Saint Valentine's Day: how it all started?
Saint Valentine's Day, commonly known as Valentine's Day, has a rich history dating back to ancient times. The origins of this widely celebrated day are shrouded in legend and mystery, with various stories contributing to the tapestry of its inception.
Origins of Saint Valentine's Day
One popular theory traces the roots of Saint Valentine's Day back to ancient Rome. Legend has it that during the third century, Emperor Claudius II banned marriages for young men, believing that single men made better soldiers. However, a priest named Valentin defied this decree and continued to perform marriages in secret. When his actions were discovered, Valentin was arrested and later executed on February 14th, around the year 269 A.D.
The celebration of Saint Valentine's Day as we know it today is believed to have begun as a commemoration of Saint Valentine's martyrdom. Over time, the day became associated with romantic love. Later it evolved into the cultural phenomenon we now celebrate annually on February 14th.
First mentions of Saint Valentine's Day
The first recorded association between Saint Valentine's Day and romantic love dates back to the 14th century in England and France. During this time, people believed that birds began to mate on February 14th. This event further cemented the day as one for expressing affection and love. Geoffrey Chaucer's poetry from the Middle Ages, particularly his work "Parlement of Foules," played a crucial role in popularizing the idea of romantic love during this period.
As the centuries passed, the celebration of Saint Valentine's Day gained momentum. It has spread to various countries, each adopting its own unique traditions and customs.
Celebrations in United States of America
In the United States, Saint Valentine's Day gained popularity in the 19th century. It sterted with the exchange of handmade cards and tokens of affection becoming a common practice. Esther Howland, known as the "Mother of the American Valentine," played a pivotal role in commercializing the production of valentine cards during this era.
How Asia celebrates Sait Valentine's Day?
In Japan, Valentine's Day has a distinctive tradition where women present gifts, often chocolate, to men. One month later, on March 14th, known as White Day, men reciprocate with gifts for the women who gave them presents on Valentine's Day.
South Korea celebrates Saint Valentine's Day in a similar fashion but adds an extra layer with Black Day on April 14th. On this day, individuals who did not receive any gifts on either Valentine's Day or White Day gather to eat black bean noodles, turning it into a day of solidarity for singles.
Why Brasil is different?
In Brazil, the celebration of Dia dos Namorados, or Lover's Day, takes place on June 12th. This day coincides with the eve of Saint Anthony's Day, the marriage saint. It is marked by the exchange of gifts and romantic gestures.
In recent times, Saint Valentine's Day has transcended cultural boundaries, becoming a global celebration of love and affection. Whether it's the exchange of love notes, flowers, or romantic dinners, people worldwide participate in this day dedicated to expressing and celebrating love.
How do we honor Saint Valentine's Day?
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