• Sign In
    Sign Up
  • English speaking customer support only

    Toll Free - USA & Canada only:


  • Change Language
  • USD

Claddagh Rings Information

Gold Claddagh Ring with Emerald Accents
Gold Claddagh Ring with Emerald Accents

Claddagh rings are traditional Irish rings featuring two hands clasping a heart, over which is a crown. According to tradition, the hands signify friendship; the heart is a symbol of love and the crown stands for loyalty. The fishing village of Claddagh in Galway, Western Ireland, is the origin of the eponymous ring.

The clasped hands of the Claddagh are thought to originate from Roman "fede" (faith) rings, which were tokens of affection. The Claddagh ring itself is said to date back to the 1600s and there are several stories regarding its history. One such legend tells of a lady called Margaret Joyce, who married a wealthy Spaniard called Domingo de Rona, who died and left her his money. It is said that Ms Joyce put the money to good use, building bridges and doing other charitable work, and due to her good deeds, the ring was dropped into her lap by an eagle. Another story is of a Richard Joyce, who went to work in the West Indies, leaving his beloved behind awaiting his return. However, Joyce was captured and sold as a goldsmith's slave. Once freed, Joyce returned to Ireland with the ring he had made for her. According to some, a Claddagh ring should only be received as a gift, rather than purchased by the wearer, and that Claddagh rings are traditionally handed down from mother to daughter.

During the 1800s, Claddagh rings became known beyond the borders of Ireland. In fact, it is said that Queen Victoria of England wore a Claddagh ring, along with other members of the British Royal Family. Across the Atlantic, American presidents and Hollywood stars have also been known to wear Claddagh rings. These are sometimes worn to indicate Irish ancestry, as well as friendship.

Silver Claddagh Ring with Peridot Gemstone
Silver Claddagh Ring with Peridot Gemstone

Traditionally, the significance of a Claddagh ring differs according to the way in which it is worn and there are regional variations in the meaning. Generally, if the ring is worn on the right hand with the crown facing out (toward the fingertips), this means that the wearer is available, and their heart is open to love. If worn on the right hand with the crown facing inward, this means that the wearer's heart is taken. When the Claddagh ring is worn on the left hand with the crown facing out, this means the wearer is engaged, and when worn on the left hand with the heart facing inward, it conveys that the wearer is married.

Many Claddagh rings are plain gold or silver, but more modern versions use a heart-shaped central gemstone. Some Claddagh rings may also be embellished with channel-set gemstones in the band. A popular color for Claddagh ring gemstones is green, since the Irish national symbol of the shamrock is green. Therefore, emerald, peridot, sapphire and other green gemstones are a perfect choice. Another modern version of the Claddagh ring is a wedding band which features the hands, heart and crown design engraved or in relief on the surface.

If you are thinking of giving a gift from the heart with a special link to Irish heritage, perhaps a Claddagh ring would be a perfect lasting token of love, loyalty and friendship, along with the traditional phrase, "With these hands I give you my heart and crown it with my love".

  • First Published: October-16-2015
  • Last Updated: January-22-2019
*You're signing up to receive GemSelect promotional email.

Privacy Notice © 2005-2022 all rights reserved.

Reproduction (text or graphics) without the express written consent of (SETT Company Ltd.) is strictly prohibited.


More Shapes
Popular Gemstones
  • Sapphire
  • Emerald
  • Ruby
  • Aquamarine
  • Zircon
  • Opal
  • Topaz
  • Tourmaline
  • Garnet
  • Amethyst
  • Citrine
  • Tanzanite
All Gemstones (136)
  • Actinolite Cat's Eye
  • Agate
  • Agate Geode
  • Almandine Garnet
  • Amazonite
  • Amethyst
  • Amethyst Geode
  • Ametrine
  • Ammolite
  • Andalusite
  • Andesine Labradorite
  • Apatite
  • Aquamarine
  • Aventurine
  • Black Opal
  • Bloodstone
  • Boulder Opal
  • Carnelian
  • Cat's Eye Apatite
  • Cat's Eye Aquamarine
  • Cat's Eye Gemstones
  • Cat's Eye Moonstone
  • Cat's Eye Opal
  • Cat's Eye Scapolite
  • Chalcedony
  • Charoite
  • Chocolate Opal
  • Chrome Diopside
  • Chrysoberyl
  • Chrysocolla
  • Chrysoprase
  • Citrine
  • Color Change Gemstones
  • Color-Change Diaspore
  • Color-Change Fluorite
  • Color-Change Garnet
  • Color-Change Sapphire
  • Coral
  • Demantoid Garnet
  • Dendritic Agate
  • Diamond
  • Druzy Amethyst
  • Druzy Azurite
  • Druzy Variscite
  • Emerald
  • Enstatite
  • Fire Agate
  • Fire Opal
  • Fluorite
  • Fossil Coral
  • Garnet
  • Golden Beryl
  • Grandidierite
  • Grossularite Garnet
  • Hematite
  • Hemimorphite
  • Hemimorphite Druzy
  • Hessonite Garnet
  • Howlite
  • Idocrase
  • Imperial Topaz
  • Iolite
  • Jade Gemstones
  • Jadeite
  • Jasper
  • Kornerupine
  • Kunzite
  • Kyanite
  • Labradorite
  • Lapis Lazuli
  • Larimar
  • Malachite
  • Malaya Garnet
  • Mali Garnet
  • Maw-Sit-Sit
  • Moonstone
  • Morganite
  • Mother Of Pearl
  • Mystic Topaz
  • Nuummite
  • Obsidian
  • Opal
  • Opal Doublet
  • Opal In Matrix
  • Pearl
  • Peridot
  • Pietersite
  • Prehnite
  • Pyrite
  • Pyrope Garnet
  • Quartz
  • Quartz Cat's Eye
  • Quartz With Hedenbergite
  • Quartz With Marcasite
  • Rainbow Moonstone
  • Rainbow Pyrite
  • Rhodochrosite
  • Rhodolite Garnet
  • Rose Quartz
  • Rubellite Tourmaline
  • Ruby
  • Ruby In Fuchsite
  • Ruby-Zoisite
  • Rutile Quartz
  • Sapphire
  • Scapolite
  • Scolecite
  • Seraphinite
  • Sillimanite
  • Sillimanite Cat's Eye
  • Smithsonite
  • Smoky Quartz
  • Snowflake Obsidian
  • Sodalite
  • Spectrolite
  • Spessartite Garnet
  • Sphene
  • Spinel
  • Star Diopside
  • Star Garnet
  • Star Gemstones
  • Star Moonstone
  • Star Rose Quartz
  • Star Ruby
  • Star Sapphire
  • Strawberry Quartz
  • Sunstone
  • Tanzanite
  • Tiger's Eye
  • Tiger's Eye Matrix
  • Topaz
  • Tourmaline
  • Tsavorite Garnet
  • Turquoise
  • Variscite
  • Zircon
Main Categories
  • New Arrivals
  • Gemstone Lots
  • Calibrated Gemstones
  • Gemstones By Piece
  • Top Grade Gems
  • Matching Pairs
  • Cabochon Gemstones
  • Drilled Gems, Briolettes and Beads
  • Birthstones
  • Gemstone Carvings
  • Fancy Gemstones
  • Star Gemstones
  • Unheated Sapphire
English speaking customer support only

Toll Free - USA & Canada only:


Save Money
No shipping Fees for Additional Items!
$8.90 Worldwide Shipping

Update Translation
Current Value
New Value
GemSelect Gemstones
X Close Window
Colored Gemstones
X Close Window
Colored Gemstones
X Close Window
Colored Gemstones
Size and Weight

Gems are always measured in Millimeter (mm)

Dimensions are given as;
length x width x depth,
except for round stones which are;
diameter x depth

Select gems by size, not by weight!
Gem varieties vary in density, so carat weight is not a good indication of size

Note: 1ct = 0.2g

Size Comparison Chart