Princess Margaret: Experts discuss 'heartbreaking' divorce
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Princess Margaret’s engagement to Antony Armstrong-Jones in 1960 caused quite the stir, with Margaret one of the Royal Family’s most famous members at the time. Although their union was not to be and ended in divorce in 1978, Princess Margaret’s unusual engagement ring has come to be known as one of the most famous royal engagement rings ever. Express.co.uk explored the touching hidden meanings behind Princess Margaret’s iconic engagement ring.
The tribute to Margaret’s name
Princess Margaret was named Margaret Rose by her parents, King George VI and the Queen Mother, then known as the Duke and Duchess of York in 1930.
And in a fitting tribute to Margaret’s floral middle name, Antony chose an engagement ring that resembled a rose for his future wife.
Alexandra Michell, a gemologist at Prestige Pawnbrokers of Channel 4’s Posh Pawn, told Express.co.uk: “Princess Margaret’s engagement ring was a sweet nod to her middle name ‘Rose’.
“Designed by Antony Armstrong-Jones – her soon to be fiancé – he chose a ruby centre stone, surrounded by a garland of large diamonds to represent a flower.
“These were set into a platinum mount, and a yellow gold band.
“He worked with renowned British jeweller S. J. Philips of Mayfair to create the piece and in 1960, the price tag came to £250.”
The symbolism of the ruby
Although many royal engagement rings feature diamonds, Antony purchased a ruby ring for his royal bride-to-be.
According to the jewellery expert, rubies are often seen as a symbol of love, making the ring the perfect choice for the loved-up couple.
Ms Michell added: “Red or pink are not usually considered as traditional colours for an engagement ring. However, it is the most popular colour to represent love.
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“Combined with the symbolism of the design, although it is uncommon, it is very romantic.”
In the years since Princess Margaret’s engagement ring debuted, very few members of the Royal Family have opted for ruby engagement rings.
Sarah Ferguson was given a ruby engagement ring upon her engagement to Prince Andrew in the 1980s.
But on the whole, sapphires appear to have been very popular for royal engagement rings, with Princess Diana, Kate Middleton and Princess Eugenie all pictured sporting sapphire engagement rings in recent decades.
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