The first known mention of an engagement period was in 1215 at the Fourth Lateran Council, headed by Pope Innocent III, which decreed that "marriages are to be ... announced publicly in the churches by the priests during a suitable and fixed time, so that if legitimate impediments exist, they may be made known."
Despite its long-standing tradition, the concept of engagement has only recently seen a great revival, with more and more couples around the world celebrating their engagement, when the marriage proposal is made, with family and friends.
There are many different engagement rituals but the modern Western form involves the giving or exchanging of engagement rings. It is thought ot have begun in 1477 when Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor, gave Mary of Burgundy a diamond ring as an engagement present.
Plant: "Growing Old Together"
A plant or bonsai tree, with a note to say "Grow old with me, the best is yet to be" makes a long-lasting and personal gift for many occasions.
It can also be a great gift for a couple celebrating their wedding anniversary, wishing them a long and happy life together.
Scrapbook: Book of Honor
Mark a special occasion or milestone by creating a personal scrapbook for the recipient. Get the whole family or a group of friends to participate and ask each of them to fill a couple of pages with their best wishes and personal memories, including photographs and other small items, to create a truly unique gift.
Electronics: MP3 Player
Make this gift more meaningful by including a few special songs when you purchase your choice of mp3-player.
Choose songs that relate to the recipient and yourself (songs from a joint vacation, a night out together, etc.) or which have a 'theme' (songs of encouragement, love songs, happy tunes). Explain the meaning behind your choice of songs in a personal message to make your gift perfect!
My boyfriend gave me a very special Christmas gift: he bought me some beautiful lingerie and attached my wedding ring to the bra.
Sun & Moon
The sun is known as the ruler of the heart and the moon is known as the ruler of the head. The two combine to symbolize a balanced and happy life.
Truth and knowledge are revealed when a veil is lifted.
The introduction of the wedding veil stems from the time of the Crusades. In early weddings the bride was bargained for through her father; she was married wearing a veil and only revealed to her husband after the ceremony. Veils were used as a symbol of virginity and purity.
The vase is a symbol of treasure in the Kabbalah.
A long marriage is two people trying to dance a duet and two solos at the same time.
The sum which two married people owe to one another defies calculation. It is an infinite debt, which can only be discharged through eternity.
At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet.
A man is not where he lives, but where he loves.
Love is a canvas furnished by Nature and embroidered by imagination.