There are so many things we love about a royal wedding. The pomp, the circumstance, the fairy-tale element, the tiaras, the gowns, the guest-list full of dignitaries, Hollywood celebrities and foreign monarchs—but there is nothing we love more than a royal engagement ring. Of course, every engagement ring makes a special statement, but when you’re royal – or marrying one – you can guarantee it will be seen around the world. Which royal engagement ring is your favourite…
PRINCE HARRY AND MEGHAN MARKLE
Prince Harry proposed to the American actress with a ring he designed himself. Two smaller side stones from Princess Diana’s personal collection flank the centre stone, sourced from Botswana. The trilogy shape creates optimum sparkle, and represents the past, present and future. It is set in yellow gold, a classic metal, said by Harry to be Meghan’s favourite. “The little diamonds on either side are from my mother’s jewellery collection to make sure that she’s with us on this crazy journey together,” said Prince Harry.
The Ring: A 3-carat cushion cut diamond with two side diamonds flanking the centre stone on a yellow gold band.
PRINCESS EUGRNIE AND JACK BROOKSBANK
The daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson was proposed to by Jack with an engagement ring that contains a padparadscha sapphire surrounded by diamonds in a design similar to her mother’s Burmese ruby ring. The main gemstone in Eugenie’s ring is surrounded by 10 round diamonds, plus flanked by an additional two pear-shaped diamonds. Jack admitted that he proposed without a ring, as he “didn’t want to do anything until Eugenie had signed off on it.”
The Ring: A blush coloured padparadscha sapphire surrounded by diamonds.
PRINCE WILLIAM AND KATHERINE MIDDLETON
Princess Diana’s iconic 12.00ct sapphire and diamond engagement ring now sits on the finger of Kate Middleton, following her marriage to Prince William in 2012. After Diana’s death in 1997, Prince Harry had chosen the ring as a memento from her jewellery collection – but the boys decided whoever of them proposed first would keep it. “Obviously, she’s not going to be around to share in any of the fun and excitement of it all,” said Prince William on their engagement, “so this is my way of keeping her sort of close to it all.”
The Ring: An oval 12-carat Ceylon sapphire surrounded by a cluster of 14 solitaire diamonds set in white gold.
PRINCESS ELIZABETH AND PHILIP MOUNTBATTEN
Philip himself designed Princess Elizabeth’s three-carat diamond ring made with stones from a tiara once belonging to his mother, Princess Alice of Battenberg. The centre stone is flanked by five smaller diamonds on each side and broke a running tradition of receiving coloured-stone rings in the engagement ring. Having just celebrated her 92nd birthday, Queen Elizabeth II still wears this ring.
The Ring: A 3-carat round centre stone flanked with 10 smaller diamonds.
PRINCE RAINER OF MONACO AND GRACE KELLY
Prince Rainer originally proposed to Hollywood actress Grace Kelly with a ruby and diamond eternity band. However, after seeing that other leading ladies were wearing much larger rings than Kelly, he later bought her another engagement ring – a 10.47ct emerald cut diamond with two baguettes on either side — that would become iconic.
The Ring: A platinum 10.47 carat emerald-cut diamond with two baguette diamonds on each side.
PRINCE CHARLES AND CAMILLA PARKER BOWLES
In 2005, Prince Charles proposed to Camilla Parker Bowles with a ring that had belonged to his grandmother, the Queen Mother. The platinum ring is made up of a large central diamond, flanked by three baguette diamonds on either side and is one of the largest rings in the Royal Family’s collection.
The Ring: An emerald-cut diamond flanked by a trio of baguette diamonds on either side.
PRINCE ANDREW AND SARAH FERGUSON
Although Prince Andrew had already reportedly acquired an emerald ring for his bride-to-be, Sarah Ferguson was intent on receiving a ruby. Sarah chose an oval cut Burmese ruby and it is said they chose the unusual colour because it matched her flame coloured red hair.
The Ring: An oval-cut Burmese ruby flanked by 10 diamonds set in yellow gold.
EDWARD VIII AND WALLIS SIMPSON
The controversial Duchess of Windsor, whose husband the Duke of Windsor abdicated his throne to marry her, had an equally as controversial ring. Wallis Simpson’s royal engagement ring was an enormous 19.77ct Emerald that bore the inscription “We are ours now 27 X 36”, shorthand for the day Edward proposed, October 27, 1936.
The Ring: A 19.77 carat Emerald ring.
PRINCESS MARGARET AND ANTHONY ARMSTRONG-JONES
For her marriage to Antony Armstrong-Jones, Princess Margaret (Queen Elizabeth’s younger sister) was given a ruby ring that was designed to look like a rose, in celebration of her middle name.
The Ring: A vibrant Ruby surrounded by diamonds.
PRINCE FREDERICK AND MARY DONALDSON
Prince Frederik proposed to our Mary with an emerald-cut diamond flanked by two ruby baguettes, representing the Danish flag. Since their marriage in 2004, the couple has added a diamond to either side of this patriotic ring.
The Ring: An emerald-cut diamond flanked by a pair of ruby baguettes.