Submitted by: Scott Wilhelmy
Claddagh rings appeal to the sentimental side of everyone who has ever heard the story of Richard Joyce. Interestingly enough, the men who hear this possible legend seem to enjoy the telling as much as do the women. Perhaps, this is because loyalty, steadfastness, hard work and succeeding when everything was stacked against him appeals to the best characteristics in every person. Women may be as much interested in the above sentiments, but they also enjoy hearing about the love that was displayed by the young man in question. It is appealing to think of being loved so much that a half world of distance, slavery and the enticement of wealth and security did not sway the man.
Elements of the ring that became known as the Claddagh ring have been around since Roman times. Finger rings of all sorts were created to demonstrate commitment to another person at some level. Claddagh rings belong to a group of rings known as faith rings, since they were provided to demonstrate the sealing of a promise, that of faith in another individual. More specifically, this particular version of the ring was more elaborate than others and espoused the sentiments of love, loyalty and friendship or voluntary choices.
The particular symbols that go along with the presentation of Claddagh rings to a loved individual may vary according to the relationship and to the level of commitment that it is intended to portray. Claddagh rings have been given to recognize a birthday, to recognize a woman as the mother of one’s children, or to show a recognition of a commitment to wed. Couples today commonly exchange these rings and wear them proudly as wedding rings. The rings may incorporate precious or semi precious stones which have their own symbolism.
Claddagh village and the surrounding area, including the environs of the city of Galway is commonly recognized–both in history and in the naming of the Claddagh rings–as the location of the original design. This is a relatively small area geographically, but it has given the world a beautifully crafted design and symbol of lasting love. The name Joyce or Joyes is well known as a clan name in the area and as the primary person in at least two versions of the legend.
Legend of the Ring
Regardless of which of the legends of the Claddagh rings that appeals to you, it portrays a beautiful and timeless story of true love and commitment to another person which was not affected by separation, distance or enticements of wealth and fame. Another version of the Claddagh ring legend is less devoted to romantic love than to love and care for one’s fellow man. Margaret Joyce supposedly spent her personal fortune to help the people of her adopted community of Galway and was rewarded from the heavens with the Claddagh ring. Whether any of the legends are fairy tales or completely verifiable is less important than the belief in the lofty sentiments that they portray.
About the Author: Losing a
in a break up is absolutely awful. Whether it be an
Irish Claddagh Ring
Silver Claddagh Ring
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