Valentine’s Day: How February evolved to be the Month of Love, Sex & Romance

happy-v-daySo with Valentine’s Day coming around the corner, I figured you Geeky Beauts would be interested in knowing how the holiday came about! Let me take you on a little journey that began in late third century Rome. [1] 

Lupercalia

The celebratory cheer of Valentine’s Day is believed to be a derivative of an ancient Roman fertility festival called, Lupercalia (or Lupercalis). I imagine there were quite a few lovers getting busy on this day…and rightfully so. More Roman babies please! Plus more babies meant more males soldiers that could fight to protect Rome. But, surprisingly, Lupercalia was celebrated on the 15th of February. In 496 AD, Pope Gelasius; however, decided to switch this celebration to the 14th as Christianity became more widespread. This happened with several other special days too! He opted to dedicate this lover’s day to St. Valentine, a martyr and a romantic who believed in love and the power of marriage. [1]

So,

Who was St. Valentine? 

map-of-terni
Terni, Italy (Follow pink arrow)

St. Valentine of Terni (located in the region of Umbria in Italy) was a bishop who lived during the height of the Roman Empire and his ideas of marriage clashed with those of the man who ruled Rome at the time, Emperor Claudius II [2]. Pagan beliefs differed from Christianity and Christians were largely persecuted during this time. They were killed in barbaric ways, being burned alive or being torn apart by dogs! [3]

When the Roman Empire was too big to control, they began to fall prey to outsiders including: Slavic peoples, the Huns, Turks, and Mongolians. The need for skilled soldiers increased and Claudius believed that married men were weak soldiers because they had an attachment to home and longed to return. So, what did he do? He banned marriage!! St. Valentine was angered by this ban because he believed that marriage was symbolic of romantic unity and that it should be upheld. Young lovers were distraught that they were no longer able to marry, so St. Valentine began marrying young Christians in secret ceremonies (How cute!). Unfortunately, he was caught and thrown in jail for defying Claudius!

N 1558 002
St. Valentine

When he was in jail, the person guarding him, Asterius had a daughter who suffered from blindness and he had asked for St. Valentine’s help; he was known to have healing powers. Legend says that he cured Asterius’ daughter and fell in love with her.

Claudius II had met with Valentine to see if his position on the marriage ban had changed, it didn’t and in fact, Valentine attempted to suggest that Claudius convert to Christianity. Valentine was then sentenced to be executed on February 14, 270 AD. His sweetheart was distraught upon hearing the news of her lover’s inevitable death and he proceeded to pen a love letter to her which he signed “From Your Valentine. [1]” (Now it’s coming together huh?)

Valentine’s Day as a Recognized Holiday 

Card Love Figure Heart Pastels Valentine's DayAfter his execution, Romans began recognizing February 14th as an official holiday. Fast forward to the 1840s in the US colonies, a woman named Ester A. Howlanda Mount Holyoke, began hand-crafting cards with hearts, lace and ribbons and from then on Valentine’s Day cards were sold commercially on a wide scale in the US. Until today, Valentine’s Day continues to be one of the most celebrated holidays around the world. It’s a time for people to romance and woo their crushes or to bring fire and spice back to a long term relationship or marriage [1]. *plays Marvin Gaye’s “Sexual Healing” in the background.*

If you’re wondering just how important V-Day is to folks then keep reading…

Valentine’s Day Facts [4]

  • A whopping 62% of people celebrate Valentine’s Day! That’s more than half of the population. Geez. Everyone loves to love and be loved I suppose. Champagne Wine Chocolates Valentine's Day Pink Wine
  • $448 million is spent on candy during the week of V-Day. That’s just candy alone people!!
  • 58 million pounds of chocolate is sold! (I get that, chocolate is freaking awesome).
  • 36 million heart-shaped chocolate boxes are sold!
  • 150 million people send V-Day cards to their beaus.
  • But, who spends more on V-day men or women? Men of course! Haha! Women don’t play damn games when it comes to this love day!!
    • Men spend an average of $150 dollars while women spend about $74! 
  • Contrary to what you may think, roses are the second most popular flowers….MIXED FLOWERS have the the #1 spot!!!
  • The statistic that blew my mind the most is the one about wine!
    • $8.6 million is spent on sparkling wine. 

Well, Geeky Beauts I hope you enjoyed this post and leave any comments below or tell me what you found interesting about the history of V-Day!

do-not-disturbHave a wonderful Valentine’s Day and I hope you all get your groove on with a sexy someone or if you’re celebrating alone (grab your B.O.B) and make sure you have some fun too…if you know what I mean! (Damn girl you nasty) Hey! Who said that?!?!

Anywho,

Happy V-DAY!!! 

xo Ayana ❤

*Check out the links where I got my info from if you want to read in more detail* They’re numbered in brackets!!

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2 Comments Add yours

  1. carlosuper2 says:

    So interesting never knew that!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. geekybeaut says:

      Yeah! Glad you liked it! 🙂 I’m thinking of doing another backstory for Easter! I can’t wait!! xx

      Like

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