10 Interesting Facts About Valentine’s Day

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1. Valentine’s Day started with the Romans. During the Roman Empire in 270 A.D. when Claudius II reigned, he didn’t want men to marry during wartime because he believed single men made better soldiers. In the spirit of love, Bishop Valentine went against his wishes and performed secret wedding ceremonies. For his disobedience, Valentine was jailed and then executed by order of the Emperor on February 14. While in jail, he wrote a love note to the jailor’s daughter, signing it, “From your Valentine.” Sound familiar?

2. The ancient Romans celebrated the Feast of Lupercalia on February 14 in honor of Juno, the queen of the Roman gods and goddesses. Juno was also the goddess of women and marriage.

3. In 1537, England’s King Henry VII officially declared February 14 the holiday of St. Valentine’s Day.

4. “Wearing your heart on your sleeve” is more than just a phrase. In the Middle Ages, young men and women drew names from a bowl to see who their Valentine would be. They would wear the name pinned to their sleeve for one week for everyone to see. This was the origin of the expression “to wear your heart on your sleeve”.

5. Casanova, well known as “The World’s Greatest Lover”, ate chocolate to make him virile.

6. The chocolate box has been around for more than 140 years. The first Valentine’s Day box of chocolates was introduced by Richard Cadbury in 1868.

7. It’s the 2nd most popular holiday for greeting cards. According to the Greeting Card Association, 190 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine’s Day the second most popular greeting card–giving occasion, after Christmas.

8. Husbands and boyfriends like to give flowers on Valentine’s Day. Men account for 73 percent of Valentine’s Day flower sales.

9. Roses are the flowers of love. The red rose was the favourite flower of Venus, the Roman goddess of love. The bud stands for strong romantic feelings, so it’s no surprise they make up the most popular Valentine’s Day flowers.

10. The average number of wedding proposals on Valentine’s Day each year is 220,000. Will you be proposing to your Valentine this year?