Valentine's Day Symbols and Their Valentine Day Symbol Meanings
Continuing our quest to make semi-amusing articles about holidays, we arrive on Valentine's Day: the smoochiest of all holidays.
We're going to take a look-see at some Valentine's Day symbols and the partially true stories behind them.
On this day, we show our love and appreciation to, generally, our romantic partners. On this day, our displays of affection come in many forms. It can be roses, chocolates, greeting cards, and even perhaps a nice dinner somewhere out on the town.
But how did this craziness all come about? Who's responsible for this day of lovey-doveyness?
What's the story behind all these symbols? Let's start with the man himself: Saint Valentine.
The History of Saint Valentine, the "Love Saint"
The Valentine's Day holiday got its start back in the days of the old Rome Empire. Originally it was a day devoted to Lupercus, a fertility god, but centuries later, that was changed due to Lupercus getting canceled.
The day became devoted to a Christian martyr: Saint Valentine. His existence is not well documented – even his full name is unknown.
In fact, the Catholic Church removed Saint Valentine from the official calendar in 1969 when the evidence for his actual existence proved to be non-existent.
But he’ll always live on in our hearts ☺
Let's not dwell on this. Facts are not important in this day and age.
Saint Valentine is, of course, the patron saint of lovers, but he also handles beekeepers and epileptics. He's an incredibly busy guy.
Combine those three elements into one mesmerizing screenplay, and there could be an Oscar in your award-winning future.
Here's Saint Valentine’s story in a sentence. A long time ago, in ye olde Rome, they sent a priest to prison for helping the Christians out.
That guy was… you guessed it… St. Valentine.
After he croaked, his feast day, February 14th, became known as Saint Valentine's Day. Or as it's also known, VD Day.
If you know, you know.
A Day for Cupid
Alright, now let’s get the skinny on the crazy little kid running around and bow and arrow. What's the deal with Cupid?
He's the son of Venus (the goddess of love), so right away, we know this is a story about connections. Cupid didn't work his way up from the bottom; he was born into it.
His mother gave him a job to strike humans with love at first sight, and he's been doing that same job since the very first day his mother gave him the responsibility. He's never had any other employment.
And most everyone agrees that the kid does a lousy job.
Remember, never give a trust fund kid an important position.
Why Flowers Are an Important Symbol
They aren't that important, but let's pretend they are.
Roses and Valentine's Day go together like break-ups and ice cream. They're a natural combination.
It's one of the symbols that make the existence of florists possible. Without this symbol driving consumer purchases, they'd lose about a third of their annual business. No joke.
White roses symbolize purity, and red roses represent true love. Since most of us aren't pure, red roses are, by far, the more popular choice.
So, to sum up, this enthralling section, roses stand for love.
Flowers are nice while they last, but eventually they decay and end up in the trash.
Now on to our next Saint Valentine’s Day symbol.
The Hidden Meaning Behind Heart Symbolism
This meaning is not hidden. It’s not hidden at all. It’s one of those clickbait words that keep people reading.
Did it work?
The heart symbol is one of the primary symbols associated with love and relationships - and has been for about 500 years.
Naturally, this symbol is a good fit for Valentine’s Day and is festooned on just about every single bit of St. Valentine’s Day merch in existence.
Also, the heart symbol looks more like body parts related to fertility than it does to an actual human heart.
There’s probably some interesting research around this topic, but I ain’t gonna do it.
How Valentine's Day Cards Got Their Start
Surprisingly Valentine Day cards are not a modern invention. Flirtatious Romans were sending them to each other back in the heyday of the Roman Empire.
The modern Valentine’s card began to be mass-produced in the US in the 1840s. There have been attempts to replace them with electronic cards, but really they seem kind of sad.
There’s nothing less romantic than getting a hyperlink for Valentine’s Day.
I choo-choo-choose you!
The Valentine’s Symbols Wrap-Up
Alright, well, I hope you learned something and were vaguely entertained.
Valentine’s Day is a day you hate when you’re single as you need to avoid your favorite restaurants as they’re filled with starry-eyed lovers.
And it’s a day you hate where you’re in a relationship as it represents yet another needless responsibility in a reality that already seems increasingly burdensome.
In conclusion, it’s the perfect holiday because it's hated by nearly everyone.