Elizabeth Taylor was a legendary actress of the twentieth century, known for her talent, beauty, and impeccable sense of style. She was also well-known for her numerous marriages, which included some of the most famous men of the time. She was engaged eight times in her life and received some of the most stunning engagement rings in history. Let’s take a closer look at her engagement rings and the stories that go with them.
The Engagement Ring of Conrad Hilton
When Elizabeth Taylor became engaged to Conrad Hilton, the hotel magnate and founder of the Hilton Hotels chain, she was only 18 years old. Hilton gave her a simple but elegant diamond ring set in platinum with a 4-carat emerald-cut diamond. At the time, the ring was worth around $10,000.
Unfortunately, the engagement was short-lived. Taylor and Hilton married in May 1950, but the couple divorced eight months later. Despite their brief relationship, the ring became a symbol of Taylor’s first engagement and entry into the world of Hollywood glamour.
The Engagement Ring of Michael Wilding
Elizabeth Taylor began dating Michael Wilding, a British actor 20 years her senior, after her divorce from Conrad Hilton. Wilding proposed to Taylor with a diamond and ruby engagement ring set in a gold band, which featured a large, square-cut diamond surrounded by rubies.
Taylor’s eclectic jewelry taste was reflected in the ring. It also reflected the couple’s shared interest in antique and vintage items. Unfortunately, their relationship was also brief, as they divorced after five years of marriage in 1957.
Mike Todd’s Wedding Band
Elizabeth Taylor’s third marriage was to film producer Mike Todd, who was known for his outsized personality and lavish lifestyle. Todd proposed to Taylor with a breathtaking 29.4-carat emerald-cut diamond ring worth $1 million at the time.
Todd’s extravagant taste and desire to spoil Taylor with the finest things in life were reflected in the ring. It was also a reflection of their deep love and their passionate, whirlwind relationship. Todd died in a plane crash just a year after they married, leaving Taylor devastated.
Eddie Fisher’s Wedding Band
Elizabeth Taylor’s fourth marriage was to singer Eddie Fisher, a close friend of the Todds. Fisher proposed to Taylor with a 30-carat diamond ring, one of the largest engagement rings available at the time.
Fisher’s desire to outdo Mike Todd’s extravagant proposal, as well as his love and admiration for Taylor, were reflected in the ring. Their relationship, however, was contentious because Fisher was married to Taylor’s friend Debbie Reynolds at the time. Taylor and Fisher married in 1959 and had a daughter together before divorcing in 1964, despite the scandal.
The Ring of Richard Burton
Elizabeth Taylor’s most well-known and long-lasting relationship was with actor Richard Burton, whom she met on the set of Cleopatra in 1963. Burton proposed to Taylor with a stunning 33.19-carat diamond ring, which at the time was valued at $1.1 million.
Burton’s passionate love for Taylor, as well as his own love of fine jewelry, was reflected in the ring. It also reflected their extravagant lifestyle and shared desire for the finest things in life. Despite the fact that they divorced and remarried twice, the ring remained a symbol of their deep love and devotion to each other.
The “Taylor-Burton Diamond” by Richard Burton
In addition to the engagement ring, Richard Burton gave Elizabeth Taylor one of history’s most famous diamonds, the “Taylor-Burton Diamond.” Cartier originally owned this incredible diamond, a 69.42-carat pear-shaped diamond. Burton bought the diamond for Taylor in 1969 for $1.1 million, and it went on to become one of the world’s most famous pieces of jewelry.
Taylor adored the diamond and wore it to numerous events and parties. “I have never seen anything like it in my life,” she famously said, and it quickly became a symbol of her extravagant lifestyle and her enduring love for Burton. However, the couple’s marriage was rocky, and they divorced for the second time in 1976.
The Engagement Ring of John Warner
Following her turbulent relationship with Burton, Elizabeth Taylor began dating politician John Warner, who was running for the US Senate at the time. Warner proposed to Taylor with a 20-carat diamond ring worth approximately $500,000.
Warner’s wealth and status, as well as his admiration and love for Taylor, were reflected in the ring. Their marriage, however, did not go as well as they had hoped, and they divorced in 1982 after only six years together.
Larry Fortensky’s Wedding Band
Elizabeth Taylor’s final marriage was to construction worker Larry Fortensky, whom she met in rehab in the late 1980s. Fortensky proposed to Taylor with a simple but elegant 5-carat yellow diamond ring.
The ring symbolized Fortensky’s humble upbringing and his desire to begin a new life with Taylor. It also reflected Taylor’s own maturation and growth, as she had come to value love and companionship over wealth and extravagance. Despite the fact that their marriage was brief, the ring remained a symbol of their deep love and commitment to one another.
Elizabeth Taylor’s engagement rings were more than just lovely pieces of jewelry; they represented her relationships, passions, and life. Each ring represented a different stage in her life and an aspect of her personality. From Taylor’s first ring’s simple elegance to the extravagant luxury of the “Taylor-Burton Diamond,” each ring tells a story about Taylor and the men she loved.
Taylor is no longer with us, but her engagement rings continue to captivate and inspire jewelry lovers worldwide. They serve as a reminder of her enduring legacy and status as one of Hollywood’s most iconic figures.