The Claddagh: More than just a ring

Claddagh Ring picture via Wikipedia

If you’ve ever seen someone wearing this ring and wondered what it signified, you’ve come to the right blog post.

The Claddagh ring is worn by people who are affiliated with or have an affection for Ireland.

The design, originated by a blacksmith in Claddagh, a town outside of Galway on the west of Ireland, was originally created as a wedding ring.

There is also a river by the name of Claddagh which meets the Corrib river at Galway city and flows into Galway bay. The word Claddagh, pronounced Clada, means stony beach. The town itself is one of the oldest fishing villages in Ireland, existing before the arrival of Christianity.

The Claddagh in Galway, Ireland

The Claddagh attracted many writers who spread the word about the idyllic location of the Claddagh with its thatched cottages. The village was located outside of the old Galway city walls, but in the 1930’s the cottages were destroyed and replaced with council housing.

The original design of the hands holding a heart and topped by a crown signify love, friendship and loyalty, fashioned by a blacksmith who could not afford to purchase a wedding ring for his betrothed.

Why do I like it? Because the guy who designed it did so with an old and outdated skill, blacksmithing, and also because the Claddagh in Galway, located near the Spanish Arch, is a beautiful area made famous by writers.

So if you’ve got friends who are of Irish descent and who aspire to writing, the Claddagh design is more than just an Irish wedding ring, it was designed in a place made famous by writers. Heck, they don’t even have to be Irish to appreciate the story of an artist who was broke and decided to use his craft and skill and then share it, do they?

The Claddagh design

The red dot signifies the location of the Claddagh in County Galway in Ireland

3 thoughts on “The Claddagh: More than just a ring

  1. Thank you for this. A bank teller in L.A. just thought it was a pretty ring and had no idea what it was. I thanked her and she said, “Have a blessed day.”

  2. Thanks, Lonnie. I have seen this ring many times and know people who purchased them. They didn’t explain the entire meaning to me as you have. In fact, I doubt they knew much more than the obvious.

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