Princess Anne: Experts discuss letters with Timothy Laurence
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Princess Anne debuted her engagement ring from Captain Mark Phillips in 1973, and after her divorce in the 1990s she received another ring from her current husband Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence. When picking an engagement ring, many people favour diamond ones. But Princess Anne bucked the trend with both of her engagement rings by opting for sapphires.
While both of Princess Anne’s rings included sapphires, her second ring is “more unique” due to the type of sapphire it showcases.
The jewellery experts at Austen and Blake said: “A clear fan of the gemstone, both of Princess Anne’s engagement rings from her marriage to Mark Phillips and Tim Laurence have featured sapphire centre stones.
“The first features three same-sized stones in a row alternating between diamond and sapphire.
“The second ring from her current marriage is slightly more unique featuring a cabochon stone with three small diamonds on each side.”
Cabochon-cut stones have been shaped and polished rather than faceted, and Anne’s cabochon sapphire gives her engagement ring a timeless finish.
Judging by her two engagement rings, Princess Anne clearly adores the blue precious stone.
And fittingly, the meaning behind sapphires makes them perfect for one of the Royal Family’s hardest workers.
Steven Stone’s leading engagement ring specialist, Max Stone, said: “It’s interesting that Princess Anne received sapphire engagement rings rather than traditional diamond rings.
“Blue sapphires are often linked to people who are respectful, loyal, hardworking, and honest, which only makes these rings even more special, and suggests that this could have meant something to Princess Anne.”
Princess Diana also famously had a sapphire engagement ring, although hers was arguably more striking than Anne’s due to its incredible size.
Designed by the royal jeweller Garrard, Princess Diana’s engagement ring features a 12-carat oval sapphire that is royal blue in hue.
The gem is surrounded by a halo of diamonds set in white gold, and it now belongs to Kate Middleton.
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Diana is thought to have picked the ring due to the striking colour which she thought matched her blue eyes.
The Princess adored it so much that she was even pictured wearing it after she and Prince Charles separated in 1992.
Princess Eugenie, the Queen’s granddaughter, also famously sports a sapphire engagement ring.
Eugenie’s padparadscha sapphire is pink-orange in colour and it is surrounded by diamonds in a sunburst arrangement.
While sapphires are certainly the Royal Family’s firm favourite gem when it comes to picking engagement rings, other precious stones have made appearances over the years.
Sarah Ferguson flaunted a ruby and diamond ring in the 1980s when she got engaged to the Queen’s second son Prince Andrew.
The wife of the former King Edward VIII, Wallis Simpson, owned an enormous emerald ring weighing in at nearly 20 carats.
Meghan Markle, Princess Beatrice and the Queen all wear diamond engagement rings.
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