An anklet, a piece of jewelry worn around the ankle, also are known as ankle bracelets. Historically, anklets have been an accessory worn by the women of India. Anklets have found their way into western cultures and are often worn as both casual and formal accessories. These trinkets can be made of any material (precious metals, beads, leather or even plastic) and often have charms or bells on them.
References to anklets can be found in depictions throughout India, the Middle East and Egypt. References to anklets can also be found in the Bible, where they are referred to as “ankle chains." These ankle chains are referred to in Isaiah 3:16-20.
In 1970’s, the boroughs of New York City were home to a unique custom concerning the anklet. When a boy asked a girl to go steady, he gave her an anklet that had two hearts and two leaves on it. Oddly enough, the girl did not wear the anklet on her ankle, instead she added a section of chain and wore it around her neck, so that it could be seen by others.
Since ankles are generally larger than wrists, most anklets are larger in circumference than bracelets, averaging 11 inches. In some cultures, anklets may be worn on the ankle or snugly on the upper arm.
House arrest monitors worn around the ankle are sometimes referred to, tongue-in-cheek, as anklets. These monitors have a GPS tracking device embedded in them that allows the wearers location to be monitored.
There is some debate as to what foot the anklet should be worn on. Traditionally, the unmarried woman would wear the anklet on her right foot and the married woman would wear the anklet on her left foot, the same side as her wedding ring. Strict adherence to this is not followed and it is often the personal preference of the wearer that determines which ankle the anklet is worn on.