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En•Grave (en gràv')

  1. To carve, cut out, or etch into a material.
  2. To create a deep marking as if by carving or etching.
  3. To make a permanent impression.


So how did engraving first find its groove? The answer isn't exactly, ahem, clear-cut. Some of the first examples were found in South Africa on ostrich shells that date back to the Middle Stone Age. Used for carrying and drinking water, several historians believe humans engraved banded lines into the shells to designate the containers as their own.

Perhaps the desire to personalize our belongings isn't such a modern development after all...


During the Middle Ages and onward, engraving really started to make an impression. Using a hardened-steel tool called a burin, goldsmiths began inscribing their metalwork and weaponry with engraved designs. Not only did it make their wares more valuable, it was also a distinctive way to distinguish each smith's own personal brand of craftsmanship. Unique designs were engraved into an ongoing record of sorts-think of it like an early form of copywriting your art.

Members of the royal court as well as high-ranking public officials made engraving a coveted practice. Many of them preferred their jewelry, fine silver, gifts, and other ornamentation to be engraved with family crests, symbols of power, and personal markings. Like today, it was a popular way to permanently designate their precious things as one-of-a-kind.

The History of engraving

One of the most interesting ways engraving was used? To "hide" secret messages or codes. Imagine you're forbidden to express your love to someone from a sparring family? Engrave your words of devotion onto a ring or necklace that only your loved one will see. Pretty smart, hm?


Today, engraving is more popular than ever. Like yesterday's kings and queens, many people appreciate engraving's ability to make something special, unique, one-of-a-kind. And for over 40 years, Things Remembered has been perfecting this fascinating art form.

So how do we do it? We'll tell you a few of our secrets...

First, we have high standards. We don't let just anyone engrave. Our artisans must complete and master several levels of craftsmanship training before we allow them to be called a Things Remembered Engraver.

Second, we use the highest-quality materials and equipment. As the art evolves, so do our techniques and engraving technology.

Third, we offer a huge selection of engraving styles and choices. The goldsmiths of long ago wanted each piece to be unique-and so do we. That's why we've created a variety of fonts-from romantic, to whimsical, to modern-hundreds of icons and designs, and dozens of colors and finishes.

The art of modern engraving

The result of these three secrets? Nothing less than a true work of art.