STERLING SILVER Claddagh pendant, measures 3/4", includes a 24" Rhodium plated chain. Gift boxed.
The Claddagh Symbol:
The Claddagh symbol is part of rich Irish tradition. The design and customs associated with it originated in the Irish fishing village of Claddagh, located outside the old walls of the city of Galway. The Claddagh ring was first crafted in the 17th century during the reign of Queen Mary II, while some elements of the design are much older.
The Claddagh's distinctive design features two hands clasping a heart that is typically surmounted by a crown. The elements of this symbol are often said to correspond to the qualities of love (the heart), friendship (the hands), and loyalty (the crown). The expression which was associated with these symbols in the giving of the ring was: "Let love and friendship reign."
Gifts bearing the Claddagh symbol are given in friendship and the Claddagh ring is often presented or worn as a wedding ring.
There are a couple of legends surrounding the origin of the Claddagh ring.
One prominent legend that bears some historic truth is that of a man named Richard Joyce, a member of the Joyce clan and a native of Galway Ireland.
Richard left his town to work in the West Indies, intending to marry his love when he returned. However, Richard’s ship was captured and he was sold into slavery to a Moorish goldsmith. In Algiers, with his new master, Richard trained in his craft.
When William III became king, he demanded the Moors release all British prisoners. As a result, Richard Joyce was set free. The goldsmith had such a great amount of respect for Richard that he offered him his daughter and half his wealth if he stayed. Richard denied the goldsmith’s offer and returned home to marry his love who awaited his return. During his time with the Moors, Richard, then a slave, forged a ring as a symbol of his love back home. Upon his return, Richard presented her with the (Claddagh) ring and they were married. An Irish love story for the ages that inspires all of us today.