You might have come across ads on TV or social media advertising food deals for couples or heart-shaped chocolates. You might have also heard people discussing gift ideas for their significant other during the first week of February each year. The name Valentine comes to your mind if you equate the V of the word with the symbol of a heart.
You may be confused about how this Day became so popular that everyone jumped on the bandwagon to celebrate it? Well, there is a unique history to how Valentine’s Day came into being. Every year, people use Valentine’s Day to celebrate their love or ask their crushes out on a date, or romancing their life partner. But it is important to know what even is Valentine’s Day?
What is Valentine’s Day?
Valentine’s Day is celebrated on 14th February every year. It is often a day marked by people buying romantic gifts for their spouses and lovers to celebrate their love or to ask a crush or friend out on a date. In other words, it is like an annual festival to celebrate the emotion of love, friendship, crushes, and admiration.
People all over the world have different ways of celebrating. Most would usually go with the option of getting chocolates with red and pink packaging to symbolize love. They can also go for teddy bears, cakes, any types of desserts, or food deals to celebrate the occasion.
Even though Valentine’s Day is celebrated in different ways across various cultures, the central essence of the Day remains the same, which is to celebrate love. People all over the world will send heartfelt messages and cards on Valentine’s Day.
Valentine’s Day is associated with a romantic version of love and a friendship version in today’s world. People also use this Day to gather the guts to ask their long-time crush out or spring a marriage proposal on their lover so that its significance increases, sweeping them off their feet.
But let’s get into how did Valentine’s Day get invented?
History of Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day used to be known by a more traditional name. You might have come across the name Saint Valentine? If you did it, then that is what this Day used to be called Saint Valentine’s Day or Feast of Saint Valentine. So this festive Day was actually derived from Christianity because it was considered a type of Christian feast day meant to give a tribute to Saint Valentine as one of the martyrs.
Story of Saint Valentine
So how did the martyrdom of Saint Valentine get equated with love?
Well, there are many versions of how this Day came to be. But one of the prominent ones is that Saint Valentine was imprisoned in Rome for ministering to Christians that were being dealt with in the Roman Empire. So this tale is centuries old. While he was imprisoned, he reversed his jailer’s daughter’s blindness. Apparently, in his letter to his daughter before he was executed, he signed that letter with the term ‘Your Valentine.’
Some people say there was a fairytale forbidden romance between the jailer’s daughter and Saint Valentine. Others say that he was executed on 14th February in 269 AD, so this date is particularly chosen to celebrate love. Other versions of this tale are that he was imprisoned because he would conduct marriages for Christian soldiers for whom weddings were illegal.
However, what remains the same is that all versions of this tale have the essence of going above and beyond for love even in those circumstances where it is risky, or a future is not possible. Talk about a fairytale forbidden romance!
How did Valentine’s Day become so Popular?
Pope Gelasius (we know it is difficult to pronounce) was the one to make 14th February the date to celebrate the martyrdom of St. Valentine. During the 1700s, this Day became synonymous with couples expressing their love for each other by getting flowers, sweet confectionery, or sending cards to their significant other, termed ‘Their Valentine.’ Red and pink roses became extremely popular because of their association with love and romance in the flower dictionary.
How is Valentine’s Day Celebrated?
Valentine’s Day is celebrated by the exchange of cards, confectionery, desserts, and flowers. It is kind of like a Christmas but for the lovebirds. Many people see Valentine’s Day as the occasion to offer luxurious presents to their partners such as jewelry, watches, clothing, or dinner at a 5-star restaurant. Adults would book a day a dinner date at a lavish restaurant or surprise their loved one with a bouquet of red roses accompanied with cards or an expensive perfume.
With children, Valentine’s Day cards are restricted to asking out their crush, making handmade cards decorated with flowers, getting chocolates, or watching a rom-com together. In schools, this Day is celebrated as a big event with giving presents to their teacher. Conversation hearts, heart-shaped cookies, and brownies are super popular during Valentine’s week.
Red velvet is a popular flavor in desserts usually capitalized upon to get people to buy different things to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
Our Final Thoughts
With so much negativity around us, there is more need than ever for love and affection to spread and shared with others. Valentine’s Day is one such festive occasion where people can let go of their differences, take out time for their loved ones, and celebrate love with their partners.
So keeping up with tradition, celebrate your love with the person you always wanted to be with because, after all, love inspires creativity. So if you are single and ready to mingle, this is a perfect day to come clean with a secret crush!