30 Interesting Valentine’s Day Facts

Valentine’s Day, also known as Saint Valentine’s Day, is a holiday that is celebrated every year on February 14th. It is a day filled with love, romance, and affection, where people all around the world express their love and appreciation for their significant others, family, and friends. However, there is more to this holiday than just exchanging chocolates, flowers and love notes. Here are 30 interesting facts about Valentine’s Day that you may not know.

1. Valentine’s Day is celebrated in honor of Saint Valentine, a Catholic saint who was martyred on February 14th in the year 269 AD.

2. The exact origins of Valentine’s Day are not clear, but it is believed to have roots in both ancient Roman and Christian traditions.

3. The earliest known written Valentine’s Day message was sent by a Duke of Orleans to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London in 1415.

4. The first mass-produced Valentine’s Day cards were created in the 1840s by Esther A. Howland, also known as the “Mother of the Valentine”.

5. In the Middle Ages, young men and women would draw names from a bowl to see who their Valentine would be. They would then wear this name pinned onto their sleeve for one week for everyone to see. This could be considered the origin of the phrase “wearing your heart on your sleeve”.

6. The classic Valentine’s Day flower, the red rose, is a symbol of love and passion because it was the favorite flower of Venus, the Roman goddess of love.

7. The heart shape, commonly associated with love, has been used since the 13th century to represent the heart of St. Valentine.

8. In the Middle Ages, young men and women believed that the first person of the opposite sex they met on Valentine’s Day would be their Valentine and they often wore amulets with birds on them as a sign of their love.

9. In Finland and Estonia, Valentine’s Day is known as “Friend’s Day” and it is a day to celebrate the bonds of friendship, not just romantic love.

10. Contrary to popular belief, Valentine’s Day is not just celebrated in the Western world. In fact, it is celebrated in many countries, including South Korea, Japan, and Brazil.

11. In South Korea, Valentine’s Day is celebrated differently. Women buy gifts for men on February 14th, and then the favor is returned on March 14th, also known as “White Day”.

12. While red is the traditional color associated with Valentine’s Day, different colored roses have different meanings. For example, yellow roses symbolize friendship, while pink roses represent gratitude.

13. Valentine’s Day is the second most popular day for sending cards, after Christmas. According to the Greeting Card Association, approximately 145 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged each year.

14. Chocolate has been associated with love and romance since ancient times. In fact, the Aztecs believed that chocolate was a symbol of passion and gave it as a gift to their lovers.

15. The chocolate industry is worth billions of dollars and during Valentine’s week, approximately $1 billion is spent on chocolate in the United States alone.

16. In the United States, it is estimated that around 220,000 marriage proposals are made on Valentine’s Day each year.

17. In ancient Rome, Lupercalia was a festival celebrated on February 15th to ward off evil spirits and promote health and fertility. This festival is said to be a predecessor to Valentine’s Day.

18. In Wales, the equivalent of Valentine’s Day is called “Dydd Santes Dwynwen” and is celebrated on January 25th. Traditionally, men carve wooden spoons as a gift for their sweethearts.

19. The first recorded Valentine’s Day gift was a poem written by Charles, Duke of Orleans to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London in 1415.

20. In the Victorian era, it was considered bad luck to sign a Valentine’s Day card. Instead, people would send anonymous cards and sign them as “your Valentine”.

21. Alexander Graham Bell applied for his patent for the telephone on Valentine’s Day in 1876.

22. The phrase “to wear your heart on your sleeve” is believed to originate from the Middle Ages where young men and women would draw names to see who their Valentine would be and then pin it on their sleeve.

23. In some countries, Valentine’s Day is not just celebrated on February 14th. For example, in Mexico, they also celebrate “El Día del Amor y la Amistad” on February 14th, but they also have “Dia de San Valentin” on February 14th and “El Dia del Cariño” on October 14th.

24. In Finland, Valentine’s Day is known as “Ystävänpäivä”, which translates to “Friend’s Day” and it is not just limited to romantic love, but also celebrates the love of friends and family.

25. In South Africa, some people wear their hearts on their sleeves quite literally. On Valentine’s Day, it is a tradition for women to pin the name of their love interest on their sleeve.

26. In the United States, Richard Cadbury, son of Cadbury’s founder John Cadbury, invented the heart-shaped box of chocolates in 1861 as a way to increase sales during Valentine’s Day.

27. After Christmas, Valentine’s Day is the second most popular holiday for giving and receiving gifts.

28. In the Philippines, mass wedding ceremonies are held on Valentine’s Day. This is organized by the government as a way to promote marriage and to help families who cannot afford to get married.

29. The Italian city of Verona, where Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet was set, receives around 1,000 letters each year addressed to Juliet on Valentine’s Day. These letters are answered by a team of volunteers.

30. Finally, while Valentine’s Day is known as a day for couples, it is also a perfect opportunity to express love and appreciation for family and friends. In fact, the holiday has evolved to be a celebration of all types of love, not just romantic love.

Valentine’s Day is a holiday that has been celebrated for centuries and while the traditions and customs may vary from country to country, the message of love remains the same. So this Valentine’s Day, take some time to show your love and appreciation for those special people in your life, whether it be through a card, a gift, or simply spending quality time together. Happy Valentine’s Day!