19th century engagement rings in today’s market are primarily from the Victorian Era of 1835 to 1900. This period coincided with the reign of the beloved Queen Victoria, who was a major trend setter of the time. Wedding rings and jewelry from the earlier part of the 19th century (the Georgian Era) are much rarer, as many have been deconstructed and incorporated into newer designs. Any Victorian or Georgian engagement ring is a real treasure, sure to be full of rich character and history! Here are some great pieces from our antique collection and some insight into 19th century wedding jewelry trends to help you find the perfect ring.
The diamond solitaire engagement ring rose to popularity in the Victorian Era. This was in no small part due to the discovery of diamonds in South Africa, which was an important British colonial holding at the time. Early solitaire designs typically feature very large diamonds in chunky cuts, often surrounded by a halo of other precious gemstones.
Featured: Brooklyn engagement ring from Victor Barbone Jewelry.
Elaborate Gold Designs
Metalworking techniques improved toward the end of the 19th century, allowing jewelers to create more intricate and detailed engagement ring designs in gold. Combined with the creative impulse toward romance, this resulted in a wide variety of exquisite and lovely styles. Many amazing rings are available from this period! With so many options, couples can find a unique ring that captures their love story perfectly!
Featured: Margaret engagement ring from Victor Barbone Jewelry.
Birthstone Engagement Rings
Queen Victoria herself popularized this 19th century engagement ring trend. Her own engagement ring was set with a very large and luxurious emerald—her May birthstone! Couples of the period followed suit and birthstone engagement rings became an extremely fashionable way to make an individual statement.
Serpent and Nature Motifs
Fashion icon Queen Victoria is to thank for many of the natural and floral patterns we see in today’s jewelry. In addition to the gorgeous emerald stone, her engagement ring featured a serpent design that captured the public's imagination. Serpent motifs soared in popularity and later expanded into a huge variety of nature motifs. Animals, leaves, organic shapes and designs offer further expressions of individuality. When shopping for 19th century engagement rings, keep an eye out for unique details like these!
Featured: Nora engagement ring from Victor Barbone Jewelry.
Etruscan, Egyptian and Native Designs
The late 19th century marked the exploration of the world and the expansion of far horizons, with British adventurers traveling the globe and discovering (some might say plundering) the treasures of lost civilizations and the ancient world. This created tremendous interest in authentic designs that reflected and celebrated cultural iconography, particularly those from the ancient Etruscan and Egyptian civilizations.
Featured: Jasmine engagement ring from Victor Barbone Jewelry.
Expanded horizons of science and culture were matched by growing enthusiasm for mystical pursuits and celebration of the unknown. Gemstones with purported mysterious properties, including amethyst, bloodstone, onyx, coral, and agate, became popular engagement ring choices because they were believed to be endowed with special properties of healing, protection, and vitality.
Find the Perfect 19th Century Engagement Ring Today
Georgian and Victorian Era engagement rings are truly distinctive, offering an amazing richness of character and history! How could you not be seduced by the romance and grandeur contained in these remarkable pieces of wedding jewelry?
To find the perfect 19th century engagement ring, shop our collection today! Treat yourself and your love to something truly wonderful!