Arnold Schwarzenegger puts a ring back

Arnold Schwarzenegger only announced his separation from wife Maria Shriver this week, but he has sparked speculation of a reconciliation by stepping out with a ring on his wedding finger.

The former California governor had not been seen with anything on the bare finger since mid-March, but today could clearly be seen wearing the ring as he walked around Beverly Hills.

Although the ring appeared to be of a signet design, it was the same ring that Schwarzenegger wore back in 2005, when no marriage troubles between the two are reported.

Speaking on Tuesday night at a Los Angeles event marking Israeli independence, Schwarzenegger said he and his wife of 25 years ‘both love each other very much’ and ‘are taking one day at a time’.

The two issued a joint statement on Monday saying that they were living apart as they work on the future of their relationship and continue to parent their four children.

In his speech Schwarzenegger said: ‘I want to take a moment and thank our many friends and family for the tremendous amount of support and love that you have given us in the last 24 hours.

‘I just spoke to Maria an hour ago before I came here.

‘We both were saying the same thing – we’re extremely blessed to be surrounded by so many wonderful people, by so many wonderful friends.’

We both love each other very much. We’re very fortunate to have four extraordinary children. And we’re taking it one day at a time.

‘The bottom line is we want to thank all the people for their great, great support.’

Since news of his separation from 55-year-old Shriver, sources have claimed it was a long time coming.

It is claimed she was ‘miserable’ in her marriage for several years and had complained about her actor husband’s ego.

Schwarzenegger, who this week announced his acting comeback in film drama Cry Macho, had ignored his wife for years and she felt unappreciated after spending ‘very little time together’ in recent years, sources said.

Shriver is understood to have been concerned about whether or not to divorce because of her religious beliefs.

One source added: ‘She’s been a lost soul for a long time.’

Shriver also posted a video on YouTube in March asking her fans for advice on how to ‘transition’ into the next phase of her life.

‘As you know, transitions are not easy. I’d love to get your advice on how you’ve handled transitions in your own life,’ she said in a video posted on YouTube.

‘It’s so stressful to not know what you’re doing next. People ask you what are you doing and then they can’t believe that you don’t know what you’re doing,’ she said.

The couple have four children together, aged 14 to 21, and today their son Patrick,17, thanked his Twitter followers for their kind words.

He wrote: ‘Appreciate all your messages. Small speed bump in life, luckily we own hummers, we will cruise right over it. All will be okay. #peace.’

While Patrick’s username on Twitter is Schwarzenegger his profile name uses his mother’s maiden name.

The pair released a joint statement on Monday night saying they were living apart while they ‘work on the future’ of their marriage.

‘This has been a time of great personal and professional transition for each of us,’ the couple said.

‘After a great deal of thought, reflection, discussion and prayer, we came to this decision together.

‘At this time, we are living apart while we work on the future of our relationship.’

‘We are continuing to parent our four children together. They are the light and the center of both of our lives.

‘We consider this a private matter and neither we nor any of our friends or family will have further comment. We ask for compassion and respect from the media and the public.’

Shriver helped bolster Schwarzenegger’s campaign eight years ago to become California Governor.

She stood by the Terminator actor at the time amid claims that he groped a string of women during his movie career.

The couple married on April 26, 1986, in a lavish ceremony in Hyannis, Massachusetts, near the Kennedy family compound. They had known each other for ten years before their marriage.

Shriver gave birth to their first child, Katherine, in 1989 and their second daughter, Christina in 1991. The births of Patrick and Christopher followed in 1993 and 1997.

Born in Chicago, Shriver is a member of America’s Kennedy political dynasty.

The daughter of Sargent Shriver and Eunice Kennedy Shriver, she met her estranged husband In 1977 when they were introduced by former NBC News presenter Tom Brokaw at a charity tennis tournament.

Before Schwarzenegger became governor of California in 2003, Shriver was a superstar presenter for NBC News.

In the 1980s she co-anchored NBC News’s Sunday Today and later became a contributing anchor on Dateline NBC in 1989.

Once her husband announced his plans to run for California’s governorship, she took an unpaid leave of absence from NBC News to support her husband’s political aspirations.

This was despite her reluctance to re-enter a life of politics, which she had seen bring much tragedy to her own family.

She also had radically opposing political views to her Republican husband.

Days before voters went to the polls in 2003, Schwarzenegger’s campaign was rocked by the ‘Gropegate’ scandal – allegations from six women who said he had groped them on movie sets, in studio offices and in other settings over the past three decades, without their consent.

In a series of interviews with the Los Angeles Times, three of the women claimed Schwarzenegger grabbed their breasts, while a fourth said he reached under her skirt and touched her buttocks.

A fifth woman said Schwarzenegger groped her and tried to remove her bathing suit in a hotel elevator and a sixth accused him of pulling her onto his lap and asking if a certain sexual act had ever been performed on her.

Schwarzenegger’s campaign spokesman, Sean Walsh, immediately responded by saying the allegations were untrue, and insisted they were part of an effort to undermine the Republican candidate by his Democratic rivals.

‘We believe Democrats and others are using this to try to hurt Arnold Schwarzenegger’s campaign,’ Mr Walsh said.

‘We believe that this is coming so close before the election, something that discourages good, hard-working, decent people from running for office.’

A 1977 magazine interview also surfaced in which he discussed attending orgies and using marijuana.

Schwarzenegger admitted he ‘behaved badly sometimes,’ adding an apology, saying: ‘I have done things that were not right, which I thought then was playful.‘

Despite the controversy, voters elected Schwarzenegger and ousted then Governor Gray Davis.

His success was widely attributed to his wife’s steadfast support.

The actor-turned-politician was re-elected in 2006.  But a short time later, as California’s economy began to implode, his approval rating plummeted to one of the lowest levels in state history.

Schwarzenegger served the maximum two terms allowed by California state law and he left office in January.

Because of his vast personal wealth from his acting career, the Austrian-born star did not accept the governor’s salary of $175,000 per year the entire time he was in office.

After he returned to private life, he said that serving California had cost him as much as $200 million in potential movie deals, but he claimed ‘it was more than worth it’.