Hearts, chocolate, candy, cute cards, roses, candlelight dinners—February 14th always brings forth compulsions with which to indulge passionate affections and expressions for a spouse, a significant other, or even a crush. Such activities are often carried through out of love for another person, which is of course the theme of this romantic holiday. However, there is a sentiment that is deeper than the confections and crafts. That is the celebration of traditional marriage.
Back in third century Rome, Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage, thinking that single men would make better soldiers compared to those with wives and families. A Catholic priest (named either Valentine or Valentinus) in the church disagreed with this sanction and performed marriages in secret. He was imprisoned when found out, but even then performed ceremonies from jail. Some legends claim he helped Christians escape from the prisons where they were tortured and beaten. It’s also been said that, in a letter written before his death to a girl he fell in love with, he supposedly signed it “from your valentine”; considerably starting the “valentine” greeting that is known today.
In the fifth century, this particular date was deemed to honor this Saint Valentine. Then, throughout the centuries, the day would become associated with love. One connection between them may have come from England and France in the Middle Ages. It was thought that birds began their mating season on that day.
Valentines can be red, pink, or cherry, but valentines celebrate the freedom to love and marry! A gift for your love is only a part of the rages, but love between two has lasted through the ages. Love is in the air, so go love the one you’re with. And maybe impress them with these fun facts if you care…
Valentine Fun Facts:
- In the 1840’s the first valentines were mass produced and sold in the United States. Nowadays, 150 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine’s Day the second most popular card-sending holiday after Christmas.
- In addition to the U.S., Valentine’s Day is celebrated in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France, Australia, Denmark, Italy and Japan.
- 448 million dollars are spent on candy the week before Valentine’s Day. 58 million pounds of chocolate candy are sold in that time. And about 8 billion Sweetheart candies are produced annually. Most of which are sold between January 1st and February 14th.
- 23% of adults say they will buy flowers. Of that majority, 61% are men and 39% are women. Mixed flowers are the number one choice for flowers given on this holiday. Red roses come second, and other colored roses are third.
Happy Valentine’s Day from ToastPop!