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Why do people wear a wedding ring on the right hand?

Updated April 17, 2017

Wearing your wedding ring on your left ring finger stems from an old belief that it contained a vein that connected to the heart, an edict that England's King Edward VI made official during the 16th century. But there are people today who choose to wear it on their right hand.

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Widows sometimes transfer their rings to the right to signify their status, or when they aren't ready to stop wearing it.


Poland, Colombia, Greece and India are among the cultures who follow the tradition of placing the wedding band on the right hand.


Left-handed people may prefer putting the ring on their non-dominant hand because the ring will sustain less wear and tear.


Wedding rings that are family heirlooms are worn on the right to show that they have sentimental value.


Some people believe a spouse will switch their band to their right hand as a code that means they are open to cheating on their mate.

Gays and Lesbians

Some gay and lesbian couples wear wedding rings on their right hands to show their sexual orientation.

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About the Author

Christa Titus

Christa Titus is a dedicated journalism professional with over 10 years writing experience as a freelancer with a variety of publications that include "Billboard" and "Radio & Records." Her writing has also been syndicated to such media outlets as the "Washington Post," the "Seattle-Post Intelligencer," the Associated Press and Reuters. Titus earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Rowan College.

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