How Valentine’s Day is Celebrated Around the World
By: Aarja Mody, Social Media Editor, The Pawprint
Valentine’s day is an international holiday that is celebrated annually on February 14th. Here people express their love for one another through gifts and greetings. This doesn’t just have to be between a couple, but it can be any type of relationship, such as friends and family.
Regardless of the fact that there were other Christian martyrs called Valentine, Valentine’s Day is said to have been named after a priest who was executed by the Roman emperor Claudius II Gothicus in 270 CE. Other stories claim that the feast was named for St. Valentine of Terni, a bishop, however, it’s likely that the two saints were the same, according to Britannica.
Romantic South Koreans celebrate love on the 14th of every month, not just in February! These days include May’s Rose Day, June’s Kiss Day, December’s Hug Day, and April’s Black Day, which is when singles congregate to console themselves over black noodles known as Jajangmyeon. However, South Koreans celebrate Valentine’s day a bit differently. On February 14, women give chocolates to the men instead.
Based on the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia, young women pin the name of their crush to their sleeve for all to see. Sometimes the subtle appearance of an anonymous card doesn’t get the job done, at least not in South Africa. Though, in the present day, it is more common for couples to celebrate valentine’s day with chocolates, gifts, and romantic dinners.
Chinese Valentine’s day is celebrated on the 7th day of the 7th month of the Chinese lunar calendar. This is also called the Qixi Festival (literal meaning: Evening of Sevens Festival). This unique celebration of love is deeply rooted in Chinese folklore and is based on the romantic legend of Zhinu and Niulang. Though they also celebrate Valentine’s day on the 14th of February with gifts, chocolates, and romantic dinners.
For Valencians, the most romantic day of the year falls on 9th October, the Day of Saint Dionysius, also the patron saint of love. To mark this festive occasion, many festivals and parades are held, and traditionally, men offer their partner a Mocadora – marzipan figurines – as a token of their love.
Valentine’s Day is an internationally recognized holiday and it is fascinating to learn how each country celebrates love in its own ways. Whether you’re single or in a relationship, these centuries-old Valentine’s Day traditions, from throughout the world, that celebrate love and friendship will give something for everyone to appreciate. So, pack your bags and start planning your international vacation to celebrate Valentine’s day immediately!
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