The triple trinity ring symbolizes ideas of fidelity, love and eternity. It also has Christian, Celtic and mathematical significance. Its pattern and symbolism continue to inspire art, design and jewelry around the world.
One of the most important symbols and beliefs in Christianity is the unity of the Holy Trinity: the Father (God), Son (Jesus) and Holy Spirit. Derived from the Latin word “trinitas,” meaning threefold, Holy Trinity stands for “God in three persons,” emphasizing the nature of one God as distinct yet one. The trinity ring symbolizes this unity, with the rings recognizably separate circles, yet held together.
The trinity ring was also a symbol of Celtic culture before it was adopted as a Christian symbol. Also known as a “triquetra” or Celtic knot, the pattern is found throughout Celtic art and culture. The Celtic knot was associated with Celtic mother goddesses, and as a symbol for the meeting of the earth, ocean and sky. Occasionally, the trinity ring is seen with a “vesica pisces,” a circle at the interlocking center of the trinity rings.
In addition to its Christian and Celtic associations, the trinity ring pattern is an important mathematical concept. Known as the Borromean rings, the design holds constant that all three rings linked together make them inseparable. If one ring is removed, the other two circles become unlinked as well. The pattern’s strength therefore lies in the interconnection of all three rings, making it a symbol of strength and unity.
Trinity Ring as Jewlery
Many couples choose the trinity ring as a symbol incorporated into engagement rings. One that prominently uses the design is the Cartier ring. Created by Louis Cartier in 1924, the ring is composed of three bands in different color golds: pink, yellow and white. The colors symbolize the unity of love, fidelity and friendship Though its style is different from traditional trinity rings, it carries the original meanings of everlasting love.
References and ResourcesOnline Etymology Dictionary: Trinity
Catechism of the Catholic Church: Dogma of the Holy Trinity
University of Liverpool: The Borromean Rings
The Everything Celtic Wisdom Book; Jennifer Emick
Style; Kate Spade