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The tradition of giving specific anniversary gifts based on the number of years a couple has been married dates back to the Middle Ages. The custom of associating silver with the 25th wedding anniversary and gold with the 50th wedding anniversary appear to have originated in the region of Middle Europe that is currently Germany.
On the 25th wedding anniversary, according to custom, the husband or friends of a woman would place on her head a silver wreath, which represented the harmony that was necessary to make so many years of matrimony possible. Similarly, on the 50th wedding anniversary, a wreath of gold was placed on the woman’s head in honour of the exceptional achievement of remaining in harmony with her husband for this lengthy period of time.
Hence, the “silver” and “gold” anniversaries came into being. In medieval times only the “silver” and “gold” anniversaries were celebrated. In modern times, however, this practice has been significantly expanded upon, and now there are traditional and symbolic gifts that are associated with every wedding anniversary. Despite this, anniversary gifts are most often given on the round anniversary years, such as the 5th, 10th, 20th, and 35th. The “silver” and “gold” anniversary years are still considered the most symbolic, and the 60th “diamond” anniversary has joined this list as well.
Gifting a diamond eternity ring to a woman by her husband is also a popular and exceptional choice to commemorate any wedding anniversary or other special occasion.
Below, please see a description of the appropriate anniversary gifts for the most common gift-giving years.