Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34Stamp of Individuality SIGNET RINGS IN HISTORY Signet rings have been symbols of power, prestige and heritage since the earliest days of civilisation. For thousands of years, they have served many important roles in the societies of which they were created. The earliest recorded use of a signet ring dates back to ancient Egypt, where rings adorned with hieroglyphics were discovered among the riches and finery of pharaohs’ tombs. As this period predated traditional writing, it is understood that these rings were also used for identification during business transactions instead of signatures. Signet rings were also a vital component of Greek and Roman culture. Decorated warriors, emperors and noblemen wore signet rings which were often adorned with images of Greek and Roman gods, pagan symbols and creatures from mythology. The wearing of a coat of arms began to develop in the 1100’s. During this time, a system of designing images and symbols were initially drawn onto the outer coat of a soldier’s clothing, and became known as a ‘coat of arms’, enabling him to be identified quickly as a friend or foe on the battlefield. As the practice grew, the process of granting and designing of arms became formalised in the tradition known as heraldry. In contemporary culture, although signets are still worn as a part of familial traditions, they are also for aesthetic purposes, to express and communicate the things that mean the most to us, creating symbols for identification, love, friendship, affiliation, promise, rebellion. They all serve as personal statements and are often striking and surprising. 9