Royal Wedding Rules: The Revealing Reason Why Prince Harry Probably Won’t Wear a Wedding Ring

When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle tie the knot in May, there is a chance that their love won’t be symbolized by a ring on Harry’s finger. While Harry and Meghan might break a lot of traditions at this wedding, not wearing a ring wouldn’t exactly be nontraditional. Here’s why the prince might leave his finger bare (page 4).

The royal family doesn’t typically follow marriage rules

Britain's Prince William places a wedding ring on kate middleton's finger

As traditional as they are, the royals sometimes try new things. | Dave Thompson/AFP/Getty Images

A regular wedding and a royal wedding are not one and the same. The royals have been known to break traditional rules. When Kate Middleton married Prince William, she opted to omit the word “obey” from her vows. She was following in Princess Diana’s footsteps, who also omitted the word because she did not want to “obey” anyone. Another tradition often broken in the royal family is wearing a wedding ring.

Next: Kate lets her engagement ring steal the show while her wedding ring stays in the background. 

You’ve probably seen the massive ring on Kate’s left hand

Kate Middleton wears a wedding ring. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

If you look at Kate’s left hand, you’ll notice her massive, 12-carat sapphire engagement ring sitting pretty on her ring finger. If you look a bit closer, you’ll also see she has a wedding ring just behind that giant engagement ring’s band, and she’s worn it every day since she and William got married. However, this isn’t the case for William.

Next: But you won’t spot a ring on her husband’s finger. 

William has never worn a wedding ring, and he’s not the only one

Prince William does not wear a wedding ring. | John Stillwell-Pool/Getty Images

When Prince Philip married Queen Elizabeth, he decided not to wear a wedding ring. However, Prince Charles wore one in his marriage to Diana. And he still wears one now that he is married to Camilla. But when William and Kate tied the knot, William followed in the footsteps of his grandfather and decided that he would not be seen with a wedding ring on his finger.

Next: The reason none of these royal men wear rings might surprise you. 

It’s actually by choice

Prince Philip has never worn a wedding ring either. | Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

The reason for a ring being absent on William’s finger is simple: He hates jewelry. According to Vogue, he actually had the palace issue a statement before the couple got married to let the world know he would not be wearing a ring. Because William’s marriage is so high profile, he didn’t think it would be necessary to have a wedding ring.

The members of the royal family do get the choice of whether they want to wear a ring, so William wasn’t creating any kind of new tradition by passing. As for Harry, it’s his decision about whether he wants to wear a ring. His father does, but both his brother and grandfather do not.

Next: Wedding rings weren’t always popular in England. 

Wedding rings in England are relatively recent

Captain Caiger of the British Army Pigeon Service, holding a carrier pigeon equipped with a 'back carrier' message capsule, 23rd July 1945. (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

British men didn’t commonly wear wedding rings until WWII. | Topical Press Agency/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

According to Vogue, about 90% of married English men wear wedding rings. However, in the grand scheme of weddings, the ring is relatively new to them. It wasn’t until World War II that English men began wearing rings. Those who were fighting in the war wanted to remember their wives back home while they were in battle. As a result, wedding rings soared in popularity. They’ve pretty much become tradition since then, but it’s a relatively new tradition.

Next: This engaged couple is no stranger to breaking tradition. 

Harry and Meghan have already broken tradition

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle watch a performance by a Welsh choir i

The couple isn’t afraid to blaze their own trail. | Ben Birchall-WPA Pool/Getty Images

Harry and Meghan have already proven they’ll be switching up the royal wedding traditions. There have already been rumors about a lot of these traditions being broken. Some broken traditions include having a May wedding, getting married on a weekend, marrying a man or woman who has already been through a divorce — the list goes on. Regardless of whether Harry decides to wear a ring, the outcome likely won’t surprise anyone.

Next: But what are Meghan’s thoughts about her new husband not wearing a ring? 

Will Meghan make Harry wear a ring?

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attends the Terrance Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair

Wedding rings are more of an American tradition. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

The question remains: Will Meghan want Harry to wear a ring? In the United States, wedding rings are almost non-negotiable. Nearly every married person wears one, and those who don’t often have a good reason. Rumors have spread about Meghan bringing a few U.S. wedding traditions into her royal wedding, and a wedding ring on the man’s finger could be one of them.

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