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Many superstitions attach to the wedding ring, probably
originating in the old Roman Catholic custom of its receiving
the benediction of the priest. Thus, in Ireland, the wedding
ring being rubbed on a wart or sore, cures it, and in
Somersetshire a stye upon the eyelid may be removed in a
like way. In some parts of Ireland a superstition still exists
that if a wart is pierced through a wedding ring with
a thorn from a gooseberry bush, the wart will gradually

The Romans believed that a peculiar virtue lay
in the fourth finger of the left hand, that is, the ring finger;
and their physicians stirred medicines with it. A similar
superstition still obtains in many places in England, where
it is believed that the ring finger, by being stroked across a
sore or wound, can soon cure or heal it.
Many of the bridal ring superstitions are connected with
the wedding cake. Slices of the latter are sometimes put
through the ring nine times and laid under pillows at night,
to cause young persons to dream of their lovers. According
to another custom, a wedding ring is mixed with the
ingredients of the cake, and baked in it. When it is cut,
the person who secures the slice containing the ring will secure
with it good fortune during the ensuing year, and,
should the possessor be a maiden, a suitor and a happy marriage.
At Burnley it is a very common practice at marriages
to put a wedding ring into a posset, and after the
liquor has been served out, the single person whose cup contains
the ring will be the first of the company to be married.
Another custom at this place is to put a wedding
ring and a sixpence into a common flat currant cake. When
the company are about to retire at the end of the day the
cake is broken and distributed among the single women.
She who gets the ring in her portion of the cake will shortly
be married, and the one who gets the sixpence will die an
old maid. In Northumberland divination was practised by
fishing with a ladle for a wedding ring which had been
dropped into a syllabub, the object being to obtain a prognostication
of who should be first married.
Another superstition is, that if a wife should lose her
wedding ring she will also lose her husband’s affection, and
if she should break it her husband will shortly afterwards
die. Many married women will not take off their wedding
rings under any circumstances, because the removal of them
would portend the deaths of their husbands. An old saying
is that, ” As your wedding ring wears your cares will
wear away.”

From The Wedding Day in All Ages and Countries: In All Ages and Countries by Edward J. Wood