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Ringing in the Changes

Somewhere around 1675 the Algerian Corsairs kidnapped and enslaved a silversmith called Richard Joyce. He was from Galway in Ireland and was on his way to visit the West Indies when he was taken hostage and sold into slavery—or so the legend goes. It continues when he was taught his trade by a goldsmith, but was free, reluctantly, when King William III sent his special ambassador to demand they release every one of the British subjects they were holding. Upon his return to Ireland Richard Joyce had brought back with him a special ring that he had spent his time crafting. His legendary tale has no proof of truth, but maybe the Irish like to believe that such things happened and the story is certainly an interesting one. Joyce was said to have brought the ring back and proposed marriage to his sweetheart with it. The ring—a gold band with a two clasped hands holding a heart, with a crown a top of the heart—was said to become the blueprint of the Claddagh ring that we now recognize.

The legend Lives on

Whatever the true story, the Claddagh ring has become a symbol of Irish tradition when it comes to jewelry. It can also be seen on many public house signs and other places of businesses across Ireland. Not only does the Claddagh ring represent a large part of Irish history, it also is said to represent loyalty, love and friendship. The crown is the symbol of loyalty, the hands are the friendship and the heart, obviously, is the love.

Anyone who visits antique markets or secondhand jewelry stores might find discount Claddagh rings for sale at a far more reasonable price than they might expect to see. Many people find that Claddagh rings are the perfect gift to offer a friend as a present because of the representation of the friendship of the hands. It is a ‘safe’ option for friends but could also be given by lovers because of the heart. The whole point of the Claddagh ring is that it is totally an open gift that really could be owned by anyone. It is an attractive and clever design that will last for a lifetime and beyond.

To purchase the best quality discount Claddagh rings contact Marcus Jewelry to view their products and prices and to see for yourself the wide choices available.

 

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    Author: Carmelo Speelman

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