13 Fascinating Valentine’s Day Facts that You Probably Never Knew
13 Valentine’s Day facts that not everyone really knows about even though the day os one of the biggest and costliest festivals on the planet. This day which comes around only once a year is more than just a Hallmark holiday. There is a rich history behind Valentine’s Day which dates back to Ancient Rome. Everyone around the world usually celebrate 14 February by exchanging cute cards, romantic gifts, candy hearts, and red roses with their loved ones. But, what were the origins of this sweet tradition? Here are 13 valentine day facts that include fascinating details about how this romantic holiday started andhow it became this modern candy-filled day in these times.
1 There are some dark roots linked to its origin
The origin of Valentine’s Day is believed by historians, to actually have begun in Ancient Rome as a pagan fertility festival called ‘Lupercalia’. This festival was celebrated in dedication to the Roman god of agriculture-Faunus, and the founders of Rome- Romulus and Remus.
2 It officially became a holiday associated with love and romance only in the 1300s
Among Valentine’s Day facts, when the Roman Pope Gelasius officially declared the date of February 14 “St. Valentine’s Day” the holiday was Christianized. The day was then associated with love because it was a common belief that the mating season of birds started from February 14.
3 Saint Valentine might not have been just one person
Saint Valentine wasn’t just one person because he might have been two or three. But, it is still a fact that the most common founder of Valentine’s Day was the Saint Valentine who had defied Emperor Claudius II. Since Claudius had banned marriage at the time, because he felt that it distracted young soldiers, Valentine illegally married couples until he was caught. When he was imprisoned young couples would often visit him in his cell and give him cards and flowers. The day of his actual demise was on February 14.
However, throughout history, there have been multiple St. Valentines. This even includes one Pope who had served for only 40 days in 827 A.D., and a bishop.
4 In the 15th century the first valentine was sent
A poem written by a medieval French duke named Charles to his wife in 1415 is the oldest record of a valentine being sent. It was when Charles was just 21 years old, and he was imprisoned in the tower of London that he penned this sweet note to his lover. In the poem one of the lines read- “I am already sick of love, My very gentle Valentine.”
5 The first mass-produced valentines was in the 1840s
It wasn’t until the 17th century that people first started exchanging handwritten letters and cards to both their lovers and friends. However, it was only in the 1840s that the first Valentine’s Day cards were mass-produced in the U.S. and were sold by Esther A. Howland. She was credited with commercializing Valentine’s Day cards in America and is known as the “Mother of the American Valentine”. She will always be remembered for her elaborate, crafty cards made with lace and ribbons.
6 Around the world it is celebrated very differently
This holiday is known as el día de los enamorados or the day of lovers, or díadelamor y la amistad- the day of love and friendship, in many Latin American countries. While it is still common for couples to exchange flowers and chocolate on this day, the focus of this holiday is also directed to showing gratitude to friends.
In Japan, There is custom for women only to give confections to the men in their lives. The quality of the chocolate indicates their true feeling according to Fortune. Exactly a month after on March 14, the men repay the favor and it is known as “Whit Day”.
7 Each year Americans send 145 million Valentine’s Day Cards
It is known among Valentine’s Day facts that the day is perhaps the second biggest holiday after Christmas, for exchanging greeting cards. Teachers receive most of the Valentine’s Day cards each year, followed by children, mothers, and wives. We have come a long way since 1913, when Hallmark Cards produced their first Valentine’s card.
8 People spend nearly $650 million on gifts for their pets
Our furry friends are very endearing to us which is why they deserve our love and gifts every now and then. Last year, more than 5 million American households presented their pet dogs with Valentine’s Day gifts and more than 2 million presented their cats with gifts. While more Americans buy gifts for their dogs, people spend way more on their pet kitties which have been estimated to be about $96 per household in comparison to $81 for households with dogs.
9 Jewelry is the one Valentine’s Day gift that people splurge on
The most common gifts for Valentine’s Day is candy and flowers as we know it. But, as per the National Retail Federation, the category that we tend to spend on the most on February 14 is jewelry- a whopping %4.7 billion. An evening-out with $3.7 billion, is the second most-paid-for gift, followed by flowers, clothing, and candy.
10 In 1861, the first heart-shaped box of chocolates was introduced
Richard Cadbury, the son of John Cadbury who is also the founder of Cadbury, created the heart-shaped box of chocolates. He did it by packaging chocolates in fancy boxes to increase sales. On V-day in 1861, he introduced the first heart-shaped box of chocolates. Today, more than 36 million heart-shaped boxes of chocolates are sold annually.
11 The first sweet printed messages on conversation hearts wasn’t until 1866
Daniel Chase, Oliver’s brother, started printing sentimental messages on the Necco sweethearts. These candies might have been bigger, featuring longer printed sayings and phrases, than the version we have today. Some of these messages read- “Married in white you have chosen right”, or “How long shall I have to wait? Please be considerate.”
12 Every year more than 8 billion conversation hearts are manufactured
Valentine’s day facts, every year, after February 14 Necco has to start making their conversation hearts for the next Valentine’s Day. Almost 100,000 pounds have to be produce daily with each box having approximately 45 sayings which include “True Love”, “Hug Me”, and “You Rock”. You can even have your own personalize ones as well. If you already have a box then you needn’t worry as they have a shelf life of five years.
13 On Valentine’s Day nearly 6 million couples get engaged
What other better day is there for a marriage proposal than a day which throughout history has been literally dedicated to love and romance? The most popular days to pop the question is Valentine’s Day. As many as 6 million couples get engaged on February 14. According to the results of a survey, Valentine’s Day was vote for the best day of the year to propose than any other day. In fact, 40% of the votes came from men.