Love is in the air… The much awaited Valentine’s Day is just about to kick off and the world is going to witness yet another day of boundless love, chocolaty gifts and…probably almost everything good. But this sweet and much tender tradition didn’t really have a happy beginning. As a matter of fact, it had a bloody start! Let us learn 30 interesting Valentine’s Day facts that you have been restlessly waiting for.
Interesting Valentine’s Day Facts: 1-10
Clubs were used to beat him to death and then his head was cut off
1. There are several theories around the origins of St. Valentine’s Day. One such theory is that Roman Emperor Claudius II really did not like the idea of Romans getting married during wartime. This however was not acceptable to Bishop St. Valentine and he secretly performed weddings of those who wanted to get married. As usual, secrets have a tendency of being discovered and St. Valentine met is fate. He was captured, jailed and finally executed. Clubs were used to beat him to death and then his head was cut off. Gruesome, right?
2. There is yet another theory. It is being said that St. Valentine was involved in helping Christians escape Roman prisons. He was captured and jailed and then execute. When he was in jail, he fell in love with the jailor’s daughter and sent her a letter by signing it as ‘From Your Valentine’ and that expression has been carried to the modern days.
3. As far as the origins of the day are concerned, some hold the notion that the day is celebrated for commemorating the death or perhaps burial of St. Valentine, which happened somewhere in 270 CE (Common Era, aka AD).
4. There are others who claim that the Valentine’s Day feast was arranged by the Christian Church in order to Christianize the pagan festival of Lupercalia. Lupercalia was actually an ancient Roman pastoral festival celebrated from 13th of February to 15th of February where Luperci members gathered in sacred caves and then the priests sacrificed a goat and a dog for fertility and purification respectively.
5. After the sacrifice, the goat’s skin was peeled off and was dipped in the blood of the two animals. The blood-dipped skin was then taken out to the streets and it was used to gently slap crop fields and women. This was done with the belief that they would become more fertile in coming years. The women gladly participated.
6. Later during the day of Lupercalia festival, women would write their names and place the same in a big urn. Bachelors would then pick a name each and get paired with the woman whose name they picked. They stayed paired for an entire year and this relationship usually ended in marriage.
7. After Christianity rose, it Lupercalia somehow managed to survive for some time but later the Christians considered the festival to be very un-Christian and banned it. Instead they selected 14th of February as St. Valentine’s Day.
8. During the Middle Ages, the English and the French however believed that 14th February marked the mating season of the birds, which added to the idea that Valentine’s Day should be a day of love.
9. There is however barely any evidence that St. Valentine’s Day was in any way linked with the ancient Roman festival. As a matter of fact, St. Valentine’s Day never had any romantic connotations. The romantic link first occurred in 14th Century poet Chaucer wrote a poetry about ‘Valentines’. In fact. Chaucer’s poetry was not even about romance. It was all about birds’ mating.[pullquote-right]St. Valentine’s Day never had any romantic connotations[/pullquote-right]
10. Over centuries however, St. Valentine’s Day became increasingly associated with romance. But, did you know that you can actually celebrate St. Valentine’s Day several times a year? More than one St. Valentine are listed in Roman Catholic roster. Here is a quick list of the possible dates that can be celebrated:
- November 3 in honor of St. Valentine of Viterbo.
- On January 7 in honor of St. Valentine of Raetia.
- July 25 in honor of female St. Valentine (Valentina) who was martyred in Palestine on that day in 308 CE.
Interesting Valentine’s Day Facts: 11-20
11. Signing a Valentine’s Day card during the Victorian Era was considered to be a bad luck!
12. On Valentine’s Day, at least 3% of the pet owners give gifts to their pets.
13. Valentine’s Day is the second-largest seasonal card sending time of the year. On this particular day, nearly a billion cards are exchanged!
14. Those who are singles have every reason to feel sad on Valentine’s Day unless they are aware of SAD. SAD actually stands for Singles Awareness Day which is also celebrated on 14th of February and of course, it is meant only and only for the singles around the world.
15. Valentine’s Day in Finland is known as Ystävänpäivä which in English literally translates into Friend’s Day. So, if you are single, you can head over to Finland and enjoy! This day in Finland is more about remembering friends rather than romance partners.
16. In Medieval times, girls who wanted to dream of their future husbands ate some really bizarre food. No one knows whether they actually dreamed of their future husbands or not.
17. The official declaration of St. Valentine’s Day as a holiday was made by King Henry VII of England. This happened in 1537.
18. Richard Cadbury officially produced Cadbury’s first box of chocolates intended for Valentine’s Day somewhere during the late 1800s. Today, 35 million+ chocolate boxes of heart shape are sold every year on Valentine’s Day.
19. Buying flowers on Valentine’s Day is more common among men than among women. Only 27% of the women buy flowers for their partners while 73% of men buy flowers for their partners.
20. In US alone the chocolates purchased on Valentine’s Day are worth over 1 billion US dollars!
Interesting Valentine’s Day Facts: 21-30
21. Red roses are popular for Valentine’s Day. It is believed that the Roman goddess of love, Venus was actually very fond of red roses. Putting aside the myth, people choose red roses more because red is considered to represent strong romantic feelings.
22. On an average, 220,000 wedding proposals are made on the Valentine’s Day.
23. In Italy there is a city named Verona. This is the city were the famous characters of Shakespeare’s story – Romeo and Juliet lived. Every Valentine’s Day, nearly a thousand letters reach the city and all of them are addressed to Juliet.
24. The first ever Valentine’s Day card to be sent was by Charles, Duke of Orleans. He sent the card to his wife when he imprisoned in Tower of London. That man stayed as a prisoner for the next 24 years. Charles Duke sent the valentine in 1415 and it was actually a poetry.
25. If you think that only bloody history associated with Valentine’s Day is that of St. Valentine, you are wrong. On February 14, 1929, seven Chicago gangsters were shot dead in a bloody massacre. That day became famed as St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.
26. Japanese women are, on Valentine’s Day, expected to give chocolates to their partners. This tradition started off as a part of a marketing campaign started by a chocolate manufacturing company.
27. Just because Japanese women are expected to give chocolates, it doesn’t mean that men can just escape. They give chocolates to their female partners on 14th of March. 14th of March is celebrated as White Day in Japan.
28. According to Durex – the famed condom production company, the sales of condoms on Valentine’s Day increase by around 20 to 30 percent, marking it as the highest sales day in whole year.
29. Sales of at-home pregnancy tests increases a month later! March is the most beneficial month of manufacturers of at-home pregnancy tests.
30. Teachers are the ones who receive the maximum numbers of valentines. The least numbers of valentines are received by sweethearts. Second, third and fourth positions are captured by kids, mothers and wives respectively.