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Details And Photos Of Meghan Markle's Engagement Ring —And 7 Stunning Rings Worn By Other Royal Women

Photo: Hello Magazine
Photos Of Meghan Markle's Engagement Ring

What could possibly be better than the news of a royal engagement? Why, photos and details of royal engagement rings, of course! 

Now that the handsome Prince Harry has officially announced his engagement to Meghan Markle, we can hardly contain ourselves from our desperate need to fill in ALL of the blanks in their fairy tale love story, so uncovering the cut, size, color, design and history of Meghan's sparkler is today's top priority.

And as the true gentleman he is, Prince Harry made sure his bride-to-be's ring is as exceptional as she is.

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Markle's ring is a fairly traditional three-stone affair designed by the groom-to-be himself and set by Queen Elizabeth II's favorite jewelers, Cleave and Company. It features a stunning center stone sourced in Botswana, a location Harry has fond memories of traveling to as a child and where he also took Markle this past summer to celebrate her 36th birthday. The colorless center diamond is flanked by two precious diamonds Harry selected from his late mother, Princess Diana's personal collection.

No sources have as yet confirmed the exact weight, color, clarity or cut of the stones, but the center appears to be a bright white cushion-cut diamond estimated to weigh between 3 - 5 carats, with the side stones estimated to be somewhere between .75 - 1 carat each, for an approximate weight of between 4 - 6.5 carats.

One can only assume the color and clarity are of the top most quality.

The stones are set delicately in platinum with what appear to be graceful double-claw prongs, and the band is made of yellow gold. Prince Harry stated that he chose yellow because it is Markle's favorite, and it will be a nice compliment if he gives her a wedding band made from Welsh gold as his brother, Prince William, gave to sister-in-law Kate Middleton, and his father, Prince Charles, gave to his mother and his step-mother, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall.

Michael Fried, the CEO of Diamond Pro, gave the following statement to Money Magazine regarding the ring's value:

“There is no way for anyone to put a value on the whole ring," he wrote. "Having diamonds form the royal collection that Princess Diana wore makes the ring priceless... A three-carat diamond like that should cost around $200,000, through the diamond qualities us non-Royal folk usually go with would allow us to get a similar sized diamond for about $80,000."

Of course, Markle's engagement ring is unlikely to be the last extraordinary piece of jewelry she receives from the vaults of the British Royal Family. 

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Aside from her ability to borrow from the family's collection, future sister-in-law the Duchess of Cambridge has been gifted with jewelry by her husband, her father-in-law, Prince Charles, and her grandmother-in-law, the Queen. It would be difficult to imagine that Markle won't receive similar gifts or have similar access to historical treasures of her own over the years to come.

In joining the Royal Family, Markle also enters into a particularly elite line of women who have received rings that are not just precious works of art, but truly priceless artifacts with historical and cultural significance.

Here is a look at just 9 of the stunning engagement rings that have graced the hands of women in the House of Windsor to date:

1. Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (AKA Princess Kate)/Princess Diana

The woman formerly known as Kate Middleton famously received the sapphire engagement ring worn previously given to Princess Diana when Prince Charles proposed to her on February 3, 1981 at Windsor Castle.

The legend surrounding the 12-carat sapphire has it that "Prince Charles presented her with a selection from Garrard (the then crown jeweler). He asked her to choose her favorite, and she opted for an Ceylon sapphire stone surrounded by diamonds set in white gold — which also happened to be a stock item. Critics — including some in the royal family — where unhappy that the future princess selected something that by most standards wasn’t considered unique and also wasn’t bespoke. (The ring was featured in Garrard’s catalog, so anyone with $60,000 at the time could have purchased the same ring for themselves.) Some insist she chose it because it was the biggest. Others claim it wasn’t and that it simply reminded her of her mother’s engagement ring."

Prince Harry originally inherited the ring upon Diana's passing, but he graciously gave it to his brother when he was ready to propose to Kate.

2. The Queen (HR Queen Elizabeth II)

Sources say that "the diamonds on her ring came from a tiara that had belonged to Prince Philip's mother. Prince Philip was involved in the design and the platinum ring was set with eleven diamonds, a 3 carat solitaire and five smaller stones set on each shoulder. When the engagement was announced, the ring was too big and had to be re sized 2 days before the official photo call. A bit of trivia: it is said that if the Queen is annoyed about anything she will start to twist the ring round and round."

3. Princess Margaret

When it came time to select a ring for the Queen's sister, "Antony Armstrong-Jones made a thoughtful choice for his fiancée, selecting a ring described as 'a ruby set like a rosebud with a diamond marguerite', for Princess Margaret Rose."

4. Princess Anne

Prince Charles' sister Anne has actually received two similar rings.

"Mark Phillips proposed to Princess Anne with a classic sapphire set between two diamonds. The princess also received a sapphire ring from her second husband, Timothy Laurence — but with a cabochon stone flanked by three diamonds on each side, this one was more bohemian in style."

5. Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall

Camilla may be Charles' second wife, but she in no means received any lesser of a ring than did his first.

"The ring is considered to be a family heirloom, and there are estimated values of £100,000. It is in an art deco style, set in platinum, and composed of a emerald cut central diamond flanked by three diamond baguettes on either side. It originally belonged to the Queen Mother, who was given the ring in in 1926 upon the birth of the present Queen."

6. Sophie, Countess of Wessex

The wife of Prince Charles youngest brother, Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, Sophie's ring is said to feature "a 2.05-carat oval diamond, flanked by two smaller heart shaped gems, set in 18 carat white gold. Made by the Crown JewellersAspry and estimated at £105,000, it is said to be the most expensive royal engagement ring in history."

7. Sarah, Duchess of York, AKA Fergie

Poor Fergie (formerly Sarah Ferguson) may have done better to have gone with her now ex-husband's original plan.

"Sarah's ring has an oval Burma ruby, surrounded by  a cluster of 10 drop diamonds. The stone was chosen to compliment her red hair. Prince Andrew had originally wanted an emerald ring, but Sarah didn't, so the couple chose a ruby instead. Prince Andrew helped to design it. It is set in eighteen carat yellow and has a white gold band and at the time it was valued at £25,000. In photographs, she can still occasionally be seen wearing the ring. The ruby stone is not chosen for rings very often, because, like opals, in the past the royal family has had superstitions regarding them. Queen Alexandra had a very strong aversion to opals, believing that the brought bad luck. The only other bride to have chosen a ruby engagement ring, in recent history, is the late Princess Margaret."

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Senior Editor and happily-former divorce coach & mediator Arianna Jeret is a recognized expert on love, sex, and relationships (except when it comes to her own life, of course) who has been featured in Cosmopolitan, The Huffington Post, Yahoo Style, Fox News, Bustle, Parents and more. Join her Sundays at 10:20 PM EST for answers to ALL of your questions on Facebook Live on YourTango and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.