Christian Jewelry: A Brief History
Dating back to the ancient Greek and Roman times, man has often worn amulets for good luck, to ward off evil spirits as well as to pay homage to deity. It’s no surprise that this tradition would be passed down in our lives today in the form of modern Christian jewelry.
We trace the origin of the first Christian symbol, the fish, back to around 54 A.D. during the days of Christian persecution. The fish was an inconspicuous sign that was easy to use as strangers meeting would draw the first crescent of the fish shape and the other would complete the symbol; thus, showing that they were also Christians. Today, we see a resurgence of this figure on bumper stickers, tee shirts and Christian jewelry. Styles like rings, bracelets, anklets even toe rings and spinner rings are all styled with the fish. Its design is widely popular with the younger generation.
Around the 4th century, we begin to see identification with a cross as a Christian icon. Crude crosses were fashioned out of sticks and leather to be worn around the neck as early signs of Christian jewelry made from this image.
Today, modern Christian jewelry offers a huge selection to appeal to every lifestyle. Diamond encrusted crosses are sometimes used as status symbols for the wealthy as well as fashion statements. Sometimes, a simple silver cross pendant can become so much more as in the case of Gemstones of the Holy Bible.
Christian Jewelry: A Gift for All Time
Special gifts of Christian jewelry are always well received as they are generally given by an important family member or friend to a child on an important red letter day.
While trinkets and bibles are often given as a special gift, an engraved cross pendant crafted from fine silver, gold or other metal is usually the first choice for the youngster who is newly confirmed or has just received the first communion. This type of gift is appropriate for both girls and boys and usually has a lasting impression because of the occasion in marks.
Baptism is also another special time for giving and receiving the gift of Christian jewelry. People of all ages enjoy both giving and receiving gifts of this magnitude as it truly is a gift that keeps on giving. The message for the receiver is that the giver supports their beliefs in the hope for a new life.
Sometimes, Christian jewelry is a “me gift” showing a quiet display of ones faith. Some choose to wear jewels with Christian images because they need a reminder that there is a better life that’s everlasting. Finally, crosses, fish, medallions of saints and other religious icons are self given because they are popular fashion statements. You can see today’s celebrities wearing large, showy cross pendants in magazines giving this symbol prominence in other areas besides just faith.
Christian Jewelry: Notable Jewels
Throughout recorded history, Christian jewelry has been an important display of mankind’s strong belief in a better life that’s everlasting in Heaven.
The Jerusalem cross pendant said to be worn by Godfrey de Bouillon, who lead the Christians to victory by capturing Jerusalem in 1099. It later became the symbol of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem, which was established after the first Crusade until 1291 when the last remaining territory of the kingdom was taken from the Christians.
Charlemagne, the Holy Roman Emperor, had one of the most famous pieces of Christian jewelry. His notable pendant was said to include pieces from the True Cross and the crown of thorns under a sapphire set with gold. It was said that he referred to his pendant as “Warrior” because he often wore it into battle.
Christian jewelry is found today in one of the finest collections in the world…the Crown Jewels. The image of the cross is found repeatedly in royal jewelry collections because it symbolizes the monarchy’s power and connection with God for over a thousand years. Historically, the Sovereigns who sat on the throne believed wholly that they are anointed by God’s own hand and are given the divine right of kings to rule their people.