Valentine�s Day is celebrated all over the world on February 14. This day celebrates �LOVE�. Lovers shower their love on each other on this day. Giving cards, candy and presenting bouquets are very much prevalent on this day. The day has its romantic association right from the High Middle Ages during the bloom of courtly love.
Symbols associated with the day
Love-notes are exchanged between lovers on Valentine�s Day. The process of exchanging hand-written notes was prevalent right from the 19th century. This has now taken the form of exchanging greeting cards. About 85% of the cards are however bought by women for this great day.
The recent Valentine symbols include the cute and winged figure of Cupid and the heart-shaped outline. Roses and lovebirds are sweet symbols for any sweetheart in love.
The Origin of the Day
Some people believe that Valentines Day owes its birth to Saint Valentine, a Roman, who refused to give up Christianity and was martyred on 14th February 269 A.D. Legend has it that St. Valentine became friends with the jailer�s daughter and left a farewell note for her before his death, which was signed �From Your Valentine�.
There is another story, which says that during the rule of Emperor Claudius, St. Valentine was a priest at the temple. Claudius imprisoned Valentine for defying him. After his martyrdom, St. Valentine went on to become the patron saint of lovers.
Another tale is that the day originated in the ancient Roman Empire for honoring Juno, Goddess of marriage and women. The day had a tradition of name drawing, which had young boys draw names of young girls from a jar and then go around with her for the entire festival. This relationship often lasted for a year and also developed into marriage.
In the 14th century, Valentine�s Day was celebrated with loved ones and a grand feast was also arranged. Exchanging of gifts among lovers began from the 16th century. Originally the cards were hand-made. Valentine�s Day became popular in the middle of the 18th century and brought in the trend of exchanging handwritten love notes that are called Valentine.
Today, Valentines Day is a universal concept and is celebrated all over the world. The romantic ceremony has major economic and social significance due to the trend of exchanging gifts and extensive dating. Nowadays, people wish �Happy Valentines Day� not only to their lovers, but also to teachers, parents, friends, siblings and any other special person.
Other than flowers, chocolates and cards, jewelry has also got a place in the gift list for women on this day. Technology has further made it possible to exchange love text messages between lovers as well as friends.
Restaurants are busy this day, as couples usually prefer a romantic candle-lit dinner to get cozy. People even visit multiplexes and malls with their beloved ones. Others may opt for parties and balls at many hotels and clubs to enjoy this day.
In the US, the marketing and commercialized trend of February 14 has made them refer to it as a �Hallmark Holiday�. Another trend has cropped up to term Valentine�s Day as the �Singles Awareness Day�.