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The History And Meaning of How to Wear Claddagh Ring

The Claddagh symbol is one of the most iconic symbols in Irish culture, with a meaning and history that stretches back centuries.

Silver Irish Claddagh ring on wooden background

This unique design consists of two hands holding a heart, with a crown on top, and is a representation of love, friendship, and loyalty.

The story of the Claddagh ring known as Fáinne Chladaigh begins with the meaning of the name Claddagh.

An Irish language term, “An Cladach”, means a flat stony shore.

Made with a pair of hands, the origin of the Claddagh ring was first introduced as an Irish heart ring meaning friendship in the 17th century.

Claddagh Ring History

Claddagh ring with blue topaz

Claddagh rings have their roots in early Irish history, where it was a symbol of betrothal and marriage.

The Claddagh ring originated in Ireland, where it is also a symbol of love.

Irish tradition holds that the first Claddagh ring was created by a native Irish fisherman by the name of Richard Joyce in the 17th century.

Legend has it that Joyce was captured by Algerian pirates. He was then sold into slavery after he was captured in a fishing boat off the coast of West Africa.

En route to the West Indies, he was sold to a Moorish Goldsmith who trained him.

But he eventually managed to return home to the city of Galway after many years.

King William III of England later knighted Joyce. And the Claddagh ring was adopted as a symbol of true love and devotion by all Irish people and county Galway.

He also demanded the release of all British subjects who had been captured and sold into slavery.

The earliest Claddagh rings were typically worn with the bottom of the heart pointing towards the fingertips. This represents that the wearer is single and ready to be wed.

Today, Claddagh rings are widely used as a symbol of marriage and love. And they are often given as gifts on engagements or any other special occasion.

Origins of The Ring

golden Claddagh ring with silver meaning of claddagh symbol

The earliest surviving Claddagh rings were found in the King’s Island area of Galway City, dating back to the 17th century.

The small fishing village of Claddagh in Roman times had a flourishing fishing industry and an early Christian Jewelry tradition.

Galway City, which is located in the western part of Ireland, is still home to many traditional Claddagh jewelry makers and retailers.

If you are looking for authentic Claddagh rings or other unique pieces of Irish jewelry. Be sure to check out the shops in Galway City.

Furthermore, you can explore all of the amazing histories that these beautiful pieces have to offer.

Meaning of The Claddagh Ring

Claddagh Irish ring meaning of claddagh symbol

Today, the meaning of Claddagh symbol ring has evolved to encompass a broader meaning of love, friendship, and loyalty.

This meaning is reflected in the way that we wear our Claddagh rings. With the heart facing inward for those who are single. And outward for those who are in a relationship or married.

Irish Americans wear the meaning of Claddagh ring as a way to connect with their heritage. While those in other cultures might wear it out of appreciation for its meaning and symbolism.

While the meaning of a Claddagh ring may change over time, one thing remains the same. Its meaning of love, friendship, and loyalty is one that many cherish universally.

Whether you are in a relationship or single, wearing a Claddagh ring is a way to express your commitment to these values and cherish them each and every day.

What is The Claddagh Ring Design?

Irish ring on an older man's hand

The design of the classic Claddagh ring is one that has been revered for centuries.

Consisting of two hands holding a heart, topped by a crown, this unique symbol represents love, friendship, and loyalty.

Specifically, the Irish design associates with a tribe known native Galway, the Joyce family.

The first Irish Claddagh ring relates to Margaret Joyce who married the Mayor of Galway, Domingo De Rona, in the 16th century.

Given to her for her good deeds it’s believed to have been the inspiration for this traditional Irish design.

Furthermore, this iconic symbol is worn as a way to express your commitment to these values. And cherish them each and every day.

Therefore, no matter your relationship status, the meaning of Claddagh ring is one that resonates with people all over the world.

Many Irish people wear Claddagh wedding rings. It encompasses the rich history and meaning that is woven throughout Irish roots.

Celtic Knot

Claddagh, Irish wedding ring set in stainless steel on a display at a jewelry store

The Celtic knot of the Claddagh ring story represents different elements and their own meaning.

The hands represent friendship, the crown is for loyalty, and the heart symbolizes love. In the village of Claddagh, the meaning of Claddagh ring represents the readiness to be wed.

Many wear it on their wedding day. And some even choose to get a Claddagh ring tattoo in lieu of or instead of the traditional Claddagh wedding ring.

In the 19th century, the Claddagh meaning inspired other jewelry designs, including pendants and earrings.

The good work of design and meaning of the design has inspired many people to create their own versions and interpretations of the Claddagh ring meaning.

How to Wear a Claddagh Ring

a Claddagh ring with bleeding hearts meaning of claddagh symbol

The master goldsmith of this ring made a crowned heart and clasped hands on the outside with a motto Claddagh ring meaning “Let Love and Friendship Reign Supreme.”

There are a few different ways that you can wear a Claddagh ring. Depending on your personal preference and the meaning you want to convey.

Some people choose to wear their ring facing outward if they are in a relationship or married, with the heart facing outward to symbolize their love for another person.

Additionally, others choose to wear the ring facing inward if they are single. With the heart facing inward as a symbol of their own self-love and commitment to remaining single.

Which Hand Should I Wear a Claddagh Ring On?

Claddagh ring with a red rose

The traditional way to wear a Claddagh ring is on the left hand with the point of the heart toward your fingertips.

However, there is no right or wrong way to wear a Claddagh ring. It all boils down to personal preference and what meaning you want to convey through this timeless piece of jewelry.

Claddagh engagement rings and wedding rings are also popular among Irish couples. As the meaning of Claddagh symbol is one that resonates at these special life events.

So whether you prefer to wear your ring on the left or right hand, don’t be afraid to express yourself and embrace your own unique style!

Who Buys The Ring?

Claddagh ring with blue topaz in center heart meaning of claddagh symbol

It can be a symbol of bad luck to buy your own Claddagh ring. The Irish symbols are typically given as gifts, either from a friend or family member.

In the Irish heritage the Claddagh ring is rooted in the tradition of friendship and love between two people, making it an especially meaningful gift.

Therefore, Irish mothers may pass it down as a family heirloom to their eldest daughter.

Specifically, the ring is placed on your daughter’s hand as a sign of holy trinity, representing her mother, father, and God.

A young woman who receives the ring may wear the meaning of Claddagh symbol on her right hand until she is married, at which point it will be moved to her left ring finger.

Claddagh Ring Today

the Claddagh ring on purple background

Over time, the traditional Irish ring has evolved to encompass a broader meaning of love, friendship, and loyalty.

Today, the Claddagh ring is all over the world as a timeless symbol of these important values.

Additionally, it was Queen Victoria that cemented the ring into Ireland’s history.

With a modern form, the Claddagh’s distinctive design is on everything from earrings to pendants.

Meaning that there is a way for everyone to express their love and appreciation for these timeless values.

The Fenian Claddagh ring is a slightly different take on the ring with no crown.

Additionally, the Claddagh design can be found as a promise ring, faith rings known as fede rings, wedding band, or as engagement rings.

Final Thoughts

Whether you are Irish or not, the meaning of Claddagh ring is one that resonates with people all over the world.

This iconic symbol represents love, friendship, and loyalty, making it a meaningful piece of jewelry for anyone to wear.

So whether you prefer to wear your ring on the left or right hand until you are married. 

Or if you want to embrace your unique style and wear it on the left ring finger, the meaning of the Claddagh ring is one that will always be timeless.

Overall, you can find the Caddah ring all over the world. There you have it, the meaning of Claddagh symbol!

meaning of claddagh symbol

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