With Valentine’s coming up, we all know that love is in the air. But how much do you know about this day dedicated to love? We think it’s high time we crushed your misconceptions! Let’s find out some fun facts about Valentine’s Day.
Jewelry jumps ahead.
Okay, okay so maybe this one doesn’t “crush” any misconceptions. In fact, it might just jibe with fun facts about Valentine’s Day you were already pretty sure about. Scooch over candy and chocolates, jewelry pulls in the big bucks. We spend $4.7 billion collectively on jewelry during Valentine’s. An evening out on the town comes in second with $3.7 billion.
Valentine’s has raucous roots.
What’s the saying? When in Rome, do as the Romans do. Maybe not so much after learning this. Valentine’s reportedly hails from Lupercalia, a Feb. 15th Roman festival that sports young men flogging women—along with animal sacrifices. This supposedly helped with fertility.
Wearing your heart on your sleeve was kind of a thing.
Courting-aged men and women during the Middle Ages had a practice of naming their love. They would clasp their heart’s true desire on their sleeve for one week. Quite a public profession!
Sending Valentines has a long lineage.
A lineage of 600 years to be exact. The first Valentine was from Charles Duke of Orleans to his wife during his imprisonment at the Tower of London in 1415. He sent a poem to his Valentine.
Candy hearts got their start as lozenges.
Fun facts about Valentine’s Day wouldn’t be the same without a treat-based one. Boston pharmacist Oliver Chase revolutionized lozenge making in 1847. This paved the way for candy production, leading to Necco wafers. It wasn’t until 15 years after Necco wafers’ debut that words could be pressed into candy. And 1902 marked the first time these candies adopted their signature heart shape we’ve grown accustomed to.
Yes, chocolate. Decadent. Sweet. Everything we could ask for. And apparently prefer! Both men and women would rather receive chocolate as a gift on Valentine’s than flowers.
The heart wasn’t always a love language.
In the past, the heart was viewed as our memory tank, where lovey-dovey feelings were recorded and stored. However, 14th century French and Italian artists ran with this theme—infusing it into their work. That groundwork led to the heart symbol we so adore today.
Roses represent love.
Roses are red. Violets are blue. Which one do you think represents love on cue? There’s a reason why roses reign supreme on Valentine’s Day. They are the Roman goddess of love’s favorite flower after all.
Valentines picked up steam in the 1840s.
Mass-produced Valentines didn’t show up on the scene until the 1840s. Before then, people would send handwritten letters to their sweethearts. However, Esther A. Howland overhauled the industry. Her signature cards trimmed with lace and ribbons earned her widespread renown.
Valentine’s is not constant through cultures.
In Latin American countries, Valentine’s is more friendship-oriented than romantic. Many share gifts with good friends to show their appreciation for one another. Japanese women will offer sweet treats to their men, with the chocolate’s quality indicating their interest. Men will return the sentiment on “White Day,” March 14.
Whether or not love has plans for you this Valentine’ Day, we hope these fun facts about Valentine’s Day tickled you pink or caused your cheeks to rose. Enjoy this day as you see fit!
Even if your love life is taking a back seat, your life shouldn’t! Come live it with us at Summer Key—and love where you live. From a playground to pet-friendly living, there’s plenty to adore with us. Visit us online to apply or call us at (256) 350-2738 to learn more. Be sure to keep coming back to our blog to stay in the know, about your favorite holidays and more!