For years, couples have dedicated a single “ring” finger to romance when
any other digit would do. A case of left side, strong side? Not
according to history.
1.Wedding announcements: The Catholic tradition of “posting the banns”
required a couple to announce their wedding in print; this helped ensure
they were not related.
A woman got off from a taxi. She was about forty years old. A man about
the same age sat by the window on the first floor of a restaurant. He
immediately recognized her. It had been twenty years since they parted.
Her slanted almond eyes all of a sudden reminded him of the girl who
once always laughed.
They sat face to face and both of them noticed each other’s hands. She
was wearing rings on every finger of her hands, except the nameless
finger of her left hand. He was wearing only one ring and it was an
ordinary diamond ring on the nameless finger of his left hand. She was
once fascinated by his beautiful long fingers which moved so flexibly on
the piano. Now his hands were coarse, dull and lumpy. They looked each
other up and down in a most unnoticeable way, trying to judge from every
clue how was their old lover’s life since they parted.
A Byron’s poem suddenly came into the woman’s mind, a poem she saw one
day after they broke up, which made the twenty-two-year-old girl’s eyes
laden with tears. “If I should meet you, after longs years, how should I
greet you? – With silence and tears.” She had imagined their reunion
scene for a thousand times. She could not help herself and laughed, but
she immediately realized it was not proper to laugh at this moment. She
gently said sorry. Her laughter made him very nervous. He quietly
checked if his tie was crooked. He then subconsciously touched his fake
wallet on the corner of the table, which he bought for this dinner, but
almost knocked over the water glass.
“I need to go to the bathroom,” the man squeezed an embarrassed smile.
He got up from his seat. The woman’s eyes swept down his body, and
noticed his hips, which were apparently out-of-shape because of sitting
all day in the office and never exercising. The man went into the
bathroom. He looked at the mirror and checked his wig was still alright.
He took a look at his watch: the car he rented needed to be returned
within two hours. The man took a deep breath and then stepped out the
In medieval times, getting caught scribbling with one’s left hand could
earn accusations of being possessed and, during the Spanish Inquisition,
lefties were more likely to be tortured or killed. In fact, the aversion
touched many cultures, from the long-standing taboo in Islamic countries
against eating and drinking with one’s left hand, to the expectation in
ancient Japan that any wife who didn’t favor her right could be legally
divorced on the spot, no questions asked. So why do we favor a finger on
a cursed hand to symbolize lasting love?
2.Fathers walking brides down the aisle: Because weddings used to be
business transactions, fathers walked brides down the aisle to transfer
ownership to grooms. Romantic!
Past perception wasn’t all bad. The union between marriage and the
now-standard ring placement can be traced back to second-century
Egyptians who falsely believed that “a certain most delicate nerve”
began in the fourth left finger and stretched directly to the heart,
according to the Greek scholar Appian. Centuries later, the Romans came
to a similar conclusion. In place of a nerve, they were convinced that a
vena amoris—or “lover’s vein”—connected this digit with the
3.Bachelor parties: Originally held by Spartan soldiers, bachelor
parties were wild fetes to kiss the single life goodbye.
古代人也不全都感觉左臂不佳。婚姻和侧面无名氏指的涉嫌能够追溯到2世纪的阿拉伯埃及共和国（The Arab Republic of Egypt）（The Arab Republic of Egypt）。希腊共和国（Ελληνική Δημοκρατία）学者阿皮安解释说，当时埃及（Egypt）人误认为“有些最软弱的神经”从左边第四指起始，从来延伸到灵魂。几世纪后，达Russ人也得出了一般的下结论。只可是，奥Crane人认为左臂无名指和灵魂相连的不是神经，而是“爱情之脉”。