Two-thirds said a proposal should be about the "little details" instead of grand gestures.

London - In the fairytale version of a proposal, the man gets down on one knee and offers his beloved a sparkling ring.

These days, however, it seems that ideal exists only in the realm of romantic fiction for many women.

According to a poll, a quarter of men popped the question without having bought a ring. And nearly half of women said they were disappointed with the way they were proposed to, with one in 20 revealing they said No as a result.

The survey found one in ten women would never forgive their partner for proposing in front of the television, while 92 percent said the occasion should never be in public. One in 20 said their other half declared their love in the pub.

Nearly a quarter of women were left embarrassed by "over-the-top" public displays of affection – including "flash mobs" and lavish gifts. And two-thirds said a proposal should be about the "little details" instead of grand gestures.

Researchers asked 1 000 women how their partners asked for their hand in marriage for the poll conducted by jewellers Beaverbrooks.

Forty percent were unhappy with the way the proposal was done and 12 percent were "bitterly disappointed".

Half felt let down by an unromantic location and 22 percent said the event lacked any real emotion.