Whether you take Valentine’s Day as the most romantic day of a year or a commercialised holiday adding a pressure to your love life, this day contains some astonishing history and facts. The rituals, whether they are presenting flowers to your special one or treating your loved one with a delicious meal, that we follow on 14 February every year are actually the traditions that have been coming from hundreds of years. Here are some fun facts that you may not know about Valentine’s Day:
14 February Used as a Fertility Festival
Valentine’s Day is associated with many stories, and one of them states that it associates with a pegan festival, Lupercalia. Romans celebrated this festival between 13 and 15 February each year. In the celebration, they sacrifice a goat or a dog and hit women after soaking their head in the goat/dog blood. It was believed that this hit made women more fertile. Pope Gelasius I outlawed the pegan festival and announced 14 February as Valentine’s Day, the day of love and romance.
Your Valentine is St. Valentine
On 14 February, you say, Would you be my Valentine, to your sweetheart. There is a story behind this. St. Valentine was in the prison and fell in love with his jailer’s daughter. After his prayer, his jailer’s daughter got sight, and got rid of her blindness. His love for jailer’s daughter became public. Before the execution, he wrote a love letter to her by saying from your valentine.
The heart shape actually came from the plant
According to anatomy, the heart is a body part with valves and muscles. It is completely different from the one we draw on paper or any surface. A legend story states that the heart shape that we usually draw came from an extinct plant, known as silphium. Found in Cyrene, the African city state, this plant was used as a cough syrup, food colouring, and a contraceptive. The association of the shape with sex got changed into the one of love. Some thought that the shape could be the representation of buttocks, breasts, sexual organs, or an inaccurate shape of heart.
Red roses reflect the romance in Victorian flower language
In the Victorian age, people used to express their feelings or emotions via the language of flowers, floriography. They used flowers of a certain colour to expose a particular message. In those days, red roses were used to convey love, affection, and romance. In the current world, the meaning of presenting red roses is the same, love and romance.
Wearing red means more attractive
From the old times, red is associated with sexuality and passion. A scientific study has proved it. The study conducted at University of Rochester concludes that men find women wearing red/standing behind a red background more sexually attractive in comparison with women wearing outfits of other colours/standing in front of other backgrounds. Women had the same feeling with men in red.
The beginning of a tradition of presenting a box of candy as a Valentine’s Day gift relates to the 19th century. Richard Cadbury, a member of the management team at a British chocolate manufacturing company, began this tradition. With time and technological advancements, the company started to make more varieties of chocolates and sell the same as a part of this celebration.
Valentine’s Day Card associates with an American female entrepreneur
Presenting handwritten notes and other signs of love and romance was a common Valentine’s Day tradition in mid-18th century England. With the advancements in printing technology, hand-written messages are replaced with ready made cards. In the 1840s, Esther Howland decided to make prettier cards than the British and made $100, 000 as her annual revenues of her company the New England Valentine Co. She earned the name and fame as the Mother of American Valentine. In today’s world, around 115 million cards are sent on Valentine’s Day each year.
Valentine’s Day has numerous stories and facts. The more you know the more facts you will come across. Whatever the history of fact is, it is truly a specific day to express your soft feelings to the one you love the most in your life. Celebrate it by exchanging gifts and love & affection to your close ones.