Jewelry vs Jewellery: Which is Correct?
Jewelry and jewellery are two words that have been used interchangeably for centuries to refer to the same type of ornamental items. But while they may sound the same, there is actually a difference between these two words—a difference that goes beyond just their spelling. The origins of this distinction lie in different languages and cultures, which has led to the unique spellings we know today. In this post, we'll explore how jewelry and jewellery came about and what sets them apart from one another.
Traditionally, Jewelry is the English spelling and Jewellery is the British spelling. This is because of their linguistic roots—the word "jewelry" originates from Old French while the word "jewellery" comes from Middle English. Although both words are derived from the same source, they have come to mean slightly different things depending on which language you use them in.
In terms of usage, jewelry tends to be more widely used in American English due to its French-derived origins. Meanwhile, jewellery is most common in countries where English has been influenced by Latin or Germanic languages such as Australia, Canada and other Commonwealth nations. But even within these regions there can be regional variations with some people using jewelry and some using jewellery.
The two words can also refer to different types of materials. Jewelry usually refers to objects made from precious metals like gold, silver, or platinum. Jewellery is generally used for items made from other materials such as glass, beads, plastics or stones. It may also be used to describe pieces that use both kinds of material combined together in one piece.
Jewelry and jewellery are two words that are frequently used interchangeably, but they have some important linguistic differences. Jewelry is the spelling most commonly used in the United States and Canada, whereas jewellery is the spelling preferred in other English speaking countries such as Australia, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.
The primary difference between these two terms lies in their etymology: jewelry originates from Old French “joiaillerie” (meaning “jewelry”), whereas jewellery is derived from a combination of Latin and Germanic languages. In addition to their different origins, both terms can refer to different types of materials: jewelry typically refers to items made from precious metals such as gold, silver or platinum, while jewellery is generally used for pieces made from other materials such as glass, beads or stones. It may also be used to describe pieces that incorporate multiple materials in one item.
In terms of usage it's important to note that there are regional variations; some people may use either term depending on where they live or what kind of piece they're referring to. However, when writing for an international audience it's best practice to use the term jewelry for U.S readers and jewellery for readers in other English-speaking countries. Knowing the subtle linguistic difference between these two words can help ensure accurate communication with any type of reader.
The word "jewelry" itself dates back to early 13th century Middle English and comes from the Old French “jouel”, which in turn derives from the Latin “jocale” meaning plaything or toy. This term was initially used to describe a small trinket or ornament carried as a token of affection, but later came to refer more specifically to decorative items crafted out of precious materials like gold and silver.
Jewelry was first used to describe a collection of accessories made from gold, silver, or precious stones. In some cases, these items included decorative elements like enamelling, filigree, and engraving. However, the term wasn’t officially recognized until 1212 when it appeared in Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. From then on it was used as an umbrella term for all kinds of jewelry including necklaces, rings, earrings and bracelets etc.
Since its inception, jewelry has become one of the most popular fashion choices for both men and women. It is not only seen as a way to add a touch of glamour to an outfit but also for personal expression and identity – conveying an individual’s unique style. Jewelry is also often used as a form of status symbol and as a form of wealth, particularly for those wealthy enough to afford more expensive pieces made from precious stones and metals. Nowadays, it is common for special occasions such as weddings or anniversaries to be celebrated with the giving of jewelry gifts – signifying the significance of these moments.
Jewelry styles vary greatly depending on culture, era and personal preference. From ancient Egyptian artifacts to modern fashion accessories, there is something for everyone when it comes to finding beautiful jewelry pieces that express their individual identity. All of our current fine jewelry available for purchase can be found here.