The Most Famous Engagement Rings Of All Time

As the saying goes, diamonds are forever. And that is certainly the case for a handful of famous rings that still have us lusting after them years (make that decades) later. From Princess Diana and Kate Middleton’s iconic sapphire beauty to Kim Kardashian's huge emerald-cut iceberg, these sparklers stand the test of time and are pretty mesmerizing to look at, too. Plus, is there anything as fun as fawning over engagement rings? Ahead are some of history's most iconic engagement rings. You may want to whip out the sunglasses for this one — these bad boys are blinding.
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Photos: Brendon Thorne/Getty Images; Arthur Edwards - WPA Pool/Getty Images.
Princess Diana & Kate Middleton
Princess Diana's oval, sapphire engagement ring (which now belongs to Kate Middleton) is easily one of history’s most iconic pieces of jewelry. The 12-carat sapphire features 14 surrounding solitaire diamonds, and at the time of purchase went for £28,000. It was originally sold in Garrard’s and easily available for anyone to buy — which caused quite the controversy. After Diana's death in 1997, the ring was passed on to Prince William, who proposed to Middleton with it in 2010.
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Photos: CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images; New York Daily News Archive/Getty Images.
Elizabeth Taylor
Okay, Elizabeth Taylor had a lot of marriages, and a lot of engagement rings to boot. Perhaps one of her most famous rocks? This gigantic emerald-cut ring, which she received from film producer Mike Todd. Seriously, it took up almost half her finger. You guys, this thing was 29 carats. 29!
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Photos: Donato Sardella/Getty Images; Jason Merritt/Getty Images.
Kim Kardashian
Let’s be real — Kim Kardashian’s engagement ring by celeb jeweler Lorraine Schwartz is pretty epic. The $8-million, cushion-cut gem is streamlined and timeless — not to mention huge, clocking in at 15 carats. The best part? Kanye West made sure that the piece was as ethically produced as possible.
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Photos: Monica Schipper/FilmMagic/ Getty Images; Clive Brunskill/Getty Images.
Beyoncé
Leave it to Beyoncé to have one of the most impressive engagement rings around. Would you expect anything less from Jay Z? Another beauty by Lorraine Schwartz, the 18-carat ring is simple and refined, and sits firmly on a gorgeous, split-shank setting.
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Photos: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic/ Getty Images; Kevork Djansezian/NBC/Getty Images.
Nicole Richie
One ring that is a fairly new addition? Nicole Richie’s 4-carat halo ring by Neil Lane. Richie received the stunning piece in 2010 from Joel Madden, now her husband. Naturally, she played a big hand in the design aspect — working with Lane on everything from the cut to the setting to nailing the vintage look.
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Photos: Karwai Tang/ WireImage/ Getty Images; Dave Hogan/Getty Images.
Victoria Beckham
Okay, Victoria Beckham might have Elizabeth Taylor beat when it comes to number of engagement rings. The designer has updated her ring a whopping 13 times, but her original engagement ring will always remain one of our favorites. David Beckham proposed in 1998 with a gorgeously simple, marquise-cut diamond set on a yellow-gold band. Perfection!
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Photos: Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic/ Getty Images; Splash News.
Olivia Palermo
It wasn’t just Olivia Palermo’s unique bridal cardigan-skirt combo that caught our attention. Her 3-carat, cushion-cut, canary-yellow diamond with trapezoid-shaped baguettes is untraditional-meets-classic — and absolutely breathtaking.
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Photos: Michael Ochs Archives/ Getty Images; DOUG KANTER/ Getty Images.
Marilyn Monroe
It only makes sense that Marilyn Monroe would have an engagement ring as iconic as she was. Gifted to the late actress by fiancé Joe DiMaggio, the simple and elegant band is packed with 35 baguette-cut diamonds all the way around. The ring was auctioned off in 1999 for $772,500. Can you imagine owning this gorgeous piece of history?
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Photos: Everett Collection; Courtesy of Cartier.
Grace Kelly
Could Grace Kelly’s emerald-cut ring be any more elegant? Not only is this sparkler huge (it’s more than 10 carats), it is also a wonderfully simple shape that stands the test of time (and may have inspired a few other rings in this roundup). The center diamond is flanked between two subtle, baguette-cut diamonds.
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Photo: Michael Ochs Archives/ Getty Images. and Photo: Pat Greenhouse/The Boston Globe/ Getty Images.
Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
When it comes to engagement rings, it doesn’t get much more stylish than Jackie O’s unique gem. A 2.84-carat emerald and 2.88-carat diamond sit side-by-side under a half-halo of solitaire diamonds. Like the former first lady herself, this piece is a national treasure.