Victorian engagement rings are some of the most precious and sought-after vintage styles. Breathtaking in their opulence, these mid- to late-19th century designs are especially elaborate, ornate, and decadent. Explore our curated collection of Victorian era engagement rings to find the perfect ring for your loved one.
About The Victorian Era
The Victorian Era refers to reign of Queen Victoria, which took place from 1837 to 1901. It was a time when grace, sophistication, and modesty ruled supreme. To Victorians, nothing was more important than how one appeared in the public eye.
Through the more than 60 years of her reign (1837-1901), Queen Victoria influenced all areas of fashion and jewelry. Her love of family and commitment to her people show in the romantic, long-lasting designs of Victorian rings. Members of the growing middle class sought tirelessly to emulate the trends set forth by Queen Victoria and other affluent members of society. Thus, the Victorian Era marked the very first period in history when engagement rings became a tradition among the masses.
Victorian Engagement Ring Designs
Floral motifs, delicate filigrees, heart shapes, birds, bows, and other feminine designs are characteristic of early Victorian diamond rings. In the middle years of the queen’s long reign, the death of her husband, Prince Albert, added darker tones to the jewelry and onyx and deep garnets were popular stones for the starker designs, along with pearls. The final years of the Victorian era saw a resurgence of more delicate and romantic designs, though stylistically they tended to be less ornate than the early years of the period. Later Victorian engagement rings were more likely to highlight diamonds rather than gemstones, and the rings were often more practical and more available to those outside the royal hierarchy.
- Deep Golden Hues - Settings made of gold alloys were by far the most popular. A change in gold standards during the mid-19th century meant metals used to make engagement rings could range anywhere from 9-karat gold to 22-karat gold.
- Unique Motifs - Intricate metalwork and feminine, floral motifs are a hallmark of jewelry from this time period. Some engagement rings also feature Egyptian designs or animal imagery. Queen Victoria’s engagement ring, for example, featured an intricate golden serpent accented with rubies, diamonds, and emeralds.
- Precious Gemstones - Colorful gemstones like rubies, sapphires, aquamarine, and opals were used to enhance the beauty of these dynamic designs. Many designs from this period also feature clusters of small diamonds.
- Low Profile Designs - Although incredibly bold, many engagement rings from the Victorian era sit closely to the hand. Inset gemstones create designs that feature a markedly low profile.
Find The Perfect Engagement Ring
To find the perfect ring for the love of your life, explore our collection of Victorian engagement rings today!