We may all associate Valentine’s Day with romance and gift giving, but what is the real reason for this day?
Many of see February the 14th as a day to openly show affection to those we love with kind gestures and presents, all in the name of St. Valentine. Who exactly is St. Valentine you ask?
Let’s take a stroll back into the history scrolls. There are a number of stories linked to the day. One very well known story is centred on Saint Valentine of Rome who was thrown into prison for executing weddings for soldiers who had been prevented the opportunity to marry, as well as ministering to Christians who were persecuted under the Roman Empire.
As written in the history books, whilst in prison, St. Valentine cured the jailer’s daughter then wrote her a heart felt letter before he was put to death. As a farewell, the letter was signed, “Your Valentine.”
During the 18th-century in England, Valentine’s Day grew popular into an actual occasion whereby lovers expressed their love for each other by presenting flowers, chocolates, greeting cards, as well as other gifts known as Valentines.
In this day and age, we associate the day of love with cupid, hearts, doves and red roses. However, instead of the traditional handwritten letter, we have now been accustomed to mass-produced greeting cards.
Why are roses associated with Valentine’s Day?
In the early 1700s, Charles II of Sweden brought the Persian poetical art known as the “language of flowers” to Europe.
The red rose was believed to be the flower favoured by Venus, the Roman Goddess of Love, and has therefore come to represent love.
Ladies from the 18th century loved floral dictionaries that had lists of symbolic meanings of different flowers.