10 Fun Facts About Valentine’s Day

1. ORIGINS OF VALENTINE’S DAY Stemming from the Roman festival of Lupercalia, held in mid February. The festival, which celebrated the coming of spring, included fertility rites and the pairing off of women with men by lottery.

2. SAINT VALENTINE At the end of the 5th century, Pope Gelasius I replaced Lupercalia with St. Valentine’s Day. St. Valentine was jailed for going against the orders of Emperor Claudius II who didn’t want Roman men to marry during his recruitment of the armed forces troops. He performed secret weddings in his church and was said to be executed on February 14.

3. STORIES OF LOVE Geoffrey Chaucer and William Shakespeare romanticised the day in much of their work, significantly contibuting to the growth in popularity of February 14 as a day for the lovers in Britain and through the rest of Europe.

4. LOVE LETTERS About 1 Billion Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged each year. This makes it the second largest seasonal card sending time of the year after Christmas.

5. X AS A SYMBOL FOR A KISS During the medieval times, people who couldn’t write their names signed in front of a witness with an X. The X was then kissed to show their sincerity.

6. WEARING YOUR HEART ON YOUR SLEEVE In the Middle Ages, young men and women drew names from a bowl to see who would be their Valentine. They would wear this name pinned onto their sleeves for one week for everyone to see. This was the origin of the expression “to wear your heart on your sleeve.”

7. CHOCOLATES ON VALENTINE’S DAY It was Richard Cadbury who produced the first box of chocolates for Valentine’s Day in the late 1800’s. Seeing an opportunity for the public to purchase his chocolates  as a gift, his brand quickly became a household name as a chocolatier.

8. RED ROSES The red rose was the favourite flower of Venus, the Roman goddess of love. Part of the reason why it’s such a popular gift on Valentine’s day.

9. BIRDS’ MATING SEASON BEGINS During the Middle Ages in both England and France, it was common accepted that February 14 was the beginning of the bird’s mating season and as a result, the date became associated with one of love and coupling.

10. CUPID Before he was called Cupid, the Greeks called this heavenly figure Eros, the god of love in all its varieties. According to Greek mythology, Cupid had two arrows, gold to make people fall in love and lead to make people hate each other. During the Renaissance, artists painted Cupid as a cherub that resembled a naked child. That depiction stuck and went on to become a popular image for Valentine’s Day.

Valentines Gourmet Buffet

Book your seats early for Valentine’s Day at Signatures Buffet, and share a gourmet buffet with your loved ones.

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