Valentine’s Day. The most romantic day of the year.
There are many legends about why we celebrate Valentine’s Day.
The lovers day falls every year on February 14th. The legends and stories related to this special date are many.
There is the one of Pope Gelasio, who, wanting to eliminate the Lupercalia (pagan festival linked to fertility, where handsome young men, naked or dressed only in small leather skirts, taking the clothes of the Faun God Luperco and personifying the ancestral and divine condition of free sexuality, whipped the earth and the hands of the women they met on their way to the Hill as a sign of fertility) brought the festivities forward by one day, to February 14th, making the feast Christian and eliminating the explicit connotations of the sexuality of the pagan feast.
There is also the story of Saint Valentine, according to which the saint would have given to a very poor girl a sum of money, necessary as a dowry for her marriage, without which it could not have been celebrated. The generous gift of the saint created the tradition of considering the holy bishop Valentine as the protector of lovers.
We also find reference to the lovers day in Shakespeare’s Hamlet, where the young Ophelia, rambling, sings: “Tomorrow is Saint Valentine’s day, and just as day breaks, I, a maiden, will knock on your window, I want to be your Valentine”.
Valentine’s Day traditions
In every country Valentine’s Day is celebrated differently.
In Italy, for example, people give chocolates and flowers to their beloved. The chocolates par excellence are Baci Perugina, that inside the beautiful paper with blue stars hide a message of love, just like the “valentines” of Charles D’Orleans, who prisoner in the tower of London, sent letters to his beloved wife calling her “ma très doulce Valentinèè”.
In Finland and Estonia February 14 is the “day of friends”, which is celebrated in company, rather than with a candlelight dinner. Nobody is excluded and for this reason it is called “Friend’s Day” in the local language and not Valentine’s Day. The official flower is the rose, but gifts, cards or candy are fine too.
Lovers in the U.S., on the other hand, have no half measures when it comes to showing their love to their partner. Every year Americans spend $18 billion on candy, cards, chocolates, flowers and jewelry. Cards are usually the most common gift, but not just for loving couples, as they are also given to family. For friends and classmates there are cards with dedications of friendship, affection and gratitude.
And how do you celebrate the lovers day? Do you prefer to give flowers or chocolate?
What would you give to one of our Redwhynot Girls if you had a romantic date with her on Valentine’s Day?
Wishing the sweetest, happiest day to you all!