Valentine's Day is best known as a celebration of love in all its forms. Pink hearts, red roses, and cute greeting cards adorn every surface that you see. What many people don't realize is that the modern Valentine's Day celebration actually arose from a religious holiday!
St. Valentine's Day was originally celebrated as a religious feast day in honor of early Christian martyrs. The martyrs named Valentine were honored: a priest in Rome, the persecuted bishop of Interamna, which is a town in central Italy, and a saint martyred in Africa.
The origin of Valentine's Day as a holiday for sweethearts actually began with Geoffrey Chaucer in his 1382 poem. As the poet wrote, "For this was on Saint Valentine's Day, when every bird cometh there to choose his mate," and the modern day romantic holiday was born. Shakespeare and many other writers have also mentioned Valentine's Day as a day of love.
Today, over $1 billion chocolates are sold in our country alone, with heart-shaped boxes accounting for 35 million of those purchased. And, on Valentine's Day itself, florists sell nearly 200 million stems of roses!
Although many people dismiss Valentine's Day as a commercialized "Hallmark holiday," it is beloved to couples and romantics across the United States and other countries. No matter what your celebratory plans may be this February 14th, may it truly be a wonderful day to celebrate the loved ones in your life! Happy Valentine's Day from all of us at Thomas Family Dentistry!