50 VALENTINE DAY FACTS
jeanniejeanniejeannie.co.uk BLOG Friday 14th February 2020
HAPPY VALENTINE’S TO EVERY ONE OF YOU
- About 1 billion cards are sent for Valentine’s Day each year.
- It is the second-biggest card-exchanging holiday after Christmas, when about 2.6 billion cards are sent annually.
- The popular medieval folk belief that birds choose their mates on February 14 made doves a favourite symbol for Valentine cards. The dove was sacred to Venus and other love deities and was known for choosing a lifelong mate.
4 Valentine’s Day was first introduced to Japan in 1936 and has become widely popular. However, because of a translation error made by a chocolate company, only women buy Valentine chocolates for their spouses, boyfriends, or friends. In fact, it is the only day of the year many single women will reveal their crush on a man by giving him chocolate. The men don’t return the favour until White Day, a type of “answer day” to Valentine’s Day, which is on March.
5 By 1900, cards were more popular in the US than handwritten letters, which is attributed to more readily available printing technology and affordable postage.
6 Groundhog Day was originally observed on February 14.[
7 Started by a group of feminists, “Quirkyalone Day” is celebrated on February 14 as an alternative to Valentine’s Day. It is geared toward people who “resist the tyranny of coupledom.” Another alternate Valentine’s Day celebration is SAD (Single Awareness Day), which reminds people that they don’t need to be in a relationship to celebrate life.
8 Lace is often used on Valentine decorations. The word “lace” comes from the Latin laques, meaning “to snare or net,” as in to catch a person’s heart.
9 Hallmark published their first Valentine card in 1913
10 For many who do not have a human loved one and a pet is their best friend, they will purchase a fun-loving gift and chocolates for their animal friend.11 One Valentine’s Day, some zoos offer the opportunity for people buy a cockroach, name it after an ex, and then watch it be fed to an animal, such as a meerkat.
11. Most florists will increase the cost of their flowers, especially roses by approximately 30% during the week leading up to Valentine’s day.
12 There is no one accepted explanation for the connection between St. Valentine and love. Etymologists report that the letters “v” and “g” were once interchangeable in common speech. The Norman word galantin, meaning a “lover of women,” was at one time both written and pronounced valanta or valentin, from which “Valentine” could have been derived.
13 Throughout history, there have been approximately eight St. Valentines. Three of them had special feast days in their honour. The two St. Valentines who most likely inspired Valentine’s Day are Valentine of Terni and Valentine of Rome, though some scholars speculate they are actually one person.
14 In 2011, Iran banned Valentine cards, gifts, teddy bears, and other Valentine tokens as part of an Islamic republic backlash against the spread of Western culture
15 Valentine’s Day may have been named after Valentine of Terni, a priest who married Roman soldiers against orders from Claudius II. He was arrested and killed on February 14 in the year 269. It is said that an almond tree near his grave burst with pink flowers and all the birds choose mates, hence the term “love birds.”
16 Valentine’s Day also may have been named after the priest Valentine of Rome, who refused to follow Claudius II’s ban on Christianity. While he was imprisoned, children would pass him notes through the jail window. Before he was killed on February 14, he wrote one last note to the jailer’s daughter with whom he had fallen in love and signed it “From Your Valentine.”
17 According to Welsh tradition, a child born on Valentine’s Day would have many lovers. A calf born on Valentine’s Day, however, would be of no use for breeding purposes. If hens were to hatch eggs on Valentine’s Day, they would all turn out rotten.
18 Teachers receive the most Valentine’s cards, followed by children, mothers, and wives. Children between the ages of 6-10 exchange more than 650 million Valentine cards a year.
19 A Valentine’s Day kiss is thought to bring good luck for the rest of the year
20 The most popular flower on Valentine’s Day is a single red rose surrounded with baby’s breath. The red rose was the flower of Venus, the Roman goddess of love. The rose is the symbol of love.
21 The saying “wearing your heart on your sleeve” is from the Middle Ages. Boys at this time would draw names of girls to see who their “Valentine” would be and then wear the name pinned on their sleeve for a week.
22 Richard Cadbury produced the first box of chocolates for Valentine’s Day in the late 1800s.
23 Shakespeare mentions Valentine’s Day in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and in Hamlet.
24 The first commercially made Valentine’s cards were produced in 1849 in Massachusetts by Esther Howland.
25 The first official written Valentine’s Day card is thought to have been in Great Britain in 1415 from Charles, Duke of Orleans, to his wife from prison. Captured at the Battle of Agincourt, he was imprisoned for 20 years. While he would never see his wife’s reaction to his valentine, the letter is still on display in the British Museum
26 British children in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries would celebrate Valentine’s Day by going door-to-door singing songs and sometimes begging for cake or money.
27 Most Valentine’s Day cards — about 85% — are bought and sent by women.
28 On Valentine’s Day, many people buy flowers. Different coloured roses have different meanings. Red means love, yellow means friendship, and pink means friendship or sweetheart. Red carnations mean admiration, white carnations mean pure love, red chrysanthemums mean love, forget-me-nots mean true love, primrose means young love, and larkspur means an open heart.
29 The condom company Durex reports that condom sales are 20-30% higher around Valentine’s Day.
30 Traditionally, young girls in the U.S. and the U.K. believed they could tell what type of man they would marry depending on the type of bird they saw first on Valentine’s Day. If they saw a blackbird, they would marry a clergyman, a robin redbreast indicated a sailor, and a goldfinch indicated a rich man. A sparrow meant they would marry a farmer, a bluebird indicated a happy man, and a crossbill meant an argumentative man. If they saw a dove, they would marry a good man, but seeing a woodpecker meant they would not marry at all.
31 Valentine’s day is the second biggest “event” of the calendar year following Christmas. It has been estimated that the UK will spend around £880 million on valentine’s day. Averaging that men will spend a staggering £611 million while women will spend around £269 on their partners!
32 Commercially, Valentine cards didn’t appear in England until almost the 1800s, though handmade cards had been popular for some time.
33 In 1653, English puritanical leader Oliver Cromwell became Lord Protector of the Realm and, subsequently banned St. Valentine’s Day customs. Valentine’s Day wasn’t observed again until Stuart King Charles II was restored to the English throne in 1660.
34 The first American Valentine was produced in 1834 by New York engraver Robert Elton.
35 The first European post boxes appeared in Paris in the late eighteenth century, which revolutionized the way Valentine cards were produced and delivered.
36 Each year 300,000 letters go through Loveland, Colorado, to get a special heart stamp cancellation for Valentine’s Day.
37 Women are more inclined to buy cards than men for this romantic day, men preferring to buy flowers and chocolates.
38 In Germany, girls would plant onions in a pot on Valentine’s Day, and next to the onions, they placed the name of a boy. They believed they would marry the boy whose name was nearest the first onion to grow.
39 Esther Howland (1828-1904) was the first person to create Valentines to sell in the United States. She first patented a lacy Valentine in 1844—and by 1860, her factory was selling thousands of Valentines, earning over $100,000.
40 Around 110 million Valentine’s roses are sold 2-3 days leading up to February 14th, mostly red of course. Out of those 110 million, 73% are purchased by men and only 27% are purchased by women.
41 Every year, about 10 to 14 million pounds of candy Sweethearts are produced, which is about 4.8 billion to 6.7 billion individual hearts
42 Over 100 years ago, the Chicago post office refused to deliver about 25,000 Valentine postcards because their messages were not nice. The caustic cards were called “vinegar Valentines.
43 The first recorded association of Valentine’s Day with romantic love occurs in Chaucer’s “Parlement of Foules.” Chaucer writes (in modern translation): “For this was on Saint Valentine’s day/When every bird comes there to choose his mate.” However, Chaucer may have been referring to Valentine of Genoa, whose saint’s day was May 2, a more likely time for birds to be mating than February 14.
44 “The High Court of Love” was established in Paris, France, in 1400 and is the first known official celebration of Saint Valentine’s Day. Composed of 30 women, it dealt with love contracts, violence against women, and betrayals.
45 Every Valentine’s Day, the city of Verona, Italy receives thousands of letters addressed to Juliet, from the character from Romeo and Juliet. Volunteers from the Juliet club respond to each letter and awards the “Cara Giulietta” (“Dear Juliet”) prize to the author of the most romantic letter.
46 During the Victorian Era, people would send “vinegar valentines” to unwanted suitors. Nicknamed “penny dreadfuls,” they were the opposite of customary valentines because they insulted and rejected unwanted admirers. They were later sent to women suffragettes in the late 19th and early 20th century.
47 Some religious activists in India and Pakistan protest Valentine’s Day as a day of shame of lust. They view it as a Western holiday in which Westerners satisfy their “sex thirst.”
48 nthophobia is the fear of flowers.
49 Most women will not spend half the amount of money on men as they expect to get brought for them.
50 There is an increase in the sales of pregnancy tests during the month of March, due to all those wonderful romantic interludes on Valentine’s day.
TAKE A LOOK AT VALENTINE SUPERSTITIONS Folow the Link Love Superstitions on Valentine’s Day
INSPIRATIONAL QUOTE FOR THE DAY
“Not all those who wander are lost.” – J. R. R. Tolkien
Happiness is…sending a Valentine Day card to your Valentine
GRANDAD’S ONE LINER JOKE OF THE DAY
Did you hear about the man who bent down to pick up a sieve and strained himself
Love is…celebrated on Valentine’s Day
©2020 Phil M Robinson