Plugged In: Gifts for Valentine’s Day?

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(Photo credit: Thinkstock)

(CNN) — Here’s a look at what you need to know about Valentine’s Day, celebrated every February 14th.

Facts: Both people in relationships and singles express their love through cards, candy, flowers and gifts.

School children exchange cards and often have classroom parties.

There are several different theories about the origins of Valentine’s Day.

The ancient Romans held the festival of Lupercalia on February 15 to protect themselves from wolves. Men struck people with strips of animal hide; women believed that this made them more fertile.

The early Christian church had at least two saints named Valentine.

One story says that Emperor Claudius II forbade young men to marry because he believed unmarried men made better soldiers. A priest named Valentine secretly married young couples.

Another says that Valentine was an early Christian who was imprisoned for refusing to worship the Roman gods. His friends tossed notes to him through his cell window.

Many stories say that Valentine was executed on February 14 about 269 A.D.

Cupid: Cupid is a well-known symbol of Valentine’s Day. He is armed with a bow and arrows in order to pierce people’s hearts.

In Roman mythology, Cupid is the son of Venus, the goddess of love and beauty.

In ancient Greece, Cupid was known as Eros, the young son of Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty.

Timeline: 496 A.D. – Pope Gelasius I names February 14 as St. Valentine’s Day. 1847 – Esther Howland, of Worchester, Massachusetts, becomes one of the first U.S. manufacturers of valentines.

1868 – The first “chocolate box” is introduced by Richard Cadbury, when he decorates a candy box with a painting of his young daughter holding a kitten in her arms. Cadbury also invented the first Valentine’s Day candy box.

2013 – The National Retail Federation estimates that U.S. consumers will spend $18.6 billion on the holiday.

2 comments

  • joanie Deveney

    I just want to invite folks to STUPID CUPID 2014 from A to Z (THE INVITATIONAL) …. OPENING ST. VALENTINE NIGHT … at the doubitng thomas art and free verse space. 856 Jefferson Ave. Tremont, Oh.
    great art, interactive performance, treats, Ball Room Dance, music by Nicholas Deveney …. free and fun 7-midnight

    Make it a stop on your Valentine Night….

  • Mary Lee

    I am soooo tired of football. It’s over! Players are reporting to spring training in Arizona. GOOOOO TRIBE!!!

Comments are closed.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.