26 February 2015

Crown Princess Mary's Engagement Ring

As we wrap up our look into the jewelry box of our Magpie of the Month, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, it's only appropriate that we discuss the piece of jewelry that signaled her entry into the world of royalty: her engagement ring.

Mary met her future husband -- and the future king of Denmark -- during the Sydney Olympics in 2000. Three years later, the couple officially announced their engagement. The ring that Crown Prince Frederik gave his future bride featured both diamonds and a colored stone: rubies.

Frederik reportedly selected the ruby and diamond ring because it reflected the red and white colors of the Danish flag. Ruby baguettes flank a central emerald-cut diamond, and the stones are set in gold.

Mary is not the only modern royal bride to receive a ruby ring -- Sarah Ferguson, the former wife of the Duke of York, also wore a ruby and diamond engagement ring, as did the Countess of Frederiksborg, the first wife of Frederik's younger brother, Prince Joachim. Mary's sister-in-law, Princess Marie, received an engagement ring that included both a ruby and a sapphire.

In recent years, the engagement ring has been altered a bit: two more diamonds have been added to either side of the ring. I like the change; I think it makes the ring look more substantial -- certainly a piece fit for a future queen. And the ring can now be seen with additional symbolic weight, as the five stones could stand for the crown princess's husband and their four children.