Modern man Harry will wear a wedding ring after marrying Meghan Markle
Royal grooms such as the Duke of Edinburgh have tended not to wear a band.
Prince Harry will wear a wedding ring after marrying Meghan Markle – something not all royal grooms have chosen to do.
Wedding rings worn by royal brides are traditionally made from Welsh Gold but very few men in the monarchy have chosen to put on a wedding band.
When the Duke of Cambridge married, he followed in the footsteps of his grandfather the Duke of Edinburgh and uncle the Duke of York who both chose not to wear the symbol of marriage.
Royal brides are given wedding rings made from gold nuggets from Clogau St David’s mine at Bontddu in North Wales, and Ms Markle is expected to follow the tradition.
During the Giving Of The Rings part of the ceremony in St George’s Chapel, Harry and Ms Markle will exchange bands, after hearing the Archbishop of Canterbury describe the jewellery as “a symbol of unending love and faithfulness” and a reminder of their vows.
Ms Markle first receives her ring from Harry, who will say: “Meghan, I give you this ring as a sign of our marriage.
“With my body I honour you, all that I am I give to you, and all that I have I share with you, within the love of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.”
When Harry receives his ring from Ms Markle, she will place the band on the fourth finger of his left hand, holding it there, before addressing him with the same words.
The dual exchange of rings will be seen as pointing to the equality of the couple’s relationship.
The Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding ring, a plain, slim gold band, was made by royal warrant holders Wartski and fashioned from a nugget of Welsh gold given to William by his grandmother the Queen as a gift to mark his 2011 wedding.
The custom of men wearing wedding rings is said to be relatively recent and is believed to have started during the Second World War when servicemen wanted a memento to remind them of their partners back home.
Its popularity increased as the decades passed and as it became more fashionable for men to wear jewellery.
In contrast to other royal men, the Prince of Wales does wear a wedding band, under a signet ring on the little finger of his left hand.
There may be an element of social class at play for men who decide not to wear a wedding ring as those from the upper classes are said not to like jewellery.
The Queen Mother began the tradition of royal wedding rings being made from Welsh gold after the precious metal was used to make her wedding band when she married in 1923.
One nugget of gold was used to make the Queen Mother’s wedding ring, the Queen’s in 1947, Princess Margaret’s in 1960, the Princess Royal’s in 1973 and that of Diana, Princess of Wales in 1981.
The gold came from the Clogau St David’s mine. There is now only a minute sliver, one gram (0.035oz), of the original nugget left.
In November 1981, the British Royal Legion presented the Queen with a 36-gram (1.3oz) piece of 21-carat Welsh gold for future royal wedding rings.
The Duchess of Cornwall’s wedding ring was also crafted from Welsh gold from the Clogau St David’s mine and the river Mawddach in the King’s Forest.
It was handmade in court style by Wartski and the precious metal was supplied by Cambrian Goldfields Limited.