Valentine’s Day, or more properly “Saint Valentine’s Day,” is a tradition that dates back to 496 AD, when Pope Gelasius established the romantic holiday. The tradition thrives today, some 1600 years later, as amorous companions around the world express their love with cards, flowers, jewelry and other gifts. Though Valentine’s Day is widely celebrated, there are unique deviations that certain cultures have developed, such as:
- England – In some parts of England, legend has it that a character named “Jack Valentine” visits the rear doors of houses, leaving candy and other goodies for children. Oddly enough, the tradition continues even though many children are frightened by Jack.
- Sweden – Swedish celebrate Alla hjärtans dag – or “All Hearts’ Day.” This less-genuine holiday was actually introduced in the 1960s by the flower industry, but has taken hold as lovers give one another flowers and cosmetics.
- Latin America – in much of Latin America, the day is accented with an “Amigo secreto” (Secret Friend) tradition, where randomly-assigned participants give each other anonymous gifts.
- Japan – Japanese women often give chocolates to men, even those who are just co-workers. The men then have until March 14 (“reply day”) when they are expected to return the favor of gift-giving. If the gift given by a man is equal in value, the relationship is being ended. A more amorous response is a gift 2-3 times in value to that which was received. No gift “reply” at all is perceived as the man placing himself in a position of authority.
In the United States, while chocolates and flowers are appreciated, everyone knows that few gifts make the recipient happier than jewelry. From young to old, women of all ages appreciate rings, earrings and other sparkly treasures.
If you’re considering a Valentine’s Gift of jewelry for your loved one, you’ll be happy to know you can save an additional 5% this month, on our website by entering the code VDAY5PERCENT at checkout. If you’re buying in person, simply print out this blog entry and bring it in to save.
Happy Valentine’s Day!