We know that Feb 14th is a day of love, that we are to shower our loved ones in displays of affections, and we are to eat an unhealthy amount of chocolate. (I do for sure) Some revel in the glory of love while others curse the holiday to the depths of its existence, devaluing as a “Hallmark Holiday” constructed to simple push the sales of candy and cards. No matter how you feel about this holiday and it’s implications, the truth is that there is a ton of lore and history behind it. Here are few facts and folklore that might surprise you!
1: Though it is often claimed to be a holiday made up by the popular greeting card company, Hallmark didn’t produce its first Valentine’s Day card until 1913. This is literally centuries after the first declaration of the official holiday in 1537. The Catholic church recognizes that there were three saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred.
2: In your dreams,? Ladies in medieval times who were looking for a suitor come Valentine’s Day had an interesting tradition. So they could dream of their future spouses, women would spend the evening eating bizarre foods in hopes of seeing the one they were meant for in their dreams.
3:Where did the traditional Heart Shape Box come from?
John Cadbury, a coffee and tea shop owner in Birmingham England discovered the profitability behind chocolate manufacturing in 1822. In 1822 his son Richard packaged Cadbury chocolates, known really for their Easter cream eggs, in the world’s first heart-shaped box.
4: Chocolate used to cure a broken heart? We knew that chocolate was pretty powerful but we had no idea how much doctors believed in it. Doctors in the 1800s used to prescribe patients a dose of chocolate to cure the pangs of lost love. (I imagine this still works today, we just ice cream lol)
5: WOW! Approximately one billion Valentine cards are sent each year around the world.
6: The symbol of the ribbon, which often adorns modern-day Valentines, is rooted in the Middle Ages. When knights competed in tournaments, their sweethearts often gave them ribbons for good luck.
7: On Valentine’s Day 2000, the producer of (unnamed impotence drug), funded an impotence awareness day in Britain! (lol)
8: In medieval times it was believed that birds choose their mates on February 14, this made doves a favorite symbol for Valentine cards. The dove was sacred to Venus and other love deities and was known for choosing a lifelong mate.
9: The colors of Valentine's Day are Pink, Red and White for most cards and decorations, but is also on other Valentine commercial items like clothing, stuffed animals, candles, etc.
Red symbolizes warmth and feeling. It is associated with the color of the human heart.
White is a symbol of purity. (In some cases also of Faith and so it means the faith of the love two people have for each other.)
And so Pink (combination of Red + White) is then a symbol as I understand if of innocents or virginity in some cases.
10: Remember to Love Yourself Too! One at a time, visualize yourself hugging the people that you love, friends, kids, husbands/wives, ect. Let the infinite tenderness of your love for them wash over you. Ask for help to let go of anything that gets in the way of being close to this person, who is so precious to you.
(Does the idea of asking for help bother you? It doesn’t have to be God, or even the healing spirit of the universe, that you’re talking to. It could simply be your own deepest wisdom, which is also the heart of love. The interesting thing about asking for help in this way is that, at least in my experience, it always works...although not necessarily as we would have expected.)