What Is a Ring?

A ring is a circular band of metal or other material worn on the finger. It may have symbolic functions respecting marriage, exceptional achievement, high status or authority, and membership of an organization.

Niki Allworth, founder of budget-friendly jewelry brand Adornmonde, says to think about how you’ll wear a new ring before selecting it. For example, if you’ll be shaking hands a lot, opt for a thin and small band.


A ring is an ornamental band worn around a finger or in a piercing (such as the nose or ears). Rings are also worn on other parts of the body and can be made from almost any hard material. Rings must fit snugly on the part Jewelry Set of the body they ornament, so bands that are worn loosely, like a bracelet, are not rings.

The term ring is derived from the Latin word for “circle,” which was originally used to describe a curved piece of metal in the shape of a circle. During the course of history, a number of different shapes were popular for rings, including signet rings, which acted as personal seals. The use of rings as symbols of wealth, power and land ownership was also common throughout the European Middle Ages.

Rings are usually circular but can be elliptical, square or rectangular in cross-section. They may have a flat or raised top, known as a bezel. A bezel holds a gemstone or other decoration, such as carved cameos, which were once commonly worn by men but have recently become more common among women. A cameo ring consists of a plain hoop into which is affixed a carving depicting pagan gods, Christian saints or self-portraits. The earliest examples of betrothal rings date to ancient Egypt, where they were exchanged as tokens of devotion. These were later adopted in Greece and Rome, where they became linked to marriage contracts. During the Renaissance, goldsmiths began engraving poetic inscriptions on the inside of rings, which eventually became an accepted symbol of engagement and wedding vows.


A ring is an algebraic structure equipped with two binary operations satisfying properties analogous to those of addition and multiplication of integers. Rings may be augmented to include negative numbers to produce the ring of real numbers or to contain complex numbers and their algebras. Many non-numerical objects, including polynomials, square matrices, functions and formal power series, can be analyzed as rings.

The ring of integers, with its two binary operations and additive inverse, is perhaps the prototypical ring. A ring must also satisfy some additional conditions to be considered complete, such as the absence of an infinite sequence of left ideals. This condition is sometimes weakened to form a semiring, which has all the axioms of a ring except that it does not contain an additive inverse.

A ring can be given a topology that makes its addition map and multiplication map (R R x R) continuous as maps between two topological spaces. This form of a ring is usually called a topological ring, and it inherits the axioms of a category of rings. A topological ring is not necessarily a commutative ring, however; it can be a semiring or even a finite ring.


Rings may be crafted from a variety of materials. A gold ring is traditionally a symbol of marriage, while silver Enamel Earrings rings are worn to attract wealth-promoting energies. A ring can also be fashioned to sport insignia that signifies membership in an organization or social rank. In addition to adornment, rings have historically had many functional functions including honoring fidelity, high achievement, identifying members of an ethnic group and so forth.

Tungsten carbide rings are a relatively newcomer to the jewelry industry, but they’re known for their durability and ability to withstand wear and tear. Tungsten carbide consists of tungsten and carbon, which is a harder metal than precious metals such as gold or silver. These rings are best suited for men, as they’re tough enough to stand up to any kind of abuse and still look great.

Stainless steel is another durable choice for men’s rings. It’s a hard, shiny metal that doesn’t show scratches or signs of wear and tear as easily as traditional metals. Stainless steel rings typically have a minimum of 10.5% chromium, which helps it resist corrosion.


When it comes to choosing a ring, there are many different features to consider. Knowing the terminology can help you better communicate your ideal ring with a personal shopper or drop a hint to that special someone in your life.

Ring design has come a long way over the centuries, from simple bands that feature a center stone to rings with a halo of diamonds and other embellishments to highlight their beauty. The design of a ring can also be incorporated with a number of different symbols and sentimental attachments to mark milestones or express one’s personality.

A ring can be worn on the finger, toes or the ears (see earring). They can be made of any durable material and are designed for aesthetic appeal, to hold gems, or to mark a union or betrothal. They can be designed to have a flat top or to contain a raised bezel, in which case they are known as a signet ring.

In mathematics, a ring is an algebraic set that is closed under addition and multiplication and satisfies the following properties: