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The Fellowship of the Cuff

Our newest design from the jeweler's bench is a symbol of lasting friendship brightening a dark world.

A peaceful handshake is an ancient gesture, originally to demonstrate that you hold no weapon but now the most common way to greet your fellow man. Wear this ancient sign of fellowship as a reminder of peace and humanity.

Available in Solid Brass + Sterling Silver

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 Hera and Athena, Late 5th century BC, Acropolis Museum, Athens
 
The history of the handshake goes beyond social customs amongst polite society. It is a symbolic gesture of peace, and an amenable trading of ideas and commitments. For Hera, the Queen of the Gods, to embrace the hand of Athena, the Goddess of Wisdom, was to show the significance of one's acceptance of Wisdom - it is an emphatic gesture, a moral guide, and a signal to the populace to follow suit. Embrace Wisdom, as does the Queen herself.



The contemporary custom of shaking hands in greeting began in medieval times. It was a dangerous time to live in, and people often concealed weapons up their sleeve - so a simple handshake became a way to affirm you were not intending any harm. The up and down motion was thought to dislodge any hidden daggers. Over the years, the handshake evolved into a polite greeting, more casual than hat tipping and bowing. 

The final handshake is heavily featured in graveyard symbolism, thought by some to be a continuation of the bonds of marriage beyond the grave, or God leading the deceased into their afterlife, or most commonly the fondest farewell one can leave their loved ones - etched permanently on their grave. This polite departure to friends and family is a very familiar symbol in cemeteries. 


The Oddfellows motto of “Friendship, Love, and Truth”


The handshake as a symbol of fellowship is also significantly tied to The Oddfellows, an order that promotes charity and philanthropy, as well as a spirit of brotherhood. One of the oldest fraternal societies, The Oddfellows history is obscured, often thought to have begun with medieval tradesman guilds similar to the Free Masons. However it began, the spirit of Oddfellowship spread and continues to this day with the command to: “visit the sick, relieve the distressed, bury the dead and educate the orphan.” Essentially, to make the world a better place.





Did you know? The Free Masons have long been known to have secret handshakes. That's not all - before binding contracts required notary publics and digital docusigns, there was such a thing as a gentleman's agreement that was unwritten and bound by honour. You may have heard of it. It's called.. "let's shake on it." 


These inspirations brought us the design behind The Fellowship Cuff. 

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