Why Engagement and Wedding Rings Are Worn on the Left Hand

Wedding and engagement rings are special symbols of love and commitment between two partners, typically worn on the left ring finger. This practice has been around for centuries and has been adopted by numerous cultures.

This article will explore the history of why the left hand is so often used for engagement or wedding rings and the potential meanings that could be attributed to this hand placement.

1. Historical Significance of Wearing Engagement and Wedding Rings on the Left Hand

The original practice of wearing an engagement and wedding ring on the left hand is believed to be tied to medieval European customs. In ancient Rome, it was customary for brides to wear a ring on their left ring finger, with the belief that the finger had a vein known as the ‘vena amorist—or ‘vein of love’—which was directly connected to the heart. This romantic gesture was viewed as a representation of eternal love.

In some religious belief systems, the left hand is also seen as the spiritual side, making it a suitable choice to wear a symbol of God’s blessing and protection. In the Catholic faith, the traditional significance is that wearing a ring on the left hand signifies the couple’s journey through life together and their need for each other’s support.

Some other cultures across the world also traditionally opt for the left hand, although in some African and Middle Eastern countries, the traditions are different. In these regions, the belief is that wearing the wedding band on the left hand is a sign that a woman is taken and not available for marriage.

In the Western world, wearing a ring on the left hand is still widely recognized and practiced. Over time, the symbolism of the gesture has evolved and now also represents faithfulness, commitment, and the unbroken nature of marriage.

2. Cultural Significance of Wearing Engagement and Wedding Rings on the Left Hand

Wearing engagement and wedding rings on the left finger has held a special significance in many cultures throughout history. Some of the notable implications of wearing rings on the left finger include:

  • A Symbol of Love: Wearing rings on the left finger has long been viewed as a symbol of love and devotion. The left hand is associated with the heart, and wearing a ring on that finger has traditionally symbolized a couple’s commitment to each other.
  • Status of Marriage: Wearing a ring on the left finger also indicates that a couple is married, and marks them as husband and wife in the eyes of the public. Wearing the rings marks the union of two lives that now share a single destiny.
  • Cultural Beliefs: Wearing a ring on the left hand is also based on certain cultural beliefs about the energy of that side of the body. In some cultures, it is believed that this side of the hand is linked to the heart, and wearing the rings here will help to strengthen the emotional connection between the couple.

Wearing a ring on the left hand is therefore a powerful and symbolic gesture that has been practiced in cultures around the world for centuries. The tradition of wearing a ring on this finger is a clear representation of the strong bond of love and commitment that a couple shares.

Today, the traditional practice of wearing engagement and wedding rings on the left finger is still very popular, and these rings continue to be a reflection of a couple’s love and devotion to each other.

Nowadays, the rings are often seen as a symbol of the couple’s union, of their commitment to each other, and of their status as married.

3. Modern Significance of Wearing Engagement and Wedding Rings on the Left Hand

Wedding and Exchange rings have long been used to express commitment and commitment. Today, the rings are still a symbol of love and commitment, but they also have a modern, cultural significance in many parts of the world.

The primary modern significance of wearing rings on the left hand is that it is a very visible symbol of a couple’s commitment to one another. Whether two people are married, engaged, or simply in a committed relationship, a shared promise to remain together is usually expressed by a visible reminder, such as rings on the left hand.

Why left?

  • Historically, people have worn wedding and exchange rings on the left hand because it was believed that the left side of the body was closer to the heart.
  • Psychologically, wearing rings on the left hand can provide some comfort and security in a relationship. Knowing that your loved one wears a ring on the left hand can help you both feel more connected to one another, even miles apart.

The traditional meaning behind the left-hand rings, however, should not be overlooked. For many couples, the idea of rings on both sides of the body symbolizes the two becoming one. As two people join together as one, they are forever committed to each other.

For traditional couples, the rings also signify a new era of life that they will share together, hence the phrase “tying the knot.” For modern couples, while the physical rings may still be worn to show a commitment to each other, they may also represent the shared life the couple is entering into.


In conclusion, the significance of engagement and wedding rings being worn on the left hand is more than just a tradition. It is meant to symbolize commitment and devotion, which is why wearing it on the left hand has become the norm.

Related: Right-Hand Rings: Is It Okay?

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