How is Valentine's Day celebrated in Australia
Valentine's Day Worldwide: Customs and Manners
In many countries, Valentine's Day is traditionally celebrated on February 14th, but customs on this day differ from country to country. We introduce you to the different customs. Which Valentine's custom do you like the most?
Origins of Valentine's Day
Today, the inventor of Valentine's Day is Saint Valentine of Terni, bishop of the Italian city of Terni in the third century. As a Roman priest, Valentin is said to have married couples in love according to the Christian rite and given flowers from his own garden, despite the prohibition imposed by Emperor Claudius Gothicus (AD 268-270). The Roman Emperor had Valentin executed on February 14, 269 AD for this reason.
Today we celebrate Valentine's Day on February 14th every year in honor of Valentine. The later Pope Julius I also had a basilica built in Rome in honor of Valentine in the 4th century.
By the way: Even in ancient Rome, flowers were given away every year on February 14th. The women were given flowers on this day in honor of the Roman goddess Iuno, goddess of marriage and childbirth.
Valentine's Day in Germany
Valentine's Day did not become known in Germany until the middle of the 20th century, when US soldiers stationed in Germany brought the custom with them from America.
Today, lovers mainly give each other flowers, most often red roses, to show affection for one another. But pretty Valentine's Day cards and sweets are also very popular!
Valentine customs in Italy
The Italian couples meet at bridges on Valentine's Day and attach so-called love locks to the railings. The names and sometimes the date they met are engraved on the lock. Once the lock is in place, the couple throws the key into the water.
The love locks are supposed to bring luck and of course ensure that the relationship lasts forever - just like the love lock will always get stuck on the bridge railing.
Tradition in Wales
Wales celebrates "Welsh Valentine's Day" every year, but already on January 25th, commemorating St. Dwynwen, the patron saint of love. The Welsh people give each other wooden love spoons, so-called "love spoons", as a token of their affection.
The filigree wooden spoons have a long tradition. As early as the 17th century, prospective sons-in-law made such spoons for the future father-of-the-bride in order to convince him of their craftsmanship. Even today, the wooden spoons are symbols of love and are given away on Valentine's Day.
Valentine's Customs in England
In England, Valentine's Day poems have been sent traditionally since the 15th century. Originally, however, the couples found each other by chance, being assigned to each other by drawing lots on the previous evening.
It was not until the 19th century that lovers developed the custom of sending each other decorated cards with little poems. This is how it is still done in England today.
Valentine's Day in Japan
In Japan it is only women who give men something on February 14th. However, gifts are not only given to partners and husbands, but also to friends, relatives, male colleagues and the boss. In Japan, dark chocolate is traditionally given as a gift.
That can be expensive for some Japanese women. However, these do not go completely empty: Exactly one month later the men thank the women with white chocolate.
Valentine's Day in Spain
While books are usually given away at Christmas in this country, men in Spain receive them on the "Dia de St. Jordi", the day of St. Gregory. The Spaniards celebrate this day instead of Valentine's Day and remember their national hero Gregor, the heroic dragon slayer.
On this day, which incidentally is only celebrated on April 23rd each year, the women receive a single red rose from their husbands or partners.
February 14 in Poland
Poland's "Valentine's Capital" is the small town of Chelmno, whose parish church of St. Mary keeps a relic of St. Valentine. The relic is a small part of the skull that is kept in a silver vessel. Since February 14, 2002, the relic has been exhibited in the nave for visitors.
Chelmno is known as the "city of lovers" and Valentine's Day is celebrated here as a major holiday. A service in memory of Saint Valentine is held in the parish church and thousands of red balloons are launched into the sky. Many events and concerts take place in the evening.
So it's no wonder that the city's registry office for February 14th is completely booked years in advance.
Valentine's Day in Denmark
In Denmark, Valentine's Day is a mysterious one: the Danes anonymously send small gifts to each other and the recipient has to guess the sender.
Instead of red roses, however, the Danes give each other bouquets of flowers with snowdrops. Flower hearts, pastries and chocolate are also popular.
February 14 in Sweden
In Sweden it will be really romantic on February 14th. This may also be due to the fact that this day is called the "day of all hearts" there. Lovers give each other wine gum hearts for Valentine's Day and show their love with them.
Valentine's Day is still a relatively young holiday in Sweden. Swedes have only been celebrating Valentine's Day on February 14th since the 1980s.
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