Traditional names exist for all of them: for instance, 50 years of marriage is called a "golden wedding anniversary" or simply a "golden anniversary"; 25 is called a "silver wedding anniversary" or "silver anniversary". Sixty years is a "diamond wedding anniversary" or "diamond anniversary". Traditionally in the United States, the first year anniversary is called a "Paper Anniversary".
- 1 History and Origins
- 2 Celebration and gifts
- 3 Flower gifts
- 4 Gemstone jewelry gifts
- 5 See also
- 6 References
- 7 External links
History and Origins
The historic origins of wedding anniversaries date back to the Holy Roman Empire, when husbands crowned their wives with a silver wreath on their twenty-fifth anniversary, and a gold wreath on the fiftieth. Later, principally in the twentieth century, commercialism led to the addition of more anniversaries being represented by a named gift.
Britain and the Commonwealth
In the Commonwealth realms, one can receive a message from the monarch for 60th, 65th, and 70th wedding anniversaries, and any wedding anniversary after that, currently sent as a greeting card. This is done by applying to Buckingham Palace in the United Kingdom, or to the Governor-General's office in the other Commonwealth realms.
In Australia, where one can receive a letter of congratulations from the Governor-General on the 50th and all subsequent wedding anniversaries; the Prime Minister, the federal Opposition leader, local members of both state and federal parliaments, and state Governors may also send salutations for the same anniversaries.
Roman Catholic blessings
Roman Catholics may apply to the Office of Papal Charities for a papal blessing for wedding anniversaries of a special nature (25th, 50th, 60th, etc.); however, Archbishop Konrad Krajewski stated that after 1 January 2015 blessings will not be available to stores or businesses outside the Vatican, but by applying, scrolls can be shipped anywhere.
Denmark and the Netherlands
In Denmark and the Netherlands, a couple's copper anniversary is 12.5 years (half of 25).
Celebration and gifts
The names of some anniversaries provide guidance for appropriate or traditional gifts for the spouses to give each other; if there is a party these can be brought by the guests or influence the theme or decoration. These gifts vary in different countries, but some years have well-established connections now common to most nations: 5th Wood, 10th Tin, 15th Crystal, 20th China, 25th Silver, 30th Pearl, 40th Ruby, 50th Gold, 60th Diamond, 70th Platinum. In English speaking countries the first, wooden, gift was cut on the day of celebration and then presented to the wife as a finished article before the next two quarter days had passed. The tradition may have originated in medieval Germany where, if a married couple lived to celebrate the 25th anniversary of their wedding, the wife was presented by her friends and neighbors with a silver wreath to congratulate them for the good fortune that had prolonged the lives of the couple. Over time the number of symbols expanded and the German tradition came to assign gifts that had direct connections with each stage of married life. The symbols have changed over time. For example, in the United Kingdom, diamond was a well known symbol for the 75th anniversary, but this changed to the now more common 60th anniversary after the Diamond Anniversary of Queen Victoria. The current monarch Queen Elizabeth II's 60th year on the throne was widely marked as her Diamond Jubilee and commemorated in 2012.
Anniversary gift lists 
Traditional and modern anniversary gifts 
|Year||Traditional (U.S.)||Traditional (UK)||Modern (U.S.)|
|4th||Linen, silk||Fruit||Appliances (electrical)|
|7th||Wool, copper||Woollen||Desk sets/pen and pencil sets|
|10th||Tin, Aluminum||Tin||Diamond jewelry|
|11th||Steel||Fashion jewelry, accessories|
|12th||Silk||Silk and fine linen||Pearls, colored gems|
|75th||Diamond, gold||Diamond, gold|
|90th||Granite [unreliable source?]||Diamond, Emerald|
|2nd||Lily of the Valley|
|9th||Bird of paradise|
|50th||Yellow rose, violet|
Gemstone jewelry gifts
The Jewelry Anniversary list with gemstone jewelry for each anniversary year was established by The American Gem Society, The Gemological Institute of America, The American Gem Trade Association, Jewelers of America, and the International Colored Gemstone Association.
|1st||Mother of Pearl|
|10th||Crystal or green Tourmaline|
- Hierarchy of precious substances
- Silver Jubilee, a celebration of a 25th anniversary
- Ruby Jubilee, a celebration of a 40th anniversary
- Golden Jubilee, a celebration of a 50th anniversary
- Diamond Jubilee, a celebration of a 60th anniversary
- Sapphire Jubilee, a celebration of a 65th anniversary
- Platinum Jubilee, a celebration of a 70th anniversary
- "Debrett's Everyday Etiquette". British Wedding Anniversaries. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
- "Who is entitled?". The Monarchy Today. Retrieved 6 April 2009.
- "Queen and anniversary messages". The Monarchy Today. Retrieved 6 April 2009.
- "It's an Honour – Anniversary Messages". Australian Government. 25 January 2008. Retrieved 11 February 2008.
- "Invite the Governor General" (Requires access). The Governor General of Canada. Retrieved 2 August 2010.
- "White House Greeting". About.com. Retrieved 3 February 2010.
- Office of Papal Charities. Vatican.va. Retrieved on 2015-05-13.
- "Papal Blessings soon available only from Vatican". Pontifical Council for Social Communications. Retrieved 1 January 2016.
- "Wedding Anniversaries," compiled by librarians at the Chicago Public Library's Information Center (December 2000)
- Anderson, Charles "The Exchange," RQ 25 (1985): 175
- The World Almanac and Book of Facts, Mahwah, New Jersey: World Almanac Books, 1997.
- World Book Encyclopedia, 1997 ed., s.v. "Wedding Anniversary"
- Pears Cyclopaedia, 1978-79 edition, "Wedding Anniversaries." L128
- The platinum wedding anniversary of Jim and Gladys Till Lancaster Guardian, 8 January 2008
- Tenor and wife toast 70 years of marriage North West Evening Mail, 15 August 2008
- They've been around the world in 70 years Portsmouth News, 29 July 2008
- Miller, Vikki (24 May 2008). "Britain's longest married couple celebrate a quiet 80th anniversary". The Telegraph.
- Facts and figures The British Monarchy
- England's longest marriage: Frank and Anita Milford celebrate 80 years together The Mirror
- Jewelers of America
- Media related to Wedding anniversaries at Wikimedia Commons