The History of Mourning Jewellery

The History Of Mourning Jewellery - Inscripture

Mourning jewellery offers a way for people to cope with their loss and overcome the mental obstacles that come with grief. Bereavement can be one of the most challenging parts of life, and therefore even small tokens such as pieces of jewellery can be used to help with the grieving process.

Mourning Jewellery has a long history that dates back to the early 19th century. Let’s take a look at how memorial jewellery as we know it today came to be.

A Brief Timeline of How Mourning Jewellery Came To Be

The History Of Mourning Jewellery - Inscripture
●      The early 1800s: This type of jewellery was just becoming trendy, and this popularity was accelerated by Queen Victoria (remember, this was the pre-Instagram era, so the Queen was the equivalent of a Kardashian). People would incorporate things like hair, jewels, and tortoise shells into their jewellery to remember their lost loved one in a personal piece.

●      The 1840s: As the technology in cameras was improving, photo jewellery started to become more popular. However, due to the costs of photography, this was still reserved for the more wealthy people in society.

●      In the late 1800s: Cremation of bodies wasn’t commonplace until just over 100 years ago. However, with the increase in the number of people choosing to cremate their loved ones, people then started to make ashes into jewellery.

●      The early 1900s: Mourning jewellery evolved to become less dark and bleak than during the Victorian Era.

●      The present day: Memorial jewellery now comes in several varieties, and, at first glance, it may look similar to regular jewellery, but the person wearing it can hold lots of sentimental value.

The History Of Mourning Jewellery - Inscripture


When did morning jewellery become popular?

Mourning Jewellery became trendy during the Victorian Era, which spans from 1837 to 1901. Queen Victoria became depressed when her husband died in 1861 and then started wearing jewellery items while mourning. Soon other people within the country followed suit.

What is the purpose of mourning jewellery?

People often use mourning jewellery to help with closure as they can use the accessory to symbolise the person they loved so dearly. Most people choose an item of jewellery to hold a piece of the ashes of their loved ones, a picture of them in photo jewellery, or a symbol of that person in handwriting jewellery or fingerprint jewellery. So whenever they look at it, they can remember the loved one they lost.

Modern Day Mourning Jewellery

As time passed, memory jewellery became more of a symbolic piece and evolved into the styles we are more likely to see today. Even though it does not look like the jewellery used in the Victorian Era, it still carries the same purpose and meaning.

Visit the Inscripture website to browse some modern-day mourning jewellery and find something to suit your own style and represent the person or pet you have lost. We have a range of jewellery styles for women and men and other memorial gifts, so there is sure to be something for everyone in our extensive range.

The History Of Mourning Jewellery - Inscripture