The Claddagh is a traditional Irish ring named after the fishing village of Claddagh that is located beside the city of Galway in the West of Ireland. Claddagh Jewelry can be worn as a symbol of heritage or as a symbol of commitment to three beautiful sentiments. Love – represented by the Connemara Marble heart, Loyalty – represented by the Crown and Friendship – represented by the hands holding the heart.
The story of how the Claddagh was created goes as follows :
It is said that Richard Joyce created the first Claddagh ring in the late 1600’s . He was a fisherman from the village of Claddagh and whilst out fishing off the coast of Galway was captured by Algerian pirates.
After being captured he was sold on as a slave to a Moorish goldsmith. The goldsmith needed an apprentice. Noticing Joyce’s talent, he taught him the trade. Whilst in captivity Joyce designed the Claddagh ring for his fiancée in the hope that someday he would be released.
In 1689, Joyce was released when William III sent an ambassador to Algeria to demand the release of captured slaves. Upon hearing this, his captor offered Joyce half of his wealth and his only daughter in marriage to remain in Algeria such was his talent.
Joyce declined the offer, eager to return to his native Galway. On returning home, Joyce found that his fiancée was waiting for him and he presented her with the Claddagh ring as a symbol of love, loyalty and friendship. They were married soon after.
He was quick to establish himself as a goldsmith in Galway and went on to produce copies of the ring and examples of his work can be seen in the National Museum in Dublin.
Presented in a hinged gift box and with a Certificate of Authenticity this is such a meaningful piece of Celtic lore full of history but with a contemporary design.
These are US ring sizes please check https://connemaramarble.com/frequently-asked-questions/ for our ring size guide.