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Memento mori ring, United Kingdom, 1692

‘Memento mori’ translates from Latin as ‘Remember you must die’. They were intended to remind people about the shortness of life and the inevitability of death. This gold memento mori ring was made in 1692 in memory of a loved one. It bears the inscription, ‘MD died 6th of …1692’ on the inner circle of the ring and the image of a skull and crossbones set within a circular transparent stone. A skull commonly represented death from the 1500s onwards. It replaced the use of a skeleton.

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Glossary: memento mori

Symbols intended to remind the viewer of death. Memento mori are often objects such as skulls or hourglasses, but can also be written inscriptions.

Glossary: ring - jewellery

Small circular band worn on the finger; typically circlets of real or simulated precious metal, and frequently set with precious stones or imitations of these, intended for wearing upon the finger either as an ornament or as a token.

Glossary: mourning

Trial term S&H