's wedding band, that it will also be used for this royal wedding as well. So far, the only difference is that Markle's ring will be designed to match her engagement ring, according to Brides. This means that, instead of the traditional rose gold, Markle's band will likely be yellow. Given Markle's uniqueness as a biracial American woman marrying into the royal family, it's fitting that she will have a one of a kind band moving forward.